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For other uses of Purgatory, see Purgatory (disambiguation).

"Welcome to purgatory."
"Looks a lot like Lian Yu."
is Mandarin for 'purgatory'."
"Lovely little coincidence, eh?"
"Any idea why dad's soul would choose to come here?"
"Souls choose their prisons; this place must be what Oliver thinks about when being trapped for all eternity. It's a funny thing too; considering his memories are probably missing."
"What are you talking about?"
"The second that Oliver's soul landed here, his memories would've been—How can I put it?—Squeegeed.
John Constantine, John Diggle and Mia Smoak after arriving in Oliver Queen's personal purgatory.[src]

Purgatory, or Limbo, is the realm between Heaven and Hell where souls become trapped in their own personal hell. It is possible to escape this realm. For each person, their purgatory will be different and varies as the "limbo" is personal to them. In a purgatory, the "normal" way to escape it (for example; Ava Sharpe checking out of her shopping mall purgatory), will cause them to die; however there is a way to escape a purgatory.


Soul of Sara Lance

In 2015, after the resurrection of Sara Lance through the Lazarus Pit, her soul did not reconnect with the resurrected body due to the Pit's limitations. John Constantine assisted Team Arrow with the ritual to bring Sara's soul back to her body. Together with Oliver Queen and Laurel Lance, John traveled to Sara's purgatory: a pastice of the League of Assassins stronghold. Fighting against the mystical assassin, the two wrestled away Sara's soul, allowing it to reconnect with her body.[1]

Plots of Neron

One night in early 2019, the demon Neron had captured Ava Sharpe from her house and had taken her to a nearby motel. In the room they were checking into, Neron decided he needed a new vessel to further his plans and thought that Ava would be a suitable choice. To do that, he needed her soul out her body, for it to die, so he placed her in her own purgatory. When Sara wanted to apologies to Ava for what she had said earlier, she found out that she wasn't at home. After that, her and the Legends set on a mission to find Ava. Once they had found her, they first thought that she was dead, until they brought her back to the Waverider and found out that she was alive. This was explained by John Constantine that her soul had been placed in limbo (purgatory). Needing to save her, Sara decided to travel to Ava's purgatory. Inside her purgatory, which took the form of a large mall, Sara found Ava and explained to her that if she checks out, she dies so they need another way to escape. When asking help from Gary (part of the purgatory), he told them to go to another section of her purgatory (a clothing store). This turned out to be misleading advice as they were trapped in a small room. Working together, Sara and Ava assembled a wardrobe, able to make a door. Once they walked through it, it led them to a messy kitchen, and they thought they needed to clean it in order to escape the room. However, it was in a loop and it will always be messy and Sara somehow was able to open a portal; albeit with her alone.[2]

Escaping Ava's purgatory

Sara was inside a long hallway with AVA robots, with Gary beside her, warning of "Tabitha" arriving into the store. Confused with what he had just said, the lights turned off, with Gary stating once again that "Tabitha" has arrived. As Sara ran through the hallway, she teleported to back where she started, with Ava sitting and sobbing on the floor. Ava asked about why she didn't choose the other "Ava's" and Sara replied that she only loved her and after that had a romantic moment. This in turn led them to the escape of the purgatory.[2]

Soul of Oliver Queen

After Sara reluctantly agreed to let Oliver's daughter Mia bring Oliver back to life with a Lazarus Pit, after finding a universe with a usable Pit, Sara counted on John Constantine to bring back Oliver's soul; remembering how he'd restored her own soul after her resurrection. After the spell Constantine tried to use to retrieve Oliver's soul failed due to the Crisis, Constantine, Mia Queen and John Diggle, with the help from Lucifer Morningstar's demonic card, used some of the few remaining pieces of magic in the multiverse to travel to purgatory, focused on Oliver's soul. The purgatory took the shape of the island of Lian Yu. The trio successfully found Oliver, but ultimately were unable to bring him back, due to the Spectre recruiting him for other purposes, with the Spectre also sending the three of them back out of purgatory; back to Earth-1.[3]

Astra Logue's plans

John wakes up in his Purgatory.

Some time after Astra Logue was dragged to hell as the result of John Constantine's attempt to resurrect her dead mother; Natalie Logue,[4] Astra got a hold of John's soul coin and messed with gears inside the chip, using it to speed up when he would die;[4] making cancer that already existed in his lungs as a result of John's smoking suddenly get bad enough that he was severely weakened and at the brink of death. When John tried to go out on his own terms (drinking poison before the cancer would kill him), Astra met John in his own purgatory, which took the form of his house; telling John that the reason she wanted him dead was because he was "bad for business", due to Constantine having aided the Legends in foiling the schemes of several of the Encores she'd released as part of her plot to rule hell. Seconds before John died, he convinced Astra to let him live by telling her he could fix her family (planning to use the Loom of Fate, though he didn't tell Astra about the Loom). Astra then moved back the setting on the coin (reversing his accelerated lung cancer), but kept it with her as leverage; stating that she could kill John whenever she wanted and that he didn't have time to dawdle. John then regained consciousness back on Earth.[5]


From Earth-1/Earth-Prime

From an unknown Earth



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  • Currently, it is unknown if someone can escape their own purgatory by themselves as Sara was the one who saved Ava from her purgatory.
    • It is also not known if someone has a limited amount of time (like a timer) in their purgatory to escape.
  • There appears to only be one purgatory throughout the multiverse, as Constantine was able to reach Earth-1 Oliver Queen's purgatory from Earth-666.
    • Everyone's purgatory is different. Sara Lance's purgatory manifested as Nanda Parbat, for Ava Sharpe, it was shopping at a mall, and for Oliver Queen it was the island he was stuck on for five years. John Constantine's purgatory took the form of his own house.

Behind the scenes

  • According to the belief of some Christians (mostly Catholics), Purgatory is an intermediate state after physical death for expiatory purification.