Laurel’s Death On Arrow Forces Oliver To ‘Step Up’ For Diggle
Team Arrow is still reeling from Laurel Lance’s tragic death at the hands of the cold-blooded Damien Darhk on Arrow, and while everyone will feel the loss of Black Canary in “Canary Cry,” it’s Diggle in particular who’s most affected by the loss.
Not only did Diggle’s brother Andy turn out to be a loyal member of H.I.V.E., but his brother’s betrayal also resulted in Laurel’s death, so right now Diggle is suffering from a tremendous amount of guilt. Now, as the fractured Team Arrow comes together to lay their friend to rest, Diggle finds himself crossing his own moral boundaries in the name of vengeance. In other words, he’s in a very dark place.
“You’re going to see a Diggle that you haven’t seen—ever,” David Ramsey told MTV News. “He’s dealing with a level of guilt that he’s never had to deal with before. He’s willing to do things that he’s never been willing to do because of the death of his friend and because of Andy’s betrayal.”
Diggle and Laurel’s friendship, though brief, was deeply moving. When Oliver left to start a life with Felicity in suburbia at the end of Season 3, it was Diggle, Laurel, and Thea who held things down in Star City. They kept the bad guys at bay. During that time, Diggle and Laurel got extremely close. When Andy reemerged out of nowhere, it was Laurel who Diggle confided in. “That personal bond he had with Laurel certainly adds to the grief,” Ramsey added.
With Damien Darhk currently Enemy of the State No. 1 for Team Arrow, Diggle will take it upon himself to get revenge on the mystical H.I.V.E. leader—and he’ll be doing it solo. Diggle sacrificed a lot for his once-thought-dead brother, including his friendships with Oliver, Laurel, and Felicity.
“Throughout this entire season Diggle has lost contact with a lot of the deep relationships that he’s had,” Ramsey said. “He had this amazing connection with Laurel, but then it was pulled away as he went with Andy. Diggle and Felicity were also pulled away when he went into this thing with Andy. I think this whole storyline with Andy has estranged Diggle from Team Arrow.”
Oliver warned Diggle not to trust Andy, which undoubtedly adds another layer of guilt to Diggle’s conscience. However, in the wake of Laurel’s death, it’s surprisingly Oliver—the broody, closed-off vigilante—who steps up for his friend.
“Oliver and Diggle kind of switch roles to some degree in how [Diggle] deals with Canary’s death,” Ramsey said. “Oliver has become the one who gives advice. He’s Diggle’s rock. Diggle is not a gray guy; Diggle sees everything in black and white. He’s a soldier. And he has a very specific reaction to meta-humans and superpowers—and that reaction is, ‘What the hell?’ We’re seeing a Diggle who really needs Oliver to be the strong one because he’s dealing with a brother who came back from the dead, a Damien Darhk who uses magic, and a friend who he tragically lost. He needs Oliver to step up.”
Diggle’s grief will also bring him closer to Felicity, who’s been having her own on-off relationship with Team Arrow. It seems as though the overwhelming grief felt by Laurel’s loss will not only be the catalyst for Felicity’s return to the team, but also for Diggle and Felicity’s endearing friendship, something that fans have been missing of late.
“Within all of the melee and all of the stories to be told, some of that relationship between Diggle and Felicity has been lost,” Ramsey said. “I think there has been a conscious return to that. You’re going to see more scenes between them. They deal with their grief together.”
Watch new episodes of Arrow on CTV Wednesdays at 8ep.