Talking to Screen Rant at San Diego Comic-Con 2015, John Barrowman had some pretty insightful things to say about his Arrow character Malcolm Merlyn and what's in store for him going into the show's fourth season.
Chatting about how Merlyn views the Team Arrow group, he explained: "This is how it works for me. My Malcolm, I believe I have a soft spot for every one of those people on that team. And I haven't figured out why. Maybe it's because of Tommy knowing most of them or it's because I look at Oliver being like a son. Or my daughter, I knew I was training her to be part of it. I will protect them. But if I have to kill someone, I will. It's as black and white as that. But don't mess with them. Don't get in the way, because I will put my neck out on the line to protect them. That's what I think. That's what makes it work for me. If that happens, I don't know."
He also addressed the manipulation techniques used by Malcolm to get what he wants, but admitted to trying to deliver lines in a way which will keep him guessing what his character's true intentions are as well as the audience.
"Not much scares Malcolm. Ra's scared Malcolm when he was in front of him. But I always, again, play it like, do we really believe that Malcolm is scared or is he just a great manipulator? When you watch him... which I love when I watch him myself, because I do watch myself, I love watching him going, 'I don't really know if I believe you are telling the truth'."
With Merlyn now taking up the Ra's mantle and stepping in charge of the League of Assassins, viewers are left wondering what his relationship with key character Nyssa al Ghul (Katrina Law) will be like going forward - former Ra's al Ghul's daughter.
Barrowman says: "I want to see that relationship explored, because her father is dead. The body is gone. We don't know. Will she look to Malcolm as being a role model? Will she always want to kill him? She has to respect him because he's part of The League, because one does wear the ring. I had to make me my own demon's head. And I've been wearing it for a week."
The actor also shared his thoughts on what becoming Ra's could mean for Malcolm's future.
"He's Ra's. However, the other Ra's has disappeared. That's what I'll say, because his body is gone. Like myself, it's a role reversal. He now is rogue. He could always have a team of people around him. He might have wealth that I had. So he could be an arch enemy to my Ra's. I'm intrigued by that because would I not be as fearful of him because he is no longer the Demon's Head? He is not the almighty one. I think he would gloat a little.
"It would be a wonderful scene to have him in front of me on his knees, like when he said to Nyssa, 'Kneel before Ra's al Ghul.' I love that that was the last line they filmed with him before we went on break. And if he could say that to the other, that would be like fan boy all over the place. But I don't know if it's going to happen. I don't know. I think there's going to have to be another collaboration of teams at some point."
Arrow season 4 returns to American screens on The CW on October 7.