Arrow star Stephen Amell revealed the identity of another guest star returning to Arrow for its eighth and final season. Fan-favorite John Barrowman, who played Malcolm Merlyn for several seasons, returns to the series.
Amell let the cat out of the bag at Fan Expo Boston 2019. Shortly afterward, Barrowman posted a photo of his chair on the Arrow set on Instagram, reports TVLine.
In the caption with the photo, Barrowman wrote “love working with the team” and “#whathappens you will have to watch to find out. Trying to be soo vague.”
Malcolm Merlyn was a major character on Arrow for its first five seasons. During that time, fans learned he was the biological father of Oliver Queen’s sister, Thea. Malcolm was a bad guy for most of his tenure on the show although he was known to help Team Arrow when it fit his agenda.
In the end, he gave his life for his daughter’s in the fifth season finale. He took Thea’s place after she accidentally stepped on a land mine — just in time for the device to explode.
Since then, Barrowman’s only appeared on Arrow in a single cameo as a police officer in last season’s Arrowverse crossover “Elseworlds.”
The obvious question is whether Barrowman’s playing the Malcolm Merlyn fans know, a different version of the same character, or another person entirely.
Previously announced returning guest stars include Susanna Thompson as Oliver Queen’s deceased mother Moira and Colin Donnell as his dead best friend, Tommy Merlyn. Josh Segarra returns as his deceased nemesis Adrian Chase/Prometheus. Clearly, death doesn’t prevent a character from returning in Arrow’s last season.
However, executive producers Beth Schwartz and Marc Guggenheim have teased that Tommy and Adrian Chase may not return as fans remember them.
The highly-anticipated crossover “Crisis on Infinite Earths” is coming to the Arrowverse in December. With the multiverse more important in Arrow’s eighth season than ever, there are many possible ways to have Barrowman return.
There is no word yet on which episode we can expect to see him in, but whenever it is, fans will be thrilled to have him back.
Arrow’s final season will air on Tuesdays at 9/8c on The CW. The season premieres on October 15.