John was thrilled to be cast as the mysterious "Well-Dressed Man" in The CW's series, Arrow. The character was eventually revealed to be Malcolm Merlyn, father of Oliver Queen's best friend, Tommy Merlyn. Malcolm is an acquaintance of the Queen family and first appeared in the fifth episode of the first season, titled "Damaged".
Malcolm plays a pivotal role in the first three seasons' unfolding storyline of treachery and subterfuge in Starling City. The character was promoted to series regular from Season 3, and will remain a regular in the upcoming fourth season, so we can expect to see a lot more of Mr Merlyn!
In a recent interview, producer Marc Guggenheim said of John's performance in Arrow:
"Whenever I see dailies with him, literally the word that always comes to my mind is 'magnetic.' He is incredibly magnetic. Not having seen him in Torchwood, I am like 'This guy is unbelievable!' I had come to his performance on my own terms. He lights up the screen, and he really energizes the actors that he has scenes with."
Arrow is based on the DC Comics' series, Green Arrow, featuring billionaire Oliver Queen (played by Stephen Amell). Queen has been missing on a remote island for several years - an experience which has changed him in ways that gradually become clear during the series.
The first season of Arrow aired on the following channels:
- US: The CW - Wednesdays at 8.00pm/7c (from 10 October 2012)
- Canada: CTV - Wednesdays at 7.00pm ET (from 10 October 2012)
- UK: Sky1 - Mondays at 8.00pm (from 22 October 2012)
- Latin America: Warner Television - Mondays (from 22 October 2012)
- Spain: Canal 13 - Wednesdays (from 14 November 2012)
- Australia: Channel 9 - Wednesdays at 8.30pm (from 1 May 2013)
- Japan: AXN - Sundays at 9.55pm (from 22 September 2013)
John and his sister and co-author, Carole E Barrowman, launched a digital comic in January 2016, Arrow: The Dark Archer. Published by DC Comics, the storyline explores the history of John's Arrow character, Malcolm Merlyn. The comic is available from the DC Comics App, readdcentertainment.com, iBooks, comixology.com, Google Play, Kindle Store, Nook Store, and iVerse ComicsPlus. A print version will be released later.
For more information about Arrow, have a look at the show's official websites:
Articles and Interviews (Possible Spoilers)
- TVLine.com - 1 May 2013
- Video interview: Permanent Rain Press - 1 May 2013
- TV Equals - 1 May 2013
- Examiner.com - 1 May 2013
- TV Fanatic - 30 April 2013
- Dark After Thoughts Radio - 28 April 2013
- Starry Constellation Magazine - 26 April 2013
- The Backlot - 24 April 2013
- The TV Addict - 24 April 2013
- The Rush on Shaw TV - 16 April 2013
- Los Angeles Times: Hero Complex - 12 December 2012
- Hollywood Reporter: "Malcolm has Arrow envy" - 12 December 2012
- CBR: "Barrowman brings Merlyn to Arrow" - 12 December 2012
- TV Guide: "Is Malcolm Merlyn the Dark Archer?" - 11 December 2012
- Hollywood Reporter: "Who is John Barrowman playing?" - 12 October 2012
- KSite TV: "Arrow Bait" - 10 October 2012