The Arrow season 7 poster makes it clear the show isn't going to be kind for its main character Oliver Queen. The key art for season 7 has given a brand new look at Oliver Queen behind bars (following the season 6 finale) and Ollie is beaten, bloody and none too happy. Season 7 will open with the Green Arrow's secret identity being exposed the public and Oliver in jail for the foreseeable future. It's a new status quo that's problematic for a number of reasons.
Oliver behind bars doesn't just leave Star City without its most famous protector, the Green Arrow is now locked up with many of the criminals he helped capture. Cody Runnels as Derek Sampson and Vinnie Jones as Brick are two of many returning villains. These former baddies will be enacting their revenge on Oliver in a brutal way, evidently resulting in a lot of damage to Oliver's very pretty face.
The Arrow season 7 key art comes from Stephen Amell. In the promotional material Oliver Queen can be seen completely alone, standing in a cell block with his face bruised and full of semi-open wounds. It's a harsh contrast to the previous key art for Arrow. While Oliver has always been front and center, usually he's accompanied by his team in the season poster and the overall message of the key art is one of hope. Season 7, with its very dour Ollie, don't give off that impression.
The CW using such a roughed up image of their main character sends a bold message for the overall tone of Arrow season 7. It fits with what is known about the upcoming season. Amell posted a video from the Arrow set explaining how much of a beating his character is taking in season 7 and Amell was bearing wounds that aren't so different from the ones seen in the poster. One scene has even been teased to push the limits of network television. It wouldn't be much of a leap to assume that scene takes place in Seaside Maximum Security Prison and involves Oliver's fight for survival.
Arrow season 7 is obviously aiming for a darker tone than normal, but the season 7 poster doesn't completely squash all sense of optimism. Right underneath Oliver's battered mug, season 7's tagline can be seen: "Revelation and Repentance." Repentance most likely refers to Oliver's own personal journey in season 7. Oliver spent most of season 6 confused and reacting to events, not leading the charge. Oliver even agreed to go to prison in recognition of his mistakes.
Revelation, on the other hand, could be hinting at almost anything. The audience is currently aware, but Oliver isn't, that season 6's villain, Ricardo Diaz survived the events of the finale. Diaz will regroup in season 7 and bring with him new villains, the Longbow Hunters. The surprise return of Diaz could be the revelation in question and it might also be how Oliver is sprung from jail. In the season 6 finale, Oliver's imprisonment was delayed because Diaz wasn't yet defeated. Perhaps FBI Agent Samanda Watson will free Oliver from prison in a Suicide Squad type role to hunt down Diaz .
Since Diaz's survival is known to pretty much everyone else but Oliver and his allies, the "revelation" could be something completely different. After all, Diaz becoming season 7's big reveal would be rather disappointing. The only thing that is assured is that Arrow season 7 will have Oliver at a new low, even if he's not going to spend all season behind bars.
Arrow season 7 premieres Monday, October 15 on The CW.
Source: Stephen Amell