Not even death can keep Quentin Lance away from the final season of Arrow.
EW has confirmed that original cast member Paul Blackthorne, who played the former SCPD captain, is returning for multiple episodes in the CW superhero’s farewell eighth season. At the moment, the how of his encore is unclear given that Quentin is dead. TVLine broke the news of his return.
“We could not have a final season without @PaulBlackthorne,” Arrow showrunner Beth Schwartz tweeted Monday morning.
For six seasons, Blackthorne starred as Laurel (Katie Cassidy) and Sara (Caity Lotz) Lance’s detective father who eventually went on to join Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) in the mayor’s office and succeeded Oliver as Star City’s mayor. His time on the show came to an end when Quentin died after taking a bullet for Laurel’s Earth-2 doppelgänger in the season 6 finale. His death set up Laurel’s season 7 redemption arc, which has culminated with her becoming a member of Team Arrow in season 8.
Arrow has a history of finding relatively plausible ways of bringing back characters who have perished. Since Tommy Merlyn’s season 1 finale death, Colin Donnell has returned several times in flashbacks, as a ghost/hallucination, and most recently, as an evil alternate-reality version of Tommy in the season 8 premiere. “Starling City” also featured appearances from Colin Segarra, Susanna Thompson, and John Barrowman, all of whom played characters who died. In other words, there are many ways for Quentin to pop back up on the show.
The news of Blackthorne’s return arrives several days after Stephen Amell revealed that recently departed series regular Emily Bett Rickards is returning as Felicity Smoak in the series finale, which began production last week. The final season of Arrow is turning into quite the homecoming.
After departing the show, Blackthorne went on to star on the recently-canceled NBC drama The InBetween.
Arrow airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. on The CW.
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