Arrow's Echo Kellum Reveals Why the Stakes Are Higher Than Ever Before

Arrow Mister Terrific Curtis Holt feature

Curtis Holt's Mr. Terrific has left Team Arrow, but he's not alone. In the midseason finale, he quit alongside Dinah "Black Canary" Drake and Rene Ramirez, aka Wild Dog. Per the trailer for the show's midseason return, the three won't retire from vigilante life despite the way they left things with Oliver Queen, Felicity and Diggle; instead, they will form a super team of their own -- and that may cause more trouble than anyone realizes.

Speaking to CBR, Mr. Terrific himself Echo Kellum offered some insight into how Team Arrow's big split will affect his character moving forward. Fortunately for fans, the divide won't impact Curtis' happy-go-lucky attitude, though it will bring a lot of conflict into his relationship with his business partner Felicity Smoak. Kellum also teased his favorite scene from the midseason premiere, shared his hopes for Curtis' love life and explained why Cayden James' supervillain team will raise the stakes like never before.

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CBR: Ever since Curtis has been on the show, he's been this happy-go-lucky, lighthearted guy for the most part. Does the new split change his attitude at all?

Kellum: You know, I don't think it changes who he is. I think he's still a lighthearted guy. I think even the most lighthearted person can have moments where they're deeply affected and, you know, they have layers. We all have layers, and I think it affects him in a way that's really disappointing and it comes from a lot of hurt, because he really thought that he had a place on the team and, for half the team to split up and not trust the other half of the team, especially in Curtis' instance, where he's done nothing wrong. It's just a really huge betrayal. I think a part of why the team split and part of why Curtis left the team is because he's looking for something that has a little more trust and maybe looks a little different than what Team Arrow is offering.

I think all three of them -- Dinah, Curtis and Rene -- are looking for more of a partnership and more of a democratic approach to trying to save Star City. I think that's where they're going to really approach their team and kind of where Curtis' head is right now, but it'll still be who he is. He'll still be that optimist dude who sometimes does his own thing in his own situation, but Curtis is always looking for a piece of levity in the dark moments.

Now, as we know, Curtis' husband Paul left him because of his involvement with Team Arrow. Does the split change how he views his divorce?

I mean, Curtis' split with Team Arrow definitely brings up some of his past decisions that he made to choose to be a part of Team Arrow as opposed to give it up and be with Paul, but I don't think it was ever really about just Team Arrow. It was more about Curtis standing up for himself and trying to stand up for doing what's right for the people where he lives and knowing that he's needed out there in some capacity. Curtis has helped saved the day plenty of times, so I think those wins and saving lives or property or a building or stopping someone from doing a horrendous act makes it worth it to him in the end. Though he might waver on choosing to be a vigilante, I think that's something that he stands firm by.

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That being said, what are the odds we'll see Curtis get another shot at love?

I'd say the odds are very likely! I definitely want to see Curtis get out there and hit up a couple clubs, you know what I'm saying? Go on maybe a kayaking trip with somebody. I want to see him have fun and live life and get back in the groove and live for himself for a little bit. I think that there would be a lot of fun involved that and it'd be a lot of good growth for Curits as well.

Since Curtis will continue to work on Helix Dynamics with Felicity, how does the split impact their relationship?

Yeah, it definitely makes it a little bit more fractious. They have been very close ever since Curtis come onto the scene in Arrow, and he feels very betrayed by her. He feels betrayed by her, Dig and Oliver and that definitely will affect them. I think they'll put their differences aside to work on the company and do what's best for the company, but it's not going to be just easy sailing and hunky dory every day. There might be some eyerolls and some weird looks sometimes and some board meetings sometimes, but I think they'll do what's right for the company when it all comes down to it.

Can you tease Curtis' next interaction with Oliver?

I can't really say too much because I don't want to give away too much, but there will definitely be moments where they are at a head with each other and just dealing with turmoil or disagreements about how to approach a situation. We'll just have to see how it plays out.

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What kind of role does Curtis take on within the new team that he, Black Canary and Wild Dog are forming?

I mean, he definitely takes on a more leadership role, but -- like I said -- I think it's a shared leadership. They really want to be democratic about their approach of how they go about the new team. They just want to differentiate how they go about saving Star City versus how Oliver and Team Arrow goes about saving Star City. But you'll definitely see him more involved in the decisions and getting out there and making some calls of his own that not everyone might jive with in some instances, but I think he'll always be coming from a good place.

We haven't really seen Curtis work this closely with Black Canary before. What can you tell me about that?

I think we have a really good dynamic with each other. Dinah and Curtis, I think they help each other remember why they're doing it. They help each other move forward in a positive, uplifting way. So I think they'll be a formidable duo whenever they're out in the field together and whenever they're dealing with inner crisis that they show that they're really good friends and people who get through to each other.

Rene was willing to betray Oliver and everyone else for the sake of his daughter. How does that impact the new team's dynamic?

You know, I think it's kind of one of those things where the new team can see it from both sides. Oliver and Rene are both fighting for their children. There's no easy decisions made there. I don't think they look at Rene in a negative light for making the decision he made. They may not have made the same decision, but they understand where he's coming from. He's coming at it from the father aspect. That's the same reason that Oliver's coming from right now. He wants to be there for his son. So it's just a really tough dynamic where they can see both sides of the coin and they sympathize with both characters.

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How does Curtis view the challenge of this big supervillain team that Cayden James is leading?

I don't know if Curtis knows about them as of this point -- if anybody really knows that there's a team at this point -- but I think it just increases the chances the stakes. Usually, you have one big bad and it's tough. When you have six big bads, you're taking a huge leap in the level of toughness that they're going to have to deal with. You'll really just see the stakes risen tremendously on the show. I think it's going to be something that really pushes all of our characters, all the heroes, to break. It'll be one of those things to see if they can come back from it or if they might succumb to the dangers and perils of so many powerful forces coming at you at once.

Do you have a favorite moment or scene from the episode that you could tease?

I really, really love Rene, Dinah and Curtis' scene in Rene's apartment where they're kind of talking to each other and trying to figure out what they want to do. Even when we shot that, we had some fun moments between each other when we were cracking each other up and laughing and doing some ad libbing and whatnot. So that was a real fun scene and I hope people enjoy it when they see it.

We haven't really seen much of Curtis' life outside of Mr. Terrific. What would you want to see in his backstory?

I want to see them delving into what happened with his brother, his family life, mom. I want to see him getting out more into the dating scene. I'd like to see him just having everyday interactions with people throughout Star City and seeing what those type of interactions would be like. Would they be humorous? Is he awkward to everyone else? But I'd definitely like to see him striking out there on his own and really delving more into his own backstory.

Starring Stephen Amell as the Emerald Archer, Arrow airs Thursdays at 9pm ET/PT on The CW. The series also stars Emily Bett Rickards, David Ramsey, Willa Holland and more.

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