No-one quite knew where Arrow was headed after its divisive fourth season first killed off Black Canary (Katie Cassidy), then disbanded Team Arrow altogether.
But the superhero series has won over fans and critics with a grittier fifth season, which saw Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) assemble a new rag-tag team of heroes.
One of the new recruits was tech whiz Curtis Holt, who took on the superhero mantle of Mr Terrific – with actor Echo Kellum being promoted to series regular.
"When I first auditioned for Curtis, I knew that that was definitely a possibility that he could become a series regular at some point," Kellum told Digital Spy.
"But I didn't know it'd be in this capacity – that he'd join the team and really be engulfed in all the goings-on of the show... but I'm very thankful that he is!"
All the same, Kellum acknowledged that it was a risk for Arrow to swap out fan favourites for new characters, including Rene Ramirez / Wild Dog (Rick Gonzalez) and Rory Regan / Ragman (Joe Dinicol).
"If a show just continues to do the same things, it gets stale and we get bored. So, it's a catch-22 with fans, where we want things to be the same, but we also want things to change. And I think that's just part of the process.
"Every TV show that runs for more than three or four seasons, you start getting new characters coming in and different dynamics and new stories being told.
"I knew from the jump, just reading the script and knowing where the writers were going – how they were trying to get back to basics, back to that early season one / two vibe of the show – that fans were going to love it.
"I also knew it'd be a process. I knew people might initially be taken aback by it and be like, "What the heck?" - but I really have faith in our crew, our writers, our producers, the network, that if the fans stuck with the show, they'd be along for a great ride."
Fans got to see Curtis suit-up as a costumed crusader this season – an experience which Kellum described as "very surreal" and a "dream come true" – but they also saw him struggle with the physical side of being a superhero.
Kellum told us that he went through a physical transformation of his own as his character evolved: "I'm going through the process as Curtis goes through the process too, which is very cool. I'm in the gym on a regular basis now. I'm boxing. I'm doing Krav Maga, a little Wing Chun as well."
He's even close to conquering Arrow's famed salmon ladder – a challenge that Oliver Queen is able to meet without breaking a sweat, but one that's defeated Curtis time and time and again.
"I am definitely closer than I have ever been," he laughed. "My goal, personally, is to have it wrapped up by the end of the season!"
Echo Kellum stars in Arrow, airing Wednesdays at 8/7c on The CW. The series airs Thursdays at 9pm on Sky1 in the UK.
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