The Arrow, formerly known as The Hood (Stephen Amell) is drifting closer and closer to his comic book counterpart.  He’s already given up on killing his enemies and has employed the gimmicky arrows he utilizes in the comics, including exploding arrows and handcuff arrows.  Now he’s about to ditch the “smokey eyed” makeup.  The character will now sport a more comic-accurate mask!  (Seen above.)  (The producers did state that eventually, Oliver Queen will actually take on the moniker Green Arrow, but it’s a journey getting to that point.)

Entertainment Weekly broke the news of the mask, which makes its debut on the December 11 episode.  Executive producer Andrew Kreisberg explains the transition by stating ”Conceptually, it was something we wanted to do because Oliver himself is evolving as the Arrow–  from vigilante to hero, sort of from Arrow to Green Arrow — and we wanted to see that progression in his costume as well.  As Oliver is embracing being a hero, being a hero means stepping out of the dark and being more of a symbol, so he has to take steps to conceal his identity more.”

Logistically speaking, it also allows Oliver to further interact with characters that don’t know his secret identity, such as Laurel’s father Detective Lance.  Kreisberg added “It’s going to allow the Arrow to interact with people who don’t know his identity in a much more organic way than having him constantly keep his head down.”

The producers apparently planned for a mask from the beginning, but had hesitations.  ”For all of the work that went into creating his mask, those are all the reasons we didn’t do it when we did the pilot,” Kreisberg said, “and also, sometimes, people have this knee-jerk reaction to seeing somebody in a mask. ‘Oh, that’s silly.’ But I think that now that people see how serious the show is and how grounded it is, the mask is going to feel like a natural evolution.”

The mask was designed by costume designer Maya Mani, who was instructed to “Keep it simple.”

Now… here’s the first look of Stephen Amell wearing the mask!

What do you think?  Awesome… or corny?  Honestly, I’m glad to see the cheesy eye makeup go, so I’ll take anything!  Comment with your thoughts below!