Arrow didn't bother waiting for their San Diego Comic-Con panel to start making major Season 3 announcements. In the last few months month, the CW superhero series cast former-Superman Brandon Routh as Ray 'The Atom' Palmer; announced a crossover with Flash; and then released our first look at Roy as Arsenal. But that doesn't mean Arrow spilled all of its third season secrets before taking the stage in Ballroom 20. They saved a few exciting exclusives for the SDCC fans. You know, like the super rad teaser for Season 3 that you see above. October 8th cannot come soon enough.

The first minute is just a sizzle reel of the second season of Arrow, but it does a great job of stoking the fire before hitting us with new footage that starts with an introduction of Karl Yune as Maseo Yamashiro. Maseo will serve as another mentor figure during the flashbacks, which, as we know from last season's finale, will take place in Hong Kong. We also see Cynthia Addai-Robinson's Amanda Waller during a few of these scenes, but no Devon Aoki as Tatsu (aka Katana) just yet. They can't show everything!

They did show Brandon Routh introduce himself as Ray Palmer, and that might have been the most exciting part of the teaser for me - even if it was just a handshake. Palmer (aka The Atom) is one of my favorite comic book characters, and could help the show match Flash in the showing off superpowers department. Central City can't have all the fun.

And Palmer is not just vying for Queen Industries, he's also a love interest for Felicity. But how can that be? The trailer shows Oliver and Felicity go on a date. Like a real date. I don't think it's going to work out since she's beaten and bloody by the end of the spot. Or maybe one of the new villains targets the Smoak as a way to get back at Oliver? Speaking of villains, we do also get a glimpse of Peter Stormare as the new Count Vertigo. The Fargo and Armageddon actor is great in everything, so that's a portrayal I'm eagerly awaiting.

What else? Well, there's the return of Caity Lotz' Sara (aka Canary), Katie Cassidy's Laurel going into business with Ollie, Roy in full Arsenal apparel and Paul Blackthorne's Quentin Lance healthy and sporting a captain's hat. Did the good detective get a promotion? Glad to see he got over that heart attack-ish incident that happened the last time we saw him. There aren't any shots John Barrowman's Malcolm Merlyn or Willa Holland's Thea Queen/Merlyn, but I did learn at the San Diego Comic-Con panel this evening that their story will pick up in the limousine right where we left them.

There were a few other tidbits announced at the Arrow panel that are worth mentioning even though the panelists were pretty tight-lipped. Willa Holland said that she's been hitting the gym, and that we should all expect a much different Thea next season. The Flash crossover will start with Felicity taking a trip to Central City in the spin-off's fourth episode before the full on, two hour event takes place in both series' eighth installment.

Colin Donnell's Tommy will be back for a flashback in Episode 2, while another later in the third season will feature Felicity flashbacks. The episode in question is titled "Oracle." Yes, the room went nuts. Finally, in talking about adding Ray Palmer, the writers admitted that they were originally looking to add Ted Kord (aka Blue Beetle), but DC has other plans for that superhero. Should we expect a Blue Beetle TV show or film? We'll see.

Arrow will be back for Season 3 on October 8 at 8pm ET on The CW.
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