|Actor||Richard Speight Jr.|
|Episode(s)|| As The Trickster:|
2.15 Tall Tales
3.11 Mystery Spot
5.08 Changing Channels
5.19 Hammer of the Gods
9.18 Meta Fiction
13.13 Devil's Bargain
13.17 The Thing
13.18 Bring 'em Back Alive
Shut your cake hole. You don't know anything about my family. I love my Father, my brothers. Love them. But watching them turn on each other? Tear at each other's throats? I couldn't bear it! Okay? So I left. And now it's happening all over again.
– Gabriel, 5.08 Changing Channels
- 1 History
- 2 Personality
- 3 Characteristics
- 4 Episodes
- 5 Gabriel in Lore
- 6 See also
- 7 Gabriel in Fandom
- 8 References
The youngest of the four archangels, Gabriel fought alongside God, Michael, Raphael, and Lucifer to imprison the Darkness rather than eliminating her and causing a disruption in the Cosmic Balance. Gabriel lived in Heaven until Michael and Lucifer's constant fighting over the creation of humanity caused him to seek refuge on Earth. He took an unnamed vessel and hid as a trickster, embracing the lifestyle of a demi-god and meting out "just deserts" to those he felt deserved punishment. During his time on Earth he became a friend to some of the real pagan gods he encountered; they know him as Loki.
He first encounters Dean and Sam Winchester in his guise as the Trickster. He antagonizes them from afar during their investigation, and survives their attempt on his life. A year later the Trickster traps them both in a time loop where Dean dies every Tuesday in different ways. He does this in an attempt to teach Sam that Dean cannot be saved from his deal, and to show him that Dean is his weakness, and his enemies will use this to manipulate him.
It is nearly two years later that Gabriel traps the brothers in an alternate reality made of TV shows, so that they will "learn to play their roles"; he insists that they fulfill their destinies as the vessels for Michael and Lucifer. Sam and Dean start to suspect that the Trickster is more than he appears to be, and when they trap him in a ring of burning holy oil, Gabriel reveals himself. He claims that he does not support either Michael or Lucifer, and that he only wants the fighting to end.
Later he sides with the Winchesters and confronts Lucifer using an illusion of himself as a distraction. Lucifer is able to see past the illusion, and stabs him with his own archangel blade. Despite this, Gabriel is able to leave a message for Sam and Dean on how to use the rings of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse to open Lucifer's Cage in order to capture him.
Metatron later uses an illusion of Gabriel to try to convince Castiel to play his role in Metatron's "story." When planning how to beat Amara, the Winchesters discuss the possibility of resurrecting Gabriel with God since it took the four archangels to help God defeat Amara the last time. However, God informs them that Gabriel and Raphael are both beyond his ability to resurrect in a timely manner.
Gabriel is later seen alive and imprisoned in the Needham Asylum where Asmodeus has been extracting his grace to power himself up and torturing him to keep him in line, even sewing his mouth shut. Ketch, who was working for Asmodeus at the time, rebels and rescues Gabriel and takes him, along with his archangel blade and the grace that was stolen from him, to the Men of Letters Bunker. Gabriel is unresponsive and in shock from the unending torture, but he is able to write a message to Sam and Castiel explaining how he is still alive. He reveals that when Lucifer stabbed "Gabriel", he was another illusion used to fake his death while the real Gabriel watched from a distance. After the Apocalypse ended, he retreated to Monte Carlo and shacked up with porn stars, using his "death" as an opportunity to start fresh without any obligations to God or Heaven. At some point, he was captured and delivered to Asmodeus. After some time under Sam and Castiel's care, Gabriel begins to return to normal, feeding on his extracted grace to power himself up. The Bunker is attacked by Asmodeus and his hench-demons who came to reclaim him. Gabriel powers up and kills Asmodeus and the demons. Afterwards, he departs, declining to join Team Free Will in saving the world despite their pleas.
As the Trickster, Gabriel behaved in a mischievous manner, enjoying his games. He embraced a hedonistic lifestyle, including the "sweet tooth" for which that type of demi-god was known. Even after revealing himself to be an angel, he still used misdirection to achieve his goals and to protect himself. He is often sarcastic. Gabriel's manner is the most human of any of the angels, perhaps because of his long sojourn on earth, and he has an appreciation of what humans can achieve.
Nothing is known of his vessel, though the pagan gods' familiarity with it indicates Gabriel has possessed him for a long time, possibly centuries.
Gabriel is the only archangel that appears in one vessel. Michael possessed John Winchester in 1978 and Adam Milligan; Raphael possessed Donnie Finnerman and an unknown female vessel; and Lucifer has possessed Nick, Sam Winchester, Castiel, Vince Vincente, and President Jefferson Rooney.
Powers and Abilities
- Teleport himself and others to any location, and can also banish or imprison lesser angels.
- See glimpses of the future.
- Create illusions, including copies of himself.
- Transform objects into something else, and transform the appearance of his vessel.
- Alter reality to create time loops/pocket universes; he also can choose who is aware of what is happening.
- Revive the dead.
- Harm other archangels
- Stop humans from talking.
- Pyrokinesis that enables him to light candles with just a thought and incinerate demons as powerful as the Prince of Hell Asmodeus.
- Instantaneous healing of all of his own injuries.
- Super strength that makes him stronger than humans, regular angels and demons.
- Holy fire can bind Gabriel to a fixed location.
- An archangel blade can kill Gabriel.
- Other archangels can harm Gabriel.
- It is possible to bind Gabriel with magical spells, as the goddess Kali did by using blood magic.
- Extracting an archangel's grace can weaken them, potentially even rendering them human.
Sam and Dean investigate a series of strange deaths based on urban legends, but have no success figuring out who is responsible. They unknowingly encounter Gabriel in disguise as the school's night janitor during the course of the investigation. It isn't until Bobby suggests that they are dealing with a Trickster, based on the number of tricks that have been played on the brothers, that they track him down. However, the "Trickster" is waiting for them, and he offers them a peaceful resolution so long as they let him leave to terrorize another town. Naturally, the Winchesters refuse and attack him, with the help of Bobby. However, the Trickster easily rebuffs them by conjuring beings (scantily clad women, chainsaw wielding psychopaths) to fight for him, while he sits back and enjoys the show that is put on before him. Nonetheless, Dean manages to stab him (a bloodied stake will kill a Trickster) while he is distracted, causing his creations to disappear and the fight to end. Although the hunters believe they bested him, the Trickster survives the ordeal, having created a copy of himself for Dean to kill.
Sam and Dean get caught in an infinite time loop where Dean dies each day in increasingly strange ways and only Sam remembers when the day restarts. Sam continually fails to save Dean despite his memory of the previous days. It is only after a hundred or so repetitions of the day that Sam realizes that it is the Trickster at work and manages to locate the culprit. He threatens their tormentor with a blood-covered stake, causing the Trickster to reveal himself and agree to break the loop. However, immediately after the loop is broken, Dean once again dies, and remains dead.
Throughout the next several months, Sam becomes a far colder and more calculated person as he attempts to track down the Trickster, killing whatever threat he can along the way. Eventually, it is the Trickster who calls the younger Winchester to him, where he tries to drive in a point: that the two brothers continually sacrificing themselves for one another would bring no good, and that their enemies will use this to manipulate them. Nonetheless, Sam pleads with him to turn back time to that Wednesday so that he can save Dean. Reluctantly, the Trickster agrees, lamenting that the whole situation had become boring months ago for him anyway.
The Trickster traps Sam and Dean in a series of TV shows in an attempt to drive home the lesson that they must play their roles as Michael and Lucifer's vessels. When Castiel tries to rescue them, the Trickster easily imprisons him. Sam and Dean finally work out that he is an angel and trap him in a ring of holy fire. He confirms that he is indeed the archangel known as Gabriel. A long time ago, he left Heaven to live on Earth, as he could no longer bear the sight of his brothers fighting each other. He then tells the Winchesters that they are destined to be the vessels of his brothers, as they mirror the relationship between Michael and Lucifer. He says he's sorry they couldn't have a happy TV show-like ending, but it's a destiny they must face. The brothers refuse to accept this, and begin to leave. Gabriel calls after them and asks if they really plan to leave him there forever. Dean replies that they wouldn't, since they don't "mess with people" like he does. Dean then extinguishes the fire by turning on the fire sprinklers, and leaves Gabriel with a final thought: in the end, this wasn't about his brothers' fight or about the Winchesters' destiny, but how the archangel was too much of a coward to stand up to his family.
Gabriel turns up at the meeting of the gods who are trying to work out a way to stop the Apocalypse. They know him as Loki, the Trickster, and don't realize he is an archangel. Gabriel explains to Sam and Dean that he is there to save them, and he once had a relationship with Kali, and doesn't want her, or the other gods, killed. Gabriel tells Sam and Dean that Kali has bound Sam and Dean to her with a blood spell. He goes to her room, pretending to romance her in an attempt to retrieve the boys' blood, but she is not fooled by his ruse and draws his blood, binding Gabriel to her also.
In front of the other gods, Kali reveals that Gabriel is an archangel, and she uses what she thinks is his archangel blade to stab him. He appears to die, but instead sneaks out of the hotel. While hiding in the Impala, he tells Dean to get their blood from Kali so they can escape. Dean suspects that he cares for the other gods, but Gabriel is unable or unwilling to use his blade to kill Lucifer.
Lucifer arrives at the hotel some time later and kills most of the gods. He is about to kill Kali when Gabriel intervenes. He tells Lucifer that he has no legitimate grievance, and he is only jealous that humanity replaced him in God's affections. Gabriel says he is not on Lucifer's side, or Michael's, but that he has come to agree with God, that humanity is better than them, noting that they are a flawed race that at least tries to do better when they fail. Gabriel then tries to kill Lucifer with his archangel blade, sneaking up on him from behind while a Gabriel copy is speaking. However, Lucifer recognizes the trick, claiming he taught his "little brother" everything, and turns the sword on the "real" Gabriel, killing him. Lucifer is shown to grieve for his brother's death, staring down at his body where his wings and halo have burned onto the floor and the tables.
It is revealed in 13.18 Bring 'em Back Alive that Lucifer didn't kill the real Gabriel, that it was another replica he stabbed and the real Gabriel escaped.
After their escape, Sam and Dean play a Casa Erotica DVD that Gabriel gave Dean. In it, Gabriel tells them they may be able to re-imprison Lucifer, and that the keys to his cage are the four rings of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.
Gabriel, who was believed to be dead, makes his presence known to Castiel through Casa Erotica 14, eventually manifesting in his motel room, asking him for help against Metatron. When Cas asked how he was alive, Gabriel said, "Please, you can't take the trick out of the Trickster." He said he was in and cast out of "the safest place in the universe -- Heaven." He tells Cas that Metatron is using the Horn of Gabriel to lure the angels by making them believe that it was Heaven when it was actually a trap by Metatron and Gadreel. When they decide to stop at a Gas-N-Sip, a group of Metatron loyalists quickly descend upon them. Before they can enter the gas station Gabriel tells Castiel that he still has some of his archangel mojo left, and will hold them off so Cas can make his escape. However Castiel realizes that the whole thing is an illusion by the fact that he had ripped his coat earlier, but in the Gas-N-Sip there was no hole. Gabriel pleads with Cas to hear Metatron out, that he is really trying to help him. However he isn't able to specify how, as he only skimmed through his parts of script. Before Gabriel leaves, Cas asks him if he is really dead, but receives only a trademark smirk and eyebrow wriggle in response from Gabriel before he snaps his fingers and teleports Cas to Metatron's office.
When the Winchesters, Chuck, and Lucifer try to formulate a plan of attack against Amara, the suggestion of bringing in the other archangels is shot down by God, who claims that Michael is in no condition to fight and that it is out of His power to bring back Gabriel and Raphael, as archangels are made of pure primordial creation, and to resurrect them would take time that they do not have.
After Asmodeus reveals that he has found the archangel blade, Mr. Ketch reminds him that the lore says that the weapon can only be wielded by an archangel. Asmodeus leads Ketch to a cell where a figure is sitting, battered and with his mouth sewn shut. Asmodeus introduces Mr. Ketch to the Archangel Gabriel, somehow still alive after being stabbed by Lucifer.
Summoned by Asmodeus but then forced to wait interminably for audience, Ketch barges into the throne room to find Asmodeus extracting grace from a cowering Gabriel and injecting himself with it. Gabriel is then locked away in his cage in the throne room where he witnesses Ketch being violently assaulted by Asmodeus. When Ketch decides to make his escape, he breaks Gabriel free, taking the archangel blade and a vial of Gabriel's grace. Gabriel struggles as Ketch tries to lead him out of the asylum; when a demon guard arrives, Gabriel cowers away as Ketch kills it with the archangel blade before dragging Gabriel away to their escape.
Ketch brings Gabriel to the Men of Letters Bunker, where he offers Gabriel, a vial of archangel grace, and the blade in exchange for sanctuary from Asmodeus. Later Sam begins the process of removing the stitches which have kept Gabriel's mouth sealed. Gabriel watches on as Dean and Ketch go into Apocalypse World.
After being brought to the Bunker, Gabriel is unresponsive to Sam and Castiel's inquiries and refuses to be given his grace. He eventually tells his story, writing it in Enochian on the walls of his room. Castiel translates the writings -- the story begins at Gabriel's supposed death at the hands of Lucifer in the Elysian Fields Hotel. The Gabriel which Lucifer stabbed was in fact the fake, while the real Gabriel watched from a distance. Seeing his "death" as an opportunity be free of any obligations to God, Heaven, or mankind, Gabriel moved to Monte Carlo and "shacked up" with porn stars. At some point in time, Gabriel was captured and delivered to Asmodeus, who for years subjected him to endless torture as his grace was taken to make Asmodeus stronger.
Sam eventually has enough of his silence and makes an impassioned plea to Gabriel. He tells him that "hookers and Monte Carlo" sound great, but that his family needs him, the world needs him, they need him, and Sam needs him. As Sam is about to leave the room, Gabriel speaks his first words since his rescue, telling him, "Porn stars. They were porn stars, Sam." Gabriel is then given a vial of his grace, but is unsure if its effects have done anything. When the power surges inside Gabriel, Asmodeus, connected to Gabriel's grace by virtue of his repeated consumption of it, is able to sense it. He places a call to Sam, demanding he give up Gabriel or else he will attack the Bunker. Sam refuses to give Gabriel up, strengthening the Bunker's warding in preparation for Asmodeus' incursion. The warding fails, and Asmodeus and his demons enter the Bunker and retrieve Gabriel. As Gabriel is being dragged away, he witnesses Asmodeus attempting to slowly kill Sam and Castiel, and he manages to overpower the demons holding him. This grabs the attention of Asmodeus, who tells Gabriel he is too weak to do anything to him. Gabriel's eyes begin to glow with angelic light, his wounds become instantly healed, and he unleashes his wings to a shocked Asmodeus. He throws a blast of energy at Gabriel, which the archangel easily deflects. Telling Asmodeus how much he has always hated his suit, Gabriel incinerates him with a gesture.
With Asmodeus dead, Gabriel gets caught up to everything that has happened regarding Jack, Apocalypse World, and Michael. Gabriel, however, politely declines to join the fight, telling Sam the last time the world was going to end he put his money on Sam and Dean and he thinks they can pull it off again, before teleporting away.
Gabriel in Lore
Lore portrays Gabriel in a variety of classes and ranks. In some religious books, he is described as an angel while others cast him as an archangel. In either case he serves as a messenger of God, particularly delivering prophecies and visions to prophets. His name (גַּבְרִיאֵל, Gavri'el) means the "Strength of God".
He first appears in the Book of Daniel, delivering explanations of Daniel's visions. In the Gospel of Luke Gabriel foretold the births of both John the Baptist and of Jesus. Christians of the Catholic traditions refer to him as Saint Gabriel the Archangel.
Islam believes that Gabriel ( also called Jibrīl or Jibrail) was the medium through whom God revealed the Qur'an to Muhammad, and that he sent a message to most prophets, if not all, revealing their obligations. He is called the chief of the four favored angels and the spirit of truth.
He is called the created Holy Spirit (Islam) that spoke to Muhammad, which is not to be confused with the Holy Spirit of God in Christianity who is revered as God Himself.
In Rabbinic traditions Gabriel is one of the four sarei ha-panim, high angels that stand at the Throne of Glory, with Gabriel standing at the left hand of God. He is the angel of revelation, a role he fills in Christian and Islamic traditions also, as well as the Prince of Fire (I Enoch; Dev. R. 5). The color red is linked to Gabriel, signifying he is a manifestation of God’s Judgment (Sitre Torah, Zohar 1:99a), he is also listed among the six angels of death; his role is to function as the messenger of death for kings.
Gabriel is also mentioned in Bahá'í Faith texts, specifically in Bahá'u'lláh's mystical work Seven Valleys.
In Enoch 10:13 Gabriel was the one who instigated wars among the Giants (the children of the Watchers), as God commended him to "Let them perish under mutual slaughter; for length of days shall not be theirs." While Enoch 40:9 states that Gabriel presides over "all that is powerful."
According to the Biblical verses which specifically refer to him, Gabriel is likened to a mortal male, but is sometimes portrayed as androgynous or female, as in some New Age beliefs or contemporary art imagery.
Gabriel in Fandom
- God and Gabe comics and art by Scoutstiel
- Spn_Gabriel - LJ community for Gabriel
- Rec list of Gabriel fic
- CW Source Interview Richard about Gabriel after Changing Channels
- Richard Interview about Gabriel 2009 Chicago Con
- Interview with Richard Speight on the death of Gabriel
- "It’s All About The Brothers" Richard interview, 2011 San Francisco Convention
- Online petition to bring back Gabriel
- @AwolArchangel - Gabriel roleplaying account on Twitter
- @ChocoLovinAngel on Twitter and on Tumblr