As Arrow comes to an end with its eighth season, fans look back on the characters that came and went, and came back again. None more so than the Black Canary. The DC Comics character took on many forms throughout the show’s run, from good guy to bad guy to somewhere in between.

Black Canary isn’t a singular person but a role that is played by whoever takes on the mantle as part of Team Arrow. But not all Canaries are created equal. Some handle the responsibility better than others. Here are the seven Black Canary characters, ranked.

7 Evelyn Sharp

Evie donned her own Black Canary costume to go after H.I.V.E. and Damien Darhk after they killed her parents in their experiments. She had seen the heroine attempt to save her parents when they were gassed to death, making the Black Canary her idol. Oliver Queen recruited Evie for Team Arrow and renamed her Artemis.

But she found out that Oliver was The Hood, whom she believed was a killer, and lost her trust in him. She pretended to forgive him but secretly allied with Adrian Chase, the attorney secretly working as Prometheus, to take Oliver down. Her betrayal affected the whole team, as she let down Curtis, Dinah, and Rene as well as Felicity, John, and Oliver. It created a rift between the old and the new Arrow teams.

6 Black Siren

On Earth-2, Laurel Lance was a metahuman with the Canary cry superpower. But instead of becoming a hero like her Earth-1 counterpart, she turned to a life of crime as Black Siren. She worked for Zoom to defeat the Flash but was captured and held prisoner in the S.T.A.R. Labs pipeline. But Adrian Chase released her and she started working for him.

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She survived the explosion on Lian Yu and returned to Star City disguised as her Earth-1 counterpart to protect herself and Quentin Lance. She joined Ricardo Diaz to act as his mole for Team Arrow, but she defected and remained loyal to Oliver and the team. Her loyalties were questioned as she struggled with her criminal past, but Felicity Smoak had faith in her.


5 White Canary

After dying and coming back to life as a bloodthirsty assassin thanks to the Lazarus Pit, Sara Lance took her skills and talents to Team Legends. There she worked as the White Canary. Sara’s White Canary ensemble symboled a rebirth for her character as she fought against the darkness the Lazarus Pit brought out in her. It reminded her of the light she was capable of embracing and being to others.

The White Canary became such a strong symbol of hope for her that it led to her growth as the Legends’ and the Waverider’s captain. Sara as the White Canary became much more lighthearted than her previous stint as the Black Canary. When faced with her nemesis Damien Darhk, the White Canary learned to let go of her anger and put the team first.

4 Zoe Ramirez

In the possible future in 2040, the daughter of Rene Ramirez (a.k.a. Wild Dog), became a member of the Canaries alongside Dinah Drake. Eventually, she became the leader of the Canaries. Like all the vigilantes before her, Zoe had a day job. She worked as Chief of Staff to the Mayor of the Glades, her father. As well as being in the Canary Corp, Zoe held a place in what became known as Future Team Arrow with Mia and William.

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But Zoe didn’t get much of a chance to become the hero she could have been. While raiding Deathstroke’s lair, Zoe stepped in to protect Mia from JJ Diggle, getting killed in the process. She died in Mia’s arms, a parallel to the way Laurel died in Oliver’s arms years before.

3 Sara Lance

The series’ first Black Canary was Sara, the younger Lance sister once thought dead after going down in the boat that had supposedly taken Oliver and his father as well. But Sara survived that ordeal and was taken in by Dr. Anthony Ivo, the creator of Mirakuru. Later she was taken in by the League of Assassins where she was turned into a human weapon.

But she left the League and her girlfriend Nyssa to return to her home, Starling City, to put her skills to better use in taking down bad guys. She worked for a time alongside Oliver as the Green Arrow and her sister as the Black Canary. Unfortunately, Sara’s time with them came to a close when Thea Queen, under Malcolm Merlyn’s influence, murdered her.

2 Laurel Lance

The older Lance sister started as an attorney, helping the disenfranchised residents of the Glades find justice whenever she could. But she didn’t feel it was enough, so she turned to vigilantism, training to become a fighter. The loss of Tommy Merlyn set her on a dark path for a time. She began drinking and abusing drugs, but she got a second chance when her father, a recovering alcoholic himself who knew the signs, convinced her to go to an AA meeting.

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Laurel went on the straight and narrow, eventually joining Oliver in his fight as the Arrow. She fought to the bitter end when Damien Darhk stabbed her, wounding her mortally. Oliver honored her by revealing her true identity to the city and memorializing the Black Canary.

1 Dinah Drake

Dinah Drake was the Black Canary that closely resembled the original character from the DC Comics. She worked undercover for the Central City Police Department when the particle accelerator exploded and gave her the iconic sonic voice power. Oliver found her and recruited her for Team Arrow, bringing her to Star City, where after a time she joined the SCPD.

The combination of her combat and police detective skills with the Canary cry made Dinah Drak the ultimate Black Canary. When Oliver was arrested and Quentin killed, Dinah left the life of vigilantism behind. But it didn’t stick, as she realized that sometimes justice could only be served outside the law. Like Laurel before her, Dinah knew the Black Canary symbolized justice above all.

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