Listen up, Couch Club! I’ve got a couple things to say about couples!
The world of DCTV, and the Arrowverse in particular, has always been a pretty romantic place. While our heroes may try to put the mission first, they’re not above getting into and out of and into all kinds of relationships. Sometimes they’re serious, sometimes they’re not and sometimes they may not be the relationships we’re hoping for, but that’s all part of the fun, isn’t it?
With most of the shows on hiatus this week, I thought it would be a fun time to look at some of these past and present DCTV couples and list off a few of my favorites. This list is a celebration and by no means a definitive list—these are just some of my favorite pairs from the current slate of shows. I’m sure my list is probably pretty different than yours, so please head to DC’s official Twitter, or my personal Twitter, and let me know who you think I left off!
But for now, here are Top 5 DCTV Couples!
Constantine and Gary Green - DC’s Legends of Tomorrow
You might be screaming at me that these two lads don’t count, but you couldn’t be more wrong. This romance has become beloved since it debuted last season on the show. It even has a shipper name: Constangreen. Can we get a t-shirt, please? Plus, let’s be real, they’re really the only couple on this list that genuinely seems to like each other at all times, has had little to no conflict, and always lights up when the other enters the room.
Constantine’s bisexuality has been a defining character trait since his original adventures in Vertigo’s Hellblazer (check out my review of the classic Hellblazer story, Dangerous Habits, right here). While I would never have imagined Gary as a potential romantic interest for him, I’m 1,000% here for it. They’re a well-crafted couple with John as the rebel and Gary as the buttoned-down member of the Time Bureau who is—as was recently explored an episode titled The Virgin Gary—very inexperienced by comparison. Anyone who turns Constantine into a sweet, funny, guy-who-has-your-back must have won some piece of the magician’s heart. There’s nothing more I want out of a Legends of Tomorrow series finale than the Constantine-Green wedding. They bring the most joy to the DCTV Universe and we could always use a little more joy.
Alex Danvers and Maggie Sawyer - Supergirl
R.I.P. this couple. Team Sanvers quickly became a mainstay of the DCTV fandom after their introduction in the second season of the show. On the surface, I’ve always thought Alex and Maggie were a great pairing because they are both women who excel at everything they do and are literal badasses. They’re pretty evenly balanced in terms of what they bring to the table in successes and in failures. Maggie had some pretty serious issues with her father that led to complicated feelings about a future family of her own, and Alex struggled with finding her place as Supergirl’s sister, while knowing that she loved her unusual family and wanted one of her own in the future.
On a meta level, Alex Danvers identifying and embracing her sexuality was such a monumental turn for the character. She became a real person in a way she hadn’t been during the first season. While I was crushed that Sanvers didn’t last too long, it was one of those brief flames with a lasting impact.
John Diggle and Lyla Michaels - Arrow
John and Lyla are experts at working with a focus on the greater good…and also at breaking up. It’s easy to forget now, but these two were married, then divorced and then married again. In addition, one or the other of them has been in hiding for significant periods of time, John has spent time in jail, and they regularly fight over whatever Oliver is up to.
All that said, I admire quite a few things about the Diggles and I want to get into some of them here. First, I love that Lyla is the smarter and more powerful of the two. She’s the head of A.R.G.U.S. and, for all intents and purposes, can be thought of as a figure very similar to Amanda Waller on the comic book side of things. She’s managed to hold a job far longer than John and probably makes more money than him. It’s been lovely to spend as many years with these characters and never ever have that be a point of conflict for them. John isn’t threatened by what Lyle brings to the table or who she is—he admires her. Granted, she lets him literally get away with murder, so I can’t imagine he has too much to complain to around the dinner table at night.
John and Lyla were the first couple on current DCTV to have a child, as well. It was baby Sara at first, until Barry Allen traveled back in time and John Jr. entered the picture. Parenthood hasn’t seemed to slow them down at all. They’re still the two straight-up badasses we’ve always known them to be.
Perhaps it’s because they both had high stress careers before vigilantes and metahumans became the norm, but John and Lyla are one of the most on-paper successful couples in the Arrowverse and every time we get a chance to see them working together, I’m always thrilled.
Jefferson and Lynn Pierce - Black Lightning
The Pierces are the most mature couple on this list. That’s not an ageist remark. I mean it wholeheartedly; their relationship is mature. Both Jefferson and Lynn are often able to step back and take stock of the situation at hand before they launch into anything reckless. Granted, they’re not perfect. Jefferson, in particular, has made some mistakes during his time as Black Lightning, often requiring Lynn’s skills as a doctor. But when they butt up against conflict or moments of high emotion—Jennifer running away from home a recent storyline comes to mind as an example—the Pierces always manage to come together to find a solution rather than resulting to shouting at each other.
That’s not to claim that there hasn’t been any shouting on Black Lightning, the Pierces have their share of drama. But it’s the result of passion and love for each other and their family rather than personal shortcomings or a lack of concern for each other.
I’ve really enjoyed being along for the rekindling of their romance. When we first met Jefferson and Lynn, they were not together. Since then, we’ve had a chance to remember, along with the characters, what they like about each other and what a wonderful team they make. There’s no one else in the world who has gone through what Jefferson and Lynn have. There’s no other couple that has given birth to an entire family of metahumans and who now struggle to keep them alive. Honestly, they’re a gold standard we should all be striving for.
Oliver Queen and Sara Lance - Arrow
I know what many of you are probably thinking, but I’m going to be completely honest—this is my personal all-time favorite DCTV couple. Ollie might be wifed up with Felicity (at least, for now!), but there’s always a part of my brain longing for the classic Green Arrow/Black Canary dynamic. Justice League cartoons doomed me to be in love with their competitive dynamic and look for it at any and all available opportunities.
Yes, I realize there have been several Canaries on Arrow. But Sara Lance has always been my preferred Canary. I think Arrow got it so right the first time! Sara Lance has essentially the same arc as Oliver Queen. They begin their narrative journey as two privileged kids with no regard for anyone but themselves—there’s certainly no love or respect in their hearts for Laurel when they run off on the Queen’s Gambit together. Honestly? That act of secrecy binds them together in a way I think of as being terribly unique. They were both shipwrecked, they both trained to be fighters all over the world, they both fought to find their way back to [then] Starling City to reunite with their families and, ultimately, each other. No other character in the Arrowverse can understand Sara Lance as well as Oliver Queen and vice versa.
I just think Sara and Ollie are such perfect complimentary beings. The era when they were cohabiting in what was essentially the Smallville clocktower is my favorite era of Arrow and the closest to the Ollie and Dinah of the classic comic books I think the show has come to date. While I love the growth we’ve seen from Sara since, and adore the fact that she now has her own show, there’s a really big part of me that will always miss her time with Ollie on Arrow.
You’re probably ready to take my remote control and laptop away from me over a few of the couples that made my list, but rather than doing that, let me know which ones I left off! Does WestAllen make your heart race? Is the young love of Bruce and Selina brightening up your dark nights? Or what about the wonderfully awkward flirtation that’s happening between Nia and Brainy? I hear that one has legions of fans. Let us know your favorite DCTV pairings—after all, the couch is the perfect place to cuddle up!
Ashley V. Robinson writes about TV, movies and comics for DCComics.com and is a regular contributor to the Couch Club, our weekly television column. You can find her on Twitter at @AshleyVRobinson and on the Jawiin YouTube channel.