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Forging a Better Future is a series of Arrowverse Fanfics by ArlyssTolero, the author of Arrow: Rebirth (later on in the story, Arlyss added Nyame, author of To Hell and Back (Arrowverse), one day at a time, and the superhero game, as a co-writer for the series). This series is a Re-Cut of Rebirth, containing the same general premise but heavily expanded in many areas and cut in others.

The first story is titled The Legend of the Green Arrow (formerly titled The Green Arrow Chronicles), a counterpart to Rebirth's The Rise of the Emerald Archer. Much like Rise, it details the first half of Season One, after Oliver is returned to the past by the Monitor and instructed to prepare the world for Crisis.

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The second story is titled The Dawn of the Golden Age, which is the counterpart to Rebirth's The Age of Heroes. This details the second half of Season One, dealing with the aftermath of the events of Legend and the arrival of Fort Rozz.

The third story is titled Interlude: The Perils of Change, the counterpart to the first half of Rebirth's The Children of the Glades. It covers the first half of Season Two, seeing the return of Laurel Lance from her training trip with Lady Shiva, and the return of Thea Dearden from her stint in rehab.

The fourth story is titled Invasion!: Rise of the Justice League, and is the counterpart to the second half of Rebirth's The Children of the Glades. It covers the second half of Season Two, where the Justice League begins expanding its ranks as they prepare for the impending Dominator Invasion.

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Unfortunately, Arlyss found the the last two stories not up to par and opted to delete them in favor of a rewrite, with the PDFs for both currently posted on the Lauriver Discord. Months later, he decided to leave his position as the main writer of the Forgingverse, citing mental health problems and other issues, and leaving it to Nyame to continue if she so wished. As Nyame is currently busy with her own personal projects, that leaves the Forgingverse on hiatus.

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Summaries

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    General 

An in-depth re-imagining of the Arrow: Rebirth series with some of the excess and unnecessary storylines pruned or cut out, Forging A Better Future is the author's definitive vision of the story of Oliver Queen being sent back in time by The Monitor to better prepare the heroes of Earth-1, both those he knew before and those who remained hidden from him in the last timeline, for the Crisis on Infinite Earths.

    The Legend of the Green Arrow 

Oliver Queen’s soul has been sent back through time by the combined power of Mar-Novu/The Monitor and Jim Corrigan/The Spectre. Mar-Novu has tasked him with changing the timeline, for the current timeline will see the end of the multiverse, an outcome that Mar-Novu cannot countenance. Oliver is warned that making too many changes too quickly will see him robbed of his advantage, but Oliver soon learns that even the smallest of changes can have the greatest of ripple effects. Eventually, Oliver realizes that he cannot control the narrative, and that he must do what he does best: face the unknown with just his grit and his bow.

    The Dawn of the Golden Age 

Three months have passed since Oliver Queen’s soul was sent back through time by The Monitor and The Spectre. In that time, he has defeated Malcolm Merlyn and Tempest, who are currently awaiting trial, and inspired Clark Kent to step forward into the light as Superman. Now, Oliver faces his greatest challenge yet: assemble a team of heroes that can deal not only with sensitive missions for the country like their predecessors, the JSA, but also stand against the crises that Oliver knows are just around the bend. The urgency of his quest is exacerbated by the arrival of Fort Rozz, and with it the ruthless General Dru-Zod, who believes Kryptonians have the right to subjugate ‘lesser species’.

    Interlude: The Perils of Change 

It has been one year since Oliver Queen was granted a second chance at life, and a moment long-dreaded comes to pass, leaving Team Arrow shattered as Laurel Lance returns from her training trip with Lady Shiva. Oliver Queen focuses his attentions on his relationship with Emiko and recruiting new members for the Justice League, anything to dull the pain. Sara Lance becomes more brutal and only the remembrance of a promise breaks through to her. Tommy Swann engages in self-destructive behavior. Laurel, together with John Diggle, tries to heal the fractured team before things are said and done that can’t be reversed.

    Invasion!: Rise of the Justice League 

After the third successive attempt on his life by mercenaries, Oliver Queen questions the latest assassin and learns that he has several bounties on him, the largest of which comes from the mysterious, shadowy Division X, a secret division of the U.S. government. After the president uncovers the truth about Division X and orders it shut down, the countdown begins to a final showdown with the Dominators and their desire to enslave the entire human race. Oliver searches across the globe for new recruits into the Justice League, with the new recruits undertaking several missions to train in teamwork and learn how to fight alongside one another.

Tropes:

    Tropes A-I 
  • Aborted Arc:
    • Among the cut storylines in Legend that originally appeared in Rise include Future Felicity and Oliver making a job offer to Barry.
    • The preface of Dawn confirmed there would be no Legends storyline like there was in Age, determining that storyline is what made Rebirth so confusing to begin with and ultimately led to that series' cancellation.
    • The Birds of Prey arc is also aborted ahead of time due to Frank Bertinelli being one of those taken down by the RICO case against the List.
  • Abusive Parents:
    • Quentin does love his daughters, but can be emotionally abusive when drunk. Laurel has been subject to such for abuse for the past five years, and it's taken a toll on her. He also reacts very poorly when he learns Sara was an assassin, and while in a drunken rage, even tries to intimidate Laurel at one point. Fortunately, Sara throws him out before it can escalate, leaving it uncertain how much worse he could have gotten.
    • Dinah is said to have probably found family life annoying. She spoiled Sara, but held Laurel to impossible standards and was always quick to punish her for anything; and did not support of comfort either of them as much as she should have. She also legitimately does not seem to realize that letting Sara sleep with Laurel's boyfriend was wrong, and in fact never confessed to it in the first place. Sara has also come to realize that it was really Laurel, not Dinah or Quentin who truly raised her; and believes that Dinah's attempts to find her after the Queens's Gambit sank was to absolve her own guilt rather than find Sara. Tellingly, Dinah is considered the second worst parent, only being better than Malcolm.
    • Malcolm is, of course, the worst parent. Psychopathy aside (and that's a big issue itself), he is cold and judgmental to Tommy, who says that Malcolm has never said "I love you" to him since his return from the League of Assassins. His treatment of Thea seemed to consist solely of indoctrinating her to his worldview, suggesting he had no true love for her.
  • Adaptation Expansion: This story is much more in-depth than Rise was, and includes a number of changes, such as Moira finding out Oliver is Green Arrow before she dies, Oliver being forced to take her place as a member of Tempest, and Laurel and Sara being charged with aiding and abetting his vigilante activities, with Sara being suspected as The Woman in Black/The Canary.
  • Adaptation Name Change: After deciding to expanded Queen Consolidated by going into various other industries, Oliver decides to rename the company Queen Industries to reflect the change.
  • Adaptation Origin Connection: Inverted. In Rebirth, Bruce was a former member of the League of Assassins. Here, it's confirmed that he is not a former member, instead learning his various skills during a long-term trip around the world, and simply caught Ra's' attention via his work in Gotham.
  • Adaptation Relationship Overhaul:
    • Oliver and Laurel get back together even faster than they did in Rebirth. However, because Laurel suffered less home invasions (and later because Sara started living with her), Oliver sleeps at her place less, so their intimacy increases at a much slower pace. They don't have sex again until after the Battle of Amnesty Bay.
    • A minor example. Laurel doesn't immediately forgive Sara, due to Sara never leaving behind a note revealing her gang-rape for Oliver to give to her. However, that changes after Sara brutally beats down a group of thugs that had tried to rape Laurel on her way home from work. Laurel quickly realizes that Sara's brutality had to come from personal experience, and after getting confirmation from both Oliver and Sara, forgives her sister. If anything, the two are even closer than they are in Rebirth, with Sara living with Laurel, attending a sexual assault survivors group with her, and training her even earlier than she originally did.
    • Since Quentin never learned of Sara's gang-rape, he's unable to reconcile with her past as an assassin and essentially destroys his relationships with both Laurel and Sara.
    • Tommy never reconciles with Malcolm due to learning the full circumstances of Thea's conception from Moira. If anything, he only grows more disgusted with his father over the course of the first volume, especially after Oliver is exposed and Malcolm suggests the SCPD keep with the kill-on-sight order. He all but renounces Malcolm as his father when his actions as the leader of Tempest are exposed, and outright comes to hate him after learning Malcolm's actions would've seen Thea become a sex slave if it hadn't been for Oliver.
    • Thea is significantly closer with Malcolm than in Rebirth as Oliver never brought her into confidence regarding Tempest and her father's role in it since he never had to expose his identity as Green Arrow to her. In turn, Malcolm values Thea enough that he doesn't consider killing her like he did in Rebirth, as part of his revenge against Oliver.
    • Due to the different circumstances of the Allens' move to Starling (specifically, the fact that they moved several weeks later than they originally did in Rebirth) and Iris being much more supportive of Barry in this universe, the Allens and the Wests never fall out and remain close, with Word of God confirming that Barry/Iris will be happening in this universe.
    • While Oliver and Tommy's friendship does fall apart like it does in Rise, Tommy's Character Development is not stalled like it was in Rebirth, so Tommy has time to reflect and regret his actions. And since Oliver is able to save Tommy from being indentured by the League, Tommy is never set on the path to becoming his enemy. Legend ends with Tommy apologizing to Oliver and Oliver forgiving him, putting them on the path to reconciliation.
    • In the show, Laurel and Diggle didn't really become close until Season 4note . Here, their relationship never has any problems, and she wins him over by inviting him to Thanksgiving, insisting that he's family. Diggle even quickly sees why Oliver loves her so much.
    • Joe West has a more favorable opinion of Oliver since he has a Thou Shalt Not Kill rule. It helps that the only reason Oliver tackled Tempest by himself at the end is because his attempt to involve the authorities failed thanks to Moira refusing to turn on Malcolm.
    • Tommy and Sara's friendship fell apart in the original Rebirth due to Sara firmly siding with Oliver when Tommy and him were on the outs, and later due to Tommy being dragged off to the League. Here, thanks to Tommy's Adaptational Heroism, the two manage to patch up their friendship after Legend and become even closer friends due to spending a lot of time together when Oliver and Laurel are out on dates. This eventually leads to them falling in love with each other and becoming a couple.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance: Before Rebirth was canceled, J'onn J'onzz was supposed to be appear as one of the recruits for the expanded Justice League during Volume III/Volume IV. Here, he appears in Dawn, the series' equivalent of Volume II.
  • Adaptational Heroism:
    • Oliver. In Rebirth, he is willing to kill if he deems the threat great enough, or in cases where he is extremely pressured. In this fic, he takes great pains to avoid killing altogether, and has broken his rule only two times under extenuating circumstances. The first was when he assassinated Harrison Wells/Eobard Thawne as that was the only way to preserve the new timeline. The second was when he killed Ra's al Ghul in a duel to save Thea from becoming a sex slave for the League of Assassins, and Ra's had rejected all of Oliver's attempts at diplomacy including Tommy, Sara, and him offering themselves up in Thea's place.
    • Felicity. Since she was never replaced by Future Felicity, this is Season One Felicity, who is still a genuinely nice, if awkward and slightly arrogant girl that Oliver originally befriended and eventually fell in love with, instead of the toxic and controlling woman she became in the later seasons — the one who tried to murder Laurel to get Oliver back in Rebirth. When she does die, Oliver genuinely mourns her and it pushes him further to the breaking point of his patience with Malcolm.
    • Diggle. Unlike Rebirth, he doesn't abandon Oliver's crusade over his connections to A.R.G.U.S. and remains loyal to him even after he is exposed as Green Arrow.
    • Tommy. Due to learning about Thea's parentage earlier and under different circumstances, and later not taking custody of her and thus having limited interactions with Malcolm, his Character Development isn't stalled like it was in Rebirth, as a result of having a lot of time to reflect on the consequences of his actions without anyone toxic influencing him. This eventually culminates in Oliver managing to save him from the League, permanently putting him back on the path of being a genuine hero like he was in canon.
    • Noah Kuttler. Since Felicity died as a result of something she was doing on her own initiative and because of Malcolm's pettiness, Kuttler doesn't blame Oliver for her death. Instead, he's grateful to Oliver for taking down Malcolm, and plans to kill the bastard himself if he ever manages to escape from whatever hole he's thrown in.
    • Zigzagged with Hank Henshaw. The Henshaw in Forging is much kinder and more heroic than the one in Rebirth, but that's because he's really J'onn J'onzz like he is/was on Earth-38.
    • Bruce Wayne. Heavily downplayed, but in Forging he was never a member of the League of Assassins like in Rebirth. This also means his no-killing rule is motivated purely by morality unlike Rebirth when it was at least partially out of guilt for his time in the League, and it also means he's not complicit in allowing the League's sexual slavery practices to continue. In fact, he was completely unaware of them, and admits that if he had known, he would've found a way for Talia to replace Ra's long ago. He's also a lot less morally selfish; he acknowledges, if only to himself, that if Ra's had tried to do to him what he had tried to do to Oliver and force Barbara or Kate into being sex slaves, he would've killed the bastard himself before letting it happen.
    • Dinah Drake/Tina Boland. In Rebirth, she was a deep cover mole for the Ninth Circle. Here, she's just a normal undercover cop, and her sharing a name with Dinah Drake Lance is merely a coincidence.
  • Adaptational Job Change:
    • Unlike in Rebirth, Oliver elects to remain CEO of Queen Consolidated for at least a few years so the company can have some stability for once.
    • Tommy never becomes an executive of Merlyn Global (he even ends up selling the company to Oliver after Malcolm is outed) or a nightclub owner/manager.
    • With the Legends storyline being completely aborted, as the Council of Time Masters no longer exists, leaving no reason for the Legends (or the Council's successors, the Time Bureau) to form, Sara does not become a Legend and remains in Starling as a member of Team Arrow.
    • After being disbarred, Laurel decides to become Oliver's executive assistant opposed to joining Lance Floral like she originally did in Rebirth.
  • Adaptational Villainy: Thea, who takes Tommy's place as Oliver's destined Arch-Enemy after being forcibly inducted into the League of Assassins. Word of God confirms that she will become the new Dark Archer and will eventually oppose Oliver.
  • Adapted Out:
    • Henry Fyff, due to Oliver selecting Naomi Singh as his tech agent over him.
    • The original Hank Henshaw, who ended up replaced by J'onn J'onzz.
  • All for Nothing: In the end, all of Team Arrow's efforts to save Thea from the League of Assassins, including having Oliver kill Ra's al Ghul come to nothing, as Thea was too set in her elitist mindset to recognize the danger the League posed until it was too late. The only thing Ra's' death serves is to end sexual slavery in the League, which is the only silver lining in the situation.
  • Alternate Universe: There are a significant number of differences between Forging and Rebirth despite the similar premise and plotlines.
    • One such difference is where Diana is located — in Rebirth, she lives in Paris and works at the Louvre, and later New York City and the Met. In Forging, however, she's already in America, living in Washington D.C. and working at the Smithsonian, like in Wonder Woman 1984.
    • Perhaps the biggest change is Oliver managing to save both Tommy and Thea from the League by killing Ra's al Ghul and replacing him with Talia. This starts a chain of events that leads to Thea being the one taken by the League, not Tommy.
    • In this universe, Hank Henshaw is J'onn J'onzz like he is on Earth-38 instead of the original Henshaw.
  • Always a Bigger Fish: The U.S. Government to Tempest. Tempest might control most, if not all of Starling, but in the end they are nothing compared to the federal government and they know it. Oliver is able to bring them down due to his own connections to the government and by working with Starling's local FBI field office, which not even Tempest was able to infiltrate and corrupt.
  • Arc Welding:
    • Malcolm hired Leo Mueller to sell military-grade weapons to gangs in the Glades so that way Nudocerdo would have an excuse to shut down the Glades' police precinct.
    • Both the SCPD's SWAT unit and Blackhawk Security are exclusively loyal to Tempest, the latter to the point that all of Tempest's members hired them for protection after Oliver was exposed.
    • The Trial of Tempest reveals that there was a lot more setup involved in the sinking of the Queen's Gambit than initially revealed. Martin Somers helped sneak in the Triad member that planted the bomb on the ship, and Dave Hackett was responsible for making sure the bomb wasn't discovered during the ship's last inspection.
    • Isabel Rochev was on the List because she was involved in Konstantin Kovar's human trafficking operations, not because she was Robert's ex-mistress.
  • Arch-Enemy: As always, Oliver and Malcolm. If sinking the Gambit wasn't bad enough, Malcolm proceeds to press-gang Oliver into Tempest, murder Felicity out of spite (and unknowingly preventing any chance of Mia being born), and more-or-less corrupts Thea to be the same kind of elitist asshole he is. In many ways Oliver is grateful when he's exposed, because that means he doesn't have to play all nice-nice with Malcolm anymore, and can have an open and honest conflict with his enemy.
  • Armor-Piercing Slap:
    • Laurel slaps the hell out of Tommy the first time she sees him after he outs Oliver. Sara goes for one better and breaks his nose.
    • Laurel also slapped Oliver when he first came to see her after his return from the island. Oliver is fully expecting it, lets her do it and doesn't hold it against her, as he's well aware that he does deserve it.
  • Ascended Extra:
    • Diggle remains a main character here, as opposed to being written out like he was in Rebirth.
    • Alex has a much bigger role in Legend as Trimble's primary partner on the Tempest case.
    • Technically, Tommy, who was designated to be a major villain and reoccurring foe to Oliver in the canceled Rebirth, but ends up becoming a hero and one of the main characters here.
  • Attempted Rape:
    • Laurel is nearly gang raped while coming home from work late, but is saved by Sara. This (and the realization that Sara herself has been raped) goes a long way to healing their relationship.
    • Following Ra's death, Nyssa had to fight off three rape attempts from members of the League, as she was no longer protected as Heir to the Demon or as an al Ghul. Ironically, she ends up regaining both statuses after Oliver turns the League over to her sister Talia, who declares her Heir until Talia can have a child of her own, but by that point she no longer needs the protection as Talia had abolished the League's sexual slavery practices.
  • Avenging the Villain: Dusan al Ghul seeks to avenge his father's death at the hands of Oliver Queen during the Slabside arc.
  • Awful Truth:
    • The Lances are a Dysfunctional Family, not unlike the Queens and Merlyns. For Laurel and especially Sara, this is a bitter pill to swallow.
    • The League's sexual slavery practices are this for Thea and Tommy. The previously-belligerent Thea is pale-faced and horrified that she nearly ended up a broodmare to the point of vomiting, while Tommy loses what little affection he had left for his father upon realizing Malcolm nearly dealt this fate to Thea.
  • The Bad Guy Wins: It takes several months after his death, but Ra's al Ghul ultimately does succeed in his goal of forcing Thea to join the League to punish Oliver and Malcolm.
  • Bad Future: When Oliver is sent back by the Monitor, he's informed that the heroes in the future will lose the battle against the Anti-Monitor unless things are changed. Destruction of the multiverse is about as "bad" as it gets.
  • Batman Gambit: Oliver pulls a successful one on Malcolm. Oliver apprehends Daniel Brickwell — the one who truly murdered Malcolm's wife — knowing his counterpart is vengeful enough to risk exposure just so he can have the pleasure of killing Brickwell himself. And as Oliver planned, Malcolm takes the bait and tries to kill Brickwell before being repelled by Oliver and Sara, which succeeds in proving the existence of the Dark Archer to the FBI, limits Malcolm's movements even more, and lends credence to Tempest's existence which so far everyone has denied.
  • Big Bad Wannabe:
    • Malcolm, who is a nonexistent threat to Oliver and only lived for so long because Oliver honestly thought he was Not Worth Killing. To the point that Oliver continues to let him live rather than hand him off to the League as a form of Cruel Mercy.
    • Slade, a fact he is made bitterly aware of after Atlantis is unveiled to the world. It prompts him to attack the subsequent celebratory gala just for the sake of finally killing Oliver.
    • Sebastian Blood and Tobias Church in Perils. Both only have initial success due to staying under Team Arrow's radar, and both are defeated very quickly once the team becomes aware of them.
  • Big Brother Instinct:
    • Tommy already saw Thea as a little sister before he learned she actually was his little sister. After that, however, he adopts this attitude full-force, with her needs always the forefront of his mind. To the point that it's learning Malcolm almost caused Thea to become a sex slave that truly pushes Tommy into hating him.
    • Oliver, even after Thea comes to hate him, still remains protective of her. He beats down Morgan Edge for kidnapping her and kills Ra's al Ghul to save her from the League.
    • Both Laurel and Sara are protective of Thea too. Laurel tries to be friendly with her even as Thea constantly degrades her, while Sara didn't hesitate to offer herself in Thea's place and even promised to challenge Ra's and save her if Oliver's own challenge had failed.
    • Laurel constantly does her best to reassure and support Sara.
  • Big Damn Kiss: Tommy and Sara towards the end of Perils, after finally confessing their love to each other.
  • Birds of a Feather:
    • Oliver and Laurel are both goal-oriented people with a deep passion for helping the less-fortunate. That's one of the reasons they work as a couple.
    • Tommy and Sara both like to have fun, enjoy watching movies, and act as laidback Foils for their respective best friends.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Perils initially seems to be ending on a high note, with the various Justice League members shown celebrating Thanksgiving with their friends and family, Team Arrow having all accepted that Thea being taken by the League was not any of their faults, and Clark proposing to Lois. The story then cuts to Thea, who still blames Oliver for everything that's happened to her, and vows that one day she will have her revenge.
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: Thea. She is spoiled, naive, entitled, prone to drama, temperamental, and completely divorced from the consequences of her words and actions. She has only gotten worse due to her never learning her brother is the Green Arrow as she did in Rise, traumatized by her fear of him after he attacked her home to get the rightfully-owed severance pay for the laid-off steel mill workers, and officially joining the Merlyn household where Malcolm stokes her worst traits from Season 1 of canon and feeds her lies that she — due to her emotional immaturity, and naïveté — is all too happy to eat up. It has gotten to the point where she shares her father's belief in seeing all of the Glades' residents as criminals and her brother as a dangerous killer who belongs in prison after learning he is the Green Arrow. Even after Olver saved her from being press-ganged into the League of Assassins — where she would have been used as a sex slave — she continues disparage and insult him and everyone who supports him at every turn. Even Tommy thinks that she is now simply "being downright nasty for no reason other than to be nasty."
  • Brick Joke: After repelling the Trenchers from Amnesty Bay, Tommy makes a point to tell Oliver off for his Tempting Fate comment.
  • Broken Pedestal:
    • Tommy didn't have the best relationship with Malcolm beforehand, but his remaining faith in his father's character is shattered after he learns about Malcolm's affair with Moira. He later starts suspecting his father to be something much worse as events begin to lend more credence to Oliver's claims of Tempest's existence, and Tommy notes that many of the people Oliver exposed as domestic terrorists are people who are closely affiliated with Malcolm. He all but renounces Malcolm as his father in disgust, when he is exposed as the Dark Archer and leader of Tempest. What truly and utterly kills what little remaining affection Tommy had for his father, however, is learning that Malcolm's actions almost caused Thea to be turned into a sex slave for the League. Tommy can't even see him as a person after that, and renounces the Merlyn name outright, opting to take on his mother's maiden name Swann.
    • A minor example with Moira. While Tommy initially believes that Oliver framed Moira to save his own skin and that he's degrading Moira's memory further with the claim that she's a street rat and thief, that changes after the FBI confirm that the evidence was genuine and that Moira really was guilty of hiding the Gambit. After Edge comes into town, kidnaps Thea, and confirms that Moira did steal from him, Tommy finally begins to realize that his surrogate mother wasn't really all he believed her to be.
    • Kazumi's already shoddy opinion of Robert drops dramatically after Malcolm is exposed, because he still left Kazumi and Emiko in the Glades despite the danger they were both in thanks to Malcolm's plans. It's what finally kills what little remaining affection she had for him, and convinces her that it's time to find love with someone else.
    • Sara had a very idealized image of her family, which is why she initially refused to return home at first — she didn't believe her family could accept what she had become and didn't want to taint them with her darkness. When she does come home, however, she's gradually faced with the reality that only Laurel comes close to that ideal image. Her father is a drunkard who emotionally abused her sister after Sara's 'death' while her mother refused to confess her part in what happened to Sara (including letting Sara sleep with Laurel's boyfriend) and flat-out abandoned her ex-husband and her eldest daughter for five years over the guilt. Understandably, Sara decides she doesn't want to reconcile with either of them until they admit to their faults and stays with Laurel instead.
  • Cassandra Truth:
    • Thea refuses to believe that her mother stole from Morgan Edge to get out of the Suicide Slums in Metropolis even after Edge himself confirms it.
    • Like in Rise, Oliver's Tempest "conspiracy theory". He isn't vindicated until Ballard flips and Malcolm is exposed.
  • Category Traitor: Wilhelmina Hollinger accuses Oliver of this when he confronts her:
    "You have betrayed your own with your actions, Mr. Queen! You are unworthy of your heritage, of your acclaim!"
    • She later makes a similar accusation to Tommy.
    • Quentin, when his alcoholism gets really bad, calls Laurel this over her choosing to support vigilantes (and eventually become one), and as such "betraying" their shared devotion to the law.
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: With the exception of John Diggle / Spartan, all the members of Team Arrow have color-coded hero names:
    • Oliver Queen — Green Arrow
    • Laurel Lance — Black Canary
    • Sara Lance — White Canary
    • Tommy Swann — Azure Blade
  • Conveniently Unverifiable Cover Story: A non-mole version. In Perils, Team Arrow uses one of these to cover up Thea being taken by the League of Assassins. They decide to say that Oliver gave Thea the inheritance Moira left for her, and that Thea used the money to skip town now that she was independently wealthy. As it's well-known that Thea had issues with her brothers and was cut off from the family fortune, it's in-character for her, and the only way to dispute it would be to find Thea and have her verify it, which is impossible since she's with the League.
  • Cool and Unusual Punishment: Amanda Waller's idea of torturing Malcolm Merlyn? Forcing him to watch news bulletins from the outside world about Oliver's success and the growing power of the Justice League. Hilariously, it works.
  • The Corrupter: After Thea falls into his custody, Malcolm spends most of their time together brainwashing her into adopting his elitist mindset. Originally it was to keep Oliver in line and later to stick it to him after the younger man was exposed as the Green Arrow, but eventually he had more pragmatic reasons for it too — namely, so Thea could carry on his work after he was dead. He's been mostly successful in brainwashing her as she continues to deny Malcolm's crimes even after he was unmasked as the Dark Archer on live television. Even after she rejects him, his corruption is so deeply set in that it continues to influence her behavior over a month later, as seen with Dawn.
  • The Coup: It's revealed that Al-Owal led one against Talia during the Time Skip between Dawn and Perils, in rebellion for all the changes made to the League to modernize it. This coup is ultimately the reason why Thea is forced to join the League, as Talia needs a show of force to further stabilize her position as Ra's.
  • Crossover: Starting in Dawn, with Lucifer (2016). Both Lucifer Morningstar and Chloe Decker (and possibly more) have been confirmed to be playing minor roles in the series. Lucifer is later hired by Oliver to be the new manager of Verdant, and Chloe Decker shows up as a new transfer to the MCU.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle:
    • Since Oliver isn't recovering from prior injuries this time, he quickly and handily defeats Malcolm in combat.
    • Slade vs. Diana. It can't even be called a fight; Slade might be a super-soldier, but even that can't compare to the strength of a demigoddess.
  • Curb Stomp Cushion: Ra's does significantly better than Malcolm, and even manages to injury Oliver, but he's still outclassed. After Oliver kills him, Malcolm actually realizes that Oliver was luring him into being overconfident.
  • Death by Adaptation: Ra's al Ghul. His refusal to let Oliver take Thea on as a student and insistence in inducting her into the League forces Oliver to challenge him and kill him to save his sister.
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • Felicity, even more so than she was in Rebirth. Since she was never replaced by Future Felicity, Oliver had no reason to bring her back onto the team. She's later Killed Off for Real by Malcolm to send a message to Oliver and keep him in line.
    • Barry, due to Oliver assassinating Wells/Thawne later than in Rebirth. He comes to Starling City around the same time Malcolm is exposed instead of well before then like he did in Rebirth. It's zig-zagged in regards to his role in the series overall, though — while Word of God confirms he won't become the Flash until 2020, he still remains a major supporting character by virtue of his move to Starling and his employment at Q-Core.
    • Thea, Roy, Rene, and Ted all have reduced roles in this series; Thea as a result of the different direction her character went into, and the latter three because of the lack of a Legends subplot meant that Oliver didn't need to recruit more members for Team Arrow.
    • The Huntsman is never recruited by Malcolm to kill Felicity or Laurel. He finally appears during the Sladside Arc, where he's already in prison. He focuses on Sara instead of Laurel, and is defeated in that same chapter, with the characters never really knowing or caring much about him.
  • Double-Meaning Title: The title of Chapter 90 of Legend is "Ra's al Ghul", referencing both the titular character and Oliver killing Ra's in a Duel to the Death to save Thea from the League, thus succeeding said character as Ra's al Ghul.
  • The Dreaded:
    • Ra's al Ghul. Both Oliver and Malcolm are terrified of him, and just know that there's no way he's going to leave things be after Malcolm exposes the League on live TV.
    • Lady Shiva. Oliver is scared to death of her when he sees her in person for the first time. According to him, Shiva is the only warrior Ra's ever truly feared, and without question the greatest martial artist in the world.
  • Drowning My Sorrows: After Thea is taken by the League of Assassins, Oliver, Tommy, and Sara all get blackout drunk.
  • Due to the Dead: After buying Merlyn Global from Tommy, Oliver renames the building 'Steele Incorporated', in honor of the deceased Walter Steele.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: One of Diana's coworkers at the Smithsonian is Barbara Minerva.
  • Everyone Can See It:
    • Just like in canon, Barry and Iris. Oliver and Joe even commiserate over it, and both their fathers are counting days until they finally become a couple.
    • Tommy and Sara. When they finally confess their love and kiss, no one is surprised, with Oliver and Laurel simply smiling at the scene.
    Diggle: Finally.
  • Everyone Has Standards:
    • In their first meeting, Sara asks Laurel if she (Sara) is to blame for their parents splitting up. While part of Laurel wants to confirm this to hurt Sara, she can't bring herself to do it; and instead reassures Sara that the divorce was only ever on their parents.
    • Alex is disgusted to learn that the rest of Tempest hardly blinked when Malcolm threatened to kill Oliver's six year old son with a car crash if Oliver didn't fall in line.
    • Even the FBI agents were moved after learning about why Oliver gave William one of his fletchettes. Alex admits that she didn't have the heart to take it from him after that.
    • Even Tommy begins to see Thea's poor behavior as problematic and sees her as simply nasty for the sake of being nasty.
    • Everyone who sees Thawne/"Wells"' video will describing his murder of Nora Allen with such "smug satisfaction" is sickened.
    • After Malcolm forces Oliver to fully expose the League of Assassins and its (former) sexual slavery practices in his testimony during the Trial of Tempest to explain why he tried to trade Malcolm to the League and then later killed Ra's al Ghul, every single decent person watching is understandably horrified. Especially after learning Malcolm nearly got Tommy and Thea, his own children, forcibly inducted into the League.
      • Nearly all of the women are driven to tears, except for Diana, who is instead enraged at the idea that such a place had managed to exist with everyone none the wiser for so long.
      • Joe West, Henry Allen, and even Bruce Wayne fully admit that if they had been in Oliver's position, they would've done the same exact thing. Bruce further admits that if he had known about the League's practices, he would've found a way for Talia to replace Ra's years ago, even if it meant killing Ra's himself.
      • Noah Kuttler briefly entertained the idea of going after Tommy or Thea for Malcolm's crimes. After learning about this, however, he drops the idea immediately, recognizing that Malcolm doesn't give a shit about his kids.
  • Evil Is Petty:
    • Felicity is murdered simply because Malcolm didn't like Oliver defying him by throwing the CNRI gala. And this was after Oliver gave sufficient reasoning as to why he couldn't cancel the gala, such as the fact that it would've raised Laurel's suspicions.
    • It's strongly implied that Ra's tried to induct Thea into the League in retaliation for Oliver's 'presumptuousness' in their brief interactions together. While he did have sensible, if weak reasons for refusing Oliver and Sara's offers to trade themselves in Thea's place, he refused Tommy for no other reason than because he was already traded for Malcolm, even though Tommy was also Malcolm's child and male to boot, which the misogynistic Ra's naturally would've assumed would make Tommy a better prospective assassin. Considering the fact that Thea was going to end up a sex slave had she ended up a member of the League under Ra's regardless of her capability as a warrior, it suggests that he always intended to have Thea inducted to punish both Oliver and Malcolm.
    • While he left Barry his estate and ownership of S.T.A.R. Labs after being assassinated by Oliver, Harrison Wells/Eobard Thawne went to great lengths to ensure that Barry would never get to work as a scientist in Central City purely over his grudge with Barry's future self.
  • Excited Title! Two-Part Episode Name!: The title of Volume IV: Invasion!: Rise of the Justice League.
  • First-Name Basis:
    • Oliver and Amanda Waller. Lyla is shocked that anyone would dare to use Waller's first name, and that Waller doesn't address him with "Agent" or "Mr."
    • Lex Luthor assumes this with everyone.
    • After he is exposed as Green Arrow, Oliver makes a point to consistently call Alex Danvers by her first name, despite her insisting he call her "Agent Danvers" instead.
  • Foil: More than once in Dawn, Oliver reflects that his current team is one for his team in the original timeline. During the Amnesty Bay arc, he makes it explicit:
    "...this was what a team was really like. Playful teasing, good-natured jokes, acceptance of each other’s quirks… not judgments, recriminations, accusations, and vitriol".
  • For Want of a Nail: Again, to be expected for a time travel story:
    • Thea and Tommy find out about Thea's true parentage almost right after Oliver comes home due to Tommy's inappropriate (if well-meaning, according to him) comment about Thea's growing beauty alerting Oliver about a possible attraction between the two of them. When he mentions this to Moira (after subtly admitting to her that he knows the truth as well), she agrees that they both need to know the truth and tells them the following day.
      • Due to Moira telling them of the affair and explaining why she kept Thea's parentage a secret, rather than having it randomly dropped on them during a custody hearing, Tommy does not reconcile with Malcolm. Instead, he gives his father a "Reason You Suck" Speech over the issue, and one of the reasons he starts opposing Oliver's crusade is because he knows Oliver will be a better guardian for Thea than Malcolm.
      • Because Thea knows about Malcolm being her father before Moira died, and later Tommy revealing the truth to Malcolm in a fit of rage, Tommy is completely bypassed for her guardianship in favor of his father instead. It didn't help that Malcolm had press-ganged Oliver into joining Tempest beforehand, meaning Oliver had to give him guardianship anyway regardless of his own wishes.
      • All of this above means that Tommy's Character Development isn't stalled like it was in Rebirth. Instead, it's accelerated because he doesn't have Thea to focus on nor Malcolm to influence him, leaving him on his own to contemplate the consequences of all his actions.
      • Another consequence of Thea learning of her heritage via this avenue is that she's more predisposed to building a relationship with Malcolm, especially after Walter's death. Without Tommy to run interference between them and her deteriorating relationship with Oliver, especially after learning he's the Green Arrow, Malcolm is able to sink his claws into Thea and encourage her elitist mindset. Ultimately, his influence is so damaging that she refuses to take the League's threat seriously and thus rebuffs all of Oliver's attempts to get her to train and become a vigilante, forcing him to send her to rehab. However, even that fails, and in the end it is Thea, not Tommy, that is forced to join the League.
    • After Sara is released from the League, she doesn't leave Starling, and so doesn't leave behind a note explain her Rape as Backstory past. Thus, it takes a little longer for Laurel to forgive her (and that's only after Laurel figures out said past on her own), and strains her relationship with Quentin after he learns that she's a former assassin. While Laurel and Sara end up reconciling and becoming closer than ever, the first volume ends with Quentin's relationship with both his daughters now rocky, and him already Off the Wagon.
    • Because Oliver killed Wells/Thawne several weeks later than he did in Rebirth and never made a job offer to Barry, Barry and Henry move to Starling much later than they originally did, around the time that Malcolm is exposed. That means the Allens and the Wests never had a falling out and are tighter than ever.
    • Oliver's decision to adopt a Thou Shalt Not Kill rule means that Bruce has a much more favorable opinion of him. It also means that Ra's doesn't, considering Oliver's methods insufficient.
      • Because of this Thou Shalt Not Kill rule, Oliver spares Malcolm, which allows him to trade Malcolm for Tommy, thus sparing his best friend the League.
      • However, this also leads to Ra's refusing Oliver the right of blood to take Thea on as his student. After Ra's refuses offers from Sara, Tommy, and Oliver to trade themselves in Thea's place, Oliver is forced to challenge Ra's and kill him, temporarily becoming Ra's al Ghul in exchange.
      • This culminates in Talia becoming Ra's al Ghul, with Tommy and Thea forced to become vigilantes lest they being abducted and inducted into the League. Tommy for a period of ten years, and Thea for a period of five.
      • As a result of this, Dusan does not ally with Team Arrow during the Slabside arc and instead becomes their enemy, seeking to avenge his father's death at Oliver's hands.
    • Thanks to Oliver fully cooperating with the FBI on the Tempest investigation when he could, he manages to do more to clean out the corruption in Starling City by mentioning the List to them. In Dawn, it's revealed that the FBI managed to use the List to create a RICO case against all the people that were on it, effectively ending most, if not all the corruption in Starling City over night.
      • As Brian Nudocerdo was one of those taken down in the Tempest investigation, Franklin Pike becomes the new Commissioner of the SCPD while Lucas Hilton becomes the new Captain of the MCU, since Quentin had fallen Off the Wagon in Legend.
      • Helena never becomes Huntress due to Frank Bertinelli being on the List and thus being one of the FBI's many takedowns as part of the RICO case. Instead, she decides to leave Starling to start a new life elsewhere with what's left of the Bertinelli fortune, but not before thanking Oliver for helping bring her father to justice.
      • With so much corruption from the city gone, Oliver is able to focus more on being CEO of Queen Consolidated, and even considers buying up Frank Bertinelli's old businesses and repurposing them for QC.
    • After he's pardoned, Oliver trolls Slade by using his interview with the Daily Planet to publicly imply that he knows Slade is alive and is Deathstroke. This unhinges Slade earlier, and the gradual ascent of the Justice League (complete with the unveiling of Atlantis) furthers Slade's breakdown to the point that, instead of joining H.I.V.E., he decides to attack Oliver head-on at the gala the following night, in spite of knowing that at least half the Justice League will be present, leading to his capture earlier and completely averting the Siege of Starling City before it can even happen.
    • Because Diana lives in D.C. and has yet to start running around as Wonder Woman, Oliver has no reason to seek her out yet. Instead, she ends up joining the Justice League after defeating and capturing Slade during his attack on the gala.
  • Frame-Up: Subverted. Tommy is convinced that Oliver framed Moira for the Gambit after Moira tried to convince him to stop being Green Arrow, both to stop her from retaliating against him and to send a warning to Tommy. In reality, while Moira is not guilty for blowing up the Gambit, she is guilty for hiding it away and obstructing the investigation into its destruction and thus, the death of Robert. The only reason Oliver turned in the evidence to the FBI is because Moira refused to turn on Malcolm and he hoped to pressure her into changing her mind.
  • Freudian Excuse Is No Excuse: No one is particularly sympathetic or impressed with Malcolm using Rebecca's death as his reason to destroy the Glades. During the trial of Tempest, even Brick (who killed Rebecca) gets in on it.
    "I regret nothing, and I’ve killed plenty of people without their husbands, wives, and children getting uppity about it. Clearly, Merlyn’s insane."
  • Gentle Touch vs. Firm Hand: In Dawn, the four adults who are involved in Thea's parenting after Malcolm is arrested are split between these two approaches. Laurel and Tommy are the Gentle Touch, trying to reason with Thea and prefer diplomatic solutions to get through to her, even when she goes out of her way to be as difficult as possible. Oliver and Sara are the Firm Hand, being much less tolerant of her nasty attitude and not afraid of punishing her when she steps out of line, with Sara having even slapped Thea on more than one occasion.
  • George Lucas Altered Version: Of Arrow: Rebirth. While the general plot is based on Rebirth, there are enough changes to make it an entirely different story on its own. After Rebirth was officially canceled, Forging became the definitive version of the series.
  • The Glorious War of Sisterly Rivalry:
    • Not so glorious. Present day Sara is horrified by how cruel she was to Laurel growing up, resenting Laurel for her Promotion to Parent status instead of appreciating it, and admits she got onto the Gambit at least in part to "teach her a lesson". Currently, there's no real rivalry left.
    • Lucy resents Lois for similar reasons, but they haven't fixed things yet.
  • A God Am I:
    • Malcolm. Both Oliver and later Alex (who is a professional criminal profiler) peg him with a god complex.
    • Harrison Wells/Eobard Thawne. Upon seeing his obnoxiously lavish house in Central City, in addition to already knowing how arrogant he is, Oliver pegs the man with a god complex like Malcolm, likely seeing himself as superior to everyone in the 21st century due to being from the future.
  • Godzilla Threshold:
    • After exhausting all possible diplomatic options, Oliver challenges Ra's al Ghul to a Duel to the Death to save Thea from the League.
    • Oliver's plan to send Thea to rehab is treated as this. Several people, including his therapist and Oliver himself, note that this could do permanent damage to his relationship with Thea. However, his only other options are to either let Thea go through a stint in jail (which would do real damage to her future now that she's almost an adult and cut off from the family fortune), or to do nothing, and let the League nab her and forcibly induct her into their ranks.
  • Good Cannot Comprehend Evil: Oliver at one point notes that he can understand most forms of evil, including mobsters, rapists, and even war criminals or terrorists, but he cannot understand human traffickers.
    "What drives them to look upon their fellow men and see only a product to be packaged and shipped to other countries? How can something like that ever be seen as a ‘good’ way to make money?"
  • Good Parents:
    • It's almost universally agreed upon by all of the children of the Queen-Lance-Merlyn triad that the only true good parent they had among the four of them was Rebecca. The Queens and Quentin were solid cases of Parents as People, while Dinah and Malcolm flat-out didn't care about their children at all.
    • Oliver also acknowledges that while he didn't know Walter for long, he was kind and a good man who managed to connect with Thea in a way that the rest of the family couldn't, and thus, a good parent. Notably, Thea really didn't start buying into Malcolm's bullshit until after Walter was dead, and he's the one person that she refuses to blame for any of her problems (in contrast to everyone else, including the similarly-deceased Moira).
  • Has Two Mommies: Thea, who has two daddies in the case of Oliver and Tommy. After Malcolm's arrest Oliver is made Thea's official guardian but Tommy and he more-or-less share the responsibility of raising her. Laurel and Sara also play significant roles in this endeavor.
  • Hauled Before A Senate Subcommittee: As the leader of the Justice League, Oliver is forced to attend hearings with both the Defense and Intelligence Subcommittees after the Amnesty Bay incident and his trip to Atlantis. Trumbull's words indicate that he'll be required to do this for every major incident the JL get involved in.
  • Head Desk: After learning the newest member of the JL is a demigoddess, Malcolm goes up to the nearest wall and begins banging his head against it.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners:
    • Laurel and Sara are a rare sibling example. The two become attached to the hip over the course of Legend, living together, training together and even attending therapy groups together.
    • Oliver and Tommy. Here, Oliver doesn't forget about his friendship with Tommy and tries to keep close with him. Their friendship does suffer a strain after Tommy exposes Oliver, but they manage to reconcile at the end of the story after Oliver saves him from the League and Tommy apologizes for his actions. By the time of Dawn, they're as close as ever, with Tommy moving in with Oliver after he's finally able to leave the Quiver without fear of public backlash.
  • Historical Rap Sheet: According to Sara, Ra's trained the man who killed Franz Ferdinand of Austria, making him responsible for World War I. Naturally, no one is happy to learn about this.
  • Hope Spot: Thea returns from rehab at the start of Perils, clean and looking better than ever, even having some friendly banter with Oliver. Then they get home, Oliver talks about the beginning of her training and Thea reveals that she's still as much of a Spoiled Brat as ever, with no intentions of training whatsoever.
  • I Am Not Pretty: Laurel believes herself to be less attractive than Sara and the various other women Oliver slept with whenever they were on break. Oliver insists that is not true, and is worried about Laurel's self esteem that she believes that.
  • I Have Your Wife: Invoked. After Moira dies and Walter is murdered, Malcolm forces Oliver to take Moira's place and join Tempest by threatening grisly fates for Laurel, Sara, and William. This was deliberate, as Malcolm determined that Oliver would be much easier to manipulate than Walter due to having so many vulnerable loved ones to begin with.
  • I Just Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Deconstructed. Oliver remembers that in the original timeline Laurel had a tendency to put aside her own feelings for him and supported his relationship with Felicity, and worries that the real motivation was that she didn't believe herself worthy of love.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink:
    • Quentin, after learning Sara became an assassin during the years she was gone. That quickly leads to him to going Off the Wagon.
    • Damien Darhk, of all people, after learning that his plans might catch the attention of the Green Lantern Corps and its 3,600 members.
  • I Reject Your Reality:
    • A distressing trend with Thea after buying more and more into Malcolm's manipulations, is how she outright rejects facts that she doesn't like no matter the evidence, with a number of characters — even Tommy — worrying she is losing touch with reality. It's gotten to the point where she denies her father's crimes even after he was unmasked as the Dark Archer on live television, while trying to kill three innocent people (one of whom was Thea's own nephew).
    • Lois thinks Quentin is doing this when interviewing him and hearing his decidedly negative view of Green Arrow, but he's closer to Jerkass Has a Point. His fears of the escalation Green Arrow will bring are spot on, and Oliver destroying a cache of drugs does in fact make prosecuting the dealers harder. His refusal to see the good Green Arrow is doing (or indeed any good in Oliver or Tommy) do have shades of this trope though.
    • Played for laughs, but Oliver's absolute refusal to accept that he's Just Like Robin Hood is approaching this level of denial.
  • In-Series Nickname: As Thea's Bratty Teenage Daughter tendencies get more pronounced, Sara takes to calling her "the Little Miss".
  • In Spite of a Nail:
    • Moira still commits suicide and Walter is still killed by Malcolm to make Oliver CEO and a member of Tempest.
    • Tommy still exposes Oliver.
    • Felicity is still murdered, though this time in a hit-and-run opposed to being murdered by the Huntsman.
    • Barry still goes to Starling City after Wells/Thawne is assassinated by Oliver, and his father's name is cleared, despite never receiving a job offer from Oliver like he did in Rise. This is because Wells/Thawne — despite leaving him majority ownership of S.T.A.R. Labs — ensured that Barry would never get to work as a scientist in Central City as a form of petty revenge.
    • Quentin still gets a heart attack. In fact, due to the stress of the events of Legend in combination with him falling Off the Wagon, he gets it over a year and a half earlier than he originally did.
    • Malcolm still ends up exposing Ra's al Ghul and the League of Assassins. Only difference is that it was entirely his fault, since he didn't bother to turn off the livestream during his Motive Rant against Oliver.
    • Thea is still forced to become Oliver's student and a vigilante for five years. Except not.
    • Oliver still ends up creating Verdant, this time after buying Bertinelli's strip club and turning it into a night club.
    • A child of Malcolm Merlyn is still forced to join the League of Assassins, though this child is Thea, not Tommy.
  • Ineffectual Death Threat: Not an outright death threat, but as good as; when Moira first learns that Oliver is the vigilante, she tries to force him to give up by threatening to send him to a psychiatric facility. Oliver points out that if the Green Arrow disappears at the same time as Oliver is sent away, Malcolm will quickly work out who he is and act accordingly, which will likely include killing Moira in the belief that she was Oliver's source.
  • Interclass Friendship:
    • As with the show and Rise, billionaire Oliver is dating the working class Laurel. There's also his friendship with Sara, and the equally wealthy Tommy's friendship with them as well.
    • Dinah Drake is the daughter of wealthy Gotham socialites and married police detective Quentin Lance, even if that relationship didn't work out.
  • Internal Reveal: Just like in canon, Oliver reveals the truth about his Time Travel to the entire Justice League after the Battle of Gotham.
  • It's All My Fault:
    • After Malcolm is exposed, Tommy realizes that every terrible thing that's happened to Laurel and Thea and everyone else he cared about after he exposed Oliver is his fault.
    • Oliver, Tommy, and Sara blame themselves when Thea is taken by League of Assassins to pay off her father's blood debt; thinking they didn't do enough to convince her of the League's threat so she would train with them as a vigilante.

    Tropes J-R 
  • Jerkass Realization: Sara gets hit with one when she learns just how badly their parents have treated Laurel, and realizes that Laurel was the one to truly raise her, which (prior to the island) she resented her for. She is utterly horrified when she realizes just how awful she was to her sister.
  • Just Like Robin Hood:
    • Once again, people keep comparing Oliver to Robin Hood, and he keeps insisting he's not Robin Hood. Taken to extremes during the Mob War arc, when Trimble, Alex, Clark, Lois, Jimmy and Helena are all staying in the bunker and upon denying that he's Robin Hood, everyone can only stare at him incredulously.
    • In the article she writes, Lois even notes the obvious similarities between Green Arrow and Robin Hood and comments on how deep in denial Green Arrow is about them.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • Malcolm has Felicity murdered after initially promising to spare her life to send a message to Oliver after he decides to defy Malcolm and throw the CNRI gala. And this was after Malcolm forced Oliver to fire her too. If all of that weren't bad enough, she was killed via a hit-and-run, the same fate Malcolm threatened William with.
    • Ra's tried to do this by inducting Thea into the League and refusing any and all alternative options, largely out of cruelty. Thankfully, Oliver killed him before it could happen.
    • Thea gets two of these in a chapter of Dawn. During a sparring session apparently actively tried to hurt Laurel, who out everyone has been the kindest and most supporting to her. The second much worse one is when she derides Emiko as a "gold-digger, just like her whore mother" and says that she's nothing but a pet "like a gerbil" to Oliver. On live television.
  • Lack of Empathy:
    • Given their goals, the members of Tempest unsurprisingly have no empathy for anyone.
    • Brick is openly proud of his crimes, and then there's this exchange with Isabel Rochev (guilty of drug smuggling and human trafficking):
    Wright: And you saw nothing wrong with this kind of behavior? You willingly took part in it?
    Isabel: (coldly) I did. The people who did drugs and who ended up as part of our shipments were nothing to me. Just a means to an end.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Brick constantly mocks Tommy with his mother's death during the Slabside arc. After beating the crap out of him, Tommy turns it around him by revealing to Brick's fellow inmates that Green Arrow and the Justice League wouldn't exist if Brick hadn't killed Rebecca, permanently ruining Brick's Villain Cred.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: It's impossible to read Dawn without spoiling the big twist at the end of Legend: Oliver saving both Tommy and Thea from the League by killing Ra's al Ghul.
    • In Perils, Thea being taken by the League is the major plot point.
  • Let's Fight Like Gentlemen: Ted Gaynor challenges Oliver to a hand-to-hand fight, and promises that if Oliver wins, the other Blackhawk guards will stand down and let him finish his mission. Oliver agrees and promptly destroys him in the fight.
  • Life Isn't Fair: Thea cries how unfair it is that Oliver is not only cutting her off but sending her to rehab. This is Oliver's response verbatim.
  • Literal Split Personality: A visit from Non and some Black Kryptonite sees Oliver split into two identical versions of himself. Initially, it seems like he was simply cloned, until the inner thoughts of one reveal that he's been split between his most compassionate half and his most ruthless, the latter of whom has manifested as his identity of Al Sah-him.
  • Loving a Shadow: During one of Oliver's therapy sessions, his therapist and him discuss relationships, and Oliver comes to the realization that his relationship with Felicity checks off every attribute of a Trophy Husband-relationship — proving that she never really loved him but rather the idea of being the Green Arrow's wife. This, along with his lingering love for Laurel, is why Oliver chooses not to pursue a relationship with her again.
  • The Maiden Name Debate: A rare case where it's the child that decides to change their mother's name. After Malcolm is exposed, one of the first things Tommy did was change his mother's headstone so it showed her maiden name instead of her married name, so her legacy wouldn't be tarnished by Malcolm's actions.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Lex Luthor supplied Black Manta with the technology the latter used to awaken the Trench.
    • Agent Smith and Division X financed both Slade's attack on the Justice League and the legal defense of the Tempest members.
  • Mommy Didn't Show: Dinah didn't come to Laurel's law school graduation, despite multiple messages from Laurel begging her to. In the present, when Dinah cancels on coming up for Thanksgiving, Laurel is not remotely surprised.
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • An emotional scene of Oliver calling Thea out on her behavior and informing her he's sending her to rehab also contains the Running Gag about Oliver's denial of him being Robin Hood.
    • In Chapter 5 of Perils, a sweet scene has Laurel, having recently just finished her training with Lady Shiva and now at an airport waiting for her flight to go home, signing an autograph for a fan while excitedly imagining her reunion with Oliver and the rest of her friends and family. The following scene sees a devastated Oliver, Tommy, and Sara Forced to Watch as Thea is dragged off to join the League of Assassins.
  • Motive Rant: By the time the members of Tempest take the stand during their trial, their conviction is assured. As such, they just take the opportunity to go on a tirade explaining their motivations and justifying their actions.
  • Mugging the Monster: Malcolm sends a pair of thugs to rough up Sara as a message to Oliver and Laurel. He is immensely surprised when she effortlessly defeats them, and quickly realizes from the medical report for their injuries that Sara is a former member of the League like him.
  • My God, What Have I Done?:
    • Tommy is horrified to learn that Oliver won't be going to psychiatric facility but rather jail for his vigilante actions. The fact that he nearly got Laurel and Sara imprisoned too doesn't help matters. This feeling only doubles after Malcolm is exposed, because that means Tommy indirectly helped his father almost commit a massive terrorist attack that would've seen thousands dead.
    • Quentin has a similar reaction after he gets out of rehab, after Hilton shows him a clip of Oliver's testimony regarding the League of Assassins, realizing he spurned his younger daughter for something she ultimately had no choice in.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • The elite private school that Oliver, Tommy, Laurel and Sara attended and Thea now attends herself is Berlanti Preparatory, named after Greg Berlanti, the creator of the Arrowverse.
    • Ra's dies the same way Malcolm did at the end of Risedecapitation.
    • Headmaster Andrew Kreisberg, named after the infamous showrunner that was fired from the Arrowverse over sexual harassment allegations, is nailed at the end of Legend for being a sexual deviant who was one of Carl Ballard's best customers.
    • Kreisberg's replacement as Headmaster (or Headmistress, in this case) for Berlanti Prep is Gail Percy, named after Birds of Prey writer Gail Simone and Green Arrow writer Benjamin Percy.
  • Never My Fault: In Dawn, Thea chooses to believe that literally everyone else in her life is to blame for all of her problems, and refuses to take and responsibility for own poor behavior and actions. Being inducted into the League of Assassins hasn't changed this mindset, as she still blames Oliver for everything.
  • Nom de Mom: After Malcolm is exposed, Thea and Tommy elect to take on their mothers' maiden names.
  • Not His Sled: Neither Tommy nor Thea are taken by the League at the end of the first volume.
  • Off the Wagon: Quentin falls off the wagon even faster than he did in Rebirth, due to finding out about Sara's past as an assassin without learning her past as a sexual assault survivor.
  • Only Sane Man: Between Malcolm's god complex and psychopathy and Thea being an elitist — and somewhat delusionalBratty Teenage Daughter, Tommy ends up being this for the Merlyn family despite his naïveté.
  • Open Secret: After the events of Legend, the fact that John Diggle is Spartan is not much of a secret to the public. Diggle, knowing this, warns Carly to be prepared to have AJ and herself move in with him in case he ever has to go officially public like Oliver.
  • Parental Favoritism:
    • Malcolm clearly favors Thea over Tommy, as a result of Thea being much more malleable and sympathetic to his elitist worldview. Tommy, rather understandably doesn't care, instead worrying about the negative effects of Malcolm's influence on Thea.
    • Laurel is well aware that both of her parents (especially her mother) favor Sara over her, and eventually concludes that if she had "died" on the Gambit instead of Sara, it would not have destroyed their marriage the way Sara's "death" did. Sara eventually realizes the same thing, much to her disgust, which is probably why she chose Laurel over her mother when she visited over the Time Skip between Legend and Dawn.
  • Parental Substitute: The Queens effectively became Tommy's parents after Rebecca died and Malcolm all but abandoned him, by Tommy's own admission. To the point that it was Robert who taught Tommy about sex.
  • Parents as People:
    • While Moira genuinely loved her children, she was not a good parent because she never properly punished them nor allowed them to face the consequences of their actions, especially evident in Thea who seems to think the world will bend over backwards to give her everything she wants. This reaches its logical conclusion in Dawn, where Thea refuses to train to be a vigilante no matter what Oliver punishes her with, because she's convinced that not even the League of Assassins can touch her.
    • As Oliver puts it, while Robert truly did love Thea and him, he was also a philanderer who abandoned Emiko and put way too much on Oliver's shoulders, while also trying to mold him into being a Generation Xerox of him. It's implied that a lot of Oliver's crazier antics prior to the Gambit were a result of him acting out to escape his father's expectations.
    • Quentin, who is probably the best parent after Rebecca, does love his daughters but also has a narrow worldview and tends to react badly to things that don't easily fit into that worldview. He also has a tendency to wallow in self-pity, hence his alcoholism.
  • Pass the Popcorn:
    • After Thea is cut off, Sara gleefully watches when Thea storms into the Quiver and gets into an argument with Tommy over his decision, decidedly wishing she had some popcorn. While she doesn't get popcorn, she does manage to find a Nutri-Grain bar during their row and snack on that instead.
    • Malcolm's guards commit to invoking this trope after watching their prisoner's humorous reaction to Tommy joining the Justice League as Azure Blade. A later chapter reveals they weren't joking, as they're forced to set said popcorn aside in order to sedate a hysterical Malcolm after Green Lantern's interview with Susan.
  • Peggy Sue: Just like Rebirth, Oliver's spirit is sent back in time to the beginning of Season One, so he can save the universe from the Anti-Monitor.
  • Persona Non Grata: Earth-X to the entire multiverse. It's such a horrible place that all the universes in the multiverses banded together to lock them out of multiversal travel. The only exception is Earth-1, because it's the nexus of the multiverse, from which all the other universes are connected to. It's for that reason that Oliver considers Earth-X's attack an inevitability instead of a probability, because it's only from Earth-1 that Earth-X can launch any sort of invasion against the rest of the multiverse.
  • Platonic Life-Partners:
    • After Sara returns to Starling for good, Oliver and her settle into this relationship, acknowledging that whatever feelings they have for each other can't compare to Oliver and Laurel's love with each other and that they are Better as Friends.
    • Laurel and Tommy also elect to remain best friends after Tommy's saved from the League and forced to become a vigilante. Laurel is even the first one to forgive Tommy for his poor choices in Legend.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain:
    • Aside from his psychopathy and God complex, Malcolm is very classist. Given his Kill the Poor plan, that really shouldn't be surprising. He even dismissively refers to Laurel and Sara as a pair of "working class girls".
    • Despite how awful she's acting, Thea isn't really a villain. She still shares Malcolm's classist views, and also refers to Laurel as "[Oliver's] working class girlfriend".
    • Tempest Member Wilhelmina Hollinger is practically an exaggerated embodiment of classism.
  • Price on Their Head: Oliver had a bounty placed on his head after he was revealed as Green Arrow by Malcolm. While that one was obviously rescinded after Malcolm was exposed and captured, Division X placed a much larger one on him in hopes that killing him would return things to the status quo.
    • He's also had a price on his head from Tobias Church (also rescinded after his capture), and both the Chinese and Russian governments. Those ones are still open.
  • Promotion to Parent:
    • Laurel and Sara, after some time reflecting on their family's dynamics together, come to the realization that Laurel is the only real parent Sara has ever had, since she's the one who tried to teach Sara right from wrong instead of spoiling her like Quentin and Dinah did. While it does help them reconcile their relationship further, this revelation nonetheless hits them both hard.
    • Just like in Rebirth, Oliver takes permanent guardianship of Thea upon Malcolm's exposure as the Dark Archer. The only difference is that Tommy gave up guardianship willingly, recognizing that as the city pariah, he can't be an effective guardian for Thea right now. That being said, he still shares the responsibility of actually raising Thea with Oliver.
  • Psychological Projection: During the Thanksgiving Episode, Malcolm posits the idea that Oliver has a god complex. If anyone has a god complex, it's the guy that made it his mission to wipe out an entire city district because he felt that it couldn't be saved since his wife died there.
  • Put on a Bus:
    • Thea is sent to rehab by the end of the sixth chapter of Dawn, and Word of God confirmed we won't be seeing her until the beginning of the next volume. She does come back during that volume, only to be put back on the bus about five or so chapters in after she's forced to join the League of Assassins.
    • After her father is taken down by the RICO case against members of the List, Helena Bertinelli decides to take what's left of the family fortune and start a new life somewhere else. Her last scene is her thanking Oliver for bringing Frank down for good.
    • Just like in Rebirth, Quentin is sent to rehab after the Atlantis arc. However, he doesn't come back until Invasion!, because this time both Laurel and Sara refuse to visit him at the clinic.
  • Rage Breaking Point:
    • After over a month of dealing with Thea's terrible behavior, Oliver is at his wit's end. But what finally pushes him over the edge is a hungover Thea making numerous nasty comments about the Adachis to the press while she's leaving school. Once Tommy spills the beans to him, he finally snaps and cuts her off from the Queen Estate for good, while also having Tommy cut her off from the Swann Estate so that way she can't mooch off him instead.
    • The Battle of Amnesty Bay proves to be this for Quentin, who tears into Laurel and Sara with a brutal "The Reason You Suck" Speech over their actions (namely being vigilantes).
    • Said speech (specifically, calling Laurel a freak and a traitor and outing Sara's past as an assassin) in turn proves to be one for Sara, Oliver and Tommy. Sara slaps the hell out of him and tells him in no uncertain terms to stay away from them, and Oliver and Tommy are finally pushed to force him into rehab. The only reason it isn't one for Laurel is that she's too brokenhearted by it to be angry.
  • Rape as Backstory:
    • Sara, much to Laurel's horror. Oliver admits to his girlfriend that he suspected it when he met Sara again on Lian Yu, but never tried to confirm it because he would've gone into an Unstoppable Rage otherwise and gotten not just himself but all of his companions (including Sara) killed as well.
    • Jason Todd. He was forced into child prostitution to make ends meet before becoming a good enough thief to steal what he needed and eventually falling into Bruce Wayne's care.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Talia, in comparison to her father anyway. She grants a lot of leeway to Oliver in regards to the blood debt on Malcolm and his children. She allows Malcolm to face society's justice, only promising to killing him if he escapes. She allows Oliver to train Malcolm's children as vigilantes that don't have to kill instead of forcing them to become assassins where they won't have a choice. And, she even grants Oliver an extension on the time he has to train Thea, so she can first spend time in rehab to break her of Malcolm's brainwashing. In fact, it's implied she would drop the blood debt entirely if she didn't have to put on a display of strength to maintain control of the League.
  • Redeeming Replacement:
    • Laurel to Eric Gitter as head of C.N.R.I., just like in Rise.
    • Between being more reasonable in her dealings with Oliver abolishing the League of Assassins' mysigonistic tradition which rendered female members highly liable to rape, Talia is clearly this to her father as the new Ra's al Ghul. It is downplayed though, because she maintains all of the other brutal traditions of League including training its members through torture.
    • Oliver to Robert and Walter, as CEO of Queen Consolidated. Unlike them, he actually treats his employees as family. In Dawn, he's already done more to help them, including building a corporate cafeteria and a daycare for them.
  • Related in the Adaptation:
    • In this fic Moira's father was Lachlan Luthor and her half-brother was Lex Luthor's father. This also makes Lex Oliver and Thea's maternal cousin.
    • Dinah Drake is from a branch family of the Gotham City Drakes, making her (and by extension, Laurel and Sara), distantly related to Jack and Janet Drake — and their son Tim, the future third Robin.
  • Ret-Gone: Canon Barry and Canon Sara, who disintegrate into non-existence after Oliver kills Thawne and destroys any possibility of returning the timeline to its canon path.
  • Rich Bitch:
    • Thea, which is actually encouraged and worsened by Malcolm.
    • Wilhelmina Hollinger is this Up to Eleven.
  • Running Gag:
    • Oliver being in complete denial over the fact that he's Robin Hood.
    • Diggle flip-flopping over whether or not all the weird stuff in his life is a result of being on drugs.
    • The Tesseract escaping containment, bursting (or melting) its way through the door to the lab, and imbedding itself in the wall. Typically, this happens when Oliver is about to visit Q-Core.
    • Malcolm Merlyn having a complete meltdown whenever the news shows the growing power of the Justice League, and the public's growing admiration for Oliver. And the guards amused reactions to said meltdowns.

    Tropes S-Y 
  • Sanity Slippage: Malcolm flips his lid after Tempest is decimated, and makes a psychotic rant to a picture of his family, addressing his deceased wife and promising to 'avenge her' and his failed Undertaking by killing Oliver and everyone he cares about. And then, in his final confrontation with Oliver, he rants about the existence of Ra's al Ghul and the League of Assassins on live television, guaranteeing that he's screwed no matter what happens after his capture.
  • The Scapegoat:
    • Thea blames anyone and everyone she can for her problems, except herself. In fact, the reason why she's unreceptive to Laurel's attempts to be kind is because she blames her for Oliver becoming Green Arrow, refusing to accept that Oliver would've become Green Arrow with or without Laurel's approval.
    • Quentin blames the fact that the Lance family isn't together anymore solely on Laurel, both for supporting Oliver and Sara and not forgiving Dinah. Thankfully, he grows out of it during rehab and apologizes to her when he gets back. Though, he still doesn't approve of Oliver.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Just like in Rise, once Laurel's superpowers make their debut, many small time crooks decide to get the hell out of Starling City.
  • Shed the Family Name:
    • Because her relationship with Oliver is so much worse than it was in Rebirth, Thea opts to shed the Queen name in favor of the Merlyn one. She later sheds that one too after learning Malcolm nearly caused her to become a sex slave, and becomes Thea Dearden instead, taking on her mother's maiden name.
    • At the end of the story, all of Malcolm's actions (including and especially nearly causing Thea to be indentured into the League as a sex slave) convince Tommy to not just renounce his last name in favor of his mother's maiden name Swann, but to get rid of anything and everything connected to the Merlyn name completely. He even goes as far as to change the last name on Rebecca's headstone so it reads Swann, just so her legacy won't be tarnished by Malcolm's actions.
  • Ship Sinking:
    • Oliver/Sara and Tommy/Laurel both end gracefully, with Sara and Tommy acknowledging that Oliver and Laurel's love for each other is stronger than whatever feelings they have for their respective targets.
    • Oliver/Felicity ends before it can even begin, due to Felicity never being replaced by Future Felicity and Oliver's therapy sessions helping him realize that his relationship with Felicity in the original timeline was toxic. And then Malcolm murders Felicity, as the final nail in the coffin.
  • Ship Tease: Tommy and Sara got an increasing amount of this during Dawn, though their attraction to each other isn't really acknowledged by the other characters until Perils. They finally get a Relationship Upgrade at the end of Perils after Sara makes a Love Confession to Tommy while saving him from the Children of the Glades, sealed with a Big Damn Kiss.
  • Shipper on Deck: Both Joe and Henry very much ship Barry/Iris, and constantly wonder when the two will finally get together.
  • Shipping Torpedo: Justified. Oliver does not ship Tommy/Thea, because they're half-siblings. Once he realizes Thea has unrequited feelings for Tommy, he immediately sinks it by having Moira tell them the truth about Thea's parentage, regardless of the consequences.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The Channel 52 News Reporter that caught Thea's meltdown on live television is named April O'Neil, and her camera man is named Casey Jones.
    • Barry's clean energy project for Q-Core is called 'The Tesseract' because it's a glowing cube similar to the one in the movie, except it's colored green.
    • Some of the FBI agents who work with Danvers and Trimble are named Aaron Hotchner, David Rossi, Derek Morgan, and Spencer Reid.
    • The USDA who takes Oliver's confession is named Casey Novak. The judge who later presides over the Trial of Tempest is named Elizabeth Donnelly. A Queen Industries lawyer is named Rafael Barba, and Carrol Ferris' lawyer is Alexandra Cabot.
    • Oliver takes his exosuit to Amnesty Bay, just in case he's forced to fight "walking, talking sharks".
    • The ARGUS agents investigating Aquaman are named Diana Allers and John Shepard. And the Amnesty Bay local who gets Oliver in touch with Aquaman is named David Anderson.
    • The head of military force that arrives in Amnesty Bay is Colonel O'Neill.
    • The Secretary of State for Trumbull is Elizabeth Adams McCord. And the director of National Intelligence is named Ephraim Ware.
    • The employment fair shown in Dawn has a number of these:
      • From Daredevil (2015) is Matt Murdock and Foggy Nelson, who have recently completed an internship at Weathersby & Stone. While Foggy is interested in QC/QI due to all the benefits, Matt (unsurprisingly) seems to be more suited to CNRI.
      • Chuck gives us Chuck Bartowski (recruited as a software engineer under Naomi), Morgan Grimes (an accountant, presumably for Oliver's new insurance company), Alex McHugh (a corporate lawyer recruited by Laurel for the company's legal department), Sarah Walker and John Casey (recruited by Diggle for the company's security department).
      • Another recruit by Diggle is a man named Charles Gunn, with a record who is also raising a younger sister named Alonna.
      • The name of the insurance agent Oliver recruits is Tim Goodman.
      • Oliver's last recruit is an actuary named Oswin Stoppable.
    • The prosecutor for the Trial of Tempest is Phoenix Wright.
    • Tommy's superhero costume is explicitly said (in-universe even) to have been inspired by the classic Sub Zero.
  • Sins of Our Fathers: The League of Assassins, as always, believes heavily in blood debts. As Malcolm's sin of deliberately exposing the League on live television was in such blatant defiance of the League's core tenets, even Oliver killing Ra's and later handing off the mantle of the Demon's Head to Talia isn't enough to wipe it away without risking dissent from the hardliners. Talia is forced to punish Tommy and Thea by having them serve as vigilantes under Oliver's tutelage for a period of time each just so she won't be seen as soft or weak.
  • Smug Snake:
    • Malcolm is, as ever, utterly convinced that he has complete control of everything and that he will able to easily defeat Oliver when they finally fight.
    • Eobard Thawne is an arrogant prick, even after Oliver has blown out his knees and is preparing to execute him.
  • Spared by the Adaptation:
    • Joanna de la Vega is spared due to Diggle being there to guard Laurel during her abduction and getting shot in her stead. And since he was wearing a bulletproof vest, he survived.
    • Malcolm Merlyn, due to Oliver adopting a Thou Shalt Not Kill rule and so that way he could trade Malcolm for Tommy and Thea later when Ra's al Ghul came for them. While the trade ultimately doesn't work out, Oliver manages to save Tommy and Thea anyway and so has no reason to kill Malcolm, so he hands him off back to the authorities to face society's justice.
    • Due to the Justice League being armed with red sun weapons as opposed to kryptonite ones, very few of Zod's army are killed. Instead, most (including Zod) are sent back to the Phantom Zone.
    • Dinah Drake/Tina Boland. As she's not a mole for the Ninth Circle in this version, Oliver goes out of his way to save her and Vincent Sobel instead of letting them die like he did in Agent.
  • Speak Ill of the Dead: Oliver has quite bluntly described his mother as a terrorist more than once after her death. He also isn't very charitable to his father either.
  • Spoiled Brat: Thea, to the point that she has no problems breaking a tablet in rage if she doesn't like what she read on it, even when it's not her tablet. Tommy, who hardly had an austere upbringing himself, notes that if that is the kind of behavior Malcolm — and Moira before him — let her get away with, then there's no wonder why her attitude has gotten so much worse in so little time.
  • Spotting the Thread: After Tommy insists Oliver framed Moira, Laurel points out to him that if that had really been the case, then Moira would've fought the accusation instead of killing herself — innocent people don't kill themselves, after all. Unfortunately, it isn't until the FBI themselves outright confirm to Tommy that the evidence was not fabricated and that Moira's autopsy showed no indication of foul play does it finally sink in for Tommy, and by that point he had already exposed Oliver.
  • Stunned Silence: During the trial of the members of Tempest, their defense lawyer claims they are compassionate people who sought to only kill criminals and the corrupt. This is met with absolute silence, as everyone stares at him in stunned disbelief.
  • Summon Bigger Fish: Taken to its logical conclusion, when Xebelian ships attack Aquman's diplomatic vessel, he has a Megalodon attack their command ship.
  • Superhero Paradox: Discussed and ultimately defied by Oliver in Dawn. He points out that Black Manta has had a grudge against Aquaman for nearly twenty years during which he attempted to expose Atlantis numerous times, and Malcolm began his plans for Undertaking years before there was a Green Arrow.
    "These events, horrifying though they are, always had the potential to happen because the world we live in is not as normal or as calm as it appears on the surface. Ancient powers are awakening and there are grave threats on the horizon, all of which hunger for the chance to dominate the people of the world and make them into little more than serfs. It is far better that there is an organization that can fight such threats than if we were left with no defenses."
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • Even after learning that Oliver's actions as Green Arrow are sanctioned by the U.S. government, Moira refuses to accept his offer for help and turn on Malcolm because she can't fathom the idea that she would so easily be out from under Malcolm's thumb after years of being afraid of him.
    • While Tempest managed to corrupt most of the local government, they didn't dare try anything with federal authority, such as the local FBI field office. This is because the penalties for federal corruption are much more severe than local corruption, so federal employees are far harder to subvert. Even trying could've blown Tempest's existence into the open and ended the conspiracy before it could even get started.
    • It doesn't matter how rich you are if you don't have the right connections — your wealth might be able to buy you out of local charges, but it means nothing against the might of the U.S. Government.
    • When Amanda tries to chew out Oliver for turning himself in (thus, risking his life against Tempest's retaliation) and giving up the Bunker in exchange for Laurel's immunity, Oliver flatly tells her she's being petty as the Bunker is just one random base with minimal to nonexistent connections to A.R.G.U.S., and if Oliver actually had died she could have easily had Malcolm and all of Tempest murdered if she wanted to in retaliation. Malcolm is just one assassin and wealthy businessman — and not even an important defense contractor like Lex Luthor is. Killing him would mean nothing to her nor to any of her superiors.
    • Even after accepting that Malcolm is a monster and doesn't care about her, Thea's behavior is still horrid over a month later since it also stems from years of Moira's inadequate parenting. In the end, all Malcolm did was just make it worse, so it's going to take more extreme measures to deprogram her and force her to grow up. Tommy and Oliver are eventually forced to send her to rehab to get her clean of her addictions and poor behavior.
    • Upon seeing how badly Malcolm has influenced Thea's behavior, Tommy constantly expresses regret over the fact he didn't try to take custody of her himself. When he says this out loud in front of Oliver, however, Oliver gently rebukes him, telling him that even if he had, Malcolm would've found some way to subvert that and sink his claws into Thea anyway, since he controlled most of the courts in Starling. That's the only reason why Oliver himself didn't try to transfer custody of Thea to Tommy instead of Malcolm.
    • Even though he has more time to devote to Thea and her needs and no longer has to worry about Malcolm taking guardianship of her away from him, Tommy can't be an effective guardian for her because he's now the city pariah, which is why he gives up official guardianship of her to Oliver.
    • Thea's poor attitude in general gets hit with this a lot once she no longer has Malcolm's protection and she's forced to face the (possible) consequences. To wit:
      • Her refusal to answer Alex and Trimble's questions after Malcolm is exposed and captured nearly gets her slammed with a federal obstruction of justice charge, which — as she's almost an adult — could mean up to eight years in prison. She wisely shuts up and answers their questions after that.
      • When Thea accidentally breaks Malcolm's tablet in a rage, he brushes it off since she bought him a new one with his money. When she tries to break Laurel's in a rage, Tommy quickly stops her and rebukes her, since Laurel isn't ultra-rich like they are and likely can't afford to buy a new one herself. Sara later confirms this; Laurel bought her tablet used and on discount, as she can't afford a brand new one even as Director of CNRI.note 
      • After exhausting all other options with Thea short of a stint in jail (which would ruin her future prospects since she's now permanently cut off from the Queen Estate and the Swann Estate), Oliver plans to do what any other rich person does with a relative with major drug addiction problems: send her to rehab.
    • After Malcolm is exposed, riots start breaking out in the streets and everything associated with him, such as Merlyn Global and Merlyn Manor, becomes the target for the citizens' rage. As a result, Tommy and Thea are forced into the temporary protective custody of the FBI until the heat dies down. Over a month later, Oliver has to personally escort Thea to school everyday just so she won't be attacked by someone who wants revenge on Malcolm, while Tommy is holed up in the Quiver and hasn't been seen in public outside of a scant few appearances in over a month.
    • While everyone who sees Thawne's video will confessing to the murder of Nora Allen believes it to be genuine, the DA comments that it will have to be verified before Henry can be freed. Evidence always needs to be verified after all, especially something like this.
    • Quentin is passed over a promotion to Captain of the MCU because of his drinking. While his superiors are willing to tolerate his drinking as a field detective, they won't tolerate it when he's in a position of authority. The next senior detective, Quentin's partner Lucas Hilton, gets the promotion instead.
    • Since Talia didn't inherit the mantle of Ra's al Ghul or won it a duel, but instead had it handed to her by Oliver, her position as Ra's is shaky and she still needs time to properly establish herself. That means she can only show so much favor to Oliver before putting her foot down, lest she be accused of being his puppet and lose control of League.
      • The number of changes Talia makes to the League aren't well-received by the traditionalists because they're made so close in succession, leaving them little time to adjust. When she decides to modernize the League entirely after Oliver and Sara were forced to out the organization's existence, it sparks a rebellion from the faction led by Al-Owal. While she manages to put it down, her position is still shaky, so she can't grant any more extensions to Oliver for Thea's training period for fear of being called too soft.
    • While Oliver had no choice but to kill Ra's in order to save Thea, that doesn't change the fact he did what Malcolm and Moira have been doing over the past five years — bail her out of trouble, which is why she didn't properly appreciate the lengths he went to in order to protect her, or how serious of a threat the League of Assassins is. Oliver himself acknowledges this, and rectifies it by cutting Thea off for her poor behavior and forcing her to go to rehab so she can get clean.
    • Oliver's destruction of the Vertigo supply makes it harder to nail the Count with a conviction since it was the primary evidence. On the other hand, the reason Oliver destroyed the supply is because he didn't want any of the remaining dirty cops in the SCPD to steal it from evidence lock-up to either sell it for themselves or (worse) reverse-engineer the formula to make it themselves — which is what happened in the last timeline. Even Pike is forced to acknowledge that he has a point about the lingering corruption in the SCPD, and aims to fix that by creating an Anti-Corruption Task Force to deal with the issue.
    • Almost all of Team Arrow is dropped by their insurances after joining the Justice League, due to the danger their new roles will land them in. Oliver decides to remedy this by creating/buying his own insurance company for members of the JL, which Ned and Emiko suggest he expand to include members of other law enforcement agencies and employees QI to make it more viable as a business.
    • Sometimes, it doesn't matter how hard you try to change someone for the better, if they aren't willing to change themselves. As proven with Thea, with tragic results.
    • After Thea is taken by the League, Oliver and the rest of Team Arrow take a leave from Justice League missions because they're too emotionally compromised to conduct those missions effectively. Unfortunately, they also make up half of the current membership of the JL, forcing Oliver to start searching for new members to make up the deficit.
  • Take Me Instead: After Ra's refuses to release Thea into Oliver's tutelage, Sara, Tommy, and Oliver all try to offer themselves in her place. He refuses Sara because her soul is divided, Tommy because he was already traded for Malcolm, and Oliver because, despite his skill, Ra's believes his inability to kill means he won't make an effective assassin.
  • Take That!:
    • While Felicity generally gets better treatment in this series, the pairing of Olicity does not, with both Laurel and Sara taking potshots at the infamous double wedding when they learn about it and Oliver acknowledging that it was one of the many signs about their unhealthy relationship that he ignored.
      • There are still some criticisms at Felicity herself, namely her arrogance and immaturity.
    • Once again, Oliver is deeply ashamed of how terribly he treated Laurel in the show's timeline.
    • When Oliver tells the Justice League about the original timeline, he includes how Sara spared Damien Darhk in the Legends Season 2 finale, allowing him to go on to murder Laurel. Sara is at a loss to understand why she would do something like that.
    • As noted above in Foil, Oliver notes more than once that his team in the original timeline was full of bickering, vitriol, and a fundamental lack of respect or trust.
    • Oliver himself acknowledges some of the criticisms he received from his old team were justified, namely the ones regarding him continually sparing Malcolm who would in turn betray them (and played a role in Laurel's death). He concludes that he really should have killed Malcolm after this pattern became apparent.
    • A great deal of time is spent on Oliver telling Lois all about his five years away. His summary of his fourth year however is done in a single chapter. In an author's note, Arlyss Tolero confirms this was because he hated everything about Season 4, and wanted to spend as little time as possible recapping any of it.
    • Oliver reflects on how Republicans in Congress are stalling passing a bill that was proposed by Democrats, and how Democrats would stall any bill proposed by Republicans. He concludes in irritation that they're nothing but "a pack of children".
  • Take Up My Sword: Oliver made contingencies so, in case he was ever killed, Sara would be able to take his place and take down Tempest herself. Luckily, they never had to be used.
  • Tantrum Throwing: After reading an article supporting Oliver's actions as Green Arrow and (accurately) framing her as a spoiled teen out of touch with reality, Thea throws the tablet across the room, breaking it. She nearly does this again at the end of the story, only for Tommy to save it. Just as well, the second tablet was Laurel's, who unlike Malcolm, can't afford to buy a new one just because Thea broke the old one.
  • Team Member in the Adaptation: In Dawn, the original line-up of the Justice League from Age is expanded to include three more members, with a potential fourth in J'onn J'onzz: Diggle, Sara, and Tommy. J'onn later on joins the team during the Battle of Gotham, expanding the original line-up to eleven members.
  • Technobabble: After being appointed head of Applied Sciences, Oliver complains that many of the scientists deliberately speak in this, seemingly just to lord their higher IQs/education over him. He appoints Curtis Holt specifically to translate said technobabble into Layman's Terms for him.
  • The Teetotaler: As of Dawn, Laurel is starting to abstain from alcohol, not wanting to end up like her father. Oliver, who remembers that she did struggle with addiction in the original timeline (though she was clean when she died) is relieved and supports her in it. Sara later follows the suit, both for the reasons above and because a predisposition to alcoholism is genetic.
  • Tempting Fate: Oliver comments that if there's no Aquaman, then the worst that can happen is that they spend a few days as tourists in Amnesty Bay during the winter. He then asks, "Really, how bad could a few days in a seaside community be? " Tommy is horrified that he would tempt Murphy so openly, and tells him that if anything happens, it will be his fault.
  • Thou Shalt Not Kill: A distinct difference between Rebirth and Forging is that this Oliver doesn't kill except under extenuating circumstances. This backfires on him later, because Ra's feels that Oliver's methods are a half-measure and don't execute true justice, and thus refuses him the right of blood to teach Thea his ways. Ironically, this leads to Oliver killing Ra's to save Thea from the League.
  • Threatening Shark:
    • A shark is used by Aquaman to help Oliver in dealing with a group of whalers.
    • He also uses sharks to assist in repelling the Trenchers attack.
    • And he summons a Megalodon to attack the Xebelians.
  • The Unapologetic: Dinah refuses to acknowledge that letting Sara sleep with Laurel's boyfriend was wrong and insists that Laurel is blowing it out of proportion.
  • To Be Lawful or Good: Discussed. Laurel eventually says that the reason that she is willing to work with Oliver and Sara despite them being vigilantes, is that she cares about justice, not the law. Her father meanwhile, cares about the law over justice, creating the divide between them.
  • Too Dumb to Live: An insane Slade, desperate to get his revenge on Oliver, stupidly attacks a gala that he knows is being attended by at least half the Justice League. Ironically, he was stopped by Diana, who hadn't even joined the JL yet.
  • Trauma Button: The ocean, other large bodies of water and anything associated with it, for Oliver and Sara. Considering both have had multiple bad experiences with the ocean, no one can really blame them. Seeing Aquaman attack a Xebelian wolf patrol with a giant megalodon renders both of them outright catatonic.
  • Underestimating Badassery: Malcolm seriously underestimates Oliver at every turn, and it takes watching Oliver best Ra's al Ghul in a duel for him to realize that.
  • Ungrateful Bitch: Thea. Oliver saves her from Morgan Edge who wanted to force her into prostitution, and risks his life in a duel with Ra's al Ghul to save her from becoming a sex slave for the League of Assassins; Thea continues to treat him with hate and disgust, and remains determined to blame him for all of her problems.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Defied by Laurel in Dawn. As she explains to her mother, she and Sara do not need the approval of either of their parents. They can take pride in themselves instead, as they know that they are doing the right thing.
    • Despite this, in Invasion Oliver comments to Dr. Green that there's a part of Laurel that still wants her father's approval; and she's hurt by the fact that he won't support her in being the Black Canary yet.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: How the various members of Tempest seem to see themselves, out to save the city. This is even how their defense lawyer tries to portray them during their trial.
  • Wham Episode: Legend: The last three chapters! To wit: While Ra's is willing to trade Malcolm for Tommy, he refuses any and all offers for Thea, forcing Oliver to challenge him for his sister. Oliver ultimately wins the duel, and becomes Ra's al Ghul. He later travels to Tibet and hands the position off to Talia, but not before merging the League of Assassins and the League of Shadows back into one.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Oliver and Sara's experiences on the Gambit and Amazo have left them both uneasy on boats out on the ocean. They are both uncomfortable throughout much of the trip to Atlantis, and when they see Aquaman summon a Megalodon to attack a Xebelian ship, both got into shock. Oliver was once attacked by a shark, so this is doubly bad for him.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Malcolm again, both in his plot to destroy the Glades and then willingness to murder Oliver's son.
  • World's Best Warrior: Lady Shiva, according to Oliver and supported by Sara. When she appeared on his doorstep to make her offer of training to Laurel, Oliver openly paled and began trembling the moment he saw her.
  • World's Most Beautiful Woman: Diana, who bewitches the entire room when she appears at the celebratory gala for the new alliance between the United States and Atlantis. When the Justice League and their press friends meet her, the men are gobsmacked, the women are stunned, and Sara doesn't hesitate and immediately hits on her.
  • Workaholic:
    • Laurel, as in canon, even more so once she becomes Director of C.N.R.I. Sara makes a few comments about her drowning herself in paperwork/working herself to death; and both she and Oliver have headed to C.N.R.I. late at night, accurately predicting that Laurel will still be there. Even after she gets disbarred and becomes Oliver's executive assistant, she continues to be a workaholic.
    • Oliver is a CEO by day, and a vigilante by night. And that's not including his duties as leader of the Justice League.
  • You're Not My Father: When Quentin's drunken verbal/emotional abuse gets too extreme, Sara furiously tells him he is not their father, even calling him by name.
  • You Should Have Died Instead: After learning about her fate as a vigilante, a furious and belligerent Thea once again blames Oliver for all her problems and cruelly tells him that she wishes he had died on Lian Yu. Seeing the hurt look on Oliver's face after that comment is what finally causes Sara to lose her temper and rip into Thea, including explaining just what exactly, Oliver risked his life to save her from.
    • During his Rage Breaking Point, Quentin says that Laurel and Sara should have died on the docks and the Gambit (respectively) rather than become the people they are now.
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