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"From the moment your children are born, you worry what the world might do to them... but you never stop to think what you might do to them. That we could be our worst enemy."
—Moira to Oliver Queen[src]


Moira Dearden Queen[1] (c. 1964[2] — April 24, 2014[3]) was the wife of the late Robert Queen, the mother of Oliver Queen and Thea Queen, the grandmother of William Clayton, the ex-wife of Walter Steele, the former close friend/former lover-turned-enemy of Malcolm Merlyn, the ex-friend of the late Frank Chen, and an old friend of Jean Loring and Jessica Danforth. After Walter was kidnapped by Malcolm, she became the new acting CEO of Queen Consolidated.

After Oliver convinced her to do the right thing, Moira held a press conference and confessed her involvement in a conspiracy to destroy the Glades and everyone in it, masterminded by Malcolm Merlyn. She was immediately arrested for conspiracy to commit murder. Moira was tried and acquitted on all counts, due to threats made by Malcolm towards the jury members. It was also revealed that Thea is Malcolm's daughter, the result of a short-lived affair with Moira. Moira was running for mayor of Starling City but was killed by Slade Wilson with his sword in his mission of vengeance against Oliver.

Biography

Early life

Moira was born in 1964. She later met and married Robert Queen, and on May 16, 1985 (at age 21), she gave birth to their son, Oliver.[4] At some point, Moira met and became close friends with Malcolm and Rebecca Merlyn, Walter Steele and Frank Chen. She was also good friends with Jessica Danforth and Jean Loring.

Robert was frequently unfaithful and cheated on Moira with multiple women,[5][6] such as Isabel Rochev.[7] In her anger and frustration, Moira cheated on Robert with Malcolm shortly after Rebecca's death, though he was still grieving over his wife. The affair was brief, but it resulted in the conception of Moira's second child and only daughter, Thea, who was born on January 21, 1995.[1] When Malcolm left Starling City after Rebecca's death, Moira and Robert took in Tommy Merlyn and raised him as their own son.[8]

Moira became acquainted with the Lance family through Oliver and Tommy's friendship with Laurel and Sara Lance. When Oliver started dating Laurel, Moira was supportive of their relationship.[9]

In 2007, Oliver got a girl, Samantha Clayton, pregnant. After a thorough investigation confirmed the child was indeed Oliver's, Moira believed this revelation could potentially ruin Oliver's life, as she felt he wasn't ready to be a father. Thus, she went behind her son's back and made a compromise; Moira offered Samantha one million dollars if she told Oliver she had a miscarriage and another one million if she moved back to Central City and never contacted him again, allowing both Oliver and her grandchild to have a "bright future."[10] Although Samantha took the money, agreed to lie to Oliver and moved to Central City, it was later revealed that she never cashed Moira's check. She also denied Moira access to the child, William. Moira was unable to pursue legal action against Samantha without alerting Oliver and her family to the truth.[11]

After they returned home from one of Ted Kord's fundraisers, Moira noticed Robert had been acting off and asked what was wrong. Robert revealed his accidental murder of local councilman Henry Goodwin, which prompted him to join Tempest as a way to atone for his mistake. He told Moira that Malcolm was planning on leveling the Glades, much to her horror. Moira begged Robert to stop The Undertaking, since murdering thousands of innocent people won't absolve him of his mistake or save the city.

When Robert was about to board the Queen's Gambit to China, he assured a worried Moira he knew what to do to stop The Undertaking. Oliver arrived at the last minute, wanting to accompany Robert. He revealed he dropped out of his fourth college, much to their exasperation. Moira bid her husband and son farewell.[6]

Soon after, Moira learned that the Queen's Gambit was supposedly lost at sea, much to her shock and devastation. She also found out from the dockmaster that Sara was on the yacht as well, which she sadly revealed to Laurel and the girls' father, Quentin.[12]

Moira suspected Malcolm had something to do with the sinking of the Gambit, but didn't have any evidence. She began searching the seas for the wreckage of the Queen's Gambit and was successful in 2009, though no bodies were found. When the search team revealed a bomb was placed on the yacht, Moira realized the sinking wasn't an accident and ordered the team to investigate and find any forensic evidence. When one of the workers tried to call Malcolm, Moira's bodyguard caught him. The man refused to say anything under interrogation, but Moira had her suspicions confirmed. Her bodyguard offered her the gun but she was unable to bring herself to pull the trigger so he did it himself. Unbeknownst to them, another worker had called Malcolm and revealed Moira knew about the bomb.[13] Malcolm forced Moira to aid him in his scheme by threatening her and Thea, and she reluctantly agreed.

In 2011, Moira fell in love with and married Walter.[14]

Oliver's Return and Malcolm's Undertaking

Moira received a call from her thought-to-be-dead son, who had assured her that he was alive and well, and was about to return home. When her son returned, Moira went to the hospital and was told by Doctor Neil Lamb that "the Oliver you lost may not be the one they found". When Oliver was abducted, she voiced concern over his safety and hired John Diggle to be his bodyguard. However, she was later revealed to be the one behind Oliver's abduction after his arrival.

Moira was seen accompanying Oliver with the rest of her family and Tommy Merlyn to go to court to get Oliver legally resurrected. Later on, as Oliver was taken to his father's company, Walter and Moira tried to convince Oliver that he needs to be the one to run the company, although they were unsuccessful. After Oliver eludes his bodyguard Diggle again and again, Moira expresses to Oliver that she lost him once and doesn't want to do so again, so she wants Diggle to accompany him when he goes out. She is later seen getting into a limousine with Merlyn, talking with him and revealing that the ship Oliver and his father were on didn't shipwreck but was sabotaged by Moira and Malcolm.

Moira was further questioned by Merlyn, who informed her there is a hooded vigilante isn't going after the rich, but is targeting those on "the List". Later, Quentin arrived with multiple police officers and arrested Oliver, accusing him of being the vigilante.

When Oliver is in the interrogation room Moira and Walter barged in and stop it while talking to Oliver about attorneys to use but Oliver wants Laurel. Though hesitant at first Moira then does ask Laurel but she declines but eventually decides to do so and Moira is present to see it in court, though Oliver isn't arrested he is put under house arrest. Furthermore, Oliver decides to have a house party much to Moira's concern. She is later interrogated by Malcolm who suspects Oliver of being the Hood because of the evidence but Moira assures him that he is not. Moira later visits Walter who tells her that he has found the remains of the Queen's Gambit and Josiah Hudson was killed trying to move the wreck but Moira tells him not to look any further into the matter.

When Moira returns a gunman has attempted to kill Oliver and Moira openly blames Quentin for accusing Oliver publicly and making him a target, Oliver is then cleared of charges when Quentin states that the Hood was seen elsewhere at the time and Moira apologists for his family's troubles but calmly tells him to get the hell out. She later visits Malcolm, knowing that he sent the gunman to kill Oliver and had Josiah killed, and threatens to destroy everything Malcolm was worked toward. Later Walter leaves but doesn't know when he'll be back much to Moira's concern.

She burned the book that was known as "The List". She later had a brief meeting with Malcolm Merlyn which Diggle eavesdropped on and recorded, learning about the Undertaking that they have planned.  Oliver, while hesitant to believe that Moira would be involved in such a thing, was convinced after hearing Diggle's recording. Oliver confronted Moira as The Hood to ask her about the Undertaking. 

Moira shot The Hood in self-defense and nearly killed him. Later, Moira was questioned about The Hood confronting her by Quentin Lance. 

Moira tried again to back out of the Undertaking and failed. She decided to pay the Chinese Triad, represented by China White, to kill Merlyn for her. Malcolm survived and asked Moira to discover who tried to have him killed. When Malcolm seemed on the verge of uncovering her plot, Moira betrayed her co-conspirator Frank Chen and set him up to be killed by Malcolm so that Malcolm would not discover she was the one behind the assassination attempt. She then begged that the life of Frank's daughter be spared, and Malcolm, as the Dark Archer, agreed.

Moira welcomed Tommy and Laurel into her home, while they were hiding from the assassin who was trying to kill the child they are watching over. When she was talking to Laurel later, she admitted that she liked who Oliver was when she was dating him.

Moira was online shopping with Thea when Oliver came in to tell them that Walter was dead. She went straight to Malcolm, furious with him for having Walter killed. Malcolm called someone to turn on a camera, and she was shown that Walter is actually alive. Oliver heard her admit that she contributed to the Undertaking.

Walter was distant from Moira as he realized that she was behind his kidnapping. He filed for divorce soon after. Oliver later talked to her, and they were both kidnapped by Diggle, disguised as The Hood. She confessed her involvement in the Undertaking, after John hit Oliver multiple times.

Oliver convinced Moira that she had to do something. She held a press conference where she admitted her culpability in the Undertaking out of fear for her family's life, and that Merlyn planned to destroy the Glades. After the statement in front of the Starling City press, she was arrested for conspiracy to commit murder.

Prison, Trial and Malcolm's Return

Moira was serving time in Iron Heights Prison, and awaiting trial for her involvement in the Undertaking. Thea refused to visit her for five months, as she was still angry with her. After his second return from the island, Oliver visited Moira in prison, where she warned him not to trust Isabel Rochev. It is also implied that she suggested that Oliver ask her ex-husband, Walter Steele, for help to save the company from falling into Isabel's hands. After being kidnapped by The Hoods, Thea realized Moira was only trying to protect her and Oliver from danger. Thea visited Moira in prison for the first time since her arrest, and they shared a tearful exchange and hug.

Thea visited Moira in Iron Heights prison and picked out a few clothes for her court appearance. Later that day she appeared in court and was threatened with the possibility of the death penalty however it was not decided. Later in her prison cell talking to her lawyer she says that her Thea and Oliver are in a good place and that she should stop digging into it as there are some questions that must never be answered.

Jean suggests to Thea that she break up with Roy, a previously convicted felon, to uphold Moira's reputation as a devoted mother who raised good children. Thea dumps Roy but does not reveal the real reason until Moira contacts Roy and Thea from the prison, bringing them together again.

Moira is put on trial for her involvement in the Undertaking and the resulting deaths of 503 people in the Glades. Laurel Lance tries to dissuade Moira from testifying in her own defense after discovering ADA Adam Donner has a "trump card" that will swing the jury against her. Moira later confesses to her children that Donner's trump card is the fact that she once had an affair with Malcolm Merlyn.

During the trial, Moira decides to take the witness stand. Laurel cross-examines her and reveals the affair with Merlyn in open court. However, the jury finds Moira not guilty on all counts despite the apparent strength of the prosecution's case. After she is released, Moira is taken by her driver to meet a very alive Malcolm Merlyn, who informs a stunned Moira that it was he who manipulated the jury to get her acquitted, and that he knows Thea is his daughter. It is implied that hers and Malcolm's affair was not as brief as she claimed it to be.

When Malcolm demanded that Moira tell Thea the truth about her parentage, he made the mistake of mentioning Nanda Parbat. Moira did some investigating and learned that Malcolm was once a member of the League of Assassins. Thus, Moira contacted an emissary of Ra's al Ghul and informed him of Malcolm's survival. When Malcolm later visited her, Moira informed him that Ra's was displeased with his Undertaking and personally wants him dead. Having no choice but to run, Malcolm swore he wasn't done.

Moira and Thea attend Alderman Blood's unity rally for the citizens of Starling City. When the bomber Shrapnel attacks the rally, a lighting tower falls and nearly crushes Moira, but she is saved by Roy Harper, revealing his Mirakuru-enhanced strength to Thea.

Mayoral Campaign

Moira has dinner with Walter and one of his colleagues, who try and convince her to run for mayor against Sebastian Blood, whose policies they believe would threaten the corporations of Starling City. At first, she believes both of them are in way over their heads as she doesn't believe anyone in Starling City would vote for her as a result of the Undertaking. However, Walter later points out that 43% of the people in Starling City do not blame her for the Undertaking, and that everyone loves a redemption story. After talking with Thea, who agrees with Walter and believes that Moira would make a great mayor, Moira soon agrees to run, but tells Walter (who is revealed to be aware that Thea is not Robert's daughter), that her OBGYN knows about Thea's true parentage and must be silenced throughout her campaign.

Moira is confronted by Felicity Smoak, who has figured out Thea's true parentage. Manipulating Felicity's feelings towards her son, Moira convinces her not to tell Oliver the truth.

She kicks off her mayoral campaign, with Oliver and Thea by her side. Later she then meets with Sebastian Blood, who tells her to get out of the mayoral race; she refuses and warns Blood not to underestimate her. An angry Oliver later meets with Moira, furious that she has hidden the truth about Thea from everyone, and even tried threaten Felicity to keep it from him. Moira pleads that she was doing it to protect their family, but Oliver declares that their relationship is over.

Slade's Revenge

Moira is shown having an interview about her mayoral campaign. Thea interrupts the interview to states that Moira can no longer use Verdant for her campaign rally. Moira reminds Thea that she signed a contract, further alienating her daughter. Moira's campaign manager advises her that Moira cannot be a candidate and a mother at the same time. Later, she is shown telling Sebastian Blood that she is dropping out of the mayoral race, even though she is ahead in the polls. Sebastian requests an explanation, and Moira replies it's because her family needs her. Later, she is getting ready for her speech at the rally. Oliver comes in and demands to know why she is dropping out. She says that she needs to be with Thea. Oliver says that she should show Thea that she is a good person by changing Starling City as mayor. Moira then reveals that she has known that Oliver is the Arrow after the events of the Undertaking, and says she has never been so proud of him.

She makes her speech and decides to keep running for mayor. Then, she flees along with everyone else in Verdant when Roy Harper comes in. Later she is shown in a limousine with Thea and Oliver. Thea says that Oliver and Moira should tell the truth. Moira is about to reveal something to Thea and Oliver about Malcolm Merlyn (presumably that he is still alive) when the car is hit. Moira is then shown tied up with Thea and Oliver, and Slade Wilson asks Oliver to choose which one of them should be killed. Moira volunteers herself, stating that both of her children will live. Slade states that Moira has true courage, and that it is a shame that it wasn't passed on to Oliver. He then stabs Moira with his sword, killing her instantly. Oliver collapses in shock and grief as Thea cries over her mother's body.[10]

Alternate Reality

In the alternate reality created by the Dominators, Moira was still alive and married to Robert. She had a good relationship with Oliver and Thea, proud of the people they became, and was delighted that Oliver was getting married to Laurel and would soon take over Queen Consolidated.[15]

Legacy

Moira Queen loved both of her children very much and despite her mistakes, she was not afraid to die to protect them. However, Moira's constant secrets and lies greatly tarnished her relationships with Oliver and Thea.

Thea was devastated over her mother's death, regretful that Moira died believing the former hated her. She decided to leave Starling City after her mother's funeral.[3] While Moira did not live to see this, Thea ultimately matured even more after her death. Ironically, the one who helped her to do so is Malcolm Merlyn; the very person Moira failed to keep away from Thea.[16]

Oliver was broken and defeated by his mother's murder and initially considered surrendering to Slade Wilson until Felicity, Diggle and Laurel talked him out of it.[3] Moira got justice for her death after Oliver defeated Slade and imprisoned him on Lian Yu.[17]

A year and a half after Moira's death, her good friend Jessica Danforth decided to run for mayor of Star City until her daughter, Madison Danforth, was kidnapped by Lonnie Machin. Madison was saved by Team Arrow and Jessica decided to step down in fear of daughter's safety. Inspired by the words of Quentin and Jessica about the city needing a hero in the light, Oliver decides to follow in his mother's footsteps and run for mayor,[18] eventually succeeding in May 2016.[19]

In late 2015, Oliver learned that Moira secretly paid off Samantha Clayton to keep their son, William, a secret from him. This revelation complicates his life and proves to be another one of Moira's mistakes; as Oliver wants to be a father to William but is unable to acknowledge his son due to his mother's actions, leaving him hurt and angered at Moira for depriving him of his own child.[20]

Moira's wedding ring was used by Oliver to propose to Felicity.[21]

Three years after Moira's death, Slade's mind was completely cleansed from the effects of the Mirakuru and he felt great remorse for his murder of the Queen matriarch. To atone for this, Slade helped Oliver battle Adrian Chase on Lian Yu and rescue his family and friends.[22]

Personality

Moira Queen was oftentimes ruthless and immoral, in an ends-justify-the-means sense. She had her own son kidnapped, but tried to justify it as doing so to prove he knew nothing about The Undertaking to protect him from Malcolm Merlyn. Despite helping Malcolm with The Undertaking, Moira was disgusted about this endeavor and ashamed of her actions, only complying to protect herself and her children and later her second husband Walter Steele when he was kidnapped, knowing Malcolm would kill them since he was responsible for Robert's death. Moira once tried to have Malcolm assassinated by the Triad to prevent the deaths of thousands of innocents and ensure that she and her family would be out from under his thumb. When the attempt failed, she betrayed her co-conspirator and old friend, Frank Chen, to avoid her own implication. However, Moira apologized to Frank before he was killed and convinced Malcolm to spare Frank's daughter, Amanda.

Moira wasn't an ideal parent, always giving her children too much space. However, after receiving encouragement from the reformed Oliver, Moira tried to be a better, more attentive parent. For example, she grounded Thea for breaking into a store and underage drinking. Despite Robert's infidelity throughout their marriage, Moira nonetheless cared for him deeply and was devastated over his death. She even desired to keep Robert's cheating ways a secret from Oliver and Thea to preserve their memory of their father.

After the events of the Undertaking, Moira felt guilt and remorse for her involvement and being partly responsible the deaths of 503 people, including Tommy Merlyn, who was like a son to her. She almost went through with the ADA's agreement just so her children would not find out about her affair with Malcolm and that Malcolm is Thea's biological father. When Moira discovered that Malcolm is still alive, she reveals he is alive to Ra's al Ghul in a failed attempt to keep him away from Thea. Moira now openly despises Malcolm, and will do anything to destroy his legacy as revenge for everything he did to her and her family.

Moira is shown to be impressed in the face of determination and strength. Despite her initial opposition, she expressed admiration for Oliver, Tommy and Thea's business venture, Verdant, acknowledging the nightclub as a success. She even complimented Felicity Smoak's intelligence and capability when the latter discovered Thea's paternity by tracing a wire payment on Tempest to Dr. Gill, who delivered Thea.

Moira had failed time and again to learn from her mistakes, particularly keeping secrets from her children, as her constant lies were what eventually destroyed her relationship with them. When Felicity revealed to Moira that she discovered the truth about Thea's paternity and advised her to tell Oliver and Thea herself, Moira refused and even tried to manipulate Felicity into keeping quiet by using the latter's feelings for Oliver, which ultimately backfired. Thus, once the truth came out, Oliver disowned his mother and Moira's attempt to threaten Felicity further alienated him. Moira attempted to justify this, claiming that she was protecting her children when in truth, she was actually protecting herself from how Oliver and Thea would react if they found out. Also, Moira never revealed to Oliver the truth about his son, William, even after he returned a changed man from the island. Once Oliver found out a year and a half after her death, he was furious at his late mother for lying to him again.

However, after Thea was kidnapped by Slade Wilson and learned her true paternity from him, which estranged her from Moira and Oliver, Moira seemed to finally realize that her secrets nearly destroyed her family and willingly started to take responsibility for her mistakes. She made amends with Oliver and didn't appear to hold any ill will against Felicity for telling him the truth. Moira initially considered stepping down from the mayoral election to work on being a better mother and mend her damaged relationship with Thea, acknowledging that she can't run a platform based on family when her own has fallen apart. However, when Oliver pointed out that as mayor, she could help save Starling City which would not only atone for her role in the Undertaking, but allow Thea to see her as a good person, Moira decided to stay in the election, determined to turn over a new leaf and become the person the city and her family need.

Moira revealed to Oliver that she knows he is the Arrow, but had accepted this and was proud of the man her son has become. She even decided to tell Oliver and Thea the truth about Malcolm's fate (and maybe even Samantha and William's) but was unable to when the three of them were captured by Slade. Moira, without hesitation, sacrifices herself to ensure her children will live and spare Oliver the burden of choosing between her and Thea.

Abilities

  • High-level intellect/Great business acumen/Expert tactician/Leader: Moira was a very intelligent and capable businesswoman, as seen when she ran Queen Consolidated and helped finalize the merger with Unidac Industries. She also (unwillingly) helped Malcolm Merlyn successfully plan the Undertaking and secretly coordinated an assassination attempt on the latter. Moira is also very charismatic and a skilled leader; following her release from prison, she was able to eventually salvage her reputation by running for mayor of Starling City and would have won the election had it not been for her murder.
    • Expert investigator: Moira was able to eventually uncover the remains of the Queen's Gambit after it sank and was presumed lost. She also deduced Felicity Smoak's feelings for her son, Oliver, despite only knowing Felicity briefly.
    • Expert deceiver/Manipulator: Moira was able to continue maintaining her image of a philanthropist and businesswoman whilst planning the Undertaking. When the Triad's assassination of Malcolm failed, Moira was able to frame Frank Chen for the whole plan and make it seem as if she was still on Malcolm's side. When confronted by the Hood, she got the vigilante to lower his guard, giving her an opening to shoot him. Moira tried to Felicity's feelings for Oliver to manipulate her into keeping quiet about Thea's parentage, though this ultimately backfired as Felicity refused to fall for it.
  • Skilled markswoman: Moira was able to shoot the Hood in his chest from a fair distance whilst the latter was distracted,[23] just missing his carotid.[24]
  • Network: Moira had many contacts with significant figures as a member of the social elite and Tempest. Through Frank Chen, she was also associated with the Triad and paid Chien Na Wei to try and assassinate Malcolm. Moira was also able to contact an emissary of Ra's al Ghul to inform the League of Assassins that Malcolm was alive.

Appearances

Arrow

Season 1

Season 2

Season 3

Season 4

Season 5

Season 6


Blood Rush

The Flash

Season 1

Season 3

Comics

Arrow

Arrow: Season 2.5

Novels

Gallery

Promotional images

Arrow

Season 1
Season 2

Trivia

  • She does yoga.[25]
  • Moira enjoys the salmon tartare at Table Salt.[26]
  • Moira is the second character of Arrow, after Tommy Merlyn, within the main cast to die.
    • She is one of the only main characters of Arrow that never visited any version of the Arrowcave. The other is Adrian Chase.
  • Moira Queen and Henry Allen have certain similarities.
    • They are both the parent of their shows' main protagonists (Oliver Queen and Barry Allen).
    • They are introduced in the first season of their respective shows and killed near the end of the second.
    • They both lose their spouses due to their respective shows' first season antagonists. Moira loses Robert Queen due to Malcolm Merlyn setting a bomb on the Queen's Gambit that led to Robert killing himself. Henry loses Nora Allen to Eobard Thawne stabbing her with a kitchen knife.
      • Their spouses also both died in their respective shows' pilot episodes.
    • They were killed by the second seasons' main villains to cause their children misery. Moira is killed by Slade Wilson out of vengeance (albeit under the influence of the Mirakuru at the time) and Henry is killed by Hunter Zolomon to make Barry feel his pain.
    • They both served time in prison and were released within a year before they were murdered.

Behind the scenes

  • In the DC comics, Moira Queen is indeed the mother of Oliver Queen and the wife of Robert Queen. She and her husband die during a hunting accident in the safari when they are mauled by lions.
  • In the DC comics, Mia Dearden is the name of the second Speedy. In the show, Dearden is Moira's maiden name and intriguingly enough, Thea used the name Mia as a alias in Season 3 and has the middle name Dearden.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 "State v. Queen"
  2. Arrow - Facebook
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 "City of Blood"
  4. "Damaged"
  5. "Vertigo"
  6. 6.0 6.1
    "The Undertaking"
  7. "The Man Under the Hood"
  8. "Dead to Rights"
  9. "Home Invasion"
  10. 10.0 10.1 "Seeing Red"
  11. "Legends of Yesterday"
  12. "Heir to the Demon"
  13. "Fathoms"
  14. "Pilot"
  15. "Invasion! (Arrow)"
  16. "Sara"
  17. "Unthinkable"
  18. "The Candidate"
  19. "Schism"
  20. "Legends of Today"
  21. "Green Arrow"
  22. "Lian Yu"
  23. "Betrayal"
  24. "The Odyssey"
  25. "Unfinished Business"
  26. "Darkness on the Edge of Town"