The 1st season of Arrow had me (who is largely unacquainted with its literary source material) draw quite some comparisons to Bruce Wayne and his background, except for the fact that Oliver Queen has far less moral implications about killing the people standing in the way of his plans. In fact he seems less like a hero and more like a man on a personal quest for revenge and this contrast as well as his image as a brutal killer is a major theme of the whole season.
But then in the 2nd season he seems a changed man (albeit after a major fallback together with a reclusion to the island he "grew up" on). And in fact the change that he isn't supposed to kill anyone anymore is heavily emphasized throughout the season, starting with his opening monologue introducing every episode:
My name is Oliver Queen. After 5 years on a hellish island I have come home with only one goal, to save my city. To do so, I can't be the killer I once was. To honor my friend's memory, I must be someone else, I must be something else.
But my question is, has this major change in Oliver's moral compass always been intended from the beginning of the show's conception or was it somehow influenced by possible reservations the audience had or the producers saw against a "hero" who freely kills bad-guys in a time where the shiny knight and the severity of killing humans has become more and more important? Has there been any official word or background information if the people watching and ultimately evaluating the show had any "say" in adjusting Arrow's character to the real hero he has arrived at in the 2nd season?