Recap 'Arrow' Season 3 To Get Ready For Season 4 & Hopefully, More Olicity

Remember that time Oliver Queen died in the middle of Arrow Season 3? Those were some pretty dark days, but thankfully, they were short-lived. There's of course a whole story surrounding Oliver's death and his revival, but I'm already getting ahead of myself. Before Arrow Season 4 kicks off, it's time to do a quick recap of Arrow Season 3, because if you recall, Oliver wasn't the only one who died.

Still coming to grips with, well, everything in his life, in Season 3 Oliver has decided to stop killing people once and for all, and makes sure he sticks to it. Slade has been defeated and is locked away on Lien Yu. Sara has decided to rejoin the League of Assassins, even though both Laurel and Detective Lance don't want her to. Oh, and Detective Lance is actually Captain Lance now. Elsewhere, Thea has run away with her biological father, Malcolm Merlyn, though no one realizes she's MIA just yet.

But the most important thing is that Oliver is starting to come to terms with his feelings for Felicity. He realizes that she's actually the one he loves, and Olicity 'shippers exploded with happiness. Of course, we couldn't break out the party hats and streamers just yet, because these two are still sailing through rocky territory. And don't forget, Oliver dies. Here's everything else that happened in Season 3, so you don't fail this city when Season 4 premieres on Wednesday night.

Know Who Else Dies?

SARA. I had an awful feeling that Sara would die, only because Laurel was destined to become the Black Canary. However, I did not think that Sara would die in the first episode of the season, setting in motion an entire season-long arc trying to find her killer. Her death totally wrecked everyone, Laurel the most. Somehow, she was able to keep her sister's death from Lance for most of the season, and when she finally broke the news to him, it destroyed him too. Sara's death sent a ton of shockwaves through Team Arrow, which lasted for the entire season.

On a happier note, Diggle and Lyla named their daughter Sara in her honor, and it was really sweet.

Oliver's Flashbacks

Hong Kong. Amanda Waller has found Oliver, and is forcing him to work with an agent named Maseo. This is the first time Oliver has gotten off the Island, and he decides to use the opportunity to try and contact his family back home. Tommy (dearly departed Tommy) is the only one who answers Oliver's ping for help, and flies to Hong Kong to try and track down his best friend. It's unsuccessful.

Oliver and Maseo begin to form a friendship, and Oliver also befriends Maseo's wife, Tatsu. The three of them get into a ton of situations where it appears as if one, or all, of them will die. In the end, it's actually and Maseo and Tatsu's son, Akio, who dies. This causes Maseo to join the League of Assassins, while Tatsu begins a solitary life in the mountains.

Thea Fights Her Own Battles

Thea doesn't want to be the victim anymore. So, during the Slade battle at the end of Season 2, she runs away with Malcolm to Corto Maltese. She starts training with him, and quickly learns how to fight. Eventually, Oliver is able to talk Thea into returning to Starling City (after telling her the truth about how their father died) and she goes willingly.

However, she's still very much in contact with Malcolm once she returns. As she's adjusting back to life in Starling, we discover that it was actually Thea who killed Sara, but she was not in control of her actions and has no recollection of what happened, because she was essentially being controlled by Malcolm.

Oh, and Thea dies too, because this was the season when everyone died, only to be brought back to life, except Sara (but that is coming later). In Thea's case, it was the Lazarus Pit that resurrected her.


Remember how Oliver finally admitted to himself that he had feelings for Felicity? It was short-lived. The two try to go out on a date and it's going well, until a bomb goes off in the restaurant. They are both still all-in for the relationship... until Felicity starts having second thoughts. She tells Oliver that she doesn't want to be "a woman that he loved" and ends everything.

The League

Why is Felicity so mad, anyway? Probably because Oliver got mixed up with The League of Assassins. He has sworn to protect both Malcolm and Thea, so when the League comes a knocking, Oliver has to stand up for them.

Since Sara was a member of The League, the big bad for Season 3, Ra's al Ghul, wants someone to answer for her death. In Thea's place, Oliver goes to Nanda Parbat to challenge Ra's. And this is when Oliver dies.

Seriously, Oliver Dies

Oliver lost his duel with Ra's, as the League leader stabbed him in the chest and then pushed him off a cliff. This all happened during the Season 3 midseason finale, so then we had to wait more than a month to learn his fate. He was healed with the help of Maseo and Tatsu, who still aren't on great terms, but thankfully were willing to work together to save Oliver.

Ray Palmer

While all of this is going on, there's a new billionaire in town who wants to become a vigilante. His name is Ray Palmer, he now owns Queen Consolidated, and he's great. He's so great, he catches the eye of Felicity, who realizes she has a type. The two eventually begin dating, and I feel like I betrayed Olicity because I totally 'shipped them.

JK, Oliver Is Not Dead

Surprise! Oliver returns to Sterling City only to find that everyone is actually pretty pissed at him — mostly Felicity. He also also finds a totally shattered Team Arrow, with one surprising new member.

Laurel Becomes Canary

It was only a matter of time before Laurel suited up with Sara's crime-fighting leather jacket. Her sister's death sends Laurel into a tailspin, and she takes her anger out by training to become a fighter, and eventually, the new Canary. She enlists the help of Ted "Wildcat" Grant to train her. She even has a blonde wig to keep up the whole charade that she's really the Canary, while also pretending to be Sara. Oliver is not amused by this, but instead of telling her to go home, he helps her learn the ins and outs of crime-fighting (though he is still not very happy about it).

Roy Gets The Hell Out Of Starling City

Roy learns that while he was under the influence of mirakuru, he killed a police officer, and understandably, it doesn't sit well with him. In a very elaborate ploy, he decides to unveil himself as the Arrow, which gets him arrested. While in jail, he is apparently killed.

Surprise! He's not really killed, it's just a way to make everyone think that Roy was the Arrow, and that the Arrow is now dead. Instead, Roy takes off for parts unknown, leaving Arsenal — and Thea — behind.

Then Oliver Becomes Al Sal-him

You know what they say, if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. Since Oliver can't seem to take down The League from the outside, he decides to take it down from the inside. It almost works. Except that Oliver is tasked with killing everyone in Starling City (he doesn't) and then the remaining members of Team Arrow show up, are locked in a cell, and almost killed, though thankfully Barry Allen from The Flash runs to them in time.

But Ra's is still determined to destroy Starling City, and plans to release a virus (introduced in the Hong Kong flashbacks) into the city. Team Arrow manages to stop him before he can do so, and Oliver kills Ra's, only to be rescued himself by Felicity, who borrowed the Atom suit.

Olicity, Part 2

And they all lived happily ever after!

...Except for Ray Palmer

Who accidentally blows himself up. Whoops.

Or does he? The answer is, no, because he'll return for the new Flash/Arrow spinoff Legends of Tomorrow next year. And since it looks like he finally got his A.T.O.M. shrinking technology to work just before the explosion went off, it's more than likely that Ray actually shrunk and avoided the whole disaster.

Got all that? When Arrow returns, it may be down Ray, Roy, and Sara, but will have gained the 'ship we've all been waiting for, a new Canary, and surely a ton of new threats to Starling City. After remembering just how much happened last season, I'm even more excited for Season 4.

Images: Dean Buscher (3), Liane Hentscher (2), Cate Cameron (5), Diyah Pera (3), Screengrab/The CW