Yet another member of the Queen family on The CW's Arrow is about to be targeted by a sort-of villain when Colton Haynes' version of Roy Harper steals the scene (pun intended). But he is hardly some fat cat, twirling an evil mustache, worthy of being crossed off of The Arrow's list. Roy Harper (Haynes) is a kid from the wrong side of Starling City-- the part that Oliver (Stephen Amell) had noted had fallen apart when he first returned. Growing up in poverty has hardened Roy and made him act badly out of necessity, but he is about to glimpse a much different kind of life by his interaction with Thea Queen (Willa Holland).
"Roy is kind of a smart-ass, so he is not afraid to make fun of [Thea] for the fact that she has butlers. He makes fun of her like, ‘Yeah, I do have to answer my own door’…so there’s a lot of fun, witty things that go on between them. I like that they kept it more light, instead of him being really rude to her," Haynes said when LA TV Insider Examiner caught up with him over the phone.
"He’s pretty much always reminding her ‘This is how I live my life; that’s how you live your life, so can you stay out of The Glades? Because you’re going to get into a lot of trouble!’ Which ultimately ends up happening."
Despite their unconventional way of meeting, Thea finds herself drawn to Roy, partially per Haynes, because he does try to keep her at a distance, and maybe even because she wants to save him a bit. But there should be a question of whether or not she can trust him, given his shady lifestyle.
"He has a heart, but he also has bills to pay. They’re doing it so well where you want to trust Roy, and you want to believe Thea whenever she tells everybody he’s a good guy, but then there’s also the way he’s lived his whole life...His normal is going and stealing things to get food. That’s how he grew up. So he could end up getting her into more trouble, or [he could] help save her, in a way," Haynes said.
"She is so fascinated by this world in which he lives. He keeps pushing her down, in a way, and she keeps being like ‘Why is this guy so rude to me?’ That’s the initial attraction for her, but eventually Roy starts to realize ‘Wow, maybe this girl really does care about me. Why does she care about me?’"
Roy's introduction also allows the show as a whole to dive back into the story of The Glades-- that rough part of Starling City in which Oliver has his warehouse and in which Roy grew up.
"They start talking about The Glades a lot," Haynes said. "The Arrow’s always saying The Glades has something to do with the overall scheme of things. Whether that means that Roy has been secretly trying to infiltrate the Queens’ life for a while, or they’re going to be shaping him from the disaster of The Glades, though, we will find out!"
In a lot of ways, though, Roy doesn't seem all that different from The Arrow himself. At times their methods may be questionable, but they always appear to be coming from genuine, selfless places. They're both trying to better situations, Roy's just being personal, while The Arrow is looking at things on a grander scale. While Haynes admitted the initial act of theft against Thea won't leave audiences completely sure of whether or not he has targeted her specifically because of who she is, as time goes on, the family certainly plays an important part in his life.
"There’s something that happens to Roy in a very public way, so they’re introduced to Roy [but] not in an ideal way of him coming over for dinner. It’s a thing that makes him a little famous in a non-glamorous way...I think there’s a lot of things they’re setting up to make Roy either go down a really dark path or give him some guidance," he said
"Down the road, he sees that there's something else out there. He sees a different path."
Arrow airs on The CW on Wednesday nights at 8 p.m.
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