ARROW Season 2 Finale: Andrew Kreisberg Teases the 'Biggest and Most Epic' Episode the Show Has Ever Done - Give Me My Remote : Give Me My Remote

ARROW Season 2 Finale: Andrew Kreisberg Teases the ‘Biggest and Most Epic’ Episode the Show Has Ever Done

May 14, 2014 by  


ARROW’s second season finale airs tonight, and after all the major moves the show has pulled so far this season…yeah, tonight could be brutal.

I spoke with ARROW executive producer Andrew Kreisberg about tonight’s “epic” finale, Slade’s deviousness, change for all the characters, and more…

What can you say about the finale, especially now that the run time of the finale has been extended by 75 seconds? (Ed note: If you plan to DVR the episode, the finale’s official end time is now 9:01:15.)
Andrew Kreisberg: We said from the beginning the season, that this was a sequel, essentially, to season 1, and like all the best movie sequels, number two was both bigger than [the first], and also more intimate than the first. Those are our favorite sequels.

As far as the intimacy, there’s been a lot more emotion this season, and it all sort of comes to a head in the finale between characters. Specifically, Thea and Roy, and Oliver and Felicity. We also wanted to go out big.

Usually when we write an episode, we tell production, “We know, we know, we know you can’t do all this, but we had to put something down.” And this time, production said, “You know what? This time we want to try and make all of this happen.” And from our producers, to our visual effects team, to our stunt people, everyone who works on the show loves working on the show and is proud of the show. And they really stepped up to make this probably the biggest and most epic episode of ARROW we’ve ever done.

Given how big the last few episodes have been — and how huge the finale seems like it will be — how did you actually pull off shooting the finale on a TV schedule?
AK: Honestly, one of the biggest struggles was just as far as casting. We had such a large guest cast, [that] getting everyone there, and making sure everyone was available, was, ironically, one of the biggest challenges.

John Behring, who directed this episode — he directed the season premiere this year, directed “Darkness on the Edge of Town” in season 1, he directed the first all-island episodes, “The Odyssey” — he’s one of our most talented directors; he knows this show backward and forward. We actually gave him a beat sheet, which was sort of a rough outline of the script, way ahead of time, so he could really start pre-planning the episode in his head. Glen Winter, who is our DP extraordinaire, was on hand to shoot it. It was just amazing to have sort of our best people at it. Which I think is the only way we could have pulled off something like this.

As writers, you guys have built up Slade to be truly such a horrific villain this season. Should fans be going into the finale thinking this will be the hour where Slade gets what has been coming to him, or, like Malcolm before him, is there a chance Slade will be kept around somehow?
AK: I think Oliver’s journey for the year has been, “Am I a killer or am I a hero?” And he’s certainly presented with — we’ve definitely presented him with what can only be described as the biggest challenge of his life. He’s got these Mirakuru soldiers running around, Slade has promised the kill the person he loves the most, and Amanda Waller has launched a drone strike against the city. It’s one thing to have your morals in a vacuum, but he’s facing pretty overwhelming odds. And the question of whether Oliver can come through this and maintain his new code is sort of the central tension of the episode.

But to answer your question, I think Slade’s ultimate fate, I hope, is going to be as satisfying for the audience as it is for us.

Slade did threaten to kill the person Oliver loved the most…is that Thea? Or was he talking more romantic love, so Laurel, Felicity, or Sara could be the one who he intends to kill?
AK: Um, well…[Laughs] Everyone in Oliver’s life is in danger. It’s one of the mysteries of the episode: who is the person that Oliver loves the most? And I think their identity is going to be a surprise to both the audience and to Slade. There are certainly no shortage of candidates as you pointed out. Everyone has their weak spot, and Slade is really going to feel like he’s exposed Oliver’s, and how it plays out is hopefully one of our better landings on the show.

Aside from Oliver, who is going to come out of this finale the most changed?
AK: Actually, everybody comes out of this finale changed. It’s one of the things we’re most proud of about this episode. And it’s also by design: this episode was really about, for every one of the characters, embracing who they are, and making a choice. And everyone in this episode definitively makes a choice about who they are and who they want to be. No one leaves this episode in the same place as they were in the beginning of the episode. It really has a sense of change, like any season finale should: that the pieces on the board have been moved around, and I think it gives you a pretty good glimpse at what you can expect to see in season 2, as far as all these characters and the trajectory they are around.

ARROW has had a few really notable deaths in the show’s two-year run, including Tommy’s death in last year’s finale. What can you say about if/how death will play a role in tonight’s finale?
AK: I can tell you Oliver will not die. [Laughs]

The real reason anyone truly dies on this show is because we feel like it’s their time. One of the added benefits of major deaths we’ve had, whether it was Tommy’s death or Moira’s death, was it really helps remind everyone that what our characters do is really dangerous. It really, for us, that is what keeps our show emotionally grounded, despite the larger-than-life shenanigans that are going on.

I actually don’t want to say if there are deaths, or what not, because I think it’s one of the best surprises the show is able to pull off now: because people know we’re not shy about ending someone’s life, if we feel it’s the right thing to do for that character, or for Oliver, or for other characters. People go into these major episodes not knowing who’s going to live and who’s going to die.

That’s been one of the biggest changes in television watching in the past 5, 10, 15 years, with shows like THE WALKING DEAD and LOST before us; you really don’t know that everything is going to be all right.

ARROW airs Wednesdays at 8 PM on The CW.


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