According to executive producers Wendy Mericle and Marc Guggenheim, "Arrow's" flashbacks aren't going anywhere. The two explained to TVLine why the show's flashbacks are crucial to the story, the struggles they've encountered with the convention and where Oliver is headed in season five.
"The way we write the story is still very much married to that backstory, and trying to change it up at this point would feel weird," Mericle explained.
"I don't want to tip too much, but it's a very good possibility that we'll finally find out how Oliver got that Bratva tattoo and how he learned to speak Russian," she added.
"Part of the appeal of the flashbacks -- certainly in the first two years, but I think the first three years -- is seeing what a big difference it is between Oliver Queen in the present day and Oliver Queen five years ago," Guggenheim said. "The problem is that we are telling a five-year story in the flashbacks of Oliver becoming the guy you met in the pilot. So the deeper you get into the flashbacks, the closer he becomes to being that guy, and, thus, you lose that element of the flashbacks that was so interesting, which is how different he was.... That's something we have struggled with this year."