Damn, I really hated typing up this article. I mean, after an increasingly poor season 3 and all-around terrible season 4, I was done with Arrow. I don’t care how much of a nice guy star Stephen Amell is on social media, my comic book fandom can only offer so much goodwill damn it! But then those wily bastards just had to go and add Dolph Lundgren to the upcoming season 5!
Executive producer Wendy Mericle revealed a few days ago at the TCA summer tour (via EW) that the 58-year old action movie legend would be joining the next season as a Russian villain that will be appearing in the show’s flashbacks, which will be set in the Motherland this season. It was revealed that the name of Lundgren’s character was actually already mentioned on the show by Taiana, Oliver’s co-prisoner on Lian Yu who featured on the last season’s flashbacks.
“In our flashbacks in Russia — we’re set in Russia this season — we are going to be bringing in Dolph Lundgren as one of our big bads. He is somebody we heard about in season 4. Kovar. We are going to bring him in and he’s going to be this super big badass guy who works for the Russian government, and is not a friend of Oliver or the Bratva. It’s part of Oliver’s promise to Taiana at the end of season 4 and it’s going to be interesting because it’s going to get complicated and very messed up very fast.”
Kovar is in fact the name of a Russian character from DC Comics, but since that Leonid Kovar was actually a teenage Russian hero named Red Star, who received fire control powers gained from a crashed alien spaceship and joined the Teen Titans for a bit (and had a questionable taste in eyewear), I doubt Lundgren’s character will be the same. Fellow executive producer Marc Guggenheim didn’t give any further about the character, but did reveal a bit more about Arrow‘s Russia-based flashbacks.
“We always said that Oliver had a five-year journey when he was marooned on the [island]. This year, Oliver spends his time in the flashbacks in Russia. We know from various seeds we planted back in the pilot that he knows how to speak Russian, he became a Bratva captain. Sort of the flashback story in the first half of the year is going to involve Oliver’s introduction into the Bratva.”
While I am exceedingly happy about Lundgren joining the cast (he will always be He-Man to me), I am a little peeved that it will be in the flashbacks. These narrative gimmicks have become increasingly dragged out and annoying, and hopefully contrived. Luckily though, Guggenheim has confirmed that this will be the last season where the show will be using them. Whoo hoo!
And if you’re looking for another reason to do the happy dance too, it’s been revealed Arrow‘s sister shows The Flash and Supergirl will be getting a special crossover episode. This is not to be mistaken with the giant crossover episode being planned all four DC Comics shows on CW – Arrow, The Flash, Supergirl, Legends of Tomorrow – but will rather be something else entirely. Namely, a musical crossover episode!
As some of you may know (and I also know, but I’m not sure I should admit in public) titular respective The Flash and Supergirl stars Grant Gustin and Melissa Benoist actually first got fans’ attention while cast members of Glee, so they can both sing quite well. The musical talent of The Flash‘s cast extends far beyond its lead though. Jesse L. Martin (Det. Joe West) is probably the most accomplished of them all as he was one of the original stars of Broadway hit musical Rent, but Carlos Valdez (Cisco Ramon) and Rick Cosnett (Eddie Thawne), are all accomplished stage musicians. Here’s a video of the three of them singing a gospel rendition of “The Ballad of Serenity” from Joss Whedon’s beloved sci-fi series, because damn it, it’s Joe West, Cisco Ramon and Eddie Thawne singing the theme song to Firefly and its awesome.
And speaking of Joss Whedon, there’s a rumour going round that could be incredible… if it was true. Which I’m going to say upfront it probably isn’t – even though I really want it to be – but I’m going to give you guys anyway. On the latest episode of That Hashtag Show podcast (via SR), they claim to have inside sources on the CW productions who informed them that none other than Whedon himself would be directing the crossover episode.
Of course, Whedon most famously directed his creation Buffy the Vampire Slayer‘s season 6 musical episode, ‘Once More, With Feeling’, which is widely considered one of the best TV series episodes of its time. He also of course created and directed acclaimed superhero-comedy-musical web series Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, and a whole lot of other geek favourite properties. He actually even directed an episode of Glee, even though it was before Grant Gustin’s time on the show. What’s more, Dr. Horrible himself, and the guest star on Whedon’s Glee episode, award winning fan favourite actor Neil Patrick Harris, is also being rumoured to be part of the show as the supervillain Music Meister. Harris already voiced Music Meister on an episode of the animated series Batman: The Brave and the Bold.
With all those dots being connected, I can see why it would make perfect sense for Whedon and Harris to get involved in this Flash/Supergirl musical crossover, but at this stage it is literally just The Hashtag Show’s claims with absolutely no evidence anywhere else to back it up. I totally want it to be true though.
Meanwhile, for something a bit more concrete, the plot synopses for the upcoming new seasons of all four of CW’s DC Comics shows have also been released along with their release dates.
The Flash returns for season 3 on October 4:
Blinded by anger, Barry unwittingly plays into Zoom’s game and uncovers the evil speedster’s true goal: to destroy all Earths in the multiverse. In the race of his life, Barry ultimately gets the upper hand against Zoom and defeats his nemesis. But unable to celebrate victory, Barry makes a world-shaking decision and speeds back in time to the night his mother died to stop Reverse Flash from killing her, irrevocably changing his past and redetermining his future.
Arrow returns for season 5 on October 5:
Newly appointed Mayor Oliver Queen finds himself challenged as he fights on two fronts for the future of Star City. With Diggle back in the military and Thea adamant about hanging up her hood as Speedy, Team Green Arrow is down to just Oliver and Felicity – but they’re no longer the only vigilantes in town. Green Arrow’s public defeat of Damien Darhk at the end of Season Four has inspired a new crop of masked heroes to step up and defend the city, though their painful inexperience makes them obstacles, rather than allies, in the field. The arrival of a deadly new adversary will force Oliver to confront questions about his own legacy, both as mayor and as the Green Arrow.
After moving from ABC to The CW, Supergirl makes its season 2 debut on October 10:
Kara has left the safety of being Cat Grant’s assistant in order to figure out what she really wants to do, while as Supergirl she continues to work at the DEO, protecting the citizens of National City and searching for Jeremiah and Cadmus. Along the way, she will team up with Superman (Tyler Hoechlin) to battle new villains, as she strives to balance her personal life with her life as a superhero.
And finally, DC’s Legends of Tomorow will be returning for its sophomore season on October 13:
After the defeat of the immortal villain Vandal Savage and the corrupt Time Masters who colluded with him, a new threat emerges. Dr. Nate Heywood (Nick Zano), an unconventional and charming historian, is thrust into the action upon making a shocking discovery – the Legends are scattered throughout time.
Nate must find a way to rescue season one’s beloved team of heroes and rogues, including billionaire inventor Ray Palmer (Brandon Routh), who has created an exo-suit with the power to shrink him to miniscule size, as the Atom; Sara Lance (Caity Lotz), the White Canary, a trained assassin; Professor Martin Stein (Victor Garber) and Jefferson “Jax” Jackson (Franz Drameh), who together form the meta-human Firestorm; and Mick Rory (Dominic Purcell), aka Heat Wave, a career criminal. When the Legends encounter the J.S.A (the Justice Society of America, the precursor to DC’s Justice League) in the 1940s, Amaya Jiwe (Maisie Richardson-Sellers), aka Vixen, joins the team. While the team reunites, a mystery looms – the fate of former captain Rip Hunter (Arthur Darvill).
Once reunited, the Legends continue their new mission to protect the timeline from temporal aberrations – unusual changes to history that spawn potentially catastrophic consequences. When Nate, the grandson of J.S.A. member Commander Steel, unexpectedly finds himself with powers, he must overcome his own insecurities and find the hero within himself. Ultimately, the Legends will clash with foes both past and present, to save the world from a mysterious new threat.
Last Updated: August 17, 2016