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Warning: spoilers for tonight’s Legends of Tomorrow episode are ahead!
After spending its first five episodes in the past, Legends of Tomorrow is taking its protagonists to the future for “Star City 2046.” 30 years after the team left for their time-traveling adventure, Star City has become infested with crime and chaos, and while Oliver Queen is still active, Connor Hawke has taken his place as the main Green Arrow. Unfortunately, the city also has its own Deathstroke, but it’s not Slade Wilson still wearing the mask. Instead, it’s his son Grant.
A new clip from tonight’s episode, provided by Zap2It, shows Connor, Sara Lance and Rip Hunter facing down the new Deathstroke. Assuming that he’s Slade, Sara questions how he’s still alive and made it off Lian Yu, where we last saw him imprisoned. Remarking on how he hasn’t heard the name Slade in a long time, this Deathstroke pulls off his mask and reveals himself as Grant Wilson, played by Jamie Andrew Cutler. When Grant asks how Sara knew Slade, she curtly replied he was insane and notes that it must run in the family. Grant then orders his minions to attack the group, but we’ll have to wait for the actual episode to see its outcome.
We won’t find out the reason why Star City has fallen until tonight’s episode airs, but obviously Grant commands an impressive force, allowing him to terrorize the city’s citizens. In addition to likely doing battle with Connor, Grant was also seen facing an elder Oliver Queen in stills from the episode, and no doubt the new Deathstroke will want revenge for what the original Green Arrow did to his father. Since this Legends of Tomorrow episode is set in a dystopian future that the team will eventually prevent, it’s doubtful we’ll ever see Grant as Deathstroke again. But hey, maybe they’ll surprise us.
In the comics, Grant follows in his father’s villainous footsteps and becomes the first Ravager, fighting the Teen Titans as an agent of H.I.V.E. In the New 52, Grant tried to kill his father by sending a number of villains after him, but when given the chance to do it, he decided to walk away instead. Slade Wilson’s other son Joe (who became the hero Jericho in the comics) was previously mentioned on Arrow, but Grant’s existence hasn’t been known until now. Although Slade has a daughter named Rose in the comics who also held the Ravager identity, it was Summer Glau’s Isabel Rochev who filled a similar role at the end of Arrow Season 2.
After recurring in the Season 1 flashbacks, Slade was made a member of Arrow Season 2’s main cast, seen in the present day as the main antagonist and in the flashbacks as someone descending to villainy. He was last seen in Season 3’s “The Return,” and while it seemed like we’d see him again at some point, Arrow executive producer Marc Guggenheim recently said that the character is tied up in another DC project, thus preventing him from returning anytime soon. However, Grant’s presence shows that The CW isn’t forbidden from using a Deathstroke, just not the Deathstroke.
Legends of Tomorrow airs Thursdays at 8 p.m. EST on The CW.