When Season 5 of "Arrow" premiered, there was a new man in Felicity's (Emily Bett Rickards) life and very little was known about him. As the season has unfolded, Detective Billy Malone (Tyler Ritter) has been revealed as not only a shoulder for Felicity to lean on when her days are rough -- and a source to steal police evidence from -- but a legitimate asset to the Green Arrow.
That hasn't necessarily endeared him with the fans championing Oliver and Felicity as a couple on the show, though.
"They're very passionate. I've been hearing from a lot of them," he told us jokingly during the "Arrow" 100th episode party. "I've been making a lot of 'friends' online who send me death threats."
Believe it or not, Ritter understands why many fans want Oliver and Felicity to be the show's endgame.
"As a fan of the show I also love the two of them together. I mean, it's really hot stuff," he admits. "But Mayor Queen, the Green Arrow, he's all over the place. He's got a lot of work to do. He's a superhero! It's hard to be the coolest person in the world and also the best boyfriend at the same time. That's a tall order."
Say what you will about Oliver and Felicity as a couple, there's so much drama in Star City that it makes it hard for the two of them to focus on bettering their relationship. After all, someone is always trying to kill them. Hard to have heart-to-hearts and date nights when that's going on.
Conversely, Malone doesn't have a lot of that baggage.
"He doesn't have the money, doesn't have the superpowers or the biceps," Ritter says. "But he does have a good heart and he loves her... He likes her! Strongly! I keep saying the L-bomb. Shouldn't be saying that yet!"
So whether or not Malone and Felicity end up together forever, perhaps this is what everybody involved needs at this point -- even if it's just temporary. After all, Oliver has both his job as mayor and life as a vigilante to contend with.
"I think if fans see that she feels comfortable, and that I have her best interests at heart, I hope that they'll come around," he says. "It's all in the best interest of Oliver, Felicity, Olicity and Star City."