Angel Cuffs

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Handcuffs with binding sigils etched into them.

Colloquially referred to as "angel cuffs", these handcuffs are etched with various sigils that act as binding links to nullify the powers of angels. Despite being referred to as "angel cuffs", the spellwork eteched into them is also effective in restraining demons and reapers. They prevent the entities from using their powers, reduce their strength, prevent teleportation, and in the case of demons and angels, prevent them from vacating their vessels.

Archangels have shown an immunity to the spellwork on the handcuffs, and are typically able to shrug them off. However, the Bobby Singer of Apocalypse World was able to modify the cuffs, making them capable of temporarily restraining an archangel's powers, including those of Michael.


8.22 Clip Show

The cuffs are seen amongst the various restraints found in the Bunker's dungeon by the Winchesters.

8.23 Sacrifice

Sam and Dean use a pair of handcuffs that have been etched with various sigils to keep Crowley from smoking out of his meatsuit or teleporting away.

9.02 Devil May Care

Crowley is shown in the Bunker's dungeon to still be bound using the binding linked handcuffs, as well as other restraints with spell work etched into them.

9.03 I'm No Angel

Sam and Dean use the handcuffs on the rogue reaper Maurice, as a means to keep him tethered to the Earthly plane, and extract information from him.

9.04 Slumber Party

Crowley is once again shown to be locked up in the Bunker's dungeon when he meets the Wicked Witch of the West, who is unable to free him from his restraints, as the dungeon is warded against all supernatural beings.

9.06 Heaven Can't Wait

Crowley is still locked up in the dungeon, wearing the handcuffs.

9.10 Road Trip

Crowley is freed from the Men of Letters dungeon to help expel Gadreel from Sam's body, but only on the condition he needs to wear the binding handcuffs. Later when he talks to Cecily, he shows her the cuffs and asks if they can be removed, to which she replies, "Not without the key." Later, Crowley also wears a collar that apparently serves the same purpose as he can't leave his meatsuit with it on.

9.14 Captives

Sam and Dean use the binding handcuffs to hold Del after capturing him.

9.16 Blade Runners

After finding Crowley addicted to human blood, Sam and Dean slap the handcuffs on him to force him to detox.

9.18 Meta Fiction

The handcuffs are used on Gadreel when he is captured by Sam and Dean.

9.22 Stairway to Heaven

When Dean confronts the reaper Tessa, and realizes she has carved an Enochian rune in her chest and plans to "blow herself up." He is able to place the handcuffs on her before a fight can ensue between the two.

9.23 Do You Believe in Miracles?

After Castiel has destroyed the angel tablet, Metatron appears in his office and places handcuffs etched with binding sigils on Cas, restraining him in a chair. They are removed by Metatron's former loyalists when they turn on him after discovering the truth.

10.01 Black

Dar is shown to be bound with the handcuffs as Sam is torturing her for information.

10.02 Reichenbach

Sam is able to subdue Dean after his fight with Cole, and place him in the handcuffs.

10.03 Soul Survivor

Dean is still in the handcuffs when Sam places him in the devil's trap in the Bunker's dungeon. Dean is later able to slip out of the handcuffs, as well as out of the devil's trap, when he becomes human enough.

10.17 Inside Man

Metatron is hauled out of Heaven's prison in a pair of handcuffs etched with binding sigils.

10.18 Book of the Damned

Though he is now human, Metatron is still shackled with the handcuffs. When they reach the library holding Castiel's grace, Castiel removes the handcuffs so that Metatron can help him locate the grace.

11.01 Out of the Darkness, Into the Fire

After being found by Efram and Jonah, Castiel is placed in a set of the cuffs that are linked by a long chain rather than the typical shorter chain. In a warehouse, Efram hooks the chain to a hook and the angels place a bag over Castiel's head.

11.02 Form and Void

Castiel is immobilized with the handcuffs while he is tortured by the angels Efram and Jonah for information on the location of Metatron. However, due to the influence of Rowena's Attack Dog Spell, he is able to break free of their influence and uses his telekinesis to push out the pins in his head and fight back. During the fight, Castiel is able to use the cuffs to his advantage, catching Jonah's angel blade with the chain linking the cuffs before turning the weapon on Jonah. During his fight with Efram, Castiel briefly uses the chain to strangle the other angel before he breaks free.

11.03 The Bad Seed

For protection until they can find a way to reverse the Attack Dog Spell, Sam and Dean bind Castiel to the bunker floor using the cuffs attached to a long chain. However, Castiel breaks free again when the spell takes him over.

11.06 Our Little World

Sam uses the handcuffs on the demon Jervis after overpowering him with the help of a distraction by Dean. After two more demons confront Sam, he chooses to put away his angel blade in favor of using the cuffs to restrain him, but is outmatched. Sam is eventually forced to kill one of the demons with his angel blade, but after overpowering the second he hesitates. Sam finally decides to use the cuffs on the demon rather than the blade and is pleased that he got "two out of three" with the cuffs instead of having to kill them all.

12.07 Rock Never Dies

Dean attempts to place Lucifer in the angel cuffs, however Lucifer is easily able to bypass the warding and shrug the handcuffs off.

The angel cuffs' sigils glow as Michael is restrained.

13.13 Devil's Bargain

While forming a plan to capture Lucifer and steal his remaining grace to open a rift to Apocalypse World, Sam states that he believes that in his weakened state, Lucifer could be restrained with the angel cuffs.

13.22 Exodus

To keep Lucifer in check, Castiel forces him to wear angel cuffs to keep his power bound. Lucifer agrees, but when the group comes across a contingent of angels, Lucifer smites them with a snap, revealing that the cuffs do not work on him while in Apocalypse World as they melt off his wrists.

14.10 Nihilism

After Bobby does some tinkering with the angel cuffs, he is able to improve them, allowing for the cuffs to hold an archangel, and giving Sam a chance to restrain Michael and bring him to the Bunker.

14.14 Ouroboros

After Michael escapes from Dean's mind and possesses Rowena, Dean orders Sam to get the angel cuffs so that they can restrain Michael and throw him in the Ma'lak Box. However, Michael attacks and prevents them from doing so.

15.08 Our Father, Who Aren't in Heaven

After Michael is trapped in a ring of holy fire by Castiel, the Winchesters appear and bind the archangel with the cuffs. Having been upgraded to hold the Apocalypse World Michael, they prove capable of containing his counterpart from their world. However, Michael still displays the ability to use a few of his powers, causing the ground to shake while distressed over God's betrayals and opening a portal to Purgatory. After getting the spell they need, Dean releases Michael from the cuffs and allows the archangel to leave.

15.14 Last Holiday

After significantly weakening Jack with magically tainted smoothies, Mrs. Butters places him in a pair of angel cuffs and locks him in the Bunker dungeon. Not wanting Jack to use his powers to break free, Dean attempts to break the cuffs by using the archangel blade, which only causes a shockwave that sends Jack crashing into the cabinet. Dean does this again, positioning Jack in front of the locked door, freeing them from the dungeon.

See also