|“||You wanna make this city great again, this is how. With business, money.||„|
|~ Justin's argument with The Hood|
Justin Claybourne is a minor but significant villain in the fifth season of Arrow, and is the father of Prometheus. His death is responsible for almost the entire events of season 5 of Arrow
Claybourne was the owner of Claybourne Pharmaceuticals, an associate of the black market profiteers AK Desmond Group, and the man behind an outbreak of tuberculosis in Lamb Valley.
He was eventually killed by Oliver Queen / Green Arrow. After his death his son Simon Morrison, later known as Adrian Chase, spent 5 years training to aquire the same skill set as Oliver to avenge his father's death under the name "Prometheus".
In around 1986, a woman, with the last name Morrison, conceived a son with her master, Justin Claybourne, and gave birth to him, naming him Simon. She eventually changed her name to "Amanda Westfield". Justin was eventually divorced from his wife, who made mention of their son. The boy was named Simon Morrison and would later grow up to develop the alias of Adrian Chase as well as succeeding Susanna as the district attorney of Star City.
Encounter With The Hood
Around twenty six years later, Claybourne had become the corrupt head of a pharmaceutical company with ties to the AK Desmond Group, a secretive organization that operated on the underground market. Justin was also on the List, a notebook obtained by Oliver Queen from his father, Robert Queen. The book was a compilation by Malcolm Merlyn of the shady rich business who had ruined Starling City, later known as Star City. At first it was believed The List contains the names of individuals who are damaging Starling City through various means, usually financial. It was later revealed the names on The List are actually corrupt benefactors that were leverage to contributing to The Undertaking or risk their illegal activities being known to the public.
Before the Undertaking, Claybourne released a weaponized tuberculosis in Lamb Valley, threatening many lives, while his company Claybourne Pharmaceuticals produced a cure, Dycloseral, the price of which went from $10 a pill to $1,000 overnight. Justin Claybourne and Simon Morrison both had a loving relationship until Claybourne discovered that his son had psychiatric issues and wanted nothing to do with him anymore since he believed Simon to be a psychopath. That is why Claybourne hired a lawyer named Darren Coffman to help him disown Simon.
As the Hood, Oliver tried to make Claybourne stop the operations and make things right, but that didn't work because Claybourne refused to correct his misdeeds, the Hood hunted him down at AK Desmond hideout and killed Claybourne, along with most of his guards. After his death, Claybourne Pharmaceuticals had to shut down.
After his death, Amanda Westfield left Star City for Opal City since there was nothing left for her because of Claybourne getting killed by the Hood. As for Simon, he wanted to seek vengeance on the Hood. As part of his plan, Simon dropped off the grid completely after the funeral, erased all traces of his existence from the internet, and changed his name to ¨Adrian Chase¨. Adrian did research on the Hood and everything he could about him, as well as discovering that the Hood was Oliver Queen. During his research, Adrian became aware of The List, a book of Starling City individuals with ties to Malcolm Merlyn, which included Adrian's father who Oliver had targeted. This led to Adrian to believe that Oliver was really a serial killer and that his heroism is an excuse to conduct a killing spree. Adrian wasn´t even fooled when Roy Harper revealed himself to be the Arrow which was how Adrian deduced that the Green Arrow and the Arrow were in fact the same person.
After learning much as he could about his enemy, Adrian tracked down Oliver´s former instructor Talia al Ghul to learn the ways of the League of Assassins. Impressed with Adrian, Talia granted his request. It was also due to the fact that Talia hated Oliver for putting a sword through her father Ra´s Al Ghul´s chest. Ra´s had a better relationship with Talia than with Nyssa. During Adrian´s training sessions, Talia revealed to him more about Oliver´s past such as his time on Lian Yu, Hong Kong, and Russia. Adrian also learned about the existence of Oliver´s illegitimate son William Clayton. It is most likely that Talia also explained to Adrian about the existence of time travel and of the multiverse. He also became aware of Team Flash's pipeline prison and the Waverider indicating that he is aware the identities of Barry Allen/The Flash and the Legends led by Sara Lance/White Canary.
After obtaining the skills he needed from Talia, Adrian armed himself with an array of weapons forged from The Hood's discarded arrows kept in the Star City Police Department evidence lockup. Adrian also began using a suit strikingly similar to Oliver's suit from his days as the Hood, but with darker colors and with a full face mask, and called himself "Prometheus". Adrian chose the name Prometheus because of Prometheus' role in Greek mythology in removing power from the judge, jury, and executioner gods. After the death of Susanna and Oliver becoming mayor, Adrian succeeded Susanna as the district attorney and became personally acquainted with Oliver and kept closer tabs on him. Prometheus later made a hideout in an old manufacturing plant of Claybourne Pharmaceuticals. He managed to reproduce the Dycloseral drug, with the manufacturing plant reporting heavy usage of water and power over the last few months before December, 2016.
Team Green Arrow tracked him down and fought Prometheus at this hideout, with Oliver suspecting that he is actually Justin himself, back from the dead to seek revenge. After Evelyn Sharp's betrayal and Prometheus's escape, the vigilantes left the plant. It was later investigated by Billy Malone, who located a baby photo at the company's CEO's office, causing Team Green Arrow to suspect Prometheus to be Justin's child. The Throwing Star Killer refused to confirm anything, abducting Billy and using him as bait for Oliver Queen at AK Desmond Group's old hideout.
Later on, Adrian proposed an alliance with Derek Sampson to release his father´s weaponized tuberculosis on the people of Star City at a building named in honor of Robert Queen. Fortunately, Curtis Holt was able to prevent that from happening after he, Dinah Drake, and Rene Ramirez defeated Sampson and his thugs. Oliver engaged with Adrian and revealed how Claybourne was planning to disown him because of his mental condition. Apparently hurt that his father wanted to disown him, Adrian tried to get Oliver to kill him with his own sword, however, Oliver just arrested him. Despite knowing that his father was going to disown him, Adrian still continued on with his plan believing that he could gain his father´s approval even though his father is dead.
- "Pilot" (mentioned)
- "What We Leave Behind" (flashback)
- "Who Are You?" (mentioned)
- "Spectre of the Gun" (mentioned)
- "The Sin-Eater" (mentioned)
- "Checkmate" (mentioned)
- "Honor Thy Fathers" (mentioned)
- In the comics, Adrian Chase's father was a wealthy lawyer named Charles Chase. Charles Chase used the law to help his clients, even though he knew that they were guilty. Chase's father didn't care which would upset his son and inspire him to become the Vigilante. Adrian was also at odds with his father since his father wanted Adrian to come work for him at his law firm since Adrian would make five times as much money as he would as a district attorney. Like Claybourne wanting nothing to do with Adrian in Arrow, Charles wanted nothing to do with Adrian Chase´s brother Dorian, except that it was because of Dorian constantly getting into trouble with the law before Dorian took up the mantle as Vigilante after his brother´s unfortunate demise.
- He is very much similar to Roland Daggett from Batman: The Animated Series, where Daggett unleashed a biological virus in hopes of making a huge profit. His scheme was eventually foiled by Batman and Cat Woman. Claybourne's unleashed a biological virus in Arrow so he can make a large profit for his company. He scheme was stopped by the Hood.
- He is very much similar to Norman Osborn from Spider-Man. After Osborn's death, his son Harry became a criminal to avenge the dead of his father and became enemies with his best friend Peter Parker, who is actually the costumed crime fighter known as Spider-Man Just like in Arrow, Oliver considered Chase to be his best friend until he realized that Chase was actually his worst enemy wanting to avenge his father. Unlike in Spider-Man, Peter didn't actually kill Osborn and in the show, Oliver actually did kill Claybourne.