When Stephen Amell made his pro wrestling debut a few years back, none would’ve thought it’d lead to a real life friendship and working relationship with his first onscreen foe, that being Cody Rhodes. Then known as Stardust, the grappler has since gone on to portray the villainous Derek Sampson on Arrow.
Speaking of which, the former WWE Superstar and current NWA World Heavyweight Champion will soon be returning to the series, as Sampson will be counted among those bad dudes neighboring Oliver Queen’s cell at Slabside when season 7 kicks off.
In fact, we first learned of Cody’s return via the trailer that dropped at San Diego Comic-Con back in July, but now he’s teasing his comeback over on his Instagram page. Captioned with “Back to brunette – back to Arrow,” he can be seen enjoying a flight to where we assume is Vancouver, the place where various DC TV shows have set up shop.
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So, unless the wrestler/actor is sharing an old photo, it’s entirely possible that his character of Derek Sampson will be appearing more than once in the coming year. Whether he’ll breathe free air again remains unclear at this point, but then again, we still don’t know for how long Ollie will remain in the clink.
Lest we forget how trying of a time this’ll be for our hero, let’s reflect on producer James Bamford’s portentous words from last month:
“What I’ve said to the other folks is, ‘What if Batman got put in prison and, for instance, the Joker was right next door?’ The possibilities are endless. I can’t say exactly who or what’s in there, but it’s a pretty dark, horrible, evil place. We want the audience to not only feel what it’s like to be confined in such a destitute place. I want the audience to feel what he feels, so you’ll get — hopefully, if we’ve done our job correctly — you’ll get the grit. You’ll be sort of wanting to wash this prison off of you, it should feel so real.”
Arrow returns for its seventh season on Monday, October 15 on The CW.