“Sins of the Father” ended in a way that no Arrow fan could’ve easily predicted. Despite Nyssa’s declaration no one, except for a few nameless random people, died in the civil war between the League of Assassins. Oliver and crew diverted a war and all sides lived to fight another day. 

This seems like good news on the surface. Except Malcolm’s defeat caused the occasional villain to turn towards revenge. Malcolm met with Damien Darhk and told the big bad of Arrow season 4 that there is someone Oliver loves more than Felicity. It is his son, William. With that twist, Arrow looks to have answered the season-long mystery of who is in the grave. William is apparently going to learn a harsh (and fatal) lesson on what it means to have Oliver Queen as a father.

Danger in Central City

It’s true that things don’t look good for William. The final scene of “Sins of the Father” has all the markings of dangerous foreshadow. Oliver and Felicity decide they are going to get married very soon and then Malcolm sets the timer for the metaphorical bomb that will destroy their nuptials. It’s classic Arrow, a happy event marred by set up of a looming disaster.

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The problem is that killing William off would be far too easy for the show. Yes, it would be the death of a child — Oliver’s child — but there’s very little reason to care about William as a character. William has appeared in a grand total of one episode. He’s not that important or a beloved character to the audience. Oliver’s relationship with William has existed mainly off-screen. It seems like a cop-out to kill off a character when they’ve really just been introduced on the show. Arrow can be a dark show but child murder is a whole other level of depravity.


It seems equally unlikely that William’s mother, Samantha, will meet her end. This would effectively mean that Oliver would become a single parent in Arrow season 5. This might be an interesting new dynamic but seems too jarring for the show. Dig’s own fatherhood has been pushed mostly to the background. Arrow is more about the professional lives of the characters than it is their personal lives. Oliver juggling being a single father and superhero would feel like a very different show.

If Not William, Then Whom

So if William (or Samantha) aren’t going to die that means someone has to end up in the grave. Thea is apparently off the table because her blood lust has been cured. Felicity was already shown in the clear. There’s also nothing to suggest that Laurel and Dig are in any real danger. There is another suspect on the list. 

Donna Smoak, Felicity’s mother, has been appearing more and more in Arrow season 4. While Charlotte Ross is great in the role and Donna is fantastic, the more she appears the more it seems likely she will be the one who dies. 


Arrow is no stranger to killing off parents. In fact if you have children on Arrow, your likelihood of dying increases greatly. Of the major character deaths, particularly those who have stayed dead, the majority of them have been fathers and mothers. Donna would be the latest in a long line of killing a family member off to hurt the people left behind. It also would just kind of make sense for the story. Now that Felicity’s father’s past has been revealed there’s very little that needs to be explored with Donna. 

It’s a mystery to how Donna Smoak could die. It’s seems weird that Damien Darhk or Malcolm would go after Donna. It would hurt Felicity (and by proxy, Oliver) but their focus is apparently on Oliver’s biological family in William. There’s another villain that was featured in “Sins of the Father” who could be the real culprit. 

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Felicity’s father, Noah, is in jail now but it’s not hard to believe that he will escape prison sooner rather than later. In fact, Damien Darhk could break Noah out of prison to enlist him in his evil plans. Stranger things have certainly happened on Arrow in the past. 

The final episodes of season 4 could deal with Oliver and the rest of Team Arrow trying to stop Damien Darhk and Merlyn going after William and Samantha. It’ll be a successful effort only for Noah to go rogue and end his ex-wife’s life. It would be shocking, emotional end for the season and would explain Felicity’s rage inside the limo that was shown in the flash forward. Felicity already thinks of her father as a “son of a bitch.” 

But what do you think? Is it William, Samantha or Donna in the grave? Or could it be none of these characters? Who do you think would be the most emotional death for Arrow this season? What do you make of the twist of Malcolm working with Damien Darhk? What are your theories for how the season will end? 

Arrow season 4 airs Wednesdays at 8pm on The CW.

(Images courtesy of The CW)

Derek Stauffer

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV

Derek is a Philadelphia based writer and unabashed TV and comic book junkie. The time he doesn’t spend over analyzing all things nerdy he is working on his resume to be the liaison to the Justice League.