The Green Arrow finally hung up his cowl for good; the Arrow series finale, season 8, episode 10, aired January 28, 2020 on The CW in a two-hour finale special. The episode followed a one-hour special called “Arrow: Hitting the Bullseye,” which featured cast and creators talking about the series.
After eight seasons, Oliver Queen left the Arrowverse, leaving behind a legacy of heroes and plenty of shows. While Legends of Tomorrow, The Flash, Supergirl, Batwoman, and Black Lightning will all go on, it’s still bittersweet to be witnessing the end of a show that premiered in 2018 and acted as a conduit for the start of so many other shows.
The synopsis for the episode simply reads “Felicity returns in the series finale.”
The finale promised Felicity and adult Mia meeting for the first time post-crisis. Barry Allen and Kara Danvers are also in the finale.
WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW. This article was updated live as the Arrow series finale aired.
Arrow Series Finale Live Recap
After an hour of “Arrow: Hitting the Bullseye,” it was time for the actual series finale of Arrow to begin.
The episode started with the well-known “My name is Oliver Queen,” flashing back over the past seasons including back to Crisis. Showing Oliver’s death, the voiceover told us that Oliver became a Spectre, but part of him would always be the Green Arrow.
After the introduction, the show flashed back again, this time to when Slade had Moira at gunpoint. In the original scene, Slade kills Moira in front of Oliver and Thea. In this version, though, Oliver is able to overtake Slade.
That’s the new status quo on Earth-prime; Moira gives an interview in a documentary-like setting, talking about how the world they live in now was a “gift” from Oliver.
Cut to Dinah as SCPD captain and Rene talking about the world of heroes Oliver left behind.
The documentary is the same as the one from early on in season 7 about Oliver: the one that Mia was watching in the future, talking about him as if he were a villain. Remember, in the original future of Star City, vigilantism was outlawed and highly frowned upon.
This time, though, the documentary is about Oliver as a hero. It included Diggle in tears talking about how much of a hero Oliver was.
“When Oliver rebooted the universe, he fixed things. Ever since the crisis, crime disappeared overnight, literally,” Rene tells Diggle when the filming is over. “He saved the city.”
Diggle did not look especially excited about the news. He doesn’t want the mission to be over.
The group met back in the bunker, including Roy, Rene, Dinah, Laurel and Diggle. Laurel is hurting, saying she was going to get as drunk as possible. Rene announced he’s running for mayor, and Dinah said she will be taking the promotion as chief of police. Diggle doesn’t believe that the crime is actually gone in Star City. He says that Oliver’s mission is far from over.
Another flashback, this time to season one. Oliver is talking about crossing off another name on his father’s list – John Byrne. He says there are too many names on his list to cross off and the mission will never be over.
Takeaways so far: Moira and Quentin both seem to be alive in the post-crisis world.
Another flashback: Oliver is on the boat with his dad. His dad kills himself the same way that he did in the original timeline, but this time Mia wakes up from the nightmare. Sara is in her bedroom, saying she time-portalled into her bedroom. She is there to take her to Ollie’s funeral.
Diggle does a run on the salmon ladder, finally. (David Ramsey showed his appreciation for this moment on Twitter.) He said it wasn’t that hard and he should have tried it earlier. Laurel is still drinking her troubles away. Roy and Dinah tattoo the mark of four onto each other.
Diggle says Felicity is at home with a newborn, having a hard time getting out of bed.
Back to the flashback: Diggle tells Oliver that he should not kill Byrne, instead he should take him to jail or something less intense. Mia is in the bunker on the computers when Dinah walks in. Mia says she’s trying her best to help her mom, but she said that Sara said she is not allowed to say anything about the future.
Dinah tells Mia that Oliver would be proud of her, and Mia said she just wants to protect her family. The TV turns on, and a news anchor reports that William has been abducted from his home in Central City. This is the young William (2020), obviously. Mia and Dinah look shocked.
Thea and Roy reunite! Roy apologizes for the way he left, but Thea said that Ollie passed away and William has been kidnapped, so it’s not a good time. Dinah and Diggle both say they reached out to Felicity. She shows up in the bunker a couple seconds later, exchanging hugs with each of the characters. Mia holds back tears, realizing that 2020 Felicity has never met her adult daughter.
A pan around the bunker made me realize Ragman is here! Rory is back!
Diggle hits the team with a “Suit Up,” and the show cut to Thea and Roy flipping over Van Wayne Industries. They have a conversation where Roy apologizes again, but he says he never told Thea why he left her. He said that dying and being resurrected gave him a new perspective on life. He realized he wanted Thea in his life forever and always, and then proposes to her.
Ragman scared a bunch of criminals out of a room that he was in to clear with Rene. He says he’s been fighting for justice ever since he got his rags working again, which apparently took more than a little bit of time. He tells Rene that, out of everyone, Rene is the most like Ollie, which may be why they fight so much.
Diggle and Lyla clear a different building. When William isn’t there, Lyla gets concerned that she may not be able to help Ollie’s family in the same way he helped theirs.
Mia, in her Green Arrow getup, finds William with a criminal on the top of a building. Mia asks the man who he is, and he replies “You’re wearing his hood, you should know!”
Flashback again to season one. Oliver plows through some men, maiming most of them in order to get to his true objective. Arrows fly, and the dark and gritty tone from early episodes of Arrow is definitely present. Oliver gets overtaken by the men at one point but manages to escape. The original theme plays, bringing back some more nostalgia. There are some very cool shots in this scene.
The man Oliver was trying to get to was John Byrne, and he is, in fact, the same man who has William in the present. Byrne threatens to throw William off the roof, saying he spent eight years in prison, and Oliver did not save him. He opens his arms, inviting the Green Arrow to shoot him. Mia does not, saying that if Oliver didn’t kill him, she wouldn’t either. She says he will be going back to prison.
Honestly, this scene, more than anything in the previous episodes, made me more excited for the possible Green Arrow and the Canaries. Mia is finally feeling like she could be a hero that could live up to her father’s legacy.
Felicity watches Mia talking to William in the bunker. Felicity is completely shocked that Mia has become a hero, but she looks unbelievably proud. She says that “she might be here, but she’s also at home, awaiting me.” She doesn’t want to rush seeing Mia grow up.
The news reporter is back, talking about William being rescued. They show footage of the rescue, speculating that Oliver inspired a new generation of heroes to carry on his mission.
Back to the flashbacks. Oliver tells Diggle about what happened with Byrne and admits that not everyone in his father’s book deserves to die.
In the present time, Thea is looking over pictures of herself with Oliver when Roy walks into the room. They reminisce about their meeting, and Roy says that they’ve changed his life forever. Thea agrees to marry Roy as long as he promises that he’ll talk to her instead of leaving next time he freaks out.
Quentin and Laurel meet up at the SCPD to talk about sacrifices. Laurel struggles over the fact that the original Laurel (Earth-One Laurel) sacrificed herself for the greater good and Oliver would have brought her back if he could. “Oliver’s death, it fixed everything else. Why didn’t it fix this too?” She asks.
Quentin tells her there is nothing about her that needs to be fixed.
Diggle is in the bunker looking melancholy. He says it’s the end of the line and the mission is over, and he was just having a hard time accepting that Oliver is really gone. He says that he’d like to think that somehow, someway, Oliver is still in that bunker.
Diggle accepted a promotion in Metropolis, and he and Dinah are both moving there. She won’t be taking the promotion in SCPD after all. (Ahem, Supergirl?? Superman and Lois??) Rene says he’s staying in Star City since he will hopefully be mayor soon.
The three team members turn off the lights and leave the bunker one last time.
There’s a candlelight vigil being held for Oliver, and Quentin is speaking. He says that he really used to hate Oliver Queen. The camera pans over all the people around as he says he was wrong, calling Oliver both a hero and a good man. He says the fact that Ollie didn’t start out that way makes him even more honorable, standing as a reminder that anyone can change. They unveil the statue of Oliver Queen/The Green Arrow.
Thea and Moira are standing around Robert Queen’s grave. They ask why he didn’t fix their father’s death, and Moira says he probably couldn’t fix that because, if not for Robert dying, he would have never become the Green Arrow.
Emiko appears at the funeral as well, seeming decidedly not evil.
Tommy is alive again! He and Laurel talk about how weird it is that he used to be married to Laurel on Earth-Prime when Laurel from a different Earth is still around.
Nyssa and Talia are both there as well. Nyssa says she had her marriage to Oliver erased. Sara thanks the women for coming, and she meets Sara for the first time. Nyssa introduces Sara as her beloved.
Mia and Felicity finally meet, and it’s a very tear-filled conversation. Mia says she was taught by Oliver how to be a hero and she hopes she can be more like him. The women embrace.
Barry shows up to the funeral, and he tells Felicity that he’s tortured with the thought that he could have done more to save Oliver. Felicity reassures him, saying he did everything he could have.
Anatole is here as well. He points out that there is no body in the casket, and they just buried mementos instead. Kara is there as well, saying that words seem meaningless. Diggle is the one who delivers the final eulogy. He says that Oliver brought heroes into the world and inspired everyone. He says they were brothers.
Diggle says life will go on, implying that twists and turns will happen. Mia goes back to her own time.
Diggle is seen almost getting hit by a meteor while saying “expect the unexpected.” He says that the mission lives on, and Oliver will live on in the people he inspired.
Diggle walks to the thing that fell from the sky, and it’s A GREEN LANTERN RING BOX. The voiceover says that the “universe is far bigger than any of us could have imagined, even if it is a little less bright without him in it.”
Cut to Star City 2040. Felicity talks with The Monitor on her way to see Oliver again. She says she’s waited a long time to see him, and she’s ready. They walk through a portal.
Felicity smiles as she realizes she’s been transported to Moira’s old office, complete with her red pen. She chews on the tip of it while looking down at a picture of Oliver and his dad. Oliver shows up in the doorway and says “Hi, glad you could finally make it.” They embrace.
Felicity jokes that the afterlife would look less like his old office, but he says that it’s actually his mom’s office and that’s where he first saw Felicity. He tells her it’s a long story, but now they have all the time in the world together.
John Diggle and Dinah Drake are both moving to Metropolis on Earth-Prime, which means that they will share a city with Kara. Hopefully, that means that they’ll be appearing on Supergirl at some point.
John opening up the box from space with the green glow hints heavily that he will become the Green Lantern. There have been clues to this in the past like Diggle’s father’s last name is Stewart, which aligns with the fact that the Green Lantern that gets the ring after Hal Jordan in the comics is named John Stewart.
We also saw in the “Elseworlds” crossover that the Flash from another Earth thought that Diggle looked weird “without his ring.” It’s not clear if we’ll ever see that, since the only current DC Green Lantern show in the works will be airing on HBO Max, and so far, the universes do not cross over.
So, what’s next?
Green Arrow and the Canaries is possibly coming soon, and Stargirl will premiere in spring 2020. For now, fans of the Arrowverse have Batwoman, Supergirl, Black Lightning, The Flash, and Legends of Tomorrow to watch.