In the mid-season finale of Arrow, Oliver comes back to the bunker to see Laurel Lance, alive and well. What we don’t know is how. In season four, Damien Dahrk kills her so Laurel’s reappearance is suspicious, to say the least. To be completely honest, I stopped watching after season four because the show went from being a superhero show to a badly done soap opera. As an amateur comic reader, the minute I found out Laurel died, I decided that “Eleven-Fifty-Nine” would be the last episode I’d watch. For non-comic book readers out there, the Black Canary (Laurel Lance in the Arrowverse) is a force to be reckoned within the DC universe. Thus far, Black Canary has a history span of 69 years and an iconic but tumultuous romance with the Green Arrow.
So it’s that much more frustrating that the writers of Arrow, specifically Marc Guggenheim, stated that they “never really thought about going back” to explore the “Laurel-Oliver romance story” after the first season. It’s ridiculous given the amount of history these characters have in both the show and the comics. The only thing that kept me going all those years was Katie Cassidy, who I’m a big fan of. And as it turns out, I’m not the only person who thought the show had gone downhill.
Flashpoint’s Possible Involvement
So, just like Arrow’s 100th episode, I decided I’d watch, just to see if it was holding up to its promise of going “back to [their] roots” as producer Wendy Mericle put it. After watching the mid-season finale, I went back to watch the rest of the season and found myself pleasantly surprised. But Laurel’s absence is still disappointing. Which is why Laurel standing in the Arrow cave was very exciting.
What we don’t know yet is how and why now. Guggenheim previously stated that Laurel would stay dead. The only clue as to how she’s back is Mericle revealing that “Flashpoint might have a little bit to do with that”. Flashpoint being the new timeline that Barry (the Flash) created after going back to save his mother, then coming back to the original timeline. In other words, it’s complicated. With that, a multitude of theories of how Laurel is alive have surfaced online. Regardless, I’m just glad to see her back on my TV screen, hopefully for good.
With that, here are my theories of Laurel Lance’s return:
Theory #1: It’s Black Siren impersonating Earth-1 Laurel Lance
If like me, you’ve been keeping up with The Flash, Katie Cassidy went from dying on Arrow to becoming the badass villain Black Siren from Earth-2 (watch her scenes here). Near the end of the episode, Team Flash locks her up, but what would happen if she found a way out? There’s still a lot we don’t know about Earth-2, let alone the Earth-2 version of Laurel Lance. What we do know is that the Green Arrow on Earth-2 is Robert Queen, and Oliver died instead. What we don’t know is how Laurel became the Black Siren. But my theory is that Laurel became the Black Siren after Oliver died on the Queen’s Gambit. It’d be very similar to Helena’s (AKA the anti-hero, the Huntress) origin story. So it’d be interesting if she somehow found a way out of Star Labs after discovering that Oliver’s alive.
Theory #2: Earth-2 Laurel is no longer Black Siren
The last we saw of Black Siren was behind, well not bars, but double-paned soundproof glass. But Flashpoint’s changed everything, perhaps even in other universes. My guess is that Earth-2 Laurel Lance is just no longer Black Siren. It could mean that she’s just your average everyday lawyer. Or she might still be a meta-human but she’s the Black Canary we’ve all been asking for. Either way, I still see an Earth-2 non-evil Laurel Lance as a viable option.
Theory #3: The Lazarus Pit
Last season on Arrow, we learn Nyssa al Ghul destroyed the Lazarus Pit. If you don’t know, it’s a fountain of youth with the power to grant someone immortality as well as bring someone back to life. In the comic world, there are multiple Lazarus Pits around the world. The writers haven’t explored that yet in the Arrowverse, but they could. Even if they decide not to have more than one Lazarus Pit, Flashpoint (again) could change the fountain’s fate. Maybe the writers will even include the al Ghul sisters’ involvement. Especially given the close relationship between Laurel and Nyssa and the recent casting of Talia al Ghul. Another possibility would be that Talia or Nyssa decide to bring it back somehow.
Whether or not any of these theories come to pass, my only hope is that she stays. Especially because there is a more probable chance considering the fact that Katie Cassidy signed a contract that allows her to be a series regular across Arrow, The Flash, and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow. But what I can ultimately say about the character of Dinah Laurel Lance, both the DC comic character and television adaptation, is that she deserved better.
Arrow returns on January 25th at 9/8c on the CW.