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Arrow Mid-Season Finale Preview: “Three Ghosts” [VIDEO and INTERVIEW] 

Photo Credit: Cate Cameron/The CW
Photo Credit: Cate Cameron/The CW

[WARNING: Mild spoilers for tonight’s Arrow]

The mid-season finale for the CW’s Arrow just so happens to be a thrill ride of an episode (shocker, I know). Last week’s installment (“The Scientist”) ended on a bit of a cliffhanger. Let’s just say for “Three Ghosts” you guys need to expect to stay on the edge of that cliff the entire hour. So much happens. There’s character-driven goodness mixed in with perilous situations and action sequences. We don’t even want to give anything away but it’s definitely one of our favorite Arrows of the season. So what can we tell you about it? Let’s start with the official CW Network synopsis for “Three Ghosts”:

  • After a fight with Cyrus Gold AKA the Acolyte (guest star Graham Shiels), Oliver (Stephen Amell) is drugged and left for dead. Determined to cure him, Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) makes a risky decision. The cure causes Oliver to hallucinate, and what he sees forces him to confront his past. Meanwhile, Barry (guest star Grant Gustin) continues to help Felicity, and their connection grows stronger. The Arrow asks Lance (Paul Blackthorne) to look into Gold, but when the stakeout on Gold goes bad, someone is killed. Roy (Colton Haynes) is captured and tortured by Brother Blood (guest star Kevin Alejandro).

Arrow star Stephen Amell has been hyping up the episode on Facebook and “Three Ghosts” definitely lives up to the hype. It’s a great way to go into a winter break. But be warned. Said hiatus will be painful. Amell tackles some really heavy, emotional scenes. My only complaint is I wish those scenes had been longer. I’m a fan of when a show and an actor gets to really dig deep emotionally. So…more of that, please. One particular moment really blew me away in terms of the action and the way it let us in on Oliver’s psyche at the same time. Plus, the island flashbacks are just as important as what’s going on in the present. “Three Ghosts” works on all levels. I am also going to confess that, at least for me, there was one moment that literally made me gasp out loud. I actually would have teared up a little bit had I not been watching the episode with 30 other people. Just saying.

It’s crazy how much goes on in this mid-season finale. When TV Goodness took part in a Q&A with the Arrow executive producers, Geoff Johns, Greg Berlanti and Andrew Kreisberg, the trio talked about how challenging it is to blow through plot points and story beats and arcs at such a speedy (pun intended) pace:

GEOFF JOHNS: I credit Greg [Berlanti] with driving story a lot because he’s a really big believer in moving story ahead. And I love that because it’s confidence. It’s saying we have all this story. We have more ideas.

ANDREW KREISBERG: We’ll pitch Greg — like ‘Hey, we have this great idea for episode 14’ and he’s like, ‘Why are you waiting?’ And to get to it faster and sometimes a lot of times for us we’ll…it’s like if we do this sooner than we don’t know what to do next. And if our first reaction is we don’t know what to do next then your reaction is going to be, ‘Holy s–t, what are they going to do next?’ And somehow we’ve always managed to figure out what to do next. So we’ve been okay but…

GREG BERLANTI: Sometimes it doesn’t work, you know? It’s the truth. I mean the…Flash…not to bring it back to The Flash but to bring it back to The Flash…it’s a perfect example. It could have ended up as just a CSI comes to town. That was our goal. We had an aim of bringing the character on but we wanted to do it right. And so many times when you’re at home cooking something you’re kind of making it up as you go along, like you have this aim to do it a certain way, and we’ve been really fortunate with the show I think in terms of everybody up there [Vancouver, where Arrow films], the production team and everyone and all the actors…all of these ideas that are kind of harebrained, late night ideas sometimes, they’ll send back and you watch it and you’re totally engaged like a viewer and it just makes you kind of try to do it even more, I think.

Speaking of The Flash, his alter ego — Barry Allen — sticks around Starling City for tonight’s episode. While his introduction in “The Scientist” was good, I wasn’t completely hooked. After watching “Three Ghosts,” consider me a Grant Gustin fan. He totally won me over. One of the aspects I enjoyed most had to be the Barry/Felicity interaction. There’s a spark there and as much as I love Felicity and Oliver, I’m digging the different vibe that Felicity and Barry provide:

ANDREW: It was just something we were talking about when we were trying to figure out how we were going to bring him in. We spent a lot of time talking about Barry and even before the pilot aspect, just like how were we going to introduce him in these episodes. And, you know, especially with the way the season had been going, talking about Oliver and Felicity and their sort of growing relationship or feelings for each other…the fact that Barry and Felicity are so similar. And they’re both sort of a little bit uncomfortable in their own skins and both very likable and personable. It just seemed like they would instantly hit it off which would just complicate things for Oliver even more. It just felt like the right way to go. And one of the things we did when we were testing the finalists was Emily Bett Rickards (Felicity) came from Canada to read and the minute we saw her read with Grant, it was a done deal.

Look for more Barry and Felicity quality time when the Arrow mid-season finale airs tonight at 8/7c on the CW.


“Three Ghosts” Preview

“Three Ghosts” Clip

“Three Ghosts” Producer’s Preview

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