One of my biggest pet peeves about ‘Arrow’ the past couple of weeks, and I will admit, this is somewhat nitpicky as the show has been doing a lot better this season than it did during seasons 3 and 4, is that Thea just disappeared, and has not been seen for awhile, and there has yet to be a solid explanation of why, other than Oliver throwing out random comments about her being on work trips or things like that. I had honestly hoped there would be a solid reason for her absence story-wise, that maybe Oliver sent her on a fact-finding mission about Prometheus, or maybe she was on an extended stake-out of Evelyn to find out whether she really had turned on the team and was working with Prometheus, something that made her disappearance from the show worthwhile. Unfortunately, according to recent comments made by ‘Arrow’ executive producer Marc Guggenheim, that is not the case:
“Everyone’s, like, ‘where’s Thea?’ Well, Willa’s [in] 14 out of 23 episodes this year. She’s not in all 23. That’s not her contract. So we’ve had to write around that…We try to make the process invisible in terms of our storytelling but there are just human realities and contractual realities that not only tie our hands, but tie the hands of everyone running a show these days.”
I hate to hear things like this. I mean look, I get it, there’s contractual obligations. She could not be in all of the episodes this year, that’s fine. But do something with her absence. Something like what I listed above, or I dunno, maybe have her off hunting down her father Malcolm Merlyn who she has not seen all season and is maybe worried that he might be getting into trouble (which he is, off in ‘Legends’). I mean look at how they did Quentin Lance’s absence from the show, the rehab thing may not have been great, but it was a perfect way for the character to disappear for a number of weeks, we all knew exactly where he was, it served his character, it served the arc of the season, and it added something to the show.
Do they feel Thea was just not that important enough to actually write something for her absence? If I were Willa Holland I might be insulted. Just simply letting her disappear and having Oliver tell the audience she is away on business is lazy writing, the worst kind of lazy writing in my opinion, and it does not do anything for your story, the arc of the season, or service the character in any way. I’m glad she will finally be back this in this week’s episode titled ‘Spectre of the Gun’ but I sincerely hope they treat her better moving forward.
Am I being too critical about this point? Or do you agree that they should have done something more with Thea’s absence? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Source: Green Arrow TV
Nick is a freelance writer based in Los Angeles, who belongs to the privileged few who enjoyed the ending to ‘Lost.’ For more of Nick’s thoughts and articles, follow him on Twitter.