"I need you, the team needs you, the city needs you. I'm not saying you shouldn't do your penance. You probably should, but do it as Spartan."
Oliver convincing Diggle to return to Star City
"Penance" is the fourth episode of the fifth season of Arrow, and the ninety-sixth episode overall. It aired on October 26, 2016.


Oliver and Lyla team up on a secret mission for Diggle. Felicity finds out and disapproves of the plan and opts to stay behind. When Tobias Church launches a deadly assault against the city, Felicity must decide if she wants to send the recruits out without the Green Arrow.[1]


  • Oliver mentions that he thinks that wearing a hockey mask and being a vigilante is cool. This is a reference to Stephen Amell's role as Casey Jones in the film Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows, who also is a vigilante wearing a hockey mask.
  • Escaping a military prison after being framed for a crime the prisoner didn't commit is the premise of The A-Team.
  • There are two references to George Lucas' films
    • The way Rory Regan says "Sorry about the mess" is a callback to Han Solo from Star Wars
    • * John is in cell 1138, a number commonly used in pop culture after the George Lucas film THX 1138 and referenced in the Star Wars and Indiana Jones series.
  • Oliver escapes with John just as Batman did with Lau in the film The Dark Knight.



Production ran from July 27 until August 8, 2016, with a break for British Columbia Day on August 1. Shooting ran from August 9 until August 18, 2016.[2]


  1. Arrow #5.4 “Penance” Official Description - GreenArrowTV
  2. Marc Guggenheim (@mguggenheim) - Twitter