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When Oliver Queen gave up the job of Green Arrow to Diggle in the second episode of season six, nearly everyone reacted the same way. 

There's no way that's going to stick, we all said. This will last for like, an episode, we all thought. And even Diggle himself, David Ramsey, felt the same way. 

"I thought it was going to be like a one-off," he tells E! News. "You know, kinda the way it's been before—he's a decoy." 

But apparently, for at least the first six or so episodes of the season, Diggle is keeping the gig. 

"When I found out he was going to have a crossbow, I knew that they're really committed to it, because you know, there's more than just the money for a new costume invested. Now you're going into the props and you're changing the story," Ramsey says. "There's a visual change to the character, not just the weapon he uses." 

With the FBI closing in on Oliver's (Stephen Amell) vigilante habits and his son worried about his father not making it home, it was time for a change. So he officially gave up the bow and arrow to Diggle so he could focus on being the mayor, being a parent, and getting the FBI off his back, but Diggle's not just an interim Green Arrow. 

"They didn't just kind of bandaid this inquiry that the FBI has of Oliver Queen," Ramsey says. "I wasn't used to facilitate a bandaid. It was really a commitment to a storyline that I was impressed by."

So far, Diggle's time as the Green Arrow isn't going all that well. He can't shoot arrows like Oliver can, and he's got a seriously concerning tremor in his hand after the explosion. So of course, he's doing drugs. 


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"I think it's great for John Diggle who's always been kind of a bastion of integrity and morality, but now he's taking drugs to continue the mission of the team," Ramsey says. "And we're going to see that this becomes less of a moral question about his need for this drug, this performance enhancing drug, but it becomes about his lust for it, and to continue the mission, it becomes tunnel vision. And the team and mission gets compromised because of it." 

While he doesn't think the storyline compares to Lance's (Paul Blackthorne) substance abuse issues explored a couple seasons ago, Ramsey says we're going to see a whole new side of his character.

"It is used to kind of underscore a different John Diggle, a John Diggle we've never seen before, and that's really the purpose of it to use as a story prop," he says. "So you should be concerned in the sense that the missions are compromised, and you haven't seen a Diggle like this before." 

So far, Diggle has yet to open up to Oliver or any of his teammates about the drugs he's taking, and Ramsey thinks that's the biggest lesson he has yet to learn as the Green Arrow. Apparently things are going to get a lot worse before he finally opens up. 


The CW

"We're talking about major health problems, near death type of experience," he teases. "Compromising out in the field, people getting hurt, and he himself getting hurt. So the stakes get higher and higher and higher the more the secrets get compounded." 

Tonight's episode finds Black Siren (Katie Cassidy) launching another attack and we finally get to meet Cayden James, the leader of Helix. But it also finds Diggle going "deeper into the rabbit hole." 

"We just go deeper into the pit of where he is with this drug and his need for it to continue to perform at the level he's performing at," he says. "There's more of Diggle missing the moral mark that he's so prone to always hit." 

In happier news, Oliver and Felicity (Emily Bett Rickards) will continue to put their relationship back together, "and it's Oliver that helps Felicity realize that she needs the team to face this threat." Plus, he becomes a kind of mentor for everyone on the team. 

Since Oliver now has his s--t together, Ramsey says "there's a lot of falling to pieces" for the rest of the team, and Oliver is there to help put them back together. 

"Because Oliver has maybe reached another plateau, another level in his maturity, it does allow for you to see a lot of chinks in our armor in the rest of the team." 

Arrow airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on the CW. 

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