‘Arrow’ EP Talks Oliver’s ‘Crisis of Confidence’ on Show's Winter Return

“He finds himself sort of struggling with how he can be The Arrow," The CW series' executive producer tells Celebuzz.

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Stephen Amell in 'Arrow'
'Arrow's' John Barrowman
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Last we left Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) on The CW’s Arrow, he was defeated emotionally and pretty banged up physically, too, by the Dark Archer (John Barrowman). After encountering a foe he couldn’t take down with a quick arrow, Oliver started to realize that not everything in his mission was what it seemed and questions about his family, his father, and the nature of his list seemed to formulate in his mind.

When Arrow picks up with its all new return episode on Wednesday, “Burned,” Oliver has been out of commission for six weeks, and in his break from taking down the corrupt in Starling City, a lot has changed.

“He’s very different! We haven’t seen hide nor hair of The Arrow. We’re going to learn why that is — why The Arrow has gone underground. You know, this is the first time he suffered a defeat from anybody, so he’s really dealing with a crisis of confidence,” series executive producer Marc Guggenheim told Celebuzz.

“He finds himself sort of struggling with how he can be The Arrow, and one of the ways we explore that in this episode is the nature of fear.”

“Burned” sees the introduction of a new villain for The CW show but one very familiar to DC comicbook fans in Firefly (Andrew Dunbar), a firefighter who was disfigured in a previous fire and now uses the element against others. This allows the show to push the boundaries of their production value and stunt sequences, as Guggenheim shared that the majority of the fire in scene was all practical. Meaning they actually set things and people on fire.

“It has a scope to it that I think is something you don’t often see,” Guggenheim said.

“For this episode, we decided to go with a villain that A., Oliver couldn’t hit, and B., someone who could really personify fear in our world, and for us, that was fire. This is a villain who basically can use fire as a weapon. And that’s a terrifying prospect for Oliver! Who isn’t scared of fire, you know?”

In having to face off with Firefly, Oliver also recalls a time on the island, through more flashbacks, that dealt heavily in this theme of fear. Though he took a “time out,” Oliver ultimately refuses to give into fear — something that one can’t really quantify, let alone fully know. As it turns out, though, The Arrow’s absence was felt in a different way that audiences — or even Oliver himself — might have expected.

“One of the things we’ll learn in this episode is The Arrow has had a bit of a chilling effect on the city. We never talked about it before this point,” Guggenheim said.

“But The Arrow was going as fast as possible to cross these names off the list, but he also put the fear of God into those in the city. We’ll see how The Arrow’s absence has had sort of a collateral effect.”

Arrow returns Wednesday at 8PM on The CW.

What are you most excited to see in Arrow’s return? Let us know in the comments below!

-- Danielle Turchiano

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