Arrow season 5 – Show boss explains absence of Willa Holland’s Thea, talks Katie Cassidy’s future

Why have we seen so little of Thea Queen on “Arrow” this season? It’s certainly been rather frustrating, especially when you consider just how important this character was to the early seasons of the show. As we’ve mentioned, she’s the only series regular on this show who really knew Oliver well before he became the Green Arrow; while Lance is also out there, we don’t believe their relationship to be all that complex or in-depth.

Now, we know a clear answer as to what’s going on, and it doesn’t have to do so much with how much the show wants to use her as it does how many episodes that have a contract with Willa Holland to appear in. Speaking (per TVLine) at a recent screening for Wednesday’s episode, executive producer Marc Guggenheim mentioned that Holland is only contracted to appear in fourteen episodes out of the 23 that are ordered for the season, and they just have to figure out a way to include her in as many as they can.

What’s just as interesting, if not even more so, is Guggenheim’s comment that the future for Katie Cassidy’s Laurel Lance is unclear. Despite word of her having a deal that would make her a series regular across all of the DC Universe shows on The CW over the summer, Guggenheim said that there is not any contract for her to appear in any more of “Arrow” this season. We’re starting to wonder if some of these CW / DC deals proved to be a little too complicated for their own good, or if it was just a way to retain rights on people for the future if the right venue opened up for them. Another example of this is Wentworth Miller, who’s barely appeared on “Legends of Tomorrow” or any other show in the universe this season.

While it’d be great to have some more answers on the subject of these cast members’ future, we’re not sure we’ll be getting it this season. Let’s just hope that the Thea absences are being made more from a financial perspective than any desire to eventually write her off.