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|Jafar says: Read my lips and come to grips with the reality!|
|“||You failed. (Earth 90 Flash: Why are you doing this?) You did this to yourself. And now, all of you will perish.||„|
|~ Monitor telling The Flash of Earth 90 that he failed before destroying Earth 90.|
|“||Well, I certainly wouldn't have placed it on Deegan's hands if that weren't my intent. (Earth 90 Flash: Enough. You will not do to this Earth what you did to mine.) I admire your persistence, Barry. (Elseworlds Flash: He said you were testing us.) And, thus far, I'm unimpressed. A crisis is imminent. Someone is coming, someone far, far more powerful than myself. I mean to prepare. (Elseworlds Green Arrow: By giving a Nutbar an all-powerful reality-rewriting book?) I'm testing universes to find one. I hope to stand strong enough against him. (Elseworlds Flash: You're causing chaos, and you're blaming everyone else!) In the hopes of finding the champions that would save the multiverse entire. You are the first of those I've placed under fire who have managed to retrieve the Book of Destiny for all the good it did you.||„|
|~ Monitor telling Green Arrow, Earth 1 Flash, Supergirl, and Earth 90 Flash about the upcoming Crisis.|
|“||To survive? You can't. In order for billions to survive this coming Crisis, the Flash must die.||„|
|~ Monitor telling Barry Allen/The Flash that he must die to stop the Crisis.|
Mar Novu, also known as the Monitor, is a major antagonist/anti-villain of the Arrowverse, being the only character to appear in every show in the franchise. He appears as one of the main antagonists (alongside John Deegan) of the 2018 Arrowverse crossover, Elseworlds, an anti-hero in Season 8 of Arrow, a supporting character in Season 6 of The Flash, and a major character in the upcoming 2019 Arrowverse crossover, Crisis on Infinite Earths.
The Monitor is a powerful cosmic being who has prepared many worlds for the oncoming Crisis of 2019. To prepare them, the Monitor tested multiple worlds to see which one is worthy, but most of which had failed, except Earth 1. With Earth 1 passing his test proving it is the world that shall fight for the fate of all universes, Novu would recruit Oliver Queen/Green Arrow and Lyla Michaels/Harbinger to assist him in preparing for the prevention of the destruction of the Multiverse and is preparing other heroes like Barry Allen/The Flash and Kara/Supergirl for his malevolent mirror counterpart, the Anti-Monitor.
In the past, Mar Novu, nicknaming himself "The Monitor", Mar Novu visited many different Earths in the multiverse, testing them in an Elseworld to see which Earth should be prepared for an upcoming crisis, those that fail his Elseworld test would be destroyed. In the test, the Monitor bestowed the Book of Destiny to individuals from different Earths and then letting the chosen individuals create their Elseworld by using the Book. The Monitor, as well as a coming crisis, came under the attention of the Crescent Order.
In the year 1013, the Monitor visited a warrior named Al-Fatih, and he told him to keep the balance of good and evil or else Al-Fatih's entire world would suffer the consequences. The Monitor also bestowed him with the gift of knowledge that was not previously known to man. Al-Fatih would do what he could to keep the balance by becoming the first Ra's al Ghul and founded an organization with the sole purpose of keeping the balance by eliminating all threats.
When Lyla, distraught over how her entire squad died, prayed to any godly being who could hear her, the Monitor answered her prayers. It remains unknown what had happened between them but it is clear that he did help her sort out her problems and in return she allied with him, helping him whenever he needed it.
Traveling to Earth 90, the Monitor encountered numerous heroes, who opposed him. Despite being vastly outnumbered, the Monitor's god-like power was able to defeat all of them with ease, not even sustaining a scratch as all the heroes of Earth 90 were murdered with only the Flash as the survivor. After the battle, the Flash crawled towards the Book of Destiny on the ground. However, the Monitor grabbed the book first. As the Flash asked about his motivations behind his actions, the Monitor explained that they did this to themselves. He then opened the Book of Destiny, proclaiming they would all perish while the Flash ran away from the scene.
After testing Earth 90, the Monitor traveled to Earth 1 and appeared before Arkham Asylum Doctor John Deegan in Gotham City. When he asked for his assistance, Deegan refused and insulted him. To prove his seriousness, the Monitor destroyed Deegan's car. Having Deegan's attention, he gave him the Book of Destiny, telling him to do as he pleased with reality and watched as Deegan became amazed by the book.
Seeing that Cisco Ramon was observing this event later through a vibe, the Monitor turned to him and expressed interest, as he didn't believe Earth 1 had this capability. He then explained that things had already been set into motion that they couldn't prevent. He then observed Deegan change reality to where Oliver Queen is the Flash and Barry Allen is the Green Arrow.
Later, after the heroes had retrieved the Book of Destiny from Deegan, the Monitor appeared at a street in Central City, where he was promptly surrounded by police, and waited for the heroes to confront him. The Monitor was soon confronted by the Flash of Earth 90, The Flash of Earth 1, Green Arrow, and Supergirl of Earth 38. They demanded he help them use the Book of Destiny to set reality right, but the Monitor refused. The Flash of Earth 90 proclaimed he would not let the massacre of Earth 90 repeat on Earth 1. After expressing admiration for The Flash's persistence, the Monitor made him disappear before he could take a step.
With the other heroes realizing they were outmatched, Earth 1 Flash asked the Monitor what he was testing Earth 1 for. The Monitor explained that he was testing universes to find the right heroes to stand against a being far more powerful than himself who threatens the multiverse. He compliments them for being the first to acquire the Book of Destiny, before retrieving the book from A.R.G.U.S. with a wave of his hand. Supergirl then tried attacking him, but he simply breached her back to where she started before she could even touch him. Stating they show potential, the Monitor then departed and returned to Deegan, returning the Book of Destiny to him and telling him to think bigger.
After Deegan had altered reality once more where he was Superman, the Monitor summoned Oliver and Barry to his realm to discuss their destinies. The Monitor expressed interest in how they were able to outwit the Superman powered Deegan with no powers or abilities. When Oliver demanded to get back to his test, the Monitor described his personality and was pleased with his willingness to die and save countless others. He then explained the only way to survive this trial was to know their true self, before sending them away.
Later, Oliver, after becoming Green Arrow once again, returned to the Monitor's realm to demand him to stop the test from killing Barry and Kara Danvers, as unlike him they were true heroes and had the best chance at stopping the crisis. Impressed by his bravery, the Monitor agreed to help Oliver, so they made a deal to spare the Flash and Supergirl as Green Arrow attempts to stop Deegan from destroying reality, but to maintain balance of the universe, the Monitor made Green Arrow promised he would join him to stop the crisis when the time comes. The Monitor then gives Green Arrow a metaphysical arrow that is capable of destroying the Book and returning reality to normal. After the heroes defeat Deegan, the Monitor leaves Earth 1 knowing that they passed his test, and would soon have to prepare for the upcoming threat.
Preparing for the Crisis
After the Timeline changed when Team Flash destroyed Cicada's dagger, the crisis was moved up to 2019 instead of 2024. The Monitor was therefore forced to improvise and hasten his plans in stopping the crisis. Anticipating that Team Flash would want to change the timeline to prevent this so Barry would not go missing but knowing fully well that the crisis is inevitable and any attempts to avert it would only make things worse, the Monitor destroyed the plinth in the Time Vault to prevent them from seeing the change in the future newspaper. In the process, he destroyed Nora West-Allen's message to her parents, which he was not proud of but believed was a necessary sacrifice, along with Gideon, although purposefully as she could still be of use to the Flash, the Monitor left enough of her for Barry to rebuild.
After destroying the plinth, the Monitor traveled to Earth 38 to free a Green Martian named Malefic J'onzz from the Phantom Zone. He then urged the Martian to avenge himself against his brother who betrayed him. When Malefic asked if the Monitor would assist him, he told him he had to walk his path by himself, as he had one last place to visit. He then traveled to Lex Luthor's dead body and began to wave a hand with interdimensional energy.
The Monitor, holding the Book of Destiny is seen inside Heyworld watching the Legends perform with magical creatures. He shakes his head in disappointment with the rest of the audience when their performance was terrible. However, when a Dragon showed up, he is seen eating popcorn in amusement, using the book as a stool.
In 2019, after the birth of Oliver's daughter, Mia Smoak, the Monitor returned to visit Oliver to collect his end of the deal. As Oliver had promised that he would give whatever the multiverse requires, he had no choice, but to keep his word and asked the Monitor what he needed to do. The Monitor revealed that Oliver must help him avert the crisis, but admitted regretfully that in exchange for countless deaths being prevented, Oliver would sacrifice himself and that future is inevitable and cannot be escaped. As Felicity Smoak at first vehemently opposed the Monitor, the Monitor calmly appeased her by revealing that in exchange for Oliver coming with him that night, she and her daughter would survive.
The Monitor then gave them time to say goodbye before he took Oliver with him to start their attempt to prevent the crisis. It remains unclear what happened up until Novu sent Oliver to Earth 2 to gather Dwarf star particles, which could only be found prominently on that Earth, but according to Oliver, Novu had been sending him on several missions before-hand that despite according to Lyla having a purpose, Oliver spitefully believed to be useless, although considering Oliver's resentment of Novu's secrecy, whether it is the truth or just an exaggeration remains unknown.
Sometime around August and September 2019, the Monitor visited Barry and Iris West-Allen in the Time Vault. Iris, realizing he destroyed Nora's message, tried to attack him in anger, only for Barry to stop her. The Monitor acknowledged that it was an unfortunate side effect but argued he had to discourage them from hoping they could avoid the coming crisis. When Iris argued they still had five years, the Monitor revealed it had since changed from 2024 to December 10, 2019, and on that day, Barry will make the ultimate sacrifice as Earth 1 would soon fight for the fate of the multiverse. When Barry demanded to know how he can stop it and still survive, the Monitor firmly stated that Barry cannot survive and the only way for billions to survive was for Barry to die. He then leaves Barry to contemplate his fate.
Sensing Oliver deterred from his mission on Earth 2, the Monitor confronted him in Queen-Merlyn Enterprises and stopped him just as he was about to confront Malcolm Merlyn of being the Dark Archer. After musing on how impressive mankind's capacity for invention, the Monitor told him not to interfere on another Earth and to focus on his mission, to which Oliver explained that the Dark Archer had taken the particles and Oliver was simply attempting to retrieve them. The Monitor was unconvinced but Oliver's continued questions ultimately made the Monitor relent but before leaving, he made it clear that despite not revealing why the particles are a necessary part in averting the crisis and therefore the mission was still important.
After Earth 2's destruction, displeased by the destruction of the world due to Oliver's interference, which is a sign that the crisis has begun and hastened due to Oliver, the Monitor brought Oliver, John Diggle, and Laurel Lance to Hong Kong. He separated Oliver from them and put him to sleep in a building until he woke and the Monitor then revealed the fate of Earth 2 and how it would happen to all other universes if the crisis is not stopped. When Oliver questioned how he failed to save the earth as he had done what the Monitor asked, the Monitor coldly rebuked him for having caused it himself by interfering with the events of Earth 2 by stopping Tommy Merlyn and saving Laurel. The Monitor then instructed Oliver to find Doctor Robert Wong but refused to say why. As Diggle arrived, looking for Oliver, the Monitor teleported away before he could be discovered with a warning to Oliver not to fail him again.
Although Oliver ended up deciding to try to oppose the Monitor and did not hand him over, instead of leaving him to A.R.G.U.S, the Monitor simply contacted Lyla, who was angry at him for not warning her about Earth 2's destruction, or that John was on Earth 2 when it was destroyed. The Monitor solemnly remarked that Earth 2's destruction was a necessary sacrifice and coldly denounced Lyla's outrage over his disregard of Laurel's feelings, noting on how countless more like the ones Laurel loved would die if the crisis was not stopped. He then asked her if she had Wong. She replied that she did, and the Monitor responded by saying that they could proceed by preparing Oliver for the upcoming crisis.
The Monitor later brings Connor Hawke, Mia Smoak, and William Clayton from 2040 to 2019 in Star City as a gift to Oliver so he can spend time with his children before his death for his determination and willingness to sacrifice himself. The Monitor then tempts the Laurel Lance of Earth 2, claiming that he could restore her Earth if she betrays Oliver Queen. but in truth, it was just a test. Lyla, later on, knocks out Oliver, John, and Laurel after Laurel refused to betray Oliver under the Monitor's orders and the Monitor then trapped them inside a time loop that has Quentin continually die with Lyla guiding them to make them realize that Oliver cannot escape his fate and to allow Laurel to say goodbye as a gift for her loyalty. After Oliver finally bitterly accepted his fate and escaped the loop, the Monitor teleported Team Arrow to Lian Yu to help Oliver and Laurel with the final mission.
Crisis of 2019
To Be Added
After the Crisis was averted, sometimes between 2019 and 2040, the Monitor promised Felicity that he would reunite her and Oliver once she prepared William Clayton and Mia to take care of themselves. In 2040, after she said goodbye to her children, he kept his deal and returned for Felicity to take her to be with Oliver forever, presumably Heaven as Oliver had died a hero's death saving the multiverse from the crisis. Before taking her, he warned her that once he had sent her there, she will never be able to return. Felicity accepted it and the Monitor opened a portal to send them to whatever peaceful afterlife Oliver currently is and reunite Felicity with Oliver.
The Monitor is a calm, level-headed, and focused cosmic entity shown how he continued to find the Earth that could save the Multiverse from the coming crisis. He is quite capable of being ruthlessly demanding and strict, as he left a trail of destruction while testing other Earths, like Earth 90 and showed no regret or remorse for it and instead blamed the heroes for failing to save their Earths. He is also extremely confident in his power, as he didn't see the heroes of Earth 1 despite their abilities as true threats to him. This is best shown when Oliver Queen, the Barry Allen of Earth 1, Kara Zor-El, and the Barry Allen of Earth-90 confronted him but he remained calm and made Barry Allen from Earth-90 disappear while stopping all of their attempts to attack him took back the book and gave it back to John Deegan.
When dealing with his allies, the Monitor can be strict, harsh and firm both in the execution of his plans and the secrets he keeps, going to lengths to keep Team Flash from trying anything to change Barry's fate to die in the crisis, even destroying Nora's message and the plinth that showed the newspaper along with it, despite how it deprived Barry and Iris of what was left of their connection to Nora, before proceeding to coldly and firmly drive it home through Barry that no matter how hard he tried, he will die sacrificing himself to stop the crisis, and despite his sympathy for Oliver's sacrifice, he would still strictly demand Oliver's dedication to any mission he assigned him to without revealing anything to him, both when he had him search for the dwarf-star particles and collect Robert Wong.
Also, when Oliver meddled with the fate of Earth 2, the Monitor coldly scolded him for not heading his orders and ordered him never to disobey him again. The Monitor also dismissed Lyla's sympathy for Laurel despite moments before showing some somberness at Earth 2's destruction with yet another cold reminder that countless more like the ones Laurel cared for would perish if the crisis is not averted. However, the Monitor's actions, while ruthless, are not for malevolent purposes and instead to prepare for the crisis to find the heroes capable of saving the Multiverse from the crisis, which the Monitor openly acknowledges to being far more powerful than himself, showing he could still feel fear.
His confidence do not make him truly arrogant, being fully capable of respecting others, as he openly acknowledged to be impressed by the capabilities of the heroes of Earth 1, and remaining calm even in the face of insults, as he was utterly unfazed when Oliver coldly told him he wasn't a god, merely saying that as there isn't a name to what he is, a god would do and then when Laurel insulted him, along with also being quite flexible when the situation has truly garnered his respect and impress, as after seeing how persistent Earth 1 was against his test and how brave and self-sacrificing Oliver was, the Monitor ultimately decided that Earth 1 would be the earth to fight for the fate of all universes and gave Oliver the metaphysical arrow needed to save his friends from the test after Oliver revealed Barry and Kara are the best chances to stop the crisis and not him, although he asked that Oliver provide whatever the Multiverse requires to survive the Crisis to maintain the balance of the universe by creating another change in place of Barry and Kara being saved.
Also, the Monitor isn't entirely without empathy, as he did have cause to show genuine sympathy towards Oliver and Felicity Smoak as he revealed that in exchange for the Crisis being averted, Oliver would die and leave his wife widowed and his daughter fatherless, assuring them he meant no harm for Felicity and their child and Oliver's sacrifice would allow them to live, and sincerely apologizing to Oliver for his inevitable death, nor is he so tactless as to callously shrug off things he did that emotionally hurt people or discriminate them for holding on to their flaws, even able to apologize and compliment on said flaw, as he noted that destroying Nora's message was not something he was fond of doing and was unfortunate but necessary as well as Barry's fate being set to die saving the Multiverse and openly acknowledged its boundlessness to be his greatest quality despite deeming it to be a flaw on the Crisis.
The Monitor also proves himself to be honorable, as he would keep the end of his deal to Felicity to reunite her with Oliver despite having no actual reasons to do so and before doing this, he warned her that she can never return. He does possess a carefree side, as he went to Heyworld eating a bag of popcorn and enjoying the show with the Legends and the Magical fugitives.
- In DC Comics, the Monitor is a powerful being who exists to observe and record any information on the Positive Matter Multiverse it was also to prepare the superheroes for the Crisis on Infinite Earths, by giving weapons to villains to test the heroes as he did in Elseworlds. When the time came, he gathered heroes and villains together to fight the Anti-Monitor, the Monitor's antimatter counterpart, set on destroying the multiverse. Decades later during the Rebirth era, it was revealed his name was Mar Novu, after the Arrowverse's version.
- It is unknown if the Monitor can rewrite reality himself or if he needs the Book of Destiny to do that. However, even without the power to warp reality, he is still currently the most powerful being shown thus far, displaying many cosmic powers, as he was able to single-handedly defeat every hero on Earth 90 with ease. Not only that, as he hints that he has the power to restore Earth 2 to existence even with the Book destroyed, it is heavily implied he can still warp reality without the Book.
- LaMonica Garrett describes the Monitor as a "cosmic being who feels a responsibility to right what has been wronged and will do whatever it takes to defeat his brother." However, in the end, though it would cause him to be at odds with his allies during the crisis, it will "culminate into something amazing and by the end of the Crisis, the fans will have empathy for him." He also says that the difference between him and Thanos is that unlike Thanos who believes all he did was for a good cause even though he wiped out half of all life, the Monitor is doing bad things for a truly good purpose.