Amell, McDonough Talk ‘Arrow’: “No One Says No to Damien Darhk”

By November 19, 2015

This season of Arrow has in large part so much fun to watch. Last season took a step back from being one of the best shows on television to just pretty good. I didn’t think it was as bad as some people thought but it definitely wasn’t up to par compared to the first couple seasons. This season we have truly seen Oliver Queen grow not only into the Green Arrow but as Oliver.  We have begun to see the true Oliver in the light of day and not hiding behind a playboy facade.  This season has also given a fascinating villain played by a personal favorite of mine, Neal McDonough. The battle for Star City has been raging in the shadows but it is coming into the light of day as Oliver is now running for Mayor trying to take down Darhk on two fronts. It should be fascinating to see both Oliver, as himself and the Green Arrow, and Darhk face off for the soul of Star City.

Recently the cast of Arrow spoke to a group of journalists on the Vancouver set about the events of this week’s episode ‘Brotherhood’. You can find our review of ‘Brotherhood’ here. Stephen Amell and Damien Darhk spoke at length about the ongoing battle between Team Arrow and Darhk and it’s transition in the light of day. Beware of spoilers for ‘Brotherhood’ in the interview.

Stephen Amell spoke of this new dynamic between Oliver and Darhk now that he is running for Mayor Star City.

“It allows us to establish an interesting dynamic.As we saw in the second episode of the season, Darhk doesn’t react very kindly to people running for mayor. He doesn’t want any galvanizing force or goodness in the city. That puts everyone at odds.”

That’s an understatement. The last mayoral candidate was the target of assassination by Darhk.  I’m excited to see more of Oliver’s campaign and how Darhk will go about trying to bring Oliver down (and not as the Green Arrow). I think that Darhk may run for mayor himself as Oliver is currently running opposed. To see the both of the fighting this war on two fronts would be incredibly exciting!    

Neal McDonough also gave some insight into Damien’s initial  thoughts about Oliver running for Mayor.

“Damien thinks this is the greatest thing on Earth. We’ve got this nice guy, this good-looking guy, he’s running for mayor — I’m going to use him for whatever I need. And we have this wonderful scene where I’m telling him, here’s what’s happening: I’m going to back you for mayor … and oh by the way, you have to bow down to whatever I ask of you. And of course, [Oliver] has his own agenda. Damien doesn’t like that. No one says no to Damien Darhk.”

I love this. We knew Darhk wasn’t going take Oliver turning down his assistance lying down, so to hear that reaffirmed by McDonough and in that way is awesome. The rest of this season is setting up for some great confrontations.

McDonough also added,

“You see that Darhk has a huge heart for something. And that’s also the driving force that he wants to make this world perfect for this ‘something.’ [Oliver] figures out a little bit about my personal life and uses that against me.”

This is an interesting little nugget into Darhk’s motivations. What is he really after? Other than bringing down Star City what is his ultimate agenda? I’m anxious to learn more about Darhk. Every time he’s on screen a little bit more of the mystery surrounding him is unraveled, but we’re still left wanting so much more. He’s one of the more fascinating characters that have ever appeared on Arrow.

Darhk is one of those villains that believe what they are doing is ultimately doing something for the greater good, and as we know those villains are often the most dangerous (and fun to watch). They will not hesitate to do whatever is necessary to accomplish their goals. McDonough eluded to this when he talked about commanding his men.

“You see how I basically give the Kool Aid to these men and make them become part of Hive. You see the absolute joy on Damien Darhk’s face, like, ‘I just love my life!’ But he does, because he believes he has a purpose to save the world in his sick, twisted way. He’s a dictator, but he believes what he’s doing is right and just. If didn’t think that, then he would just be a foolish character.”

Season four of Arrow appears to have found its stride. It feels more like the show we loved in season one and two while continuing to grow. Oliver has grown into a strong leader and exceptional hero but it’s going to take his entire team to ultimately bring down Damien Darhk.

Excerpts from the interview come from

Arrow airs on Wednesday nights on The CW.

Make sure to keep checking back for more updates — right here on GeekNation.

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Christopher Skalicky
Chris, a film and television junkie, grew up on Star Wars, all things Disney, Stargate SG-1 and a healthy dose of John Wayne. When not thinking about movies he is busy being an avid St. Louis Cardinals fan. He will also argue that Surf Ninjas is the greatest movie about surfing ninjas ever made. Tweet him at @Schlick51