Please let this actually happen this time.
Way the hell back before the premiere of the third season of Arrow, early character descriptions promised the arrival of “Daniel” who was said to be a “tech-driven superhero.” I immediately seized on the hope that “Daniel” was in fact Ted Kord, the Blue Beetle, a tech-driven vigilante with one of the coolest costumes in all of comics. “Daniel,” of course, turned out to be Ray Palmer, and I think we can all agree that turned out pretty darn well.
Ah, but now That Hashtag Show has a list of a handful of new characters who will be introduced in Arrow Season 7. One of those is, once again, named “Daniel.” This time it’s “Daniel Porter” who is described as “an intelligent and homosexual technological entrepreneur whose creativity has given him a huge success as a businessman.” The character has “gone through tragic losses” but he hides those “from the people around him.”
Could maybe those “tragic losses” be the kinds of things that would make someone maybe channel their technological know-how into crime fighting? So yeah, other than the tech angle, I admit that there’s little in this description to immediately make you think of Ted Kord or the Blue Beetle. But on the other hand, Kord Industries constantly pops up on assorted DC superhero shows, and we’ve even had Ted mentioned by name. Eventually, they’re going to have to introduce him, Blue Beetle costume or not.
We already know that this season’s DC TV crossover will be Arrow-centric, and will introduce Batwoman and Gotham City to the mix. These shows could use some new costumed characters, whether to lay the groundwork for potential future shows or to keep refreshing the always shifting Legends of Tomorrow roster. Ted Kord fits the DC b-lister vibe perfectly for the latter, and with that show’s tone feeling an awful lot like JM DeMatteis and Keith Giffen’s classic Justice League International comics, it’s easy to see how Beetle would fit right in.
DC has recently reintroduced Ted Kord to the comics (after unceremoniously killing him off as one of the inciting events for Infinite Crisis), making him a mentor and co-adventurer with the Jaime Reyes version of Blue Beetle. Jaime has long been the focus of the Blue Beetle name, appearing in DC animated series from Batman: The Brave and the Bold to Young Justice and more. He even appeared in a single episode of Smallville which…wasn’t terrible. It’s understandable if Jaime Reyes is the Beetle that DC wants to keep the focus on, but his intricate, hi-tech costume and magical power set don’t make as much sense for Arrow as Ted Kord would.
Maybe Daniel’s “tragic loss” is that of his mentor, archaeology professor Dan Garrett, wielder of the mystical Blue Beetle scarab, and the man who wore the blue tights before Ted. Ted’s guilt over Dan’s death could lead him to become a superhero as he looks for that lost scarab…but when he finds it, it’s in the hands of Jaime Reyes. In this case, everyone wins. Especially Blue Beetle fans.
Anyway, I am prepared to be both wrong and disappointed when “Daniel Porter” isn’t “Ted Kord” after all. But I am here for all your Blue Beetle stan action and speculation over on Twitter if you need me.