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You called "ass-butt" and set me on fire. And then you helped send me to hell.
~ Michael to Castiel
Father, no. That was a lapse of judgment, I admit, but I swear I...
~ Michael to God

Michael is the secondary antagonist in season 5, and an anti-hero in the fifteenth and final season of the TV show Supernatural. He is the first and oldest of the four Archangels created by God, making him the very first angel ever created, as well as one of the oldest and most powerful beings in the universe. During the War In Heaven in the distant past, Michael banished Lucifer from Heaven on God's command, later restricting him to a Cage bound by 66 Seals. He was the Viceroy of Heaven in God's absence and commanded the Heavenly Host before he fell into the Cage with Lucifer. As the highest-ranking Archangel, he issued the commands, which went to the higher-ranking angels to disperse the orders down across the angelic chain.

Once again, Michael appears at Season 13, but this time, he comes from an alternate universe who seeks to conquer the main universe. However, the alternate version is more chaotic and ruthless, even controversially more powerful than the original Michael claimed by Lucifer and eventually he appears as the main antagonist in Seasons 13 and 14.

Michael is the first, and the most powerful, of the four Archangels, the older brother of Lucifer, Raphael, and Gabriel.

He was portrayed by Matthew Cohen and later Jake Abel because of his ability to possess people. In season 13, his alternate self is portrayed by Christian Keyes and later Jensen Ackles while possessing Dean Winchester.

In season 15, this version of Michael finally escaped from Lucifer's Cage after God threw open all of the doors in Hell. Having changed from his time in the Cage, Michael loses much of his antagonism and even shares control with his vessel Adam Milligan. He later allies with the Winchesters against God after learning the truth, though he refuses to directly fight his father. After God wipes out all other life on Earth, Michael agrees to help directly, but later tries to become God's favorite by warning him of the Winchesters' plan. Enraged God destroys the archangel for betrayal. But the Winchesters anticipated Michael betraying them and used the archangel to lure God into a trap that rendered him powerless.

Personality

Michael sees himself as a good and loyal son to his father, and that matters most to him. Despite his love for Lucifer, Michael insists that he is only serving his father by destroying his brother. He seems to think himself magnanimous when he promises to leave Dean whole and not catatonic, after serving as a vessel and by erasing John and Mary Winchester's memories of their ordeal with Anna.

His insistence that his actions merely serve God is not absolutely true, as he blames Lucifer for the loss of their father and is furious with him. He also becomes furious with anyone who interferes with his destiny, including Anna Milton and Dean at Stull Cemetery. When Lucifer suggested that they refuse to fight and "walk off the chessboard" Michael considered abandoning his destiny for a moment, before staying steadfast in his resolve to fight Lucifer. It is this stubborn insistence on fulfilling his story as written that leads him into imprisonment in the Cage.

Though Michael cares about humanity in general, he was willing to potentially sacrifice half of the population of the world to defeat Lucifer like he believed God wanted. When talking to Zachariah about his final plan to convince Dean to say "yes," Michael showed little care for the humans who died in the bar Zachariah was drinking in as a result of Michael appearing in his true form. However, after a diner full of people witnessed Michael smite Lilith, he simply erased their memories of the incident rather than takes more drastic measures, showing that he is not needlessly cruel nor does he needlessly take a human life if he can avoid it.

Michael's relationship with Lucifer is stated to mirror that of Sam and Dean's. While talking with Dean, Michael professes love for Lucifer, even after all that his brother has done, having raised his younger sibling much like Dean raised Sam and even admits that killing Lucifer would be hard for him. Despite his anger at Lucifer, when they meet again in Stull Cemetery, Michael admits to being genuinely glad to see his brother again in a softer moment before he and Lucifer prepare to engage in battle. The formerly close relationship between the two can be seen by Lucifer's furious reaction to Castiel's subsequent attack on Michael with holy fire. However, despite this, at some point, Michael created the Lance of Michael, a weapon he intended to kill Lucifer slowly and painfully. After his escape from Hell, Michael only truly snaps when Castiel accuses Lucifer of being the smarter of the two archangels for knowing that God can't be trusted, using Lucifer against Michael. This results in Michael, who had previously remained relatively calm despite his anger and frustration, physically attacking his younger brother.

After being trapped in the Cage, Michael is stated to have gone insane by both Lucifer and God. After God's betrayal, Dean suspects both were lying and Michael is in fact demonstrated to retain his sanity. Following his escape from the Cage, Michael is left directionless and unsure of his place in the world. However, he remains as stubborn as ever, refusing to accept the truth about his father. When pushed by Adam, Michael admits that if he doubts God, he feels it would be a betrayal of all that he is. Michael's refusal to hear the truth goes so far as Michael behaving like a petulant child and relinquishing control to Adam just so that he didn't have to listen to it. After seeing Castiel's memories of his father and learning that he is not the only Michael as he had believed, Michael becomes disillusioned with his father and provides the means to trap God. However, he refuses to help further, not wanting to be directly involved in fighting his father.

Due to his time in the Cage alone with Adam Milligan, Michael has developed a unique relationship with his vessel for an angel. Whereas most angels and archangels in particular only view and operate their vessels as tools to manifest on Earth and don't appear to think of them as anything more than that, Michael has begun actively engaging with Adam, even on Earth. Having reached an agreement with each other in the Cage where all they had was each other, Michael is willing to share control with Adam. Michael states an intention to use Adam as a guide in the changing world where they are both adrift, having been gone for so long that neither Adam nor Michael truly knows what to do with themselves anymore. Michael appears to have become protective over his vessel, angry at Dean for abandoning Adam in the Cage while letting Lucifer go free and Michael and Adam even appear to have become friends. Notably, Adam is able to argue with Michael fearlessly who responds back with more sincerity than he showed with anyone else, even opening up to Adam about his fears that doubting God would mean Michael betraying everything he has been and believed in.

Like most angels, Michael has an extremely low view of demons. When encountering Lilith, whom he had in the past worked with to bring about the Apocalypse, Michael is incredulous at the idea that God would send "a speck of infernal bile" to retrieve him and smites Lilith when she gets on his nerves too much.

Season 5

In The Song Remains the Same Michael first manifests when Sam, Dean and Castiel have traveled back to 1978 to stop Anna Milton from killing John and Mary Winchester in order to prevent Sam’s birth, and thus his use as Lucifer’s vessel and preventing the Apocalypse from starting. Michael comes to John while Anna is attacking, and John consents when Michael says he can stop Anna from killing Mary. Michael incinerates Anna with a touch, and banishes Uriel back to Heaven, and sends Mary to sleep. Alone with Dean, Michael explains that while Dean is his true vessel, he's not his only vessel as he can use others from Dean's bloodline. He also tells Dean his need of the Apocalypse and having a final battle. Michael tells him that his relationship with Lucifer mirrored Dean's relationship with Sam, and while he doesn't want to kill his brother, he will because he believes it to be justice. Michael believes that he is a good son who has to do what his father tells him to do because he believes it to be an absolute in any situation.

While Dean tries to counter him because of his experiences with his family, Michael insists that everything he is doing isn't random. He says everything happened from John and Mary's birth, their union, and conceiving Sam and Dean is all part of a pre-ordained plan playing itself out perfectly and he knew from the beginning that the story will end when he kills Lucifer. Michael says that "free will is an illusion," and that is why he will eventually receive his consent, though he won't leave Dean in a catatonic state when he's done using him as a vessel. He plans to erase Mary and John's memories of meeting Sam and Dean, under the pretense of giving Mary the life she wants. While Dean protests against it because of her death in 1983, Michael says that Dean knew that Mary's death was inevitable whether she knows the truth or not. He then heals Sam and returns him to the present. He says he'll see Dean soon before sending him back to the future. After erasing John and Mary's memories, he dispossesses John and returns to Heaven.

In Swan Song After Lucifer joins with his true vessel, Sam, Michael appears in Stull Cemetery outside of Lawrence, Kansas, to confront Lucifer for the final battle. Lucifer tries to convince Michael that they need not fight, but Michael is adamant that he be a "good son" to their Father, and is determined to kill his brother. Before they can begin, however, Dean arrives and demands to speak to Sam. Michael protests his presence, telling him he no longer has a place on the field. But before he can do anything about it, Castiel hurls a holy oil Molotov at the archangel, forcing him to vanish for several minutes. When Michael returns, Sam has managed to regain control of his body and has opened the gate to Lucifer's Cage. Michael demands a fight but Sam throws himself into the portal. Michael grabs hold of Sam to stop him from falling, but is dragged down into the pit along with him, the portal closing behind them.

Season 15

In Our Father, Who Aren't in Heaven From the demon tablet, the Winchesters learn that God has a secret fear that he only shared with his favorite which they realize means Michael. Though both God and Lucifer claimed Michael to be insane, Dean suspects they might have been lying and the Winchesters and Castiel travel into Hell to search for Michael. However, they quickly learn that Michael is nowhere to be found in Hell.

On Earth, Michael allows Adam to have control as his vessel enjoys a burger in a diner. Michael, manifesting as an identical duplicate of Adam, admits that he doesn't know what to do now with the other archangels dead and God is gone from Heaven. He tells Adam he sees him as his guide in the new world and the two commiserate over having difficult families. As they discuss what to do next, Lilith arrives looking for Michael on God's orders. Instantly taking control, Michael is skeptical of the demon's claims and intentions and smites her in a flash of white light when she insists. Noticing that the entire diner witnessed his actions, Michael erases their memories with a snap of his fingers.

After getting rid of Lilith, Michael begins bouncing all over the globe, finally ending up in Cairo, Egypt with prophet Donatello Redfield sensing his movements. Castiel reaches out to Michael through prayer, asking for him to come, acknowledging their past and the greater war that is taking place against God. Michael agrees to meet with Castiel in a factory, but is less than pleased to see his brother, as Castiel called him assbut and set him on fire before helping send Michael to Hell. As Michael speculates if Castiel has come to beg forgiveness, Castiel surrounds the archangel in a ring of holy fire. The Winchesters soon enter with the angel cuffs, Michael angrily demands to know what Castiel has done.

Taken back to the Men of Letters Bunker in handcuffs, Michael calls their actions stupid and starts to comment on how Sam looks compared to the last time Michael saw him in the Cage. Sam cuts Michael off and insists that they need his help. Michael is incredulous that they want him to trust them when Castiel doomed him to Hell and Dean let Lucifer walk free while Adam was trapped. Sam explains that with what they do, they have gotten too used to losing people and with Adam they said goodbye because they thought they had to but were wrong. Michael then returns control to Adam, surprising the Winchesters that Michael lets Adam have control. Adam explains that he and Michael reached an agreement in the Cage where they only had each other.

Michael quickly retakes control and demands to know why he is there. Sam and Dean explain that they need his help because God is back and while Michael thinks God will bring paradise. Dean tells him that paradise is boring, and God only wants to be entertained meaning they are all his puppets, especially Michael. Michael refuses to listen, claiming that they are lying and returns control to Adam who states that Michael isn't listening. Alone, Adam attempts to convince Michael that the Winchesters might be right, pointing out that while he doesn't forgive them, they always try to be on the right side and maybe Michael doesn't know his father as well as he thinks. Adam finally gets Michael to admit that he won't consider the truth as it would mean that Michael -- the good son, the favorite -- doubts his father which is against everything Michael has been and believed in his whole life. Adam questions if Michael really still believes that after God abandoned him in Lucifer's Cage.

When Castiel returns, Michael has retaken control and refuses to betray his father and everything he believes in. Castiel tells the archangel that he never really liked him, even when he was just another angel. Castiel always thought Michael to be too haughty and "to paraphrase a friend, you had an entire oak tree shoved up your ass." Castiel now pities Michael as he was never God's favorite but just a tiny part of God's story and figures that at least Lucifer knew that God couldn't be trusted. Enraged, Michael attacks Castiel who shows the archangel his memories of God's betrayal, the fight with the Darkness, the murder of Jack and the Apocalypse World Michael.

Disillusioned, Michael later causes the Bunker to shake and agrees to help. Michael provides Dean and Castiel with the spell that can lock God away, but it requires a Leviathan Blossom which only grows in Purgatory. With a snap of his fingers, Michael opens a twelve hour portal, but refuses to come with them and help further. Dean removes the handcuffs and at Dean's request, Michael returns control to Adam so that Dean can apologize to his brother before Adam and Michael depart.

In Inherit the Earth Jack leads the Winchesters to a church after sensing another presence. In the church, they find Michael who expresses surprise that they survived. Michael explains that when the Rapture first began, he took refuge in the church, St. Michael's. Michael is sure that Chuck knows he took their side against his father and so avoided using any powers that might attract God's attention. Michael sadly reveals that Adam died with the rest of humanity and wonders how the Winchesters and Jack survived. Dean explains that God thought it would hilarious to watch the three of them on an empty planet and so spared the Winchesters and Jack.

Noticing the open Bibles, Sam asks if Michael has been doing some reading and the archangel explains that he never spent much time on Earth and so he was curious about the perception of God and Heaven. Michael comments on how the believers amazingly loved God and have for thousands of years. Michael notes that his efforts were more effective than he had hoped, explaining that when God left Heaven, Michael was certain of his return so the archangel made sure that all of the other angels and Prophets burnished his image on Earth, "the all-knowing and all-seeing and all-caring God." Michael huffs a laugh when Dean calls him "Daddy's boy" and Jack asks what Michael intends to do know that he's seen what his father has done. Michael just looks down and Dean reminds him that they reached out to Michael only to have the archangel ignore them. "That was then, this is now. Tell me what you need me to do," states Michael.

The Winchesters and Jack leads Michael back to the bunker where they unveil Chuck's Death Book for the archangel. Dean explains that the book is about God and how to kill them, but Sam adds that as far as they know, only Death can open it. Sam expresses hope that Michael can also open the book and with his eyes and hand glowing, Michael attempts to open the book. However, even Michael can't get the book open.

Later, Michael enters the main room, shocked to find a resurrected Lucifer there playing with a stack of cards. Lucifer knocks over the cards and Michael demands if the Winchesters are seriously thinking about trusting his brother. Dean states that they aren't exactly trusting Lucifer and Lucifer insists that he gets his brother's bitterness since Michael got no better from God than Lucifer despite everything that Michael did for their father. Michael insists that he did what he did because it was the right thing to do and not to gain their father's love. Lucifer tells Michael that God had no love to give, not to him, not to Michael and not to humanity and asks if he sees that now.

The conversation is interrupted by Betty who informs them that she has opened the book and all that they want is in there and she knows how God ends. As Betty begins to read the book, Lucifer snaps his fingers and turns her to ash, pulling the book to him with telekinesis. Lucifer then reveals that he's actually working for God and that he's "sort of the new favorite now" and taunts Michael. Lucifer flings the charging Winchesters with telekinesis and teleports away from the enraged Michael's charge. The two fling energy blasts at each other with Lucifer dodging Michael's blast and knocking his brother to the ground. Lucifer offers Jack the chance to join him and God on the winning team, stating that its Jack's only chance as Jack is not strong enough to fight him now. Lucifer realizes that someone's behind him and turns around to find Michael. His eyes glowing red, Lucifer taunts his brother that Michael never learns. Michael stabs Lucifer with an archangel blade, killing him once again. This time, Lucifer blasts into ashes instead of leaving behind remains. Michael then thanks Sam for giving him the archangel blade to kill his brother with.

Dean later finds Michael in the kitchen and asks after the archangel's state. Michael admits that he's a bit winded, having not been in a battle like that in several centuries. Dean tells Michael that he's glad that Michael was there and that Chuck is getting desperate, knowing that something is up and wouldn't take the chance of showing up personally. Michael acknowledges this and is stunned that his father resurrected Lucifer and didn't even reach out to Michael. Dean questions if Michael wanted Chuck to reach out to him and Michael insists that he didn't and that Chuck obviously knows the Death book could be lethal to him, but its useless without Death to read it. Dean tells Michael that its at least open now and Sam recognized some of the symbols and writing as being some form of Enochian. As such, Sam is going to try to use the Book of the Damned to try to figure out the End.

Later, Michael enters the library where Dean and Jack are researching with a book and asks if Sam is making any progress. Dean tells Michael that he hopes so since Sam has been busy for a long time and Sam enters. Sam tells the group that he thinks he was able to piece together the spell from the Book of the Damned that can help them which must be done in a particular place at an exact angle from the sun and it will release an unstoppable force that will find Chuck and finish him.

The group travels to the location at a lakeside where Sam performs the spell, sending blue light into the sky that then vanishes. As the Winchesters wonder what went wrong, Chuck appears behind the group and tosses Sam, Dean and Jack aside with telekinesis. Michael and God greet each other for the first time in millennia and Chuck thanks Michael for the heads-up about the Winchesters' plans and Michael states that it has always been his destiny to serve his father. However, Chuck tells Michael that its a bit too late for that and that the archangel had sided with the Winchesters before and Chuck can't forgive that. Michael desperately tries to defend his actions, but Chuck orders him to save it. Extending his hand at the archangel, God causes Michael to glow from the inside before exploding in a wave of energy.

After rendering God powerless, the Winchesters reveal that they came up with a plan to use Michael to get at God after seeing how angry Michael was at God using Lucifer to get to the book. As a result, they realized that Michael was desperate to be God's favorite again. In addition, the plan to turn Jack into a bomb to kill Chuck had turned Jack into a sort of power vacuum. When Michael and Lucifer fought and Michael killed Lucifer, Jack absorbed the power coming off of them and was charged up greatly as a result. In addition, Jack absorbed the power given off by Michael's death which, combined with the power given off by God beating on the Winchesters, made Jack unstoppable and capable of taking God's power from him.

Powers and Abilities

  • Nigh-Omnipotence: As the oldest Archangel and the very first angel that God ever created, Michael is immeasurably powerful, he has an unimaginable levels of power, and his power level is nearly completely infinite and unlimited, making him the most powerful celestial being that God created. He is one of the oldest and most powerful beings in the universe, as well as one of the oldest and most powerful beings in all of existence. He is immeasurably more powerful than the younger archangels Gabriel and Raphael, and even more powerful than Lucifer. He is also infinitely more powerful than all angels, demons, monsters, ghosts, leviathans, demigods, deities, pagan gods, and chief gods. He easily destroyed the high-ranking angel Anna by burning her from the inside out to death almost instantly and sent Uriel back to Heaven with a snap of his fingers. He then placed one finger on Mary Winchester's head instantly putting her unconscious. By placing two fingers on Sam's forehead, Michael brought him back to life while also, at the same time, heal his wounds and sent him back to the future, and then erased his parents memories of seeing Sam and Dean as adults and almost be killed by Anna and Uriel all at once. Michael effortlessly obliterated Lilith (the first and most powerful demon) in a single blast of holy white light, destroying her instantly, leaving behind a pile of ashes. He then instantly erased the memories of dozens of people who witnessed it inside a diner with a snap of his fingers. He once made the men of letters bunker powerfully shake while he was wearing upgraded angel handcuffs and effortlessly overpowered and beat Castiel into submission, and then with a snap of his fingers he instantly created a 12-hour rift to Purgatory, which not even Raphael could do without a powerful spell. Even when Castiel was powered by over 40 million souls from Purgatory, he still felt the need to keep Michael in the cage further showing the his unimaginable powers and Castiel even noted while empowered by the tens of millions of souls that he is not as powerful as Michael, and feared if Michael got out of the cage he could still easily destroy him and also feared the retribution he would take for killing his younger brother Raphael, further showing the immensity of his nigh-omnipotence. It was also suggested that if Michael got his chance to battle Lucifer, their fight alone would destroy much of Earth. He was also capable of creating a very powerful weapon called the Lance of Michael that can easily kill demons and angels, including Archangels, as evidenced with Lucifer. The only beings more powerful than Michael are God and the Darkness.
    • Holy White Light: Michael can generate an overwhelming and extremely powerful white light that is capable of obliterating anything and anyone from other living things to entire cities, states, countries, planets, and even galaxies. With this power, he can destroy a large part of the Earth.
    • Angelic Possession: Michael requires a vessel to act on Earth, and he must have the vessel's permission. His power can only be contained by someone descended from Cain and Abel. Dean Winchester is his true vessel.
    • Telepathy: Michael is able to read the thoughts of humans.
    • Empathy: Michael is able to read the emotions of humans.
    • Regeneration: If his vessel becomes damaged in any way, he is able to heal it instantly and completely. For instance, his vessel Adam was set ablaze by Holy Fire, but upon his return minutes later, he didn't have a scratch either on his skin or even his clothing.
    • Apporting: Michael could send angels back to Heaven with a simple snap of his fingers, as he did with the angel Uriel.
    • Super Strength: Being the oldest, strongest, and most powerful Archangel, the physical strength that Michael endows his vessel with is virtually unlimited and incalculable. His immense strength and powers are only somewhat rivaled by Lucifer's own, as the demon who was possessing Bobby at the time called Michael the "toughest son of a bitch they got."
    • Superhuman Stamina: As an Archangel, Michael's stamina is incalculable and, even when in a vessel, needs nothing to maintain strength, to strive or operate, as he is self-sufficient.
    • Weather Manipulation: Michael's control over the weather exceeds even his own brothers. Upon arriving on Earth to John Winchester, he caused sudden severe winds.
    • Chronokinesis: Michael has complete control over time. He sent Sam and Dean from the past to the present with ease.
    • Telekinesis: Michael is a powerful telekinetic, able to move and control objects with his mind effortlessly; he was even able to move objects in areas where he hadn't fully arrived in. He demonstrated this when he closed and locked the door to the beautiful room when Adam tried to escape it.
    • Healing: Michael can easily heal others of any injury, wound and disease.
    • Resurrection: Michael can resurrect humans with ease.
    • Mental Manipulation: Michael can erase, restore, alter and fabricate the memories and perception of a human.
    • Sedation: Just like an average angel, Michael can sedate humans by touching their forehead.
    • Teleportation: Michael can travel from one place to another instantly, without occupying the space in between. He can also take people with him, in the blink of an eye. Although he can travel virtually anywhere in existence, he is unable to leave Lucifer's Cage once the door is closed, as it was designed to hold an Archangel.
    • Pyrokinesis: Michael can generate and manipulate fire. When he used this ability to kill Anna, it destroyed the angel and the vessel, turning the latter into nothing but ash.
    • Thermokinesis: He made the doorknob to the beautiful room extremely hot to prevent Dean from being able to open it and save Adam.
    • Precognition: Michael can see into the future, but not the full picture.
    • Supernatural Perception: Michael can sense and see things even if they're naturally invisible.
    • Terrakinesis: Michael is able to cause powerful earthquakes by thought or presence alone.
  • Nigh-Omniscience: Like his brothers, Michael has a deep understanding of many things, due to him being older than the universe itself.
  • Immortality: As the eldest archangel, Michael has an infinitely long lifespan. He is the first angel and has existed before the universe itself, making him well over 13.8 billion years old. The excessive passing of time does not degrade his vessel, like with all celestial beings. His vessel is unaffected by diseases and toxins. He does not tire, and does not require food, water, oxygen, or sleep to sustain his vessel.
    • Invulnerability: Michael cannot be killed by any conventional weapon. Even Holy Fire was only able to banish him for a short time.
    • Immunity: Michael was resilient to Holy Fire, although he still found it agonizing, damaging and being able to banish him; but unlike other angels, it couldn't kill him.

Gallery

Trivia

  • The ending of season 5, with Michael, Lucifer, Sam and Adam fall into Lucifer's Cage, is rather like the ending of Rapture Palooza, where the Beast and God fall into the pool and are electrocuted. Bringing down both forces of good and evil is a theme in both Supernatural and Rapture Palooza.
  • When Zachariah shows Dean a painting of Michael, he is shown in the Catholic style of a blond man in Roman armor, however Michael (and all angels) look incredibly different to this in the show. Angels are said to be the height of tower blocks with three faces, one of which is human and the others animals. This is one reason they possess people to walk the Earth because their true forms are unbearable to humans.
  • When Michael returns in season 15, his projection that appears when Adam is in control seemingly is able to interact with the physical world or at least appears to do so to Adam. At one point, Michael picks up one of Adam's French fries while they are talking even though Adam is in control.
  • When Michael is in control of someone's body, he uses a noticeably deeper voice than that of his vessels. This is best seen when he and Adam are talking to each other and despite being completely identical down to their clothing, Michael's voice is deeper.

See also

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