The CW's Arrow launched the network's interconnected DC universe, and will wrap up its fourth season next week. With four seasons down, the show is already looking forward to season 5... and possibly bringing it back a bit closer to its roots after mixed fan reactions to the fourth season.
One way that the show might do this is by choosing a villain that challenges Team Arrow without relying on magic or superpowers. If what series star Stephen Amell says is true, then the producers may be doing exactly that.
Speaking to Variety, Amell discussed a few things that fans have to look forward to in the next season. Of course, the big question is always going to be "who is the big bad?", and Amell did drop a few lines about what he knows so far. It is apparently not an enemy that could have been done early on, with Amell saying:
“I’ve heard that our big bad, our villain, is something that you can really only do once you’re in the fifth, sixth or seventh season of a TV show."
He claimed to know more, but declined to reveal exactly how much. He did offer up one other hint:
“As far as I know, they don’t have superpowers. I’ll tell you that.”
Amell also discussed other aspects of the upcoming season, including crossovers and the general tone of the season. Since the network isn't spinning off a new series (it's picking up Supergirl, but the first season of that show has already aired), he says that the show will focus more on Oliver Queen and Team Arrow instead of universe building. He also expressed his excitement at the show "getting back to its roots," though he is looking forward to a Supergirl crossover and a four-way crossover with The Flash, Legends of Tomorrow and Supergirl.
This is definitely encouraging, though a lot of fans will likely point out that they were less upset about Oliver facing off against powered villains than they were about what seemed like a forced romance with Felicity. It's possible that getting back to the show's roots will sever that link as well, though that may be reading too much into Amell's comments. Of course, there's no telling what they actually intend until season 5 actually gets here (or at least until details start coming out about the episodes).
It remains to be seen whether a powerful-yet-unpowered villain will correct the missteps that some Arrow fans were disappointed in during season 4. For those who didn't like the season, Amell and company likely have a long way to go toward getting back to good with the series. Given how Amell himself has commented a few times about how the show was at its best against the threats of previous seasons, though, it's likely that he at least wants to bring Arrow back to its former glory.
Arrow season 4 finale airs on May 25, 2016. Supergirl returns for season 2 in the fall on The CW. The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8pm on The CW, Arrow in the same timeslot on Wednesdays, and Legends of Tomorrow on Thursdays.