Ra's al Ghul was the leader of the League of Assassins.
He had inherited the title from his predecessor. Ra's was also a mentor to Oliver Queen, and the ex-best friend/rival of Damien Darhk. In 1958, he initiated Sara Lance into the order and found her to be exceptional in skill, like she had already completed her training before. He captures Rip Hunter into custody and orders his death, but Rip wants a trial by combat. Ra's selects Sara to participate, and Rip selects Kendra. Moments into the duel, Sara hesitates after Kendra reaches out to her, and Chronos arrives to shake things up. Ra's is forced to release the Legends to fight Chronos. Later, Ra's realizes that Sara is from the future, and releases Sara from the order, telling her that Nanda Parbat is not a place for people with conflicted feelings and identities. As Sara leaves, she tells Ra's to send his daughter to an island called Lian Yu around 2008 but Ra's is puzzled as to why he would send Talia there. However Sara elaborated that it was not Talia that would be sent, but another daughter he had yet to conceive who he would name Nyssa.
At some point when Ra's was seeing to matters of importance in the desert, he encountered a woman named Amina Raatko, a woman with an appearance and personality that he was captivated by and was unable to live without. Ra's allowed Amina to become his concubine and eventually in 1985 they had a daughter who Ra's, acting on Sara's advise, named Nyssa. Nyssa was conscripted from birth to ascend to Ra's mantle herself, provided the if the prophecy of a man who doesn't die at Ra's blade will ascend to Ra's himself failed to come true.
In 1985, Ra's forced an assassin to take full responsibility for losing The Hidden by drinking a fatal green liquid. Following this, another came to alert him to the discovery of the Ashkiri marker. He told the assassin to prepare to ride at dawn, allowing him to front the attack.
In 1993 Malcolm Merlyn joined the group but eventually released from his bonds to the League by Ra's. After Malcolm broke the league's code by initiating the Undertaking Ra's realized his mistake and marked Malcolm for death.
Around 2008 Ra's sent Nyssa to Lian Yu to retrieve the younger Sara Lance as per her instructions.
Ra's sent a messenger to Sara Lance, ordering her return, though she refused and killed the messenger when he declined to report to Ra's that he had not found her, as she wanted. Around a week later, he sent Al-Owal and a team of assassins to bring Sara back by force, only to lose his team to both Sara and Oliver Queen.
Ra's was later contacted by Moira Queen after Malcolm mentioned that he went to Nanda Parbat. After learning Malcolm was alive, it was revealed that Ra's wanted to kill him for breaking the League's code of honor with The Undertaking. Ra's sent Nyssa and another League member to once again try to bring Sara Lance back to Nanda Parbat, though Nyssa ultimately released Sara from the League
Sometime later, however, Sara Lance returned to the League, to keep her family out of danger.
After he'd heard of Khem-Adam and his extremist sect Onslaught, Ra's wished to speak with Khem-Adam. He sent Nyssa and Sara Lance to retrieve him from his base in the Amon-Shu Caves of Kahndaq. They arrived back, with Khem-Adam and a girl named Mesi Natifah. Wishing to give Mesi vengeance, he gave her his sword to use on Khem-Adam.
When Nyssa arrived back at Nanda Parbat from a visit to Starling City, she confirmed Malcolm Merlyn was still alive. Ra's informed his daughter that Malcolm would face consequences for crimes against the League's code. Ra's asked about Oliver Queen, to which he learned of Oliver's oath to protect Malcolm at any cost. Due to this, Ra's took it to mean Oliver was courting war with the League.
Following Sara Lance's death, Ra's sent a squad of assassins, led by Nyssa and Sarab, to capture Oliver. They informed Oliver that he would be given 48 hours to find Sara's killer or the League would begin killing innocent civilians until the killer was caught. After the time was up, Ra's and various League members travelled to Starling City in preparation. However, Oliver met with them, falsely claiming to have killed Sara upon her request. By League law, he was entitled to a trial by combat, and so Ra's accepted the duel, allowing Sarab to tell him of the neutral meeting place.
The two met atop a mountain sometime later. They both removed their shirts, going with tradition, and Oliver picked up two swords against Ra's who was bare-handed. The latter discussed his first kill at age 11, feeling proud that he had replaced evil with death, which was what the League strived to do. They began fighting, Ra's dodging each attack with his hands behind his back, and soon disarming Oliver and fighting with the blades. Ra's easily parried Oliver's strikes and promptly cut him. He led him back to the edge of the mountain. Impressed that he had lasted longer than most, Oliver was given a chance to steal back the blade, however, Ra's quickly caught the blade as Oliver stabbed at him, disarming him once again. He promptly stabbed Oliver in the chest, saying a quick prayer before pushing the dying Oliver over the edge, and tossing the sword into the ground as a grave for Oliver.
Ra's was confronted by his daughter, Nyssa who had just discovered Oliver survived and demanded Oliver be killed. After the League captured Malcolm, Ra's watched him beg for mercy before sending him off to be tortured. When Oliver made an attempt to rescue Malcolm, Ra's locked Oliver in, along with Diggle. Later, Ra's asked if Oliver was willing to be his successor as Ra's al Ghul.
As Ra's continued to explain why Oliver should take his place, Oliver denied the request, and Ra's allowed Oliver to leave with Diggle and Malcolm. Sometime after their departure, Nyssa returned to the palace only to berate on why Malcolm was still alive. Ra's explained that Nyssa had only wanted Malcolm dead in revenge for Sara's death and that he had let them go as a sign of good faith to Oliver who will become his heir. Nyssa got enraged by his decision to make Oliver his heir and tried to kill him after which he easily disarmed her. Ra's puts Nyssa off, saying that Oliver surviving a fair duel with him merits the vigilante the right to take her father's place; and he never did approve and will never approve of the feelings of his daughter.
Sometime after Murmur's arrest, Ra's arrives in Starling City dressed as the Arrow and quickly killed Murmur's remaining men leaving only one alive to spread the word. To force Oliver to take his offer he made Maseo and other assassins dress up as The Arrow and kill criminals.
After Maseo killed Celia Castle and failed to kill Felicity Smoak, he met with Oliver and told him to accept the title of heir to the demon or he would spend the rest of his life in a cage, claiming he wasn't going to capture Oliver when he challenged it but a police helicopter soon arrived. He later sent Maseo to intercept and capture Captain Lance and brought him to Ra's where he revealed The Arrow's identity as Oliver Queen.
Oliver Queen got arrested but got free when Roy turned himself in as The Arrow to set Oliver free. After Roy faked his death, Ra's targeted Thea. He appeared in her apartment and asked her if she knew who he was. After she said Oliver would kill him, he said Oliver would beg him to become the next Demon's Head. He caught the knife Thea threw at him and the two got into a fight. Ra's effortlessly dodged her strikes after which he slammed her through a table. Drawing his sword, he then impaled her and said a quick prayer, after which he left the apartment.
Ra's greeted Oliver with his entire league as a desperate Oliver arrived at Nanda Parbat holding a deceased Thea. After Thea's resurrection, Ra's expected Oliver to hold his end of the deal. Later, an upset Felicity approached Ra's and told him she doesn't care about the prophecy. Felicity told Ra's he didn't know what love was, though Ra's told Felicity about his past life. Ra's told Felicity he is offering a chance for Oliver to have a proper goodbye, one that he never had a chance to do. After a failed escape attempt by Felicity, Malcolm, and Diggle, Ra's asked Oliver who assisted them, though Sarab quickly came clean and revealed he killed three of the league members. Ra's told Sarab he won't punish him for Maseo's actions and spared him for his loyalty. Ra's went on to mark Oliver with a mark and started to cleanse Oliver of his personality so all that remained was Al Sah-him.
The next weeks Ra's personally trained Oliver and helped him improve his swordsmanship and combat skills. He used isolation and brainwashing techniques to make Oliver forget about his past and he began to accept his new identity and name. Exposing him to a herb Oliver started to hallucinate and believed a captured intruder was, in fact, his friend John Diggle. Ra's ordered him to kill him and Oliver quickly overpowered the intruder in a swordfight and killed him after which he realized the intruder was not John.
Impressed with the loyalty of Oliver Ra's showed him a few ruins as he told him he and Damien Darhk were like brothers and both candidates to become the new head of the demon. After Ra's was chosen he was ordered to kill Damien, however, he hesitated and Damien escaped and started his own organisation H.I.V.E.. Ra's explained to Oliver how Damien had attempted to buy the earthquake device and was responsible for multiple crimes. This was a direct result of Ra's having doubted in killing him. Ra's then told Oliver he does not want this for Oliver so he ordered Oliver to take out his rival for the title Heir of the Demon.
After Oliver captured Nyssa and brought her to Ra's, he complimented Oliver. He recalled how Nyssa used to steal food when she was young, but that she had never been able to hide things from her. He searched Nyssa her weapons and found the Omega virus. Ra's told her he would remember her as the warrior she once was, Nyssa replied that she was not afraid of him. Ra's ordered Oliver to kill her but stopped him at the last second. He mentioned Nyssa had been defeated by Oliver and was no longer a threat. He told both of them they would marry and Nyssa would become Bride of The Demon.
Ra's explained to Oliver that the ruined village he had shown him was his former home. He mentioned that to become the new head of the demon one had to wipe out his former home. Just like he had did and the former Ra's before him had whipped out Alexandria. Ra's explained that he would unleash the Omega Virus on Starling City. Ra's recalled how Maseo had come to him and offered him the Alpha-Omega Virus when he wanted to join him. Maseo reported a plane had been readied to spread the virus.
Ra's visited Nyssa and explained to her how he had met his concubine Amina Raatko. He gave Nyssa a necklace he had given to her, and she then gave it to him to give it to Nyssa for her wedding day. Nyssa refused and Ra's told her she would marry Oliver or she would suffer the pain of a thousand deaths.
When John Diggle, Malcolm Merlyn, Laurel, Felicity and Ray Palmer blew up his plane a huge fight started in which Maseo and many assassins got killed. Ra's confronted them and made his men capture them. He explained to them the plane was just a distraction to see if there were any traitors reporting to them. Team Arrow made it appear like Maseo had been the traitor.
Ra's talked to Malcolm who told him Oliver had been the one betraying him. Ra's called Oliver who told him that was not the case and he was devoted to the League. Ra's went to Team Arrow and threw in the Omega Virus as they screamed for Oliver to help. He and Oliver walked away as they left them to die.
Ra's, Oliver, Nyssa and a squad of assassins departed on a plane. Oliver woke up and Ra's told him there are dreams of desire, temptation, and truth. Oliver explained that he dreamed of rebirth as Head of the Demon. Ra's told him they would destroy Starling and then he would get the ring that would allow him to command the League. The plane started to shake and the pilot told them the plane had been sabotaged. Enraged Ra's blamed Nyssa. Oliver told him it was his doing. Oliver handed Nyssa a sword and she started to fight the assassins. Ra's mentioned to Oliver he had given him his holy mission. Oliver told him he had one already. The two fought and Ra's managed to knock down Oliver. Nyssa killed his assassins but Ra's subdued her and Oliver and promised them he would destroy the city and then hunt them forever. He then escaped from the crashing plane by parachute.
Ra's tracked down his rival Damien Darhk to a hotel in Starling. However, he had already escaped and Ra's noticed Oliver and his team closing in on his assistant. Ra's called the assistant and then shot him. He taunted Oliver and told him he would spread the virus and destroy the city.
Ra's then send a messenger to Oliver to tell him he would meet him so they could have a duel to finish this. Ra's met Oliver and mentioned how he would win either way. If Oliver would kill him he would become the Head of the Demon and if he would win his city would die. Ra's saw that Oliver used the sword he had been impaled with. Ra's and Oliver engaged each other in a swordfight. In spite of Oliver's considerable improvement from his training Ra's kept the upper hand the entire fight and ended up taking Oliver down and destroying his sword in one strike. Ra's mentioned that thousands of men would mourn his death if he would die. He then attempted to strike down Oliver. Oliver disarmed him with the same move Ra's had used in their first battle and ended up impaling his chest, while refuting Ra's earlier claim, stating that his men would simply kneel before the next Ra's al Ghul. Oliver then recited the same prayer Ra's did after he had stabbed him. Proud of his student's success, Ra's handed him the ring and then collapses to the floor.
- Lazarus Enhancement: Ra's al Ghul has lived for centuries thanks to his use of the Lazarus Pit, which he has used countless times, replenishing his aged and injured body.
- Longevity: Due to his unrestricted access to the Lazarus Pit, Ra's was able to live long past his original lifespan.
- Archery: Ra's was shown to be a highly skilled archer when he posed as The Arrow.
- Genius Level Intellect
- Leadership: Ra's was shown to be a great leader, as he had led the League of Assassins for at least 100 years with success.
- Martial Arts: Due to his centuries of training, Ra's was highly proficient and experienced in unarmed combat. He is able to instantly parry and dodge attacks with very minimal movement. In his first duel with Oliver Queen, he was able to defeat, and seemingly kill him with ease.
- Occultism: Ra's possesses knowledge and understanding of magic and mysticism, including the League's occult rituals and ceremonies, as well as the workings and origin of the Lazarus Pits.
- Peak Human Condition
- Stealth: Due to his great skill in assassination techniques, Ra's is a master of stealth.
- Swordsmanship: Ra's was a master swordsman with centuries of experience with wielding swords in combat.
- Tactical Analysis: Ra's is a master at formulating and executing plans.
- This version of the character is exclusive to the continuity of the television series Arrow and is an adaptation of Ra's al Ghul. The original character was created by Dennis O'Neil and Neal Adams and first appeared in Batman #232.
- Ra's al Ghul is played by Matt Nable.
- Appearances of Ra's al Ghul (Arrowverse)
- Images featuring Ra's al Ghul (Arrowverse)
- Quotations by or about Ra's al Ghul (Arrowverse)
- Character Gallery: Ra's al Ghul (Arrowverse)
League of Assassins member
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