The Flash: Armageddon and the Secrets of Mia Queen’s Return

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The following article contains The Flash: armageddon spoilers.

The Flash Season 8 Episode 5

Though Barry Allen managed to successfully thwart Eobard Thawne’s attempt to rewrite the timeline in the penultimate installment of The Flash: Armageddon, things aren’t quite back to normal just yet in Central City Not only does Team Flash have to stop Thawne once again in 2021, but they’ve also got to decide what to do with him afterward. The question of whether the monster that did them all so much harm is worthy of their mercy is precisely the sort of moral conundrum that superhero stories are perhaps the best equipped to explore, and The Flash wraps up this five-part event doing just that. 

But that’s not all. Armageddon also brings back fan-favorite Mia Queen for the first time since Arrow ended, a welcome return that takes a little bit of the sting out of the fact that The CW opted not to pick up the flagship series’ proposed spinoff, Green Arrow and the Canaries

“Putting on the suit for the first time again and being back in that world, it just felt like coming home,” Katherine McNamara, who plays Mia, tells Den of Geek. “It felt right, you know? And truly, I just love creating her story and her journey. Mia will always be very special to me. I learned a lot from her and she brought a lot of wonderful things into my life. So, stepping back into her shoes – it’s a responsibility, but it’s one that I welcome.” 

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As a character, Mia remains as intriguing in Armageddon as ever, a unique mix of her father’s stubbornness and her mother’s sarcasm, all topped up with a hefty dose of the sort of deep-seated anger and need to prove herself we don’t often see in female heroes. She’s fascinating to watch and one has to hope that this return might presage a few more appearances in this universe, either on The Flash or one of its other shows. 

“Mia has simultaneously changed and also remains largely the same. She loves to dig in her heels,” McNamara laughs when asked how the past two years have altered her character. “The writers did such an amazing job of picking up right where we left off with her.”

Though the Green Arrow and the Canaries series so many of us (read: me) wanted to see was not to be, Mia’s story still has a lot of “unfinished business,” according to McNamara, including the disappearance of her half-brother William, her lingering, largely unprocessed anger toward both her parents, and her anxieties surrounding what it means that she’s chosen to pick up her father’s bow and carry on his legacy. 

“There were a lot of unresolved things when Oliver died—for many people and many of these characters, but also for [the idea of] the Green Arrow itself,” McNamara says. “And I think we get to see a glimpse of Mia trying to fill those shoes, and trying to fill that gap. And as we see in in the scenes between Black Lightning and [Barry] – to fill that chair that’s still empty. And she’s not quite earned it yet and she’s not quite figured out how to do it yet.”

The Flash touches on all of those still-dangling plot and emotional threads, seeing Mia arrive in 2021 in pursuit of Thawne, mistakenly assuming that his temporal energy trail was somehow connected to her still-missing brother. But she becomes embroiled in the debate about whether to allow Thawne to be permanently erased from the timeline—ultimately a lesson about choosing to be a hero that the mercurial Queen daughter desperately needs to hear after two fruitless years of searching for William.

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“She’s still dealing with this struggle of taking on the mantle of the Green Arrow and not feeling as though she’s worthy of it and feeling as though she’s failing a lot of the promises she made to her parents before they disappeared,” McNamara says. “And the fact that William is still missing, the fact that she’s become obsessed with trying to remedy these failures—it’s really put her on a precipice and she’s [asking herself] what will I sacrifice and where will I draw the line to achieve what I am going after?”

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Mia has been searching for her brother since he was essentially kidnapped at the end of Arrow episode “Green Arrow and the Canaries” and seems no closer to finding him, despite her easy access to apparent time travel tech, something which seems to have made her more open than ever to what might be called darker methods. 

McNamara’s best scene in the episode comes opposite Candice Patton’s Iris West, a heart-to-heart full of some hard truths about the damage allowing yourself to become the same darkness you’re chasing can do. 

“It was actually really lovely because Mia is very much in need of some guidance right now,” McNamara says. “And even though it may not be what she wants to hear, I think everything that she’s learning from Uncle Barry and Aunt Iris who know her parents better than she does, it’s exactly what she needs to hear. And it sets her on a path that is sort of avoiding some of the potholes that her parents ended up in along the way, hopefully..”

This appearance marks the first time we’ve seen Mia on our CW screens since early 2020, but if McNamara has her way, it won’t be the last. She is, as she puts it, “100% open” to the idea of continuing Mia’s story in the Arrowverse in some form or other. 

“Look, if anyone needs a gal to come put on the suit and shoot some arrows at bad guys, put a green arrow in the sky and I’ll come a-runnin’!” she laughs. “But, seriously, I think that it would be wonderful to see more of Mia in this world. So much has been set up by the Arrow writers and the Flash writers now as well. And having the opportunity to play that out and explore more of the Arrowverse worlds would be a gift.”

And McNamara already has plenty of ideas about where Mia’s story could go next, too.

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“There are so many worlds that Mia can fit into! We saw her interact a lot with Sara Lance in Crisis on Infinite Earths, and they have a very interesting relationship. But I think Mia would fit very well in the world of Batwoman as well. There are so many opportunities to explore and to see where her journey could take her. Who knows? But I have to say I would go play in any one of those worlds.”

If pressed to choose, McNamara would be “really down to visit Gotham,” but “Armageddon, Pt. 5” also hints that there could be an opportunity to see Mia again in Central City in the not too distant future. Not only does Iris track down some information that could help her find William, but she also teases the potential of a friendship between Mia and West-Allen kids Bart and Nora. They are from the future too, after all, and legacy superheroes in their own rights. Could we finally be looking at a team-up of the next generation of Arrowverse heroes?

“Jordan Fisher has been a friend of mine forever,” McNamara laughs. “I would absolutely love for Mia to come and play with the Flash kids. But we do have to find William [first] though. I mean, even if he’s happily having a cocktail on a desert island somewhere we at least have to make sure he’s okay!”

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