Arrow will soon return to the airwaves for its seventh season, and some new bad guys are on the way to mix things up for the remnants of Team Arrow. Not all of the prominent bad guys will be new, however, as we now know one villain that could be around a lot more in Season 7. Kirk Acevedo has been bumped up to series regular status, so we could see a lot more of Ricardo Diaz.
Kirk Acevedo joined the cast of Arrow as Ricardo Diaz back in Season 6. At that point, he was a recurring character, and the show was largely still recovering from Prometheus' final blow against Team Arrow in the early episodes. In fact, for the majority of the first half of the season, Cayden James seemed like the real big bad of the season. It wasn't until Diaz killed James shortly after James was taken into custody that we learned he was the real nemesis for Team Arrow.
All in all, Diaz only appeared in 13 of the sixth season's 23 episodes. While that's still a healthy number of episodes, Kirk Acevedo's bump up to regular status could mean that he appears in even more in the seventh season. In an unusual twist for Arrow, the previous season didn't dispatch with its main villain. Oliver typically takes out his supervillain of the year by the final minutes of each finale, but Diaz was free and Oliver was off to prison when the closing credits rolled last spring.
At this point, a big question is what exactly Diaz will be up to in Season 7. Oliver will be behind bars when the action picks up, and he could stay there (with his goatee) for quite a while. While Diaz may be able to send some flunkeys after Oliver in the clink, he probably can't be present in Slabside Maximum Security Prison to watch Oliver fight for his life. He may want to exact his revenge on Oliver via his wife and son, but Felicity and William will be in witness protection.
Maybe Diaz will simply go back to good old-fashioned crime in Season 7 until some of the good guys inevitably get in his way again. It's worth noting that Diaz has surrounded himself with more than just the regular, gun-toting goons that Oliver can dispatch without breaking a sweat. The Season 6 finale revealed that he'd recruited the help of the not-so-mythical Longbow Hunters, and they're on the way for Season 7.
The good news is that we don't have much longer to wait before we see the Arrow crew back in action. There's still no precise news on how much of Kirk Acevedo we'll get in Season 7 compared to Season 6, but his new status as a regular could mean a lot more Diaz in the mix. Find out what Diaz is up to when new episodes of Arrow air Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on The CW in a brand new time slot this fall.