23. Ricardo Diaz
Considering we have already mentioned Ricardo Diaz more than once already in this story, is it any surprise that he has to be included in this ranking of characters? Not only is he very much a villainous mastermind, but he has no problem creating problems from behind the scenes.
Not only did he convince Cayden James that Oliver was responsible for his son’s death, but he is the one who ultimately killed Cayden. Ricardo is the person who helped exacerbate the problems between Emiko and Oliver, forcing brother and sister to clash repeatedly.
Ricardo Diaz’s manipulation is what sets him apart as a villain. He knows what he is doing and he knows how to get other people to play a part in the destruction of not only themselves but others. At one point, you would think that the character was simply a thug with guns, but once you get deeper into who he is and what he is about, it is clear that this is a man who feeds off of pain and destroying things.
From his own reign of terror to actually offering a backstory that works for who is and what he does, Ricardo Diaz really does have an impact on the overall story that Arrow has been telling. And even when it feels like he wasn’t being utilized well in the story (which did seem to happen), he was still there as a menacing figure creating havoc without doing much of anything.