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Johan is an Alternate Universe incarnation of Adam.
The difference is that, in Monster, the Apocalypse is set to begin in Germany, and the child switch went off without a hitch. Roberto is Johan's hellhound made human by his will.

Monster takes place in the same world as Pluto.
Doctor Tenma from Astro Boy is a descendant of Monster's Dr. Tenma & his AI research was a continuation of the Kinderheim 511 experiments using computer models & later actual robots instead of real children. The unnamed Japanese doctor who saves Paul Duncan/Paolo Holley's life in the flashback during the North #2 story is not Black Jack, but the older Dr. Tenma.
  • In addition, this explains why Epsilon looks like Johan. After awakening from his coma, Johan performed a Heel–Face Turn. Having been given his real name, Johan moves to Australia and decides to turn his intellect to AI research, to give machines humanity the same way that Tenma reawakened his. Performing great things over the course of his lifetime, when they needed a model for Epsilon he was the natural choice.

After the end of Monster, Johan escapes the hospital and trades his German nationality for Romanian citizenship. His new name? Nicolae Carpathia.
Think about it. Both show remarkable intelligence, and also prove to be extraordinarily manipulative, able to bend others to their will with relative ease. Moreover, they both have blonde hair, blue eyes and the title of The Antichrist.

Johan is Friend
Hey, if you're going to mark someone as the Anti-Christ, you've gotta let the collateral damage encompass the entire world, not just Europe. After leaving the hospital, Johan figures he'll go start up some shit in Tenma's home country, Japan. There he meets Fukubei, from whom he takes the "Book of Prophesy" from and decides to start up the Cult of Friendship. When the going got tough, Johan picked Fukubei to be the scapegoat and the corpse for his official "death". In addition, Fukubei is not Kanna's father — Johan is, which also explains why Kanna shares a physical resemblance to Johan's sister, Anna, and is apparently the only Urasawa character to be affected by Mukokuseki

Johan has Geass
C.C. has found Johan while traveling into the countryside. He has manipulated her into granting Geass. Because of that, Johan can easily manipulate his victims into becoming corrupt or committing suicide.
  • The mechanics of Geass itself make this impossible. Every person's Geass manifests differently, so I don't think he'd be able to have Manipulation Geass, considering if this is considered to take place in the same world as Code Geass, Lelouch would then get it decades later. I may be over-analyzing.

Johan is female
Because that stint he pulled disguising himself as Anna was WAY too convincing to be just a Wig, Dress, Accent.
  • Which means Johan and Anna are identical twins.
  • Either that or Johan got deeper into the role than simply slapping on a skirt and shaving his legs. Mind Rape expert (and bishonen) as he is, it wouldn't be too hard to get into the head of a false role as simple as "pretty young girl", would it? It's mostly the acting that's convincing, and not just the looks. To be fair, this troper mistook adult Johan for a girl on multiple occasions when he wasn't even in a dress. He's just that Wicked Cultured.
    • Wouldn't this have been noticed, the amount of time he's been unconscious in hospital across the series? Keeping his eyes that wide must have been a strain though...<g>

Johan can change gender
Well during the surgery if Johan was female at least the surgeons would notice. Perhaps, he's female in default, he's male when knocked unconscious or around Nina or if he feels like it.

Johan is Johann
Johan's braindead (Or is it?) body was taken over by Johann Krauss due to an emergency. Once Krauss was safe he returned the body to the hospital.


Monster is a deconstruction of fictional portrayals of child abuse
Both Johan and Nina were subjected to horrifying circumstances, including their birth mother (dressing Johan up as Nina, selecting children to be experimented on, generally not caring, etc.). Johan's experiences merely refined his own bastardly magnificence while Nina, though emotionally scarred, generally grew to be a caring, considerate, and intelligent young woman. Monster demonstrates the individual differences in reacting to such experiences and portrays the results (relatively) realistically, while most works of fiction merely use such backgrounds as Freudian excuses.
  • Er, doesn't this deconstruct Freudian Excuse moves about as much as "Some heavy smokers live to a ripe healthy old age" plus Anvilicious invocations of "free will" deconstructs "Tobacco is carcinogenic and addictive"? Leaving aside that "nature" as opposed to "nurture" approaches to evil hardly get away from determinism...

Everyone is the Antichrist, except for the main character
On top of all of this, he's got the power to kill antichrists while he's asleep.

The "monster" isn't Johan, but Satan.

The real aim of the series is to show how various characters deal with their own personal demons.

  • Tenma and Anna's "monster" is the temptation to become, ironically, He Who Fights Monsters.
  • Lunge's is his obsession with his wild goose chase, which is pretty much ruining his life.
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  • Bonaparta's is his past.
  • Grimmer's is his rage.
  • Eva's is her alcoholism, as well as her general assholery.

Johan is little more than a plot device on legs, as well as an extreme demonstration of what evil can turn you into if you don't control it. The Nameless Monster almost says this directly: Johan isn't the monster - he's just a host for it.

This would also explain why we get treated to a billion other characters and their little subplots and Freudian Excuses throughout the story. Just other folks dealing with their monsters.

The ending also makes much more sense if you think of it that way. The story's overall goal wasn't to kill the bad guy - which it obviously didn't - but to defeat everyone's demons. It seems to have accomplished this pretty well...

Depending on what Johan did with the rest of his life, of course.

The storybook monster looks into the water to mirror Milton's Eve
Nothing, no big conspiracy, that's it.

The twins mother didn't know which one she was giving away
That's the reason she dressed them alike, to blind herself to the choice.
  • That's, uh, fairly obvious.
    • Only if she could see the Sadistic Choice coming though - also given that the most sensible in-story explanation we get is that she was trying to hide the fact there were two kids by dressing them the same and only letting the neighbours see them one at a time. And if she did see the Sadistic Choice coming, why not get them both away before Bonaparta could catch up?

Inspector Lunge is a grown-up L
They are both highly eccentric detectives, both quickly become obsessed with finding their target (L with Kira, Lunge with Dr. Tenma), both are (In Lunge's case, supposedly) at the top of their field, both are basically geniuses, L is constantly doing something with his hands while Lunge is doing the typing thing.
  • Except Monster takes place way before Death Note. So unless L preformed time travel, probably not.
    • Or unless he's a Time Lord. But that's a whole other page...
      • AND he's learned how to be a great detective without sacrificing his posture.
    • These things are not supposed to make sense. It's actually the serious guesses that are missing the point.
  • Alternatively, L is Lunge's illegitimate child.
    • Wouldn't Lunge's unnamed grandson be about L's age by the time the events of Death Note come about?
      • No, L's 25. The grandson would be about 12. If anything, the grandson is Near.
  • It's just that Inspector Lunge and L both have the anime version of Asperger's Syndrome.

Johann is grateful for Tenma not for saving his life, but for choosing him over the mayor.
He'd always been haunted by the memory of his mother giving one of the twins away and wondering whether he was ultimately the unwanted one. Tenma virtually sacrificed his status and career by choosing Johann, and Johann appreciates the shit out of it.
  • Of course, finding out your saviour's a bit taken aback at your being a sociopathic serial killer takes the shine out of this one a bit, as would his sister's less than enthousiastic response to being "relieved" of her foster parents. Might explain his attempts to manoeuvre both of them into a "let's see how you like being a killer, then" plot, though - and good guess.
  • Kinda ironic then. His mother gave him away. his "Father" chose to keep him. Sounds exacly like the kind of thing this series would have...
Monster takes places in the same universe as Death Note.
The reason Johan manages to survive until the end is because he literally had no name, making him impossible for the shinigami or The Kira Group to kill (by writing his name into a Death Note). Johan realizes this, which is what makes him so suicidal and careless with his safety. When Tenma gives him back his name at the end, it finally allows him to die, which is the significance of the empty bed.

Johan's real goal was to give Dr. Tenma some Character Development.
All of his other plots, including the final "perfect suicide" plot, were part of a single Gambit Roulette to reward Dr. Tenma for saving him instead of the mayor by making him a better person. All of them.
  • In Another Monster, it's stated that Johan constantly changes his plans on a whim. He's so good at manipulating people that he doesn't bother making overly complicated plots.

Johan and Nina's real names are...
Hansel & Gretel
  • Ironically, in the original notes for Hansel and Gretel compiled by the brothers Grimm, Hansel and Gretel were only to be called "Little Brother" and "Little Sister". To quote SurLaLune, 'Hansel is essentially the same as "John Doe" representing an anonymous or "everyman" character.' Even if those are their names, in a deeper sense they still lack them.
    • Right, I'm aware of that. It would play into the series' love of irony to have their real names just as lacking in identity as their current ones. I doubt it's true, but it would have been a cool twist.
    • And given the themes of parental abandonment in the original stories— where there was no famine, just some parents who couldn't deal with supporting kids— versus the almost cute modern perception of the story...
  • Hansel is, in fact, a pet name for Johan. (Gretel is the same for Margreta.)

Johan is an avatar of Nyarlathotep.

Johan is actually part of The Plan by Adrian Veidt.
  • Alternately, he is Veidt's illegitimate child.
    • Expanding on this idea: At some point, the young Veidt had a tryst with a young woman named Anna, who later took up with a soldier and led him to believe himself to be the father of her children. Her blond, super-genius children, one of whom is conditioned into sociopathy. Johan inherited exaggerated versions of all of their father's negative traits (and his dress sense, if one goes by movie!Veidt), while Nina got the positive ones (idealism, badassery, physical prowess). The key difference here is that Veidt didn't know.

Even if Tenma saved the Mayor instead of Johan his life still would have end up being messed up.
While the whole part of the premise about how the young boy he saves ends up being an infamous serial killer is a severe case of No Good Deed Goes Unpunished even if Tenma saved the Mayor anyways there is no guarantee that things would've been better for him. It would practically be inevitable that the Hospital would end up in a major corruption scandal and take a wild guess who would Dr. Heinemann try to set up as the fall guy here? (After all would it really be out of character for Heinemann to try to do that?)
  • Alternatively, Johan would have lived whether Tenma operated on him or not.
    • Also alternately, had he saved the mayor, he would later hear that the young child he could have saved died during the operation, and experience a Heroic BSoD. He would lose patient after patient before committing suicide. You're damned no matter what choice you make, as Jakob Farobek's story shows us.
  • Plus, he would've married Eva.

Johan is the creepy woman from the Palm Pre commercials.
Both people are young, attractive, pale, blonde, and unnervingly calm at all times. Johan was crossdressing as Anna when the studio hired him as the actress for their commercial. Of course the only reason Johan took part in the commercial in the first place was to systematically mind rape and kill the members of the recording studio after filming was complete.
  • For shame. Johan's beauty eclipses hers. Tis not him.

Johan and Nina are actually Nation-tans representing East and West Germany, respectively.
Bonaparta's attempts to produce ultimate leaders instead produced anthropomorphic representations of the fractured Germany. With Germany reunited, both began to crack under a sense of not being needed any more, leading to their suicide attempts.
  • Is it okay that they're actually Czech?
    • They're at least half-German, and look Aryan.

Johan Never Existed
The significance of the empty bed, his not having a name, and the constant deaths of anyone who had seen him are very simple: he was never there in the first place. Instead, mass hallucinations were caused to cover up... something else. I don't know. But whatever/whoever it was, Johan was put into the minds of everyone who came to close to whatever the real truth was. Those who showed signs of not completely believing in the delusion were killed.

Johan Dies
The bed is empty at the end because he had died and his body was removed. The end.
  • Heh. Johan is still alive 3 years later in Another Monster.

Wolfgang Grimmer, not Johan, was secretly the Main Antagonist all along
Grimmer's young protege (fellow Kinderheim Alumni, Johan Liebert) tells him the story of how an idealistic young doctor saved his life. Upon hearing the whole story, Grimmer becomes fascinated with this doctor and decides to challenge said doctor's worldview AND get revenge on Franz Bonaparta with an elaborate plot that will leave a lot of people dead. Prior to this, his plan was simply to raise hell in Ruenheim right then and there. The decision to shoe-horn Tenma into the mess created a very lengthy detour, but one that the now-obsessed Grimmer saw as being worthwhile.

The finale in Ruenheim was actually meant to be Grimmer's elaborate suicide, not Johan's. The only reason Grimmer acted like he was investigting Kinderheim 511 and allowed himself to be beaten up and made into a fugitive was just a case of Obfuscating Stupidity to draw attention away from himself and onto Johan. Unlike Lunge, Grimmer didn't end up at Ruenheim due to any detective work. Ending up there was his plan all along. Once he dies, the plan is fulfilled.

Also, Johan was the one who actually shot Grimmer (secretly acting upon Grimmer's orders). Now that his friend and mentor's final wish has been granted, Johan sees nothing left to live for and tries to provoke Tenma into killing him.

Roberto is the ancestor of Mad Pierout
Roberto shacked up with another of Johan's followers and got her pregnant. After his death, this woman passed Johan's teachings on to her child, who passed it onto their child, and so on. Thus, Johan still had a devoted following long after the Ruenheim incident. By the time of Bebop, Pierout willingly allowed himself to be the subject of government tests in hopes that he would be able to turn his enhanced abilities on all of humanity and be just like the great Johan, but on a much larger scale. His first goal was to kill all the people who created him so that no one would be able to anticipate or stop him. After that, he would just choose victims at random. Unforturnately, the experiments did damage to his already deranged mind, giving him a crippling phobia of cats, which would ultimately lead to his downfall.

Someday, somehow, the ghosts of Johan's victims will all gang up on him and drag him screaming into the depths of Hell.
I can dream, can't I?
  • Yes. Yes you can. And Grimmer will be the leader of the victims!
    • And Richard will be second-in-command! Hoohah!
  • But.... isn't Johan described as the messenger of Hell itself?
    • If he is an agent of Hell, then what better punishment than to be put on the receiving end of the horrors he and his ilk once inflicted on others?

Monster takes place in the same universe as Sam & Max
After Tenma leaves, Johan gets out of bed and walks down the hall to make his escape. Suddenly, a hyperkinetic rabbity-thing comes round the corner and - without breaking pace at all - jumps up and pokes Johan in the eye. Johan cries out in pain, which alerts security, who detain him and call the police.
  • Wait... what?
  • I KNEW IT!!!

Inspector Lunge is a Vulcan.
He looks like one, he thinks like one... yeah.

Johan is The Joker from the The Dark Knight
After escaping from the hospital, Johan goes out to and travels abroad. In his travels he sees both humanity at its worst and at its best, from the most depraved of murderous psychos to the most virtuous and kindest of people. Comparing this the the rest of humanity, who in turn seem to teeter on back and forth between these two polarizations, begins to strain on his mind, especially he continues to fail to understand how humans can continue to become good despite such evil. He finally snaps when he sees a clown kidnapping and trying to rape a little girl. Just then a second clown comes in and saves the little girl.

The absolute ridiculousness of this COMPLETELY shatters Johan's already twisted mind, and he begins his transformation into the Clown Prince of Crime we know and love. The gives himself the Glasglow smile, puts on the makeup, makes his own clothes, subscribes to nihilistic philosophies, and begins preparing himself for some ultimate plan to plunge humanity into destructive chaos....his transformation is complete and his breakout role presents itself in the form of Batman and Gotham City....

And he finds a person who reminds him of Dr. Tenma, someone who will try in all his effort not to violate the Thou Shall Not Kill commandment. Of course, Johan sets to do again what he did back in Germany, that is, to disprove his idealistic means even if it means putting himself and everyone around him in danger......

Johan's brain attracts bullets.
This explains how he manages to keep getting shot in the head by people who probably shouldn't have that good of aim to begin with.

Bonaparta murdered Lieberts and then shot Johan.
This explains how coroners didn't find out that killer's height is lower than of average man, and why Johan has a wound in top left part of his forehead, bullet shot from the position Nina couldn't possibly reach.

Or vice-versa.
  • Actually, they gradually turned into each other. Tenma's hair grew longer, and he became more tattered looking as the ordeals he went through gradually wore him down. By contrast, Trent Reznor has become more clean cut, with shorter hair, and seems much less nihilistic than he was as a younger man.

Dr. Tenma have a case of obsessed love with Johan and it's corresponded.
Since he can't have the boy because of how their relationship developed, he tried to content himself with his sister. Johan knows that so he crossdress as his sister to make some of his fantasies come true.
  • Proof? Or what passes for proof in a WMG, anyway?

Johan is the reincarnation of Michio Yuki.
That would explain of become insane by a secret military experiment as a kid, manipulate people, have ambitions to cause The End of the World as We Know It, tries to commit Suicide by Cop, and cross-dressing.

Johan never wanted Tenma to shoot him. In fact he never wanted to die, period.
He was playing the game that Martin (the Creepy Child, not the noir-ish ganger who befriends Eva) was trying to get Dieter to play: keep putting yourself in increasingly dangerous situations to see if you win (surivive) or lose (die). As Johan sees it, the more he wins the game, the more he becomes something...far grander than an ordinary human, something that would know no fear or remorse (and therefore know no emotional trauma either). His horrible past has utterly broken him (we've seen how he reacted to looking at that picture book) and becoming something beyond human is his way of crafting a new identity and utterly forget his past. He never wanted to die, but he kept increasing the odds that he would so that he'd keep "ascending" to this new nature/identity with each game.

When he pointed at his forehead in volume 18, this was his way of playing the ultimate game. He's done everything to provoke Tenma into killing him. The odds were against him, but if he could survive this, he'd (in his damaged mind anyway) make the final ascension and leave behind his old life forever.

Johan dies somewhere between the years 2004 and 2009.
Upon escaping (either after the events of the original series or after the events of Another Monster; take your pick), Johan relocated to the US and worked for the crime syndicates there. Meanwhile, a certain Mihael Keehl was trying to work his way into the ranks of one of the rival syndicates and felt a demonstration of his abilities was in order. The result: Johan, and several other high-profile criminals, wound up being beheaded.
  • And, because I know you're thinking it, yes, I came up with the idea because they both have the same seiyu. Although I wold like to add that it does make sense. If Johan lived in the DN universe, he'd be relatively safe from Kira due to obsessively safeguarding his identity.

Johan is Martin Mystery.
Think about it: both of them are blond-haired tricksters who enjoy annoying the hell out of their sisters, and on the top of that, they can't do physical harm. The only difference is that Martin has remorse, but Johan doesn't.

Kenzo is Spoony.
Look at the image for Expository Hairstyle Change and tell me it doesn't look like a Spoony from his first videos and Spoony today.

Tenma is the reincarnation of Atticus Finch. Alternatively, he is the Monster universe's version of Atticus.
Just to list a few points of comparison...
  • Both believe in treating people equally regardless of who they are. Both also risk their reputations to stand up for their beliefs.
  • Both happen to be decent with guns, but dislike using them. Atticus only shoots a rabid dog to protect the town, and the only reason Tenma goes after Johan is to stop him from killing people. He does shoot two people, but only in self-defense. Both of them live. (Heck, he got Eva to call an ambulance for the second guy.) And he saves Johan in the end too.
  • Tenma is likely just as big a bookworm as Atticus. Another Monster describes him as being quite studious as a child. Not to mention that one flashback Eva had where Tenma didn't notice her arrival for five whole minutes because he was reading an article from a medical journal.
  • If the example on the Friend to All Living Things page is accurate, then the bird that landed on Tenma's arm in the forest with the ex-Nazi was a finch.

The scene in the hospital room really was All Just a Dream.
Tenma really did go to visit Johan in the hospital, however. It's just that he fell asleep while talking to Johan, as he was suffering from jet lag. When Johan goes back to being asleep and we see the empty bed, it's a false awakening. Thus, the empty bed is symbolic of how Tenma has everything resolved.

Bonaparta, as well as the eugenics project revolving around Johan, were parts of an agenda by Nazi cultists to summon The Antichrist (which obviously is Johan)
Well, that's the way it all made sense to me.

Tenma saved Johan again as an act of Cruel Mercy.
In the end, Tenma realized that Johan really wanted to die all along. So instead of giving Johan what he wanted, he saved him since he figured that living with his past would be a Fate Worse than Death. ...Maybe.

Grimmer is a Nobody.
It would explain a lot of his behavior.

If Tenma had grown up in East Germany and were sent to 511 Kinderheim, he would have turned into another Grimmer.
First of all, let's eliminate Johan, Christof, and Roberto as possibilities. Tenma couldn't become Johan because Johan is... Johan. No one can top him. Christof is all "I want world dominashun lolz" while Tenma cares nothing about power. Roberto is a bit more plausible, since he Used to Be a Sweet Kid, but I believe Roberto is a different enough person from Tenma for there to be a difference in their coping mechanisms. As Lunge spelled out in his chapter of Another Monster, a person who kills for pleasure (and Roberto probably does enjoy it because he's good at it) does so because they're lashing out against the world. It's their way of asserting control. Considering how Roberto turned out, even though he was originally a nice boy, his natural reaction to stress is likely aggression. 511 Kinderheim twisted that into the Roberto we all know and love. Tenma, however, rarely lashes out at someone when they hurt him. He gets pissed when other people are hurt. Furthermore, Tenma tends to lash out at himself the most often, what with his perpetual guilt and all that. Most of this is due being strongly empathic, but Roberto had empathy once too. The difference lies in that Roberto is more aggressive when it comes to defending himself while Tenma is more cautious. This cautiousness not only stems from not wanting to hurt anyone, but also from not wanting to pick fights. However, when pushed, Tenma will defend himself like any other normal person.

Now, as for Grimmer and Tenma, they happen to have some similarities:

  • Both of them retain heroic traits despite having gone through hell. (Though Tenma certainly didn't have it as bad as Grimmer did.)
  • Both are strong willed.
  • Both must be pushed in order to react violently, and only then, it's a defensive act. (Grimmer's reaction is becoming "The Magnificent Steiner." Tenma's reaction is being able to shoot a gun, which he actually does a grand total of two times and possibly could have done it a third time had someone else not beat him to it. In all three instances, it's either him or someone else being threatened.)
  • Both have a capacity for intense anger, though neither person is very prone to it. (It's less noticeable with Tenma since he doesn't act on his anger, but the capacity for intensely feeling the emotion itself is there. Just look at his rant about Heinemann in the second episode.)
  • Given the above two points, both tend to be more cautious than aggressive.
  • Based on Grimmer's Character Development, it's likely that he was originally as empathic as Tenma. (A perfect demonstration of this is his scene with Milosh.)

Now, let's speculate about what actually happened to Grimmer in 511 Kinderheim. Obviously, his emotions were disabled and he developed a split personality. A plausible scenario is that Grimmer was resistant to the usual brainwashing methods that disabled the other children's emotions, mainly due to the strength of those emotions and sheer willpower. Having strong emotions certainly wouldn't be ideal for a "perfect soldier," so the researchers at Kinderheim came up with a "special" plan for Grimmer: They would subject him to especially heinous physical torture, hoping that the trauma would emotionally numb him and that he would develop a split personality that would be useful to them as a spy instead of a soldier. They specifically introduced "The Magnificent Steiner" cartoon to him in order to plant that alternate personality seed. In the end, Grimmer's survival instinct kicked in, causing him to react violently. However, since Grimmer had such strong empathy, he could not psychologically cope with having hurt another person. (For extra Nightmare Fuel, the torturer could have been a child himself and Grimmer ended up actually killing him. Or maybe Grimmer could have actually managed to kill an adult.) So he dissociated himself from the experience and forgot about what happened. He ended up attributing the event to "The Magnificent Steiner" due to the similarities between the show and what happened to him. Thus, the plan went off without a hitch and Grimmer reacted just as expected. In order to cement the alternate personality, however, he had to be tortured a few more times. In addition to all of this, Kinderheim's messing with memories also left Grimmer unable to remember his previous understanding of emotions, effectively disabling even cognitive empathy. The mechanism for empathy was still there, mind. That was evident when Grimmer started regaining his emotions and seemed more empathic. It's just that you can't empathize with someone if you can't even feel and understand your own emotions.

Given their similarities, who's to say that Tenma wouldn't have responded in the same way if he were sent to 511 Kinderheim as a child? A piece of evidence in Another Monster seems to point at Tenma being the kind of child that would try to resist 511 Kinderheim: The hide-and-seek incident. Some bullies scared Tenma while they were playing hide-and-seek and he happened to pee his pants. Tenma was not angry at the bullies. Rather, he was ashamed of himself, and wanted to face the situation again in order to conquer his fear. So would a young Tenma sent to 511 Kinderheim be scared to death? Absolutely. But would a young Tenma also try to endure the torture while finding some way to maintain his sanity for as long a period of time as possible? He probably would. He wouldn't be outwardly aggressive or anything. He'd just show less change in comparison to the other children, which would lead to the hypothetical Grimmer scenario explained above. Another thing is that the main thing that kept Tenma from killing Johan pre-Ruhenheim (and even there, if he had shot before Wim's dad, it would have been justified) was his compassion. His compassion was also, oddly enough, part of the reason he wanted to kill Johan-he didn't want any more innocent people to die. Compassion is what primarily motivates him. Take away Tenma's compassion, and he would simply be an empty, motiveless shell with only the most basic survival instincts. Which is basically what Grimmer is.

And now you know why Tenma and Grimmer were such bros, not to mention why it doesn't feel jarring when Grimmer takes over as the main character for about two volumes.

The series was intended as a greatly-expanded adaptation of the Bonanza episode, The Crucible.
In both cases, the hero (Dr. Tenma in the former and Adam Cartwright in the latter) express their philosophy about the value of human life near the opening of the story.

They then encounter a villain with a mysterious, troubled past (Johan and Lee Marvin's character respectively). This villain tries to provoke the hero into killing him in order to prove a point about human nature and challenge the hero's beliefs. Each villain repeatedly sets up situations where the hero has a chance to kill him. The hero, in turn, can be provoked to violent reactions, but keeps refusing to actually give into the villain's philosophy. Both end with the hero attempting to save the now-defeated villain's life in one last-ditch effort to defeat the villain's philosophy; while only Tenma succeeds in saving the villain's life, they both succeed in upholding their values and outlooks.

Could this all be a coincidence? Maybe...and maybe not.

  • Alternatively, Tenma is the reincarnation of Adam Cartwright and Johan is the reincarnation of villain.

Johan is PARIAH.

Johan is Discord.
In fact, MLP: FiM is Johan's comatose dream. He has mentally regressed to the age of 5 and has fully adopted Nina's personality. Discord is simply the remnant of his old personality.

Johan is a target by Death.

Everyone is in a Reaper's Game.
The players are Tenma, Nina, Lunge, and Eva.

Tenma is fairly the obvious one. He died from the overdose of alcohol after his life is in ruins.

Lunge has died in one of his investigations. For this, he must capture the Composer, who appears to be hiding within the players. He also has to deal with the fact that his obsession is ruining his game. Eva is in the same position as him.

Now for the Reapers: Johan is the Composer, Roberto is the Conductor and Christoff is the Game Master.

Johan is Walter Sullivan.
After he escaping from the hospital, Johan travels around the world. He stumbles into Silent Hill, an attraction that is abandoned. He then takes an interest in the cult and its practices. Upon learning of how they murder for their God, his already insane mind has cracked.

He then isolates himself from everyone and begins living in Silent Hill alone. In those days living there, his hair has become long and wears a coat, and begins his killings again under the name Walter Sullivan. The police has arrested him; this is part of Johan's plan to commit suicide while being locked up. He finally did it, but his murders in Silent Hill have been part of a ritual to brought him back as a ghost. His soul splits into two: the psychopathic adult (the Monster personality) and the normal child (the normal personality). Johan has transferred his dead body into Room 302 and plans again the murders to have someone kill the Monster personality. That's when Henry Townsend gets to do it and successfully killed that personality.

  • Alternatively, Johan is the reincarnation of Walter Sullivan.

Monster takes place in the same universe as Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne.
The town that Maron lives is similar to that setting. What else is that whenever she encounters someone with Demonic Possession, it's the representation of dealing with monsters. It's as if they're saying that the monster inside them is growing stronger. Miyako will act the same way as Inspector Lunge to the fact that her obsession towards Jeanne has almost ruined her life, not to mention her friendship with Maron.

Johan has, unknown to himself, developed a Reality Marble.
It's called the Scenery at the End of the World.

Johan is HUNK.
It would appear that after leaving the hospital, Johan goes to work as a mercenary for Umbrella. Disillusioned by how they work in the use of viruses, his mind has cracked even more and he begins to wear a gas mask to hide his face and is renamed as HUNK. In that persona, he is calm, but cracked.

Johan is Michael Myers.
This gives Myers his murderous tendencies, and easily labels him as a monster.

Johan's fascination with Tenma has to do with his mother.
He really meant it when he said that Tenma was like a father to him. To start off, even though he was the one that his mother *didn't* give him up, there is enough evidence to suggest that Johan believed that he was the true unwanted child and blamed himself for what happened to his sister. Next we have Tenma, someone who decided to save his life when given a choice not to, sacrificing his career to do so. And Tenma unambiguously meant to do it while proclaiming that all lives are equal. This went against everything Johan had learned in life, and for the first time he felt as if someone really cared about him. Yet he saw a discrepancy in Tenma's statements, as Tenma also wished for Heinemann to die. (Though we all know that he never really meant it.) Johan saw himself as the cause of Tenma's problems as well and also received more proof that no one is equal. To rectify the situation, he killed them to restore what Tenma had lost, just as he did with Nina/Anna by taking her memories. When he got older and met Tenma again he was obviously playing mind games with him, but his past with his mother was unconsciously influencing his actions. He screwed with Tenma's head not just because he wanted to test human nature, but because he wanted to see if Tenma would end up making a similar choice to what he believed his mother would have made. This fact became conscious once he started remembering what happened, and thus his entire plan in Ruhenheim was to reenact his mother's choice with Tenma as the stand in for a parental figure so that what he believed should have happened would occur.

Nina is Johan in drag
The real Anna committed suicide in front of Johan shortly after they escaped from the hospital. Unable to cope with that, brain-damaged, and already conditioned to look like and act like his sister, Johan developed a Split Personality modelled after Anna who went by the name Nina and believed herself to be the real thing. ( It wouldn't be the first time he confused his memories with hers.) Any time they are in the same scene, one of them is hallucinating the other's presence. As for how they can be in multiple places at once... well, it's Johan. If anyone can pull this WMG off, it's him.
  • So does this mean everything after Ruhenheim is his Dying Dream?

Johan has changed after the ending
Sort of. I'm not going to say he's done anything resembling a Heel–Face Turn, turned over a new leaf, or found a new lease on life. But hearing what Tenma said to him in the hospital, remembering how everything went down in RuhenheimEor the first time, I think Johan has to question his worldview. He has to re-evaluate his plans. Maybe, just maybe, he's been given an opportunity, a hope. Of course, this is interpretation is likely far too optimistic.
  • It's common for a person's personality to change after trauma to the brain.

Johan committed suicide in the end.
In the end, after Kenzo leaves him, Johan gets up from his hospital bed one last times, and with a smile, jumps out the window.Thus, an empty bed, flowing drapes, and a creepy yet oddly appropriate conclusion.

Jeremy Karne is the DCU version of Johan Liebert.
He strikes me as a version of Johan with a lot of screws loose...oh, and he actually did what Johan was made to do once.

Johan is part feline.
How else could he survive being shot in the head twice? He has nine lives!

Lunge's wife left him for Roberto.
When they were fighting in Ruhenheim, Roberto seemed to know an awful lot about Mrs. Lunge's new family, after all. This makes his taunts about the grandson all the more cruel. Also, it's just something Roberto would do, I guess.

Johan is really talking to himself when he converses with the orphan boy in Prague about his mother.

Johan's demeanor seems to change rather subtly when the little boy says his mother would recognize him even though he doesn't know what she looks like.

At the boy's response, Johan looks down and asks "What if she recognizes you, but pretends she doesn't?"

He then questions whether he was wanted and why he was abandoned. Johan then shows the boy a road that will take him to Germany. This is reminiscent of what Johan and Anna did after their mother abandoned them following the escape form the Red Rose Mansion, saying they would have to take care of each other.

In part, this seems to get at the root of Johan's utter nihilism - subconsciously, he thinks his mother hated him and rejected him and sees no purpose to life. No identity and no meaning to existence.

Johan traveled to the United States, and is now Hannibal (the TV version).

He's roughly the correct age. He's from Europe. He has mysterious sister issues. Johan is repeatedly referenced as the Antichrist, while Word of God hints that Hannibal may or may not be the devil in human form, just playing around with destroying humanity.

If Johan ever met Herr Drosselmeyer, he would be scared out of his wits
Of course he wouldn't show it (I picture him getting a little more tense in Drosselmeyer's presence) but think about it: Creepy old man who loves gambling with the lives of children and corrupting their minds? Obsession with fairy tales that have depressing endings? He'd be a dead wringer for the higher ups in 511 Kinderheim! Regardless of what he thinks of the whole thing, something tells me that Johan would NOT be happy in the presence of such a person.
Johan is Johan Liebert
Because it it had to be done.
Everybody is Johan.
Monster takes place after he wipes out the rest of humanity, and he is calculating exactly what everyone else would do just to pass the time.

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