Ever since she first logged on as Queen Consolidated IT expert Felicity Smoak, Emily Bett Rickards has been an Arrow fan favorite. In this week's episode, Team Arrow's trusted tech genius and Oliver's semi-love interest takes center stage in an episode that reveals the truth about her past, introduces her cocktail-waitress mom (NYPD Blue alum Charlotte Ross), and gives us a great excuse to chat up the impossibly lovable Canadian scene stealer.
TV Guide Magazine: This episode flashes back to Felicity's time at MIT. What was she like in college?
Emily Bett Rickards: She was very smart, smarter than what college was going to teach her. And she was in love, but that became a troubled relationship. Yeah...she learned a very hard lesson that nobody should have to learn.
TV Guide Magazine: Sounds dark.
Rickards: What's really important is we get to see her life change — that point when she decided she wanted to be a hero. And we get to see the origin of her scars. We pick her up at a really big life moment.
TV Guide Magazine: Felicity and Oliver (Stephen Amell) have pretty much been on pause since the death of their ally Sara (aka the Black Canary). Is any forward movement coming up?
Rickards: I think something pushes them forward in every episode, but I don't know if it's forward in the way you mean. [Laughs] I think their relationship will change and get deeper. Are they open to talking about dating again? No. But I find what isn't being said interesting.
TV Guide Magazine: How have fans reacted to Olicity's date?
Rickards: The fans are great. They are so excited! I hope I'm giving back enough on Twitter. We've been busy shooting. My Twitter game is not what it used to be! [Laughs]
TV Guide Magazine: Can we talk about how much fun Felicity and Brandon Routh's CEO Ray Palmer are together?
Rickards: Brandon is charming as hell! Their chemistry and compatibility is so different [from Felicity and Oliver's] and it's supercool. I think everyone in the writers' room is excited about it, too. They see it and they know it's good and that viewers are going to be mad at how much they like it!
Arrow airs Wednesdays at 8/7c on The CW.