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Warning: major spoilers ahead for the latest episode of Arrow, "So It Begins."
Arrow kicked off Season 5 with a handful of mysteries, and fans have had to wonder about everything from why Oliver's decision that teenybopper Evelyn was a good choice for his gritty vigilante team to how on earth Rory's magic rags work. The biggest mystery has undoubtedly been of the identity of the villain Prometheus, and "So It Begins" gave the closest look at Prometheus to date, possibly even giving away the man behind the mask. Quentin Lance himself could be the Season 5 supervillain.
"So It Begins" ended on the reveal that the ninja throwing stars Prometheus used to murder civilians were actually made from the stray arrows that Oliver left scattered around the city back in his early days on the streets. Felicity and Oliver connected the dots to realize that the only person who could have had access to the cache of leftover arrows would be somebody with access to the police department. Then, we see Quentin jerk awake from a stupor to discover a throwing star in his hand and a wound on his arm that just so happens to match the wound that Evelyn landed on Prometheus earlier that evening. Dun dun dun!
Quentin could actually make a twisted sort of sense as the man behind the Prometheus mask. The Season 5 premiere revealed that he only returned to Star City recently after breaking up with Donna, and he'd spent most of his time since trying to drink his woes away. The combination of grief, heartbreak, stress, and copious amount of alcohol could have led to a Arrow-style psychological break for Quentin. Throw in the fact that Barry broke the timeline thanks to Flashpoint, and the recipe may have been exactly right to give Quentin a villainous alter ego of which he may not even fully be aware of. Thea has mentioned that Quentin has been missing work a lot, and some of those days coincide with attacks from Prometheus. He's definitely going to have some 'splainin' to do.
Sure, Quentin never showed signs of an alter ego before, but Arrow has made it clear over the years that folks in the Lance family don't always channel their emotions in the healthiest ways. Besides, Quentin was more or less obsessed with Oliver in his Hood days circa Season 1. He may have been able to pick up on some of Oliver's patterns and fighting habits back then to mimic as Prometheus now.
All of that said, we shouldn't start calling for Quentin's capture just yet. "So It Begins" established that Quentin is in fact drinking yet again, and it seems that he's drinking pretty heavily. It's entirely possible that the real Prometheus is trying to frame Quentin by planting the throwing star and wounding him in the same way that he himself was wounded by Artemis. If Quentin had already drunk himself into unconsciousness, Prometheus could have managed the frame job without much trouble. He does after all know that Oliver Queen is Green Arrow, and he knows that Quentin Lance is a close ally of Oliver Queen. What better patsy could he pick than a semi-disgraced ex-cop with a blackout drinking problem? If only someone could just smell the big bad's breath.
Then, there's the fact that "So It Begins" is only the sixth episode of Season 5. Three out of the first four seasons of Arrow didn't reveal the identity of the supervillain until at least the midseason finale. Malcolm Merlyn, Slade Wilson, and Ra's al Ghul didn't get their first big supervillain moment on screen until they were in a milestone episode. Arrow revealing the antagonist in Episode 6 of Season 5 is awfully early, so Quentin could be a red herring to throw us off the scent of the real Prometheus. Let's just hope if Quentin is innocent, he figures out whatever the weird Jekyll/Hyde experiment being on him is.
Tune in to The CW on Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET to see what's next for Prometheus (whoever he really is) and Oliver Queen on Arrow.
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