Noooooo! Arrow producer explains why [REDACTED] had to die

Contributed by
May 17, 2013, 9:56 AM EDT (Updated)

From big reveals to classic DC baddies, the first season of Arrow didn’t pull any punches on the way to this week’s epic finale. But did they really have to kill this fan-favorite character?

Spoilers ahead for the recently-aired season finale!

The writers haven’t been afraid to knock off some characters along the way, and took out a principal member of the cast in the epic conclusion of the Dark Archer’s plot to level The Glades. So why did Tommy Merlyn (Colin Donnell) have to die? Mostly to make sure Oliver feels some real pain, along with the rest of the characters.

Here's how producer Marc Guggenheim explained it all:

“It really had nothing to do with his trajectory as the Dark Archer. It really had to do with the fact that we wanted Oliver to suffer a loss at the end of the season. When we thought about the characters that he could lose who would have the biggest impact not just on Oliver, but on the show, Tommy was the name that rose to the top very quickly. Tommy's death impacts pretty much every member of our cast. Obviously his death impacts Oliver and Laurel (Katie Cassidy), but there's a closeness between Thea (Willa Holland) and Tommy that we've established on the show, Lance, obviously because of the connection that Laurel has with Tommy and Moira (Susanna Thompson) because of her responsibility with Tommy. He's the one character whose death would have the biggest impact.”

Creatively, it was a strong move, because most fans didn’t expect Tommy to die (especially considering his trajectory in the comic canon). It might not fit directly with the Green Arrow mythos, but it makes sense in the world of Arrow — and that’s what matters.

What did you think of the decision to kill off Tommy?

(Via TV Guide)

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