Kevin Smith Wants to Bring Onomatopoeia to ‘Arrow’

By July 5, 2016

As a lifelong collector and occasional comic book writer, director Kevin Smith is no stranger to the world of DC superheroes, and after helming a critically acclaimed episode of The Flash during the most recent season – not to mention being recruited for another episode in the future – Smith is eager to expand his reach into some of The CW’s other DC-related properties. His number one choice? Arrow.

Longtime readers may remember a 10-issue Green Arrow arc that Smith wrote back in 2002, the highlights of which was the creation of a new villain in the DC universe, Onomatopoeia. A skilled marksman and serial killer, the character’s name is derived from the fact that his only dialogue consists of imitations of sound effects, such as uttering the word “snap” when he breaks one of Oliver Queen’s arrows in half. The character has appeared in print form as an enemy of both Green Arrow and Batman, and now Smith is hoping to bring him to the small screen for an episode of Arrow, telling Den of Geek:

“Oh my god, I would love that so much. I’ve not heard from anybody over there, even though I’ve talked about it in the press quite a bit and stuff. I know I’m going back to The Flash, first week of September, to direct episode 7 of season 3. Still haven’t heard anything back from Arrow.

You know, I wish, it would be amazing because I would love to write and direct Onomatopoeia in the show. Um, but I know they’re doing – what is it? – Wild Dog this year, as well as Vigilante, so maybe they’re just like ‘we don’t need you’, or whatever. But, at the moment, anyone over there raises a flag; I’m like ‘please, let me in!’ That’d be fun as fuck.”

It’s an interesting turn of events, as showrunner Andrew Kreisberg had originally wanted to bring Onomatopoeia into the fold back in 2013, but Smith himself didn’t think a live-action version of the character would be a viable option. But now it seems the director has hit upon a more cinematic method of realizing the character while keeping the spirit of his defining characteristic:

“I’ve figured out a way to do it that is kinda bad-ass, and also connects to comics more or less. So instead of just doing the actual sound – which to me, in the real world, would be like the dude from Police Academy making noises with his mouth – he’ll just have little cards, business cards that have typewritten words of whatever the fuck. So instead of him saying ‘blam,’ you’d find this card on your desk and turn around and ‘blam,’ he’d shoot you and stuff like that. Which I think is a little more chilly, you know, for doing it in live action.

On a comic book page, those big word balloons with a tiny word in it were so fucking sweet. It looks beautifully graphic, like, at the same time it creates an image of ‘this is weird.’ But I don’t know if audibly making noises would ever work in the real world, so I think those cards would be bad-ass, man. So [you read] ‘slit,’ and you’re like “slit?” and then all of a sudden you turn around he cuts your fucking throat and dude just cocks his head Michael Myers style and watches you go down. So yeah, I’ve obviously thought about it a little bit, but it would be cool to do. Hopefully, hopefully they’ll tap me.”

After reading that explanation, I’ve got to admit that I’m intrigued – especially after the Michael Myers comparison. One of the scariest things about the Halloween films was always the complete lack of emotion exhibited by the killer, and that same concept could easily be applied here to make Onomatopoeia a deliciously creepy villain.

Of course, as Smith himself notes, there are currently no official plans for him to contribute to an upcoming episode of Arrow, but after the warm reception he received on The Flash and the handful of other TV projects that have sprung up in its wake, it’s very much a possibility that something could come together. We’ll keep you posted as we learn more.

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Brent Hankins

Brent Hankins

Contributing Writer at GeekNation
Brent Hankins is a member of the Phoenix Critics Circle and co-host of the Drinks and Discourse podcast. He's also the proud owner of an Italian Greyhound named Sullivan. He's adorable (the dog, not the author).