- For her mother of the same name, see Dinah Lance.
|Occupation||Assistant district attorney of Starling City|
Legal aid attorney at CNRI (formerly)
|Family||Quentin Lance (father)|
Dinah Lance (mother)
Sara Lance (sister)
- "Because I realized that, that I went on that boat with you too. And I've been slowly drowning for all of these years and after every heartbreak or setback or loss, I sank deeper into the dark water. And so when I saw you, so beautiful and so alive, I realized that I'm not those things. Not anymore. So please, please don't hate me Sara. Please. "
- —Laurel Lance reconciling with Sara[src]
Dinah "Laurel" Lance (born 1985) is one of the main characters of the TV series, Arrow. Formerly a legal aid attorney as well as one of two assistant district attorneys working under District Attorney Kate Spencer; until she was fired for her drug addiction, Laurel is the daughter of Dinah and Quentin Lance, the older sister of Sara Lance, the ex-girlfriend and former love interest of Oliver Queen, the ex-girlfriend of the late Tommy Merlyn, and the best friend of fellow lawyer Joanna De La Vega. Laurel had a romantic relationship with Oliver for quite sometime, up until he cheated on her with her sister.
Previously, Laurel was a part of a group called the City Necessary Resources Initiative, or CNRI, that helped people in need. She took on many high profile cases, some of which were also investigated by the Vigilante and they worked together from time to time. Often this would be initiated when one or the other asked for help though their first few cases together were worked separately.
Despite this she later worked with the DA's office to capture The Arrow and bring him to justice. She held onto the belief that he was a murderer (believing he left Tommy for dead; In truth she was simply trying to blame The Arrow for something that wasn't his fault, because she didn't want to face her own guilt, for being partly responsible for Tommy's death.) until she and her father were rescued by The Arrow after they were captured by Barton Mathis. When she becomes suspicious of Sebastian Blood she approaches him for help but she is discredited when her drug addiction is brought to light (even though she is right).
Laurel is a lawyer and worked for CNRI, a legal aid office, until she became an assistant district attorney. In 2007, her younger sister Sara, is assumed to have died in the same shipwreck that strands her boyfriend Oliver on a remote island. After he returns, she forgives him and they become friends again. She became involved with Oliver's best friend Tommy Merlyn while Oliver was assumed dead, and they became a couple for sometime after Oliver returned. Tommy broke up with her when he find out that she and Oliver still had feelings for each other.
In "Pilot", she is initially very angry at Oliver for cheating on her with her sister and partially blames him for Sara's death. When he turns up at her office after being rescued she tells him she was too angry to grieve for her sister but she couldn't be angry because Sara was her sister. She also tells him she had hoped he'd rot in a hell a whole lot longer than 5 years. She is also working on the same case as The Hood, (Adam Hunt). Though her methods are legal and his are not. Tommy convinces her to go to Oliver's welcome home party. While there she apologizes to Oliver for telling him she wished him dead but she becomes angry when he goes out his way to be horrible to her, telling her to stay away from him because he hasn't changed. She replies that he has changed, (he's more honest now). Later she and Tommy talk about sleeping together, (which she calls a lapse and he replies was more than just a lapse, while Oliver was gone), unaware that The Hood (Oliver) is listening from above.
In "Honor Thy Father", Laurel is trying a case against Martin Somers (also a target of The Hood) who murdered her client's father, a honest man. She encounters Oliver at the courthouse where his death in absentia was being revoked; she reminds everyone what he did (slept with her sister and then got her killed). Later Oliver goes to her apartment with ice cream, teasing her about wanting to do something with her that he couldn't do on the island. This is partly to apologize to her and try to reconnect. While they are eating the ice cream they are attacked by the Chinese Triad at Martin's behest. Oliver can't do much to protect Laurel and they're saved by Diggle who discovered that Laurel's police detail has been killed. Laurel and her father fight about her safety (Martin had threatened her when Quentin went to talk to him after The Hood threatened him which is why she was being protected by the police). The Hood hunts down Somers and forces a confession out of him which is then given to Quentin who presumably passes it on to Laurel. She uses it to make sure that Somers is found guilty and that her client can know her father has found justice.
In "Lone Gunmen", Joanna convinces Laurel to go to a new club that is opening up. The owner of he club, turns out to be, Max Fuller, whose fiancee Oliver slept with at the rehearsal dinner. They encounter each other at the bar where Tommy teases Laurel about her actually going out and having fun. Thea turns up drunk and when Oliver tries to take her home she angrily tells him that Tommy and Laurel slept together while he was gone, with Tommy and Laurel standing right there (not realizing that Oliver already knows). Soon afterwards Max finds out that Oliver is at the club and has him dragged to a back room to be beaten up by his goons. Tommy tries unsuccessfully to protect him but it's Laurel who quickly takes down Max and gets him to let them go. Max tells them that all three of them are banned for life. When Oliver tries to talk to Laurel she tells him they don't need his forgiveness or his blessing and leaves the club. Later Laurel talks to Tommy about what happened and points out that Oliver already knew because he doesn't react. He tries to convince her to give him a shot.
In "An Innocent Man". After the shooting in the previous episode Oliver comes home to find Laurel waiting for him. She lectures him about leaving his family and not letting them know he is alive. Oliver hears about Peter Declan who allegedly killed his own wife in their baby's room. Knowing that Declan must have been set up by Jason Brodeur The Hood approaches Laurel. He convinces her to investigate because Declan is on death row and shouldn't die for someone else's crime. At first the information she finds isn't enough to free him so she goes to the prison to talk to him. While Iron Heights Prison Laurel is attacked by the bodyguard of the man who actually killed Declan's wife, but she is saved by The Hood. However she is so horrified by The Hood's violence that she later describes him as a "monster".
In "Damaged", Laurel and Oliver kiss. She admits that she still has feelings for him but makes it clear that nothing can ever happen between them. Moira Queen requests her to be Oliver's lawyer on his insistence. She argues with her father when she chooses to defend Oliver in his trial. She tells her father that he can't blame Oliver for Sara's death, or the fact that her mother left them afterwards.
In "Legacies", Laurel's legal aid office CNRI loses it's biggest sponsor so Tommy suggests throwing a fundraiser for them. Laurel is initially suspicious of his motives but CNRI needs the money desperately so she goes along with it. After seeing Tommy caring for the drunk Thea, Laurel indicates to Tommy that she might be interested in a relationship.
In "Muse of Fire", Laurel agrees to go on a date with Tommy. When his father cuts him off she comforts him and tells him it's not his money she finds attractive.
In "Vendetta", Laurel encourages Tommy to ask Oliver for a job and they argue over his insecurities but make up soon afterwards.
In "Burned", After Joanna's brother, Danny De La Vega, dies suspiciously in a fire, Laurel asks her father for help. He refuses on the grounds that the death isn't suspicious so she steals his phone to The Hood. She calls The Hood for help investigating Danny's death. They work together and discover that Danny's murderer was a man otherwise believed to be dead, Garfield Lynns. Lynns attacks a fundraiser being held for the fire station and Laurel is briefly trapped inside with Oliver. Later Quentin tells Laurel she should keep hold of The Hood's phone as she'll find better use for it (while really planning to use her to capture The Hood).
In "Vertigo", When Thea gets in legal trouble to get her out of a long jail sentence, Laurel gets her father to get her a deal by reminding him of the trouble that Sara got into in her youth. As part of her plea bargain, Thea will work at CNRI with Laurel.
In "Betrayal", Laurel finds out that the criminal, Cyrus Vanch. has been released from prison and so she asks The Hood for help finding evidence against him. When the he has something to offer he calls her and she leaves a date with Tommy to meet him on the rooftop, not knowing her father is tracking her to capture The Hood. Later Laurel argues with Tommy about her putting her life in danger. He is furious at her for contacting The Hood and she is furious with her father for setting her up. Laurel is then kidnapped from her apartment by Vanch who uses her as bait for The Hood. After her father and The Hood rescue her she tells her father to stay away from her for his earlier actions. The Hood (Oliver) tells her he sees how much danger he put her in now and tells her he's going to stay away.
In "The Odyssey", during a flashback, Oliver is seen calling Laurel but Oliver doesn't respond, just listens to her voice. Before he can say something Slade stops the call, leaving Laurel none the wiser about who called her.
In "Dodger", Laurel and Thea are on a break while working at CNRI and are walking through the Glades when Thea's purse is snatched. Laurel attempts to chase down the man (Roy Harper) but he escapes. Later when Thea tracks Roy down, Laurel helps by passing on the information to her father so he can arrest Roy.
In "Dead to Rights", Laurel helps Tommy celebrate his birthday and comforts him when his father turns up and encourages him to attend a ceremony giving his father an award. At the end of the episode, she gets a visit from her mother, telling her that she thinks Sara may still be alive.
In "The Huntress Returns", Laurel invites her father to breakfast not telling him that her mother, Dinah, will also be attending. She encourages her father to help Dinah investigate, (whether or not Sara survived the sinking of the Queen's Gambit), in order to prove to Dinah that Sara really is dead.
In "Salvation", Laurel gets caught up in the investigation but ultimately manages to prove that the photo Dinah has found is not actually Sara. Dinah's confession that she allowed Sara to go on the Gambit with Oliver is ultimately what allows Laurel to reconcile with her. Laurel asks her mom to keep in touch when she goes back to Central City. Tommy finding out Oliver's secret in an earlier episode means that, unable to share what he knows, he distances himself from Laurel when she needs him.
In "Unfinished Business", Laurel is furious when her father tries to prove Tommy and Oliver were selling Vertigo at Verdant.
In "Home Invasion" Laurel is trying to help a family when the couple is murdered by the assassin, Mr. Blank. She takes in their orphaned son, Tyler, but then makes herself a target when the assassin comes to tie up loose ends. She, Tommy and Tyler temporarily stay at the Queens. Laurel and Moira discuss the past briefly. Later Oliver comforts Laurel which Tommy sees and misconstrues though he doesn't say anything immediately. The assassin is killed by Oliver so Laurel and Tommy are safe to go home while Tyler's grandparents have been found and can take him away with them. Tommy leaves Laurel lying and telling her that he wasn't ready for a relationship.
In "The Undertaking", in the flashbacks Laurel says that she wants to move in with Oliver as they've been together a while. This causes Oliver to panic and take Sara on board the Gambit with him while Laurel is unaware anything is wrong. In the present Laurel confronts Tommy over him leaving her, saying that she still loves him and believes he loves her so whatever the problem is they can work to overcome it. He tells her that Oliver is still in love with her and she should be with him instead. When Laurel goes to Oliver and asks him to tell Tommy that he doesn't love her, he refuses saying that he has too many lies in his life, and that he still in love with her.
In "Darkness on the Edge of Town", Oliver goes to Laurel and tells her he hoes he didn't wait too long. She kisses him and tells him he didn't. (They end up sleeping together), which Tommy witnesses from the street below. Laurel is unaware that Oliver had previously encouraged Tommy to reconcile with her and he'd been on his way to do just that.
In "Sacrifice", Laurel visits Oliver at the Queen Mansion because he left while she was sleeping (to investigate the Undertaking) He tells her to stay out of the Glades that night. But when Moira confesses in a press conference about the Undertaking, Laurel foes into CNRI to try and save valuable files for her clients livelihoods. While she's there her father calls her and tells her to get out. She leaves during the earthquake but is trapped under falling rubble when the building collapses. Tommy arrives to save her life but is tragically killed in the attempt while her father prevents her from trying to get back to him.
In "City of Heroes", Laurel is now assistant district attorney, because CNRI was destroyed in the Undertaking. During the mayor's event, it is interrupted by The Hoods. One of the members threatens the DA, but Laurel takes him down. Immediately after, one of them points a gun at her before she can do anything else. Her father, now demoted to officer rank, tries to ask her questions about the attack but his boss intervenes. Oliver arrives and they talk about how she regrets sleeping with him, feeling that she cheated on Tommy. Later, Laurel meets Oliver again at Tommy's grave. They agree on being friends, and she tells Oliver how she is going to help the DA take down The Hood, still unaware that The Hood and Oliver are one in the same.
In "Identity", Laurel makes plans to catch The Hood, determined to bring him to justice for his crimes. When he comes to talk to her, she reveals that she is also angry because it looked like he had the opportunity to save Tommy life, but didn't. When he comes to talk to her again she reveals that she's set a trap for him.
In "Broken Dolls", The Canary rescues The Arrow from Laurel and the police. When Quentin angers the serial killer his is hunting down, the Dollmaker, the man targets Laurel, kidnapping her and attempting to kill her while Quentin watches. The Arrow arrives just in time to save Laurel's life and The Canary kills the Dollmaker. Laurel realizes her misplaced guilt is aimed at the wrong person and that she really blames herself.
In "Crucible", Laurel is having a hard time from recent events, and is drinking heavily and taking anti-depressants, almost getting arrested for a DUI. Both Oliver and Quentin attempt to get through to her but fail. The Canary, who is revealed to be Laurel's younger sister Sara, is shown to be watching over her older sister.
In "League of Assassins", Laurel is put on Moira's prosecution and she's able to convince the DA to offer Moira a plea bargain - life in prison as opposed to the Death Penalty (if she's declared guilty). Oliver later takes her out for dinner in order to protect her from the Assassins pursuing her sister Sara. Afterwards, she makes a pass at Oliver, who gently refuses her and makes clear that he just wanted to be there for her as a friend, not reignite their romance. Tearfully, she then asks him why everyone in her life seems to end up running away from her. Laurel notices that her apartment is open and when Oliver investigates he finds a knife which he hides from her. After Oliver leaves, Laurel takes some anti-depressants.
In "State v. Queen", Laurel is appointed lead prosecutor in the Moira Queen case to replace ADA Donner, who had been poisoned with Vertigo. While reviewing the case notes, she discovers Donner's "trump card" (that Moira had an affair with Malcolm Merlyn). Disturbed by what she found, she tries to convince Moira to protect her family by not taking the witness stand, warning that she is obligated to prosecute the case to the best of her ability and will be forced to present Donner's evidence in court if Moira testifies.
When Moira does testify, Laurel reveals the affair and makes a strong case for a guilty verdict. When she encounters Oliver immediately after mercilessly cross-examining Moira, she tries to avoid him, and is distraught and guilt-ridden at her actions in court.
In "Three Ghosts", Sin and Thea seek help from Laurel about Max Stanton. Laurel discovers that the Blood drive Max donated blood in required a psych test which is unusual but not illegal meaning that she cannot help Sin further.
In "Blast Radius", Laurel has begun investigating Sebastian Blood, whom she finds suspicious. She questions him about his past and his connection to Cyrus Gold, and asks her father to help her get more information on Sebastian. In the course of her investigation, she comes upon the name of Maya Resik, Sebastian's aunt who is confined in a psychiatric institution. Eventually she visits Maya, who reveals that she is not Sebastian's aunt, but his mother, and that Sebastian murdered his father and had her committed to hide his crime.
In "Blind Spot", after getting a call from St. Walker's Hospital learning Maya Resik passed away, she believes she was murdered by Sebastian Blood in fear Maya would tell anyone else that he murdered his father. She asks Donner to help investigate the case but Donner refuses as he doesn't believe she was murdered as Maya was sick and there was no evidence that Sebastian did murder his father. Though Laurel tells Donner that she was told by Maya, Donner believes she said that as she was insane. Laurel then seeks help from The Arrow, he helps her to search for the files that would prove Sebastian's guilt. They are successful but learn the files have already been removed. Laurel arrives home to find that her apartment has been ransacked and is arrested by Officer Daily. She tries to pin it on Sebastian but her father doesn't believe her as she was in possession of prescribed drugs which she stole from her father. Oliver helps Laurel clean up her apartment after she is released but is knocked unconscious by Daily who then kidnaps Laurel. The Arrow goes to Starling Cannery to save Laurel, where she is apparently being held by Sebastian. She ends up being the one to shoot the man in the mask but when The Arrow removes the man's mask it turns out to be Daily. Later she is fired by Donner for her drug use and for seemingly being wrong about Sebastian.
In "Tremors", Laurel grudgingly agrees to have dinner with her father, at his request. When this turns out to be a ruse to get her to attend a drug rehab meeting, she angrily leaves. She meets with Joanna about a job offer, only to learn that disbarment proceedings are being filed against her, making her unemployable. Later she shows up at Verdant, where she gets drunk and makes a scene. Oliver takes her keys and gets her a cab. When she arrives at her apartment, she sees her sister Sara.
In "Heir to the Demon", it is revealed that Laurel didn't overdose, but was poisoned by a member of the League of Assassins. She tells Quentin that she saw Sara, although she is under the impression that it was a hallucination. When Laurel is told her mother is kidnapped, her father tries to comfort her. Quentin decides to reveal to her that Sara is alive but is called on Dinah's location. Laurel follows her father and learns that Sara is alive. After the whole Lance family is reunited, Laurel tells Sara that everything that ever happened to their family after she left with Oliver was her fault and tells Sara to "get out" out of anger. In the flashbacks, Laurel tells Sara she wants to move into an apartment in a year then get engaged about a year later. A jealous Sara leaves and decides to follow Oliver on the boat. When Laurel is discussing her future plans about Oliver, she learns the Queen's Gambit has sunk. Laurel is then told Sara followed Oliver on the ship.
In "Time of Death", Laurel still wants nothing to do with Sara, refusing to go to her homecoming party. Quentin persuades Laurel to host a family dinner, hoping he can reconcile with his ex-wife Dinah. At the dinner, things quickly go downhill when Laurel realizes that Oliver and Sara have rekindled their relationship. She explodes in rage, and argues with Oliver about her blaming everyone else for everything that's gone wrong with her life. Finally, a visibly hurt Oliver says he's done with her, and walks away. This seems to shake Laurel.
Afterwards, she goes to Verdant to apologize to Sara, and then later shows up at a Alcoholics Anonymous meeting with her father.
In "Birds of Prey", her ex-boss Adam Donner offers her her old job back, if she agrees to prosecute the case against Frank Bertinelli. When Helena Bertinelli and her gang take over the courthouse in an attempt to kidnap Frank, Laurel is taken hostage and The Canary comes to rescue her. In the stress of the situation, Laurel is about to drink to but is dissuaded by The Canary, after which she insists on staying until all the hostages are freed. She helps The Canary battle Helena's thugs, but is recaptured after the masked vigilante is defeated.
Laurel tries to persuade Helena to let the hostages go by explaining that they have a great deal in common, but the Huntress responds by slipping out of the courthouse and taking Laurel along with her. Later, when The Canary defeats Helena in battle, Laurel convinces her sister not to kill Helena.
Afterwards, DA Spencer apologizes to Laurel for Donner's having used her in his scheme to lure the Huntress out of hiding, but says that Donner had no authority to reinstate Laurel. Laurel then blackmails Spencer into rehiring her by threatening to reveal Donner's scheme to the public if she isn't given her old job back. She quotes Helena in this instance saying that someone recently told her that 'once you let the darkness inside, it never comes out'.
In "Deathstroke", Laurel visits Sebastian prior to his debate with Moira Queen, and apologizes for suspecting him of murdering his father. Later, Laurel is visited by Slade Wilson, who reveals Oliver's identity.
In "The Man Under the Hood", Laurel has a hard time dealing with Oliver's identity, mainly because revealing the Arrow's identity is the only thing that could release Quentin Lance from prison. After she sees Sara's wounds, Laurel is nearly heartbroken on learning her sister's true identity. Quentin is then attacked by a prison inmate and Laurel rushes to see him. Quentin then persuades her to keep the secret about Oliver Queen after telling her to think about the difficulties the vigilante has to face. Laurel, finally at peace with the vigilante's identity forces the D.A. to release Quentin and then visits Oliver and hugs him, saying that he is one of the few people she values in her life.
Her anger towards Oliver for supposedly getting her sister killed made her harsh towards him, at first.
Laurel is hard working, and fights hard to get what she wants. She is a great lawyer and lives to stand up for the innocent and what is right, despite the corruption in Starling City. She can be feisty and doesn't like to be told what to do. Laurel is attracted to troublemakers, as shown when she dated both Oliver and Tommy. She gets annoyed when her father tries to get in the way, always forming his opinion of her boyfriends, even though it almost never changes her mind. Laurel is tough and knows how to take care of herself. She takes risks, like contacting Arrow, and can't resist saving people from tough situations, from when Tommy and Oliver were going to get beat up in the night club Poison, to innocent people on trial.
However, she has a big heart and tends to see the best in the people around her. This is shown in "Damaged" where Oliver states that she should hate him for what he did to her and her sister, but she did not. She even wants to get along with her father again, after he used her as bait for The Arrow, even though stating that it will take some time. She is also one of the few people seeing the good person Oliver is inside, even through the snob-front he presents on the outside, the other one being Raisa, his housemaid.
Due to the events of the Undertaking as well as her kidnapping and emotional dilemmas which are enough to break her. She starts using drugs and alcohol, like her father, to cope with her pain. She is reluctant to admit that she has a problem, and spirals deeper and deeper into her addiction.
Although she eventually seeks help for her addiction and reconciles with her friends and family, it seems that her experiences have left their mark and brought out a darker, harder side of her character, as demonstrated when she blackmails DA Kate Spencer into giving her her old job back. This aspect of her personality was also hinted at when it was revealed that she got Sara grounded when the latter started showing interest in Oliver, so that she could date Oliver herself.
- Skilled hand-to-hand combatant: Laurel received extensive hand-to-hand combat training. This is because Quentin made her take self-defense classes. Still, she is nowhere near the level of Oliver and all the other felons he goes up against as The Arrow.
- Expert lawyer/Detective: These help Laurel to use the system of the court to her knowledge. It also makes her look at every aspect before making up her mind, and to see the bright side of everyone. They also help her in her quest to find the truth about Sebastian Blood.
- Comfortable with firearms: Laurel's father taught her how to use guns and Laurel is shown to possess several firearms. She uses the shotgun on Mr. Blank possibly to slow him down long enough for the Vigilante to rescue them. She later kills Officer Daily.
- She is efficient with firearms as she has a gun permit, and also has used a shotgun to protect herself in "Home Invasion".
- Being the daughter of a police detective, she learned how police badges were serialized.
- Dinah Laurel Lance is Black Canary in the original comic. She possesses the meta-human ability of a super sonic scream, which she can deploy to shatter objects and incapacitate her opponent. This ability is called the "Canary Cry". This has not happened in the show yet, though Sara produces a mechanical version of it.
- In the DC Comics, she is Oliver Queen's wife.
- During San Diego Comic Con 2012, the show's producers said that Laurel will become Black Canary "later than you hope, but sooner than you expect".
- In "Damaged", When Oliver and Laurel go alone to talk, Laurel mentions to Oliver that she wore fishnets to a Halloween party they attended together in 2005. This is a reference to Laurel's comic book alter ego's costume, Black Canary.
- At first, Laurel has mixed feelings about The Arrow, stating that he goes against everything that she was taught, but she feels he is still doing good. This is evidenced when she, in a moment of shock, calls him a killer with no remorse.
- When she sees The Arrow in "Burned", Oliver (under the guise of The Arrow) tells her that he heard what she said to her father, calling him a killer, with no remorse. She apologizes to The Arrow for what she said.
- She begins to trust The Arrow later, shown In "Betrayal", where she's more frightened by her father charging out with a gun than with The Arrow for holding a blade to her neck.
- Laurel is mentioned to be a bad cook, with the only thing she is actually capable of making is macaroni and cheese.
- Her sister, Sara, owned a black canary when they were children, which references to her comic book alter ego's costume, Black Canary.
- In "Darkness on the Edge of Town", Laurel and Oliver become a couple again, briefly.
- Laurel sometimes calls Oliver by his nickname "Ollie".
- Laurel's substance abuse stems partly from the traumas she's been through, and partly because she believes she is guilty for Tommy's death.
- Laurel started dating Oliver after she got Sara grounded when Sara had a crush on Oliver.
- Laurel is the eighteenth person to discover Oliver Queen's secret identity; as The Arrow. She discovered this in "Deathstroke", by been told by Slade Wilson.