What Is H.I.V.E. On 'Arrow'? This Secret Task Force Could Become A Major Problem For Oliver & Co.

Oliver might be back in his rightful place in Star City, but his troubles are still far from over. Now that Damien Darhk has made both his presence and superpowers known, the city is potentially in more danger than it ever has been before. (Which, considering all of the villains that have come to town over the past three years, is really saying something.) But as mysterious and powerful as Darhk clearly is, he isn't the only threat looming on the horizon, unfortunately. As many of you have probably surmised by now, Arrow Season 4 will be introducing H.I.V.E. into the series, a D.C. Comics criminal organization, which will prove to be a major hurtle for Oliver Queen & Co.

So what exactly is H.I.V.E., you may ask? First of all, the acronym stands for Hierarchy of International Vengeance and Eliminations, which sounds pretty impressive, but basically means that they're a secret group of specialized contract killers (hired guns, if you will) that are highly trained in carrying out mercenary missions. And can you guess who the leader of their little group is? Why, it's none other than Damien Darhk, of course. So if you thought Ra's al Ghul and his League of Assassins was bad, that's nothing compared to Darhk's organization, which (as far as I can tell) has no moral compass whatsoever.

As much as Team Arrow made the League out to be the bad guys, their overall mission was supposed to be for the greater good. Whenever they felt something (or someone) posed a danger to society, they simply came in and removed the threat. Granted, it wasn't always done in the best way and their way of thinking certainly clashed with Oliver's view of justice, but they weren't outright villains. Or, at least, they weren't supposed to be. H.I.V.E., on the other hand, could be a different beast entirely.

In Season 3, we learned that Ghul and Darhk trained together in the League, but when Ghul rose up to become the new leader, Darhk chose to flee instead of die, taking his followers (referred to by Ghul as his "hive") and some water from the Lazarus Pit along with him. These supposed followers are more than likely the "Ghosts" that have been plaguing Star City as of late. And they have only one goal in mind: kill and destroy. Darhk has already made his intentions known that he wants to see Star City go up in flames. (Seriously, what is it about this place that provokes such a violent reaction?) And with such a strong backing on his side like the H.I.V.E., I fear Team Arrow is about to face their greatest challenge yet.

After all, if you poke a bee hive, you're bound to get stung. Prepare yourselves…

Images: Katie Yu /The CW; Dean Buscher /The CW