Arrow season 8 premiere – every Easter egg and callback in episode 1
Note: This article contains spoilers for episode one of Arrow season eight.
Lots of people have described Arrow's season 8 premiere as a love letter to the pilot, but for something so heartfelt, there sure was a lot of bloodshed too.
However, among all that death, there were also a number of touching homages and hidden references that flew by faster than one of Oliver's arrows mid-flight.
Join us as we trek back to Lian Yu and hunt down every Easter egg we could find in the season 8 premiere of Arrow.
Deja vu hit us hard in the first moments of Arrow's final season when we relived the original opening sequence — sans Oliver's terrible wig.
For better or worse, fans didn't have long to mourn the mullet from yesteryear because we were all too distracted by Batman's mask which suddenly popped up on the island where Deathstroke's mask used to be.
Not only did this reveal that the premiere would be taking place on another Earth, but it also hinted that Bruce Wayne might have been the one who trained Green Arrow in this reality.
Speaking with TV Line, Arrow showrunner Beth Schwartz confirmed that this was just an Easter egg and nothing more, but this hasn't stopped fans from speculating about deeper connections between Batman and the Emerald Archer.
Did Batman train the Green Arrow in this reality? And more importantly, did Oliver kill Bruce Wayne on the island? That arrow through the mask is rather ominous to say the least.
Either way, this is all rather fitting given that Arrow was heavily inspired by The Dark Knight back when it first aired in 2013.
Elementary, my dear Batman
During that aforementioned interview, Schwartz also hinted that plenty more Batman Easter eggs will appear across other Arrowverse shows in the future:
"Thank God for Batwoman. Now that they're in our universe, we're able to get away with a lot more things Batman-related."
The season eight premiere continued to deliver on this promise soon after we first saw Batman's mask when Adrian Chase directly quoted the Caped Crusader:
"Bruce Wayne once told me that if you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains -- however improbable -- must be the truth."
Of course, that's not actually a Batman quote at all. In reality, these words were first uttered by the original World's Greatest Detective, Sherlock Holmes.
Oh, and Spock said the exact same thing in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country too. The Arrowverse/Star Trek shared universe theories start here...
In the build up to 'Crisis', season eight of Arrow will play out like a greatest hits, revisiting key moments in past seasons, so naturally, there were a staggering number of callbacks to the first season in this episode.
While this list isn't definitive, here are some of the best homages to earlier episodes that you might have missed:
Expect plenty more references like this as season eight continues to roll out in the coming weeks.
While it was fascinating to see Adrian Chase become The Hood on Earth-2, his role there seems to clash with what we already knew about Green Arrow in this reality.
Back in The Flash season 2 episode "Enter Zoom," it was revealed that Oliver's father, Robert, became the Green Arrow on Earth-2 instead after his son died on the Queen's Gambit.
However, no mention is made of Robert whatsoever in Arrow's season eight premiere, and fans were quick to point out this glaring omission online.
In response, executive producer Marc Guggenheim tackled this on Twitter by pointing out, "More than one person has worn the hood on Earth-1. Why assume things would be any different on Earth-2?"
While that's true, it does seem a bit odd still that in an episode full of callbacks, no one even mentioned the man who inspired Oliver's heroism in the first place.
A fool's errand?
The whole reason why Oliver Queen is on Earth-2 in the first place is to obtain dwarf star particles for The Monitor. According to the all-knowing cosmic being, this is the only place in the entire multiverse where such a thing can be found, but actually, this isn't the first time that dwarf star materials have cropped up in the Arrowverse.
Most notably, Ray Palmer has used dwarf star as a metal alloy to create his A.T.O.M. Exosuit and Superman's key to his Fortress of Solitude on Supergirl is made out of the same material.
Perhaps the real reason why Oliver was sent to Earth-2 was so that he could witness the destruction of the multiverse firsthand, motivating him to trust The Monitor more in the future.
Wells wells wells
While we touched on this earlier, it's worth exploring the fallout from Earth-2's destruction in more detail.
There's been no official confirmation yet that "Harry" Wells has died, but it seems likely given that he returned home to that reality after leaving in The Flash season four finale.
Of course, his daughter Jesse, could have helped rescue him with her speedster powers, but if not, then she too could have died offscreen when the Anti-Matter wave hit.
Whether these fan-favourites turn out to be alive or not, let's just hope that at least one of the Arrowverse shows reveals their fate sooner rather than later, because they certainly won't be the last ones to snuff it on Arrow this year.
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