Malcolm Merlyn John Barrowman Arrow The CW

John Barrowman's Arrow character Malcolm Merlyn may be gone, but his legacy will live on. Arrow will soon introduce a new character to Star City that's hellbent on avenging Merlyn's death by protecting the legacy he left behind. No, this isn't Tommy returning from the dead or Thea breaking bad, but rather actress Kyra Zagorsky joining the cast of Arrow as a new character named Athena, who has past ties to Merlyn.

Athena is a former member of the League of Assassins whose mission is to maintain Malcolm Merlyn's legacy, and as well as taking on anyone who used to associate with him. That's not great news for Oliver and the gang, since a bulk of the cast could technically be seen as "aligned with Malcolm Merlyn," considering they all went to Lian-Yu to stop Prometheus. Athena is also described as fearless and determined, per TVLine, and such determination is best evidenced by a scar on her face.

Beyond that, not much is known about the non-comic Athena, although her connection to the League of Assassins could be why Nyssa is coming back to Star City. If that's the case, then whatever Athena is capable of has the potential to change Arrow forever. Athena could certainly be the reason behind Nyssa's return, but with past episodes referencing Nyssa searching for Artemis, a.k.a. Evelyn Sharp, there's admittedly little to support the above theory. With so many big villains embarking on Season 6, Athena will likely be one of those episodic villains that will serve as a thorn in Star City's side until someone from Team Arrow brings her down.

Dr. Julia Walker Kyra Zagorsky Helix Syfy

Kyra Zagorsky was cast in the role of Athena, though it's not made clear if this is a one-off role or something more meaty. Zagorsky has played short-lived character roles on several shows like Falling Skies and Ice, as well as much more sizable roles like Helix's Dr. Julia Walker. Since she's only getting introduced now, it's hard to believe Athena would be a part of the whole evil alliance that is Cayden James' criminal cabal this late in the game, but with Marc Guggenheim teasing Season 6 taking a huge turn before its end, Athena's appearance could be more important than it initially sounds. In either case, this cast will allow Arrow to continue its streak of featuring League of Assassins-affiliated villains in every season.

Arrow airs on The CW on Thursday nights at 9:00 p.m. ET. For a look at other upcoming television that will be airing in 2018, head on over to our midseason premiere guide.

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