Arrowverse: 15 best Arrow moments of all-time

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Arrow — “Seeing Red” — Image AR220a _0064b — Pictured: Susanna Thompson as Moira Queen — Photo: Katie Yu/The CW — © 2014 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

4. Slade Kills Moira Queen

Episode: “Seeing Red” (Season 2, Episode 20)

Slade Wilson showed up in Starling City during Arrow‘s second season. As the flashback narrative had already told us his story, we knew that he would be out to get revenge on Oliver.

Infected with the Mirakuru toxin, his miraculous resurrection had distorted his mind. In doing so, made him think that his ally was responsible for the death of the woman he loved: Shado.

So he did what any good villain would do: attempt to destroy The Arrow. However, he did so much more than that, intricately plotting Oliver’s downfall by emotionally torturing him over the course of the season’s final few episodes.

It all led to a sick recreation of the night that Shado was killed, as Slade kidnapped Oliver’s mother, Moira (who had just been elected Mayor of Starling), and his sister, Thea, and attempted to force him to choose which one would live (like he thought Oliver did when he was forced to pick between Shado and Sara on the island).

An emotional wreck, Oliver was helpless and heartbroken that he had found himself in the same scenario once more, but this time, he made his refusal to choose a lot clearer. However, that’s when something really shocking took place.

Realizing what was happening, Moira stood up and fearlessly faced the man who had struck fear into the hearts of so many in the past, telling him that there would be no choice because she was willing to die for her children.

It was a brave move that caught Slade off-guard – one that earned her his respect. With that, he lowered his firearm and commended her courage. But just as it looked like hope would prevail, he swiftly turned and stabbed her through the heart with his sword.

Moira had taken part in some morally questionable activities during her time on the show, but in the end, she wasn’t afraid to prove that her heart was in the right place. More importantly, she was willing to do anything for her children. In that moment, she was the hero – which made it all the more crushing when Slade killed her.

From the sheer shock of Slade’s heinous actions to the strong performances all around, this was undoubtedly one of the most unnerving moments that the show has ever produced. Despite its graphic nature, this moment remains one of the greatest. Deathstroke had broken the show’s hero in a way that no one else ever could. As he did so, he broke all of us, too.