Season 6 of Arrow just cast its main villain! Word has come down that Kirk Acevedo, whose long list of credits include brief stints on shows like The Walking Dead to much longer roles on shows like 12 Monkeys, has been cast to play a well-known villain in the DC lore. Here’s what we know regarding his character, Ricardo Diaz, and why fans of the Arrow-verse should be pumped for the appearance of Richard Dragon.
Deadline is reporting that Kirk Acevedo has taken a season long recurring arc role of Ricardo Diaz, who is one of the identities of Green Arrow villain Richard Dragon. Diaz is described as an ex-con locked away for crimes he didn’t commit who now wishes to take over the criminal underground of Star City. A master of hand to hand fighting, Diaz has yet to meet a foe he can’t beat, which sounds like bad news for Oliver, but the Arrow hero has tangled with those types of guys before. While certainly a prominent villain in the scope of the lore and Arrow-verse, Marc Guggenheim teased at San Diego Comic-Con that Season 6 of Arrow might feature an ensemble team of villains taking on our heroes, so where does this leave Ricardo Diaz?
Looking at the New 52 lore of Richard Dragon, as well as the description provided for Ricardo Diaz, it seems likely that he will be the ring leader of a potential villain ensemble when Arrow Season 6 kicks off. In the comics, Dragon is known as the founder of a gang called the Longbow Hunters, so leadership isn’t foreign to his origin. Diaz learned everything he knows fighting-wise from the DC martial artist known as Richard Dragon, and then killed him and took his identity. Marc Guggenheim has described Kirk Acevedo’s Ricardo Diaz as “grounded,” so it’s unclear just how much of the character’s comic book lore will make its way into the Arrow-verse beyond the parts that seem obvious. In any case, Guggenheim referred to Diaz as a crime lord in this interpretation, which sounds about as close to a leadership role as one can get when dealing in Arrow villainy, so perhaps he will be calling the shots for whatever villain ensemble awaits the team.
Arrow Season 6 is scheduled to kick off at a new night October 12th at 9 p.m. ET on The CW.