Having been teased since midway through the previous second season of Arrow, The CW and DC have both enjoyed playing up the presence of a big villain that’s set to make his debut in the DC Television Universe. Now, we’ve finally got solid details on who will be realizing the so-called ‘head of the demon’.
Matt Nable has been cast as Ra’s Al Ghul for the upcoming third season of Arrow, the leader of the League of Assassins, whose costume was already teased in one of Arrow’s earlier previews for Season Three. You may remember Nable best from his role as Colonel “Boss” Johns in last year’s threequel, Riddick.
Nable’s Ra’s Al Ghul will be introduced in the fourth episode of Arrow’s upcoming third season, which will also mark the show’s 50th episode overall. From there, he’s set to be a key antagonist for the season, with Arrow’s showrunners teasing that Ra’s doesn’t necessarily disagree with Oliver or The Arrow, but he also thinks that Team Arrow isn’t thinking big enough with their quest to purge Starling City of its evildoers.
Ra’s Al Ghul may be squaring off against Green Arrow in the case of Arrow, but in almost all other DC media, he’s actually a foe of Batman. The character was previously portrayed in live-action by Liam Neeson in 2005’s Batman movie reboot by Christopher Nolan, Batman Begins, with Neeson also making a small cameo in the role during Nolan’s third and final Batman movie, The Dark Knight Rises. While Ra’s Al Ghul is immortal in other DC media, continually revitalized and having lived for hundreds of years thanks to a fictional chemical called Lazarus, in Batman Begins, he was an ordinary mortal man, whose ‘immortality’ was explained by him having his underlings pose as Ra’s Al Ghul to conceal his own identity as the leader of his organization.
While Arrow will no doubt portray the character differently from his prior big screen incarnation, a few elements of Liam Neeson’s portrayal have already lingered for the DC Television Universe’s version of Ra’s Al Ghul. Batman Begins had the character speaking an edict about, “Doing what is necessary”, a line that was also dropped by a daughter of Ra’s Al Ghul, Nyssa Al Ghul, during Arrow’s second season’s finale. Arrow has also maintained Nolan’s altered pronounciation of, “Raw’s-Al-Gool”, rather than the proper pronounciation of “Raesh-Al-Gool” from other DC media, from the Arabic term literally meaning, “The Demon’s Head.” Arrow has restored the character’s organization’s name to, ‘The League of Assassins’ however, the same as its proper DC Universe name. Nolan’s Batman movies renamed Ra’s Al Ghul’s group, ‘The League of Shadows’.
Arrow’s third season will premiere on Wednesday, October 8th, at 8:00-9:00 P.M. EST.
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