Fortunately, executive producer Andrew Kreisberg has some of the answers.
Two ‘Flash’ characters come to visit
One of the highlights of episode 19, “The Man Under the Hood,” is the arrival of two characters from the spinoff series, “The Flash.” Caitlin Snow (Danielle Panabaker) and Cisco Ramon (Carlos Valdes) show up for a brief but important scene in the episode.
Why are they there?
“We knew a lot of the fans had been looking forward to seeing a little bit of ‘The Flash’ in this season, and we felt obliged to fulfill that promise,” Kreisberg told reporters recently. “It just felt like a fun way to bring up Barry [Grant Gustin], where he’s at and give a little taste of the show.”
There’s even a slightly more science-fiction element to the “Flash” characters’ appearance that’s meant to give “a little glimpse into the type of things the Flash will be up more against.”
Is someone else going to be let in on the secret?
At the end of episode 18, Slade Wilson tells Laurel Lance that Oliver Queen is secretly the vigilante that has been roaming Starling City for the past two years. Does she believe him? How does she react? These are two big questions coming into play for Laurel in “The Man Under the Hood.”
“Laurel has obviously had a very rough year,” Kreisberg says in an understatement. “When Slade told Laurel, he thought it was going to be another devastating death charge into Oliver’s life.”
Whether this is the result or not, the “Arrow” producers wanted to let Laurel know about the secret for the variation in character this knowledge brings. “It was sort of the same experience with Colin Donnell’s character, Tommy [in Season 1],” explains Kreisberg. “Once he knew, it just changed his character so much, just the way you looked at him, every scene suddenly became super-charged with him — even if it was just a small scene that didn’t really have anything to do with the main plot.”
Fans can expect the same to happen with Laurel in upcoming episodes.
From Isabel Rochev to Ravager
Isabel has emerged as one of the true villains of “Arrow” Season 2, but her route to an evil reveal and the apparent new identity of Ravager (a villain from the DC comics who always seems somehow related to Slade Wilson) was never a given.
“Isabel was the one thing that we weren’t entirely sure about as we were developing the season,” Kreisberg says. “Part of the reason Isabel disappeared for awhile was, we still weren’t quite sure which way to go — whether she should be an ally or a villain. We had kind of written it so it could turn out either way.”
What made the decision? “As it was coming down, the scene I was picturing was Isabel, Sebastian and Slade, all in Oliver’s office as the triumvirate of evil,” the producer says. “And once that happened, there was no way she wasn’t going to be Ravager.”
The “Arrow” episode, “The Man Under the Hood,” airs Wednesday (April 16) at 8 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.