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Sara Lance

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Sara Lance
Sara Lance
Occupation Bartender at Verdant
Member of Oliver Queen's team (In secret)
Vigilante (in secret)
Bartender at Oblivion (formerly)
Member of the League of Assassins (formerly)
Status Alive
Family Quentin Lance (father)
Dinah Lance (mother)
Laurel Lance (sister)
Actor Jacqueline MacInnes Wood (season 1)
Caity Lotz (season 2)
The Canary
The Canary
"We are both ghosts, we died on that island."
—Sara to Oliver Queen[src]

Sara Lance (born on December 25, 1987)[1][2] is the daughter of Quentin and Dinah Lance, the younger sister of Laurel Lance, and girlfriend and close friend of Oliver Queen, a close friend and the ex-girlfriend of Nyssa al Ghul, and a good friend of Sin, and acquaintance of Roy Harper.

When Sara was presumed dead after the Queen's Gambit went down in 2007, her father, at first, did not forgive Oliver. However, sometime between 2008 and 2013, Sara trained as a part of the League of Assassins and learned to fight. She left the organization and returned to Starling City under the vigilante moniker The Canary, and stayed to protect her sister, Laurel, before she was forced to leave due to the League following her, trying to bring her back.

She was eventually released from the League of Assassins by her former lover Nyssa. Following this she joins Oliver Queen's team and began a relationship with him, much to her sister Laurel's chagrin.


Earlier lifeEdit

During her high school years, Sara was bullied by some of her classmates because she was stealing one of her classmate's boyfriends. The often occurrences of her getting bullied caused behavior issues from Sara, and caused her grades to drop. This led to her father teaching her and Laurel how to defend themselves. At some point Sara and Laurel met Oliver Queen. Sara formed a crush on Oliver and even snuck out of the house to go to a secret party he and his friend Tommy Merlyn held. Laurel however out of envy called the cops and Sara was grounded.[3]

Voyage on the Queen's GambitEdit

In late 2007, despite her mother's wishes, Sara went on the Queen's Gambit with Oliver Queen.[4][5] During their sail at sea, the ship was sabotaged (by Malcolm Merlyn) and sank, along with Sara. Her remains were never recovered, so her family buried an empty casket, after being declared legally dead.[6]

The Amazo Edit

After the Queen's Gambit sinks, Sara was left stranded until she was picked up by the crew of the Amazo. She is then taken prisoner, but is released by Dr. Anthony Ivo who takes her

During the time with Ivo she learned much from him and when Ivo preformed his experiments on the prisoners she was forced to watch and was only part of it becuse she was glad that she was not one of them.

One year later she meets a confused Oliver, but kicks him stating that prisoners do not speak and walks away. She helped Oliver slightly whilst he was a prisoner on the Amazo. However, that was soon realised to be a ruse to see if Slade and Shado were still alive on Lian Yu. However when the ship captain tried to kill Oliver Sara instead suggested keeping him alive to find the gravesite which Ivo agreed. 

The Island Edit

She went with Oliver Dr. Ivo and the crew of the Amazo onto the island to the plane, and watched as Ivo ordered his men to attack Slade and Shado after Oliver screamed for them to run.

Sometime later, Shado and Slade ambushed the crew at arrow and gun point and demanded Oliver back, when Anthony released him, Oliver punched the Captain in the face and grabbed Sara and ran away with his friends.

The hōzen Oliver found had coordinates on it which was revealed to house the location of the submarine Anthony discovered with the cure to save all of man kind, after Sara revealed this to them, Oliver asked if it could cure Slade.

They used the hōzen to find the sub and they did. They boarded it and they found the Mirakuru and Oliver injected Slade even when Sara told him that Slade would not survive it , Slade began to react to the serum and had no heart beat. Then Ivo and his men came inside the room and captured them.

Ivo told Oliver to pick who would die between Shado and Sara, threatening to kill them both if Oliver didn't decide within 30 seconds. Oliver chose to save Sara and Ivo killed Shado and Slade awakened and saved Oliver and Sara. She covered for Oliver by saying that Ivo just shot Shado.

They buried Shado and Sara warned Oliver not to tell Slade why Shado died, becuse he now has the Mirakuru inside of him so he is unpredictable and learning the truth behind Shado's death would not end well. As they where walking they asked Slade where they were going and he said that he is going back to the plane to get weapons to kill Ivo. Both Sara told him he would not be able to take them on alone and he grabbed Oliver by the neck and began to choke him and Sara had to hit Slade with a stike to make him stop. Later Ivo called them on their radio and gave them ten days to deliver the Mirakuru to him and in return he would give them safe passage of the island. Sara then came and told Oliver that Slade is gone and took the Mirakuru with him.

Sara and Oliver went to the plane to find Slade, but he was not there. Sara suggested they could accept Ivo's offer but Oliver turned it down immediately. As they argued Sara explained that she learned a lot and Oliver said he did too : "you can't trust anyone". Later they talked and Oliver, feeling guilty, apologized for what had happened to them. she explained that it's not entirely his fault because she used to have big crush on him of wich Laurel was aware of, and she got her out of the way by calling their dad on Sara, after she snuck out and went to a party. It got her grounded and the next thing she knew Laurel and Oliver were together. When Oliver fell asleep Sara took the comunicator and walked out and talked to Ivo. Ivo tried to pursuade her to come back to him. Sara explained that when he took her in she felt like he was he savior and she felt part of something bigger but it was only because she didn't want to see how he was torturing the people on the boat and how she was glad she was not one of them. Then she told him that she would rather die than be part of it, she then ended the call only to see Oliver had listened to the conversation and she had now earned his trust.

They used the sensor grid to find Slade and they discovered that Slade is at the caves and when they got there he was gone and they found a drawing on one of the walls and Oliver rembered that they where calculations for the missile launcher and Slade intended to open fire on the freighter with it. They ran to find Slade and they did and Slade held Olliver at gun point, but Olliver convinced him not to destroy the freighter by telling him that Shado would have wanted him to get back home. Slade commented that they are still stuck on the island and Oliver said that they will take the freighter together.

At some point something happened, Sara got separated from Oliver and he believed that she was dead once again and a girl named Nyssa al Ghul found her and took her in. Nyssa was part of the League of Assassins and at Nanda Parbat, she trained with them and became a assassin herself by swearing her alligence to them. At some point during her five years with the league she and Nyssa became lovers, after The Undertaking Sara left Nanda Parbat to see if her family was okay.

Season 2Edit

In "City of Heroes", Roy Harper was fighting a group of men who'd been harassing a woman, the Canary swooped in and fought off the attackers before they could beat Roy. Roy expressed shock by her sudden entrance, before she quickly left.[7]

In "Broken Dolls", The Arrow was cornered by the Police led by Sara's sister Laurel. Then, Sara came in and used a sonic device to distract the policemen and break the windows, they used the chaos to quickly escape the scene. Sometime later, when Roy was lured in to her hideout by her friend Sin, she knocked him out with her staff. She asked why he was looking for her, but was interrupted by a message on Roy's phone. She took a look at it and let him go, before climbing up poles and exiting the building via the roof. That evening, after Barton Mathis kidnapped her sister and her father, she ran away from The Arrow, she helped stop him, though he released a bunch of metal poles from above, knocking her down. The Arrow successfully subdued him, though The Canary ultimately killed him. [8]

When returning at the tower, she found herself confronted by a hooded man (wearing clothing identical to that of Malcolm Merlyn). The intruder told her Ra's al Ghul wanted her to return. She declined and tried to persuade him to tell he could not find her. The man then threatened her with a knife. She quickly killed him with his own knife.

In "Crucible", Felicity notices a pattern in the Canary's appearance, this leads to Oliver catching her to learn her identity. Oliver unmasks her and is shocked to discover that she is Sara. Oliver then reveals to John and Felicity that he thought she drowned on the Queen's Gambit, but met her a year after being shipwrecked, however he thought she had died since he last saw her. She goes back to her hideout and shares a meal with Sin, in which she reveals to her about running into Oliver and then how her dad is a cop and her sister is a lawyer. She follows Oliver to Verdant where she asks if Oliver told her dad and sister about her, but he says he didn't. They converse about her hiding when Quentin arrives asking for Oliver's help about Laurel, Sara overhears the conversation about Laurel's depression.

When Sin is injured by The Mayor, she and Oliver team up and takes on The Mayor and his cronies. Both work hand in hand together, even using each others weapons. Sara is about to kill the Mayor, but Oliver convinces her not to. She spares him and lets him go. She is then seen watching Sin as she wakes up, with has company from Roy and Thea. As she is leaving, she encounters Oliver, The two leave together. At the end of the episode, in a flashback, Oliver and Sara encounter each other on the ship.

In "League of Assassins", she is shown to be staying with Oliver at his mansion. However, they are attacked by Al-Owal, a member of the League of Assassins. Oliver and Sara successfully fight him off, and later she reveals to Oliver and his team that she was once part of the League and now they are on the hunt to bring her back to their leader, Ra's Al Ghul. Oliver and Sara then hunt down Al-Owal, narrowly escaping with their lives. Fearing retaliation against Sara, Oliver decides to protect the whole Lance family, but Sara decides that it was time to reveal herself to her father. She then tells her father everything, bringing him up to her hideout where they are attacked by Al-Owal and his two companions. Oliver arrives and along with Quentin and Sara, defeat the assassins. Sara kills Al-Owal and leaves one to run to Ra's to tell him that her family is off limits. She then leaves Starling City, trying to draw the League away from her family, but not before making her father promise not to tell Laurel that she is alive.

In "Tremors", Oliver contacts Sara after Laurel losses her job and right to law and is now a drug and alcohol adict and tells her that Laurel needs her. Later when Laurel passes out when she gets home, Sara appears to her though Laurel thinks she is a hallucination. 

Nyssa al Ghul holds a poisoned Sara Lance
Sara in Nyssa's arms poisoned by snake venom.
MakeShiftAdded by MakeShift
In "Heir to the Demon", after Oliver gets back from his visit to Laurel at the hospital, Sara (working out in the cave's gym) decides to leave Starling but Oliver tries to persuade her otherwise. Then Oliver gets a call from Quentin asking for Sara, who knows she is back, and she talks to him. Sara later meets up with her father who begs her to stay but insists that she must leave. When Sara walks down a street, Nyssa al Ghul arrives and the two kiss. Sara and Nyssa go for a walk,  Sara begs Nyssa to release her not wanting to kill anymore. An angered Nyssa kidnaps Sara's mother Dinah,  giving Sara only 24 hours to rejoin the League or her mother dies. Oliver, Sara and Quentin track down an assassin for information but he kills himself before he can. Sara then decides to give herself over but poisons herself as Oliver and her father arrive. Oliver however manages to counter the poison, and Nyssa tearfully releases her from the league as Quentin and Dinah arrive with Laurel. Later at Laurel's apartment the Lances all have a reunion but Laurel is less than happy and openly blames Sara for all the mistakes in her life in the past 6 years and kicks her out. Sara later returns to Oliver's headquarters both of them feeling betrayed by their families and the two of them passionately kiss before making love.

In a flashback sequence, which takes place just before the Queen's Gambit sails on its final voyage, Sara drives back to Starling from college, paying a surprise visit to her family. It becomes clear that the real motive behind her visit is to meet with Oliver so they can sneak away together, but she starts having second thoughts about betraying her sister. When Laurel tells Sara about her plans to settle down with Oliver, Sara suggests that Oliver is a playboy and unlikely to commit to Laurel on a permanent basis. Laurel reacts angrily, and the sisters argue bitterly. In the aftermath, Sara finally decides to go with Oliver on the Queen's Gambit.

In "Time of Death"

In "The Promise"

In "Suicide Squad"

In "Birds of Prey", Sara tries to convince Laurel to drop of her current case when Adam Donner assigned her Frank Bertinelli's prosecution, knowing that it would make her a target of the Huntress. When Helena took control of the Courthouse, Laurel got into a fight with one of Helena's henchmen, forcing Sara, as the Canary, to intervene. As she made her way outside of the building with Laurel in tow, Laurel convinced her to help rescue the hostages. This led to her facing off against Helena, who was able to deprive Sara of her staff and even threw her from the window.

In "Deathstroke",


Much like Oliver, Sara was a person who "just couldn't stay out of trouble". She made unwise, often selfish decisions, such as pursuing a boy with a girlfriend while in high school, provoking physical attacks from his girlfriend and her friends in retaliation. She apparently got in a fair bit of trouble as a teenager, including one incidence of shoplifting, that her father made go away. She also had an affair with her sister's boyfriend Oliver, suggesting that loyalty to her sister meant nothing to her. Though this may have something to do with the fact that she had a crush on Oliver before he started dating Laurel, which Laurel knew about and possibly sabotaged by informing her father about the party and the fact that Sara was there. In her youth she snuck out of her house, to spend alone time with Oliver. Going on the Queen's Gambit was her way of getting revenge for what Laurel did to her. The fact she was with Oliver led to her presumed death, when the Queen's Gambit went down. 

However in her time spent with Dr. Anthony Ivo after being rescued by him, Sara appeared to become more cold and brutal and far more intelligent with technology and science, even helping Ivo torture his test subjects though secretly she was terrified of being the next subject so she kept to herself. Despite Oliver being one of the reasons for her shipwreck Sara still cared about him as when he is captured on the boat she does everything to stop the crew from killing him, though she was still loyal to Ivo as she used Oliver to give up Shado and Slade Wilson's location on the island though her loyalty is cut when Ivo calls her an "ungreatful bitch" on the radio.  After spending time with Oliver and Slade she also regains her sense of loyalty. Soon after Sara was recruited into the League of Assassins and became a cold killer once again though she never forgot her family and still cared deeply for them but has become afraid to reveal herself alive to her family fearing that they'll reject what she has become.

Though Sara is willing to kill those she knows are corrupt she is not so willing to kill people she knows nothing about like she did when she was in the League which was a main reason for leaving, so much so that when she was black mailed into rejoining she poisened herself to prevent herself from rejoinging. Like Oliver, Sara has a sense of justice and honor, and she has morals and remorse for her actions, she dislikes criminals who attack innocent women. Though despite this Sara can also vengeful and unforgiving, towards people in general who tried to kill or harm a member of her family and her friends, like Barton Mathis and Xavier Reed.

Sara also still deeply loves Oliver even 6 years after the Gambit's sinking and the events of the island and is even in a relationship with him again even though their affair is what destroyed Oliver's relationship with Laurel in the first place. She also loves Nyssa despite the violent causes she serves to the point where she refused to kill her and begged Oliver not to kill her when he had the chance.

She cares for wayward orphan Sin like a little sister, partially because of a promise she made to her father before his death on the island. Sara gets along well with John Diggle who like Felicty uses his nickname "Dig" rather than just Diggle like Oliver does. She also gets along well with Felicity Smoak and is actually amused by her awkwardness finding it cute. However Sara doesn't get along so well with Roy Harper mainly due to his Mirakuru injected rage as he openly insulted Sara's relationship with Oliver saying "Of course you'd take his side your screwing him". She was even willing to kill him with an arrow when he lost it at Dig. 


  • Peak of human physical condition: In "League of Assassins", Sara is shown to be strong enough to break Al-Owal's neck in a matter of seconds.
  • Skilled hand-to-hand combatant/Martial artist: In "City of Heroes", Sara is shown to be a skilled hand-to-hand combatant and martial artist when she took down three armed thugs simultaneously. In "Broken Dolls", she was also able to kill Barton Mathis by impaling a baton in his chest. In "League of Assassins", Sara was barely able to hold her own against Al-Owal, even with Oliver's help, whilst Oliver himself was eventually able to take down Al on his own, possibly indicating she is not at Oliver's level yet. She stated that one martial art she was trained in was Wing-Chun.
  • Trained stick fighter: In "City of Heroes", Sara carries a pair of expandable batons that combine to form a bo-staff, and she is possibly trained in some form of staff fighting.
  • Skilled archer: In "Crucible", Sara is shown to be a skilled archer, she was able to use Oliver's customized Oneida Kestrel Compound bow, combined with one of his customized hunting arrows, shooting it with great accuracy, into the shoulder of one of The Mayor's goons.
  • Free running/Acrobatics/Stealth: Sara has shown herself to be capable of scaling buildings and running from rooftop to rooftop easily. She displayed impressive acrobatics while entering and leaving buildings. She is also able to quickly enter and leave without being seen.
  • Multilingualism: Based on what has been currently shown, Sara is capable of speaking English, Mandarin, and Arabic fluently.
  • Skilled tactician: In "Crucible", Sara carefully plans on how to take down her opponents.
  • Tolerance for pain: In "League of Assassins", Sara has shown an increased tolerance to pain. An example of this is when Oliver is stitching her wound, Sara shows no sign of pain, not even a flinch.
  • Skilled forensic technician: In "Time of Death", Sara is shown to be skilled in forensics and chemistry due to her time on Ivo's freighter. She was able to analyse blood from her baton to discover the Clock King's genetic disease.


  • The Canary Costume: Sara wears a black leather costume (pants instead of fishnet stockings) while fighting crime as The Canary.
  • Canary Mask: Sara wears a black mask while fighting crime as The Canary, to hide her identity from her enemies.
  • Expendable Batons: As The Canary, she uses a pair of expandable batons to fight. They are able to combine into a bo-staff.
  • Sonic Device: A handheld non-lethal Sonic weapon used to disable large groups of people. It overwhelms the hearing of everyone in the immediate vicinity, and is also capable of shattering glass. This is the series' equivalent of her metahuman Sonic shout ability. Although she once lost that ability and used a similar device called "Canary bombs".
  • Voice Filter: Sarah used her voice filter when she was talking to Laurel, so she could hide her true identity.
  • Dagger: Sara killed Suarez in Guyana with a dagger in his bed. 


Season 1

Season 2



  • Whenever The Canary leaves an area (i.e. jumps away from a ledge), a canary cry can be heard in the music.
  • In the third episode of the second season, "Broken Dolls", it was revealed that she was trained by Ra's al Ghul, as part of the League of Assassins.
  • During her time with the League, she was told to "choose a new name". She chose "Ta-er al-Asfer" (in Arabic: الطائر الأصفر), which is Arabic for canary ("yellow bird"), reminiscent of the canary Quentin got her when she was ten.
  • In "League of Assassins", during her fight with Al-Owal, she tells him "You should be mindful of your surroundings". This is a reference to the film Batman Begins, where Ra's al Ghul trains a young Bruce Wayne.
  • Sara Lance is the ninth person to discover Oliver Queen's secret identity, The Arrow. Though this was only directly revealed to her in "Crucible", she had long suspected that Oliver was the green-hooded Starling City vigilante that she had been hearing about in the past year.
  • During the first season, Sara was portrayed by Jacqueline MacInnes Wood. However, Sara was recast as Caity Lotz for the second season, who re-filmed scenes originally filmed with Wood in the first season's "Pilot".
    • When Caity Lotz auditioned, she was under the impression that she was auditioning for a character named Lisa.[9]
  • In "Blind Spot", it was revealed Sara originally had a crush on Oliver prior to Oliver and Laurel dating, which Laurel was fully aware of.    
  • Sara is the second person to be released from the League of Assassins, following Malcolm Merlyn.
  • Despite being credited as a guest star rather than a regular, Caity Lotz has appeared in virtually every episode of season 2 in either flashbacks or present day.
  • As of "Heir to the Demon", Oliver and Sara are a couple again.
  • Sara is the fourth person to join Oliver's team, after Roy Harper.


Promotional imagesEdit


  1. "Vendetta"
  2. "Year's End"
  3. Arrow #14
  4. "Salvation"
  5. "The Undertaking"
  6. "Pilot"
  7. "City of Heroes"
  8. "Broken Dolls"
  9. DC All Access - Ep 8 - Arrow's Black Canary, Harley Quinn Giveaway and a Real-Life Batcave (1:20) - YouTube
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