|“||You're right. It is personal. You humiliated me. I... I hate you. Deeply. Truly. I'm gonna enjoy wiping that smug, self-satisfied look off your face. Personally.||”|
Fergus Roderick MacLeod (c. 1661 - 1723) was a human, who after death (near the age of 63) became Crowley; a powerful demon who was the King of the Crossroads and the King of Hell, following Lucifer's second re-imprisonment in his Cage. Although he initially served with Lilith as her right-hand man, he went rogue in Season 5 after her death and Lucifer's release, aiding the Winchester brothers in resealing the latter back into his cage. With the power vacuum in Hell unoccupied and with Ramiel's encouragement, he appointed himself the new King of Hell.
Crowley allied with Sam and Dean in Season 5 against Lucifer to obtain the Four Horsemen's rings with them to protect himself, then with Castiel to obtain the power of Purgatory and briefly with Raphael after his betrayal in Season 6, and then with the Winchesters again in Season 7 against the ambitious Leviathans. However, in Season 8, he cuts his allegiance to the Winchesters and Castiel, seeking vengeance as well as attempting to capture the Prophet Kevin Tran and The Word of God to further his own goals, only to be captured by the Winchesters as part of their plan to close the gates of Hell. In Season 9, Crowley was temporarily Sam and Dean's captive while being hunted by Abaddon as part of her plan to take over Hell. However, upon being freed as part of a deal with Dean, he has rightfully resumed his post. After Dean was killed by Metatron and revived by the First Blade, Crowley guided Dean through the process of becoming a demon. The two spent a significant amount of time together until Dean was cured.
Crowley was overthrown and held as a slave when Lucifer escaped from his cage. Crowley was forced to do slave work until he managed to flee.
Crowley's role is often shifting from main antagonist to anti-hero. He was an anti-hero in Season 5, one of the three main antagonists in Season 6, an anti-hero in Season 7, the main antagonist of Season 8, and an anti-hero for the rest of his appearances. However, in all of his duration as an anti-hero, he is still openly an antagonist, usually pulling a life-threatening stunt on the Winchesters after assisting them. He is currently one of the longest lasting antagonists in the series, second only to Lucifer.
|“||What's the line? 'Saving people, hunting things. The family business.' Well, I think, the people you save, they're how you justify your pathetic little lives. The alcoholism, the collateral damage, the pain you've caused... The one thing that allows you to sleep at night- the one thing is knowing these folks are out there. Still out there. Happy and healthy because of you. You great, big bloody heroes! They're your life's work and I'm going to rip it apart. Piece by piece. Because I can. Because you can't stop me. Because when they're all gone, what will you have left?||”|
Crowley's main goal is self-preservation, and he is willing to sacrifice anything else for it. He is a survivor at heart, and will use any means to accomplish this goal. In fact, he tends to only lose his temper when his personal safety is threatened or when dealing with what he considers overwhelming stupidity. Crowley at times appears incredibly volatile under his smooth and charming personality, as when he has screamed at multiple people, including Dean and Castiel, when appearing calm only seconds before. As Dean described it, when dealing with Crowley, "he will always find a way to bone you". A good example would be the finale of Season 7, in which he orchestrated the death and/or imprisonment of most of those he held a grudge against and also captured a prophet. He is not above making deals or alliances with his enemies when he feels it is beneficial for him. He is extremely opportunistic and his goal seems to be to expand the grasp of his power as he's gone from "punk-ass crossroads demon" to King of Hell, and in Season 6 he was looking for Purgatory, as he called himself a developer, saying the monsters in Purgatory would help him.
Crowley is cunning, devious, and highly skilled at manipulating others. This is best demonstrated when he tricks Dean into impressing and getting the First Blade from Cain, successfully manipulating not just Dean but a large number of demons who he led to the slaughter. Despite his arrogance, he does not dismiss possible threats like the Winchesters as other demons do, but seeks to eliminate said threats, however at times he does let his arrogance get the better of him, especially if he feels certain he will win. He was also the only demon to realize that Lucifer must hate demons as much as he hates humans (which demons originally were). He leaves once he realizes that a situation is too dangerous for him to risk, but resolves himself when he knows that escape isn't an option (such as derailing the Apocalypse once his betrayal was revealed to Hell and "accepting" death in "Meet the New Boss"). He thought up new ideas for how Hell ought to be run and tried to implement new ideas when he became its king; when other demons resisted this, he called them "evil, lying prats" and "stupid," expressing the desire to kill them all at times. He is also seemingly sentimental as he is rather dismayed when Sam kills his pet hellhound. Crowley was also intelligent enough to work out where Castiel had hidden the Angel Tablet, even when Naomi and her garrison couldn't. As the former King of the Crossroads, he is also extremely skilled at drawing up contracts and creating hidden agendas to trick his enemies. He was also clever enough to make sure it was Sam, not Dean, who signed his deal in "Sacrifice".
Beneath Crowley's affable facade, he is cruel, sadistic, and merciless. He appears to be quite vengeful: he wants utter annihilation of the Leviathans when their leader insults him and also implies that he would like to see all demons destroyed; he kept secret the ramifications of using a Bone Of Righteous Mortal Washed In the Three Bloods of Fallen so that Dean and Castiel would be imprisoned in Purgatory; he killed Kevin's girlfriend in front of him; he threatened Linda Tran when she slapped him and later apparently tormented her so badly during her brief possession by him that she went catatonic. Crowley also has no problem killing children as he is willing to slaughter a nursery of infant shapeshifters to find Purgatory's location and later bakes baby uvula muffins simply to get on Dick Roman's good side. He was also willing to let a hunter, Tara, die in order to trick Dean and retrieve the First Blade, dismissing her as eggs that need to be cracked to make an omelette. Crowley has also shown to at times be extremely ruthless and wrathful to other demons. After both Lucifer and Abaddon were defeated, Crowley's first course of action was to round up and kill all the demons who had supported his enemy.
Crowley is shown to be a tough task master and inspires fear in many demons. A captured crossroads demon preferred death from the Winchesters than the alternative of facing Crowley. Even when Abaddon told demons of his "death," some still feared him and refused to join until they witnessed proof of his demise. Crowley is also perhaps masochistic as he laughed at the idea of Sam and Dean torturing him and seemed to eagerly provoke Kevin to "beat" him in order to manipulate him.
In Sacrifice, as Sam cured Crowley of his demonic nature, he seemingly starts to reveal that he wants to be loved. It's possible, based on his reaction to his own confession, that this is true and his time being tortured in Hell twisted his desire to an megalomaniac need for power and respect. He also displayed some regret for his actions, asking Sam where he could even begin to ask for forgiveness while discussing Sam's own confession to purify his blood. The ritual has been shown to have some lingering affects on Crowley, though he hid it. He developed a craving for human blood and still retained at least a few human emotions, such as enough affection for his son who he'd previously claimed to loathe to stop him from being sent back to his time to die, even though it could seriously effect history.
Crowley is an accomplished tinkerer and innovator. He innovated various methods or techniques on harming his opponents, such as the case when he was torturing the Alpha Shapeshifter. He also possesses knowledge of how to produce more ammunition for the Colt. He also had the ingenuity to melt angel blades into bullets as a form of deadly weapon against angels. Crowley is a very capable strategist, a skill he has used and demonstrated multiple times to achieve survival or dominance. He has outplayed or outwitted many of his opponents, even those more powerful than him. In Devil May Care, it has been said by a crossroad demon that a lot of them still fear Crowley, despite him missing in action. The said demon was extremely loyal to her king, and showed no hesitation to voice out her reluctance to support Abaddon, who was planning to usurp the crown from Crowley.
Following the attempt to cure him and their alliance to stop Abaddon, Crowley seems to have developed something of a trust in the Winchesters, coming when they call and trusting Dean's word that he will return the First Blade to him. He also seemed genuinely fond of demon Dean and the idea of him ruling Hell at his side and was shown to be nostalgic about their time together. Rowena suggests that he has a fondness for the Winchesters bordering on seeing them as friends, not enemies anymore given all that he does for them. However, this trust seems to have been broken by Dean's revelations in The Executioner's Song that he lied to him at a time when Crowley clearly was taking him at his word.
Notably, Crowley is also very resilient to torture and does not submit easily to whoever wishes to take control of him. He has withstood numerous beatings and comes out in the end appearing either proud or completely unfazed. Lucifer, a master torturer, is unable to completely break the demon despite going so far as the imprison Crowley and force him to wear anything but his beloved suit, which Crowley has admitted to being deeply fond of. However, if he truly feels like his life is threatened, he will succumb to his torturer's wishes, as with the case of Amara, who demanded him to free Dean.
Overall, Crowley retains his self-serving and self-preservation personality traits. He will force anyone to do as they are told on pain of death or that of their loved ones. He will also abandon anyone to save himself, as in the case with Rowena. His main goal as of yet is to become the King of Hell again, and to this end he wants Lucifer captured. Once he succeeds in this task, Crowley proves to be as scheming as ever, using lies and tricks and killing loose-ends to prevent Lucifer from escaping captivity.
Despite his ruthless nature however, Crowley is capable of affection even for his on-and-off allies, the Winchester brothers. He willingly sacrifices himself to lock Lucifer away in an alternate dimension. Crowley's final acts showed a more humane side to his character, which may have been the lasting result of the human blood he was injected with. Crowley's desire for the throne of Hell also disappeared, and his bid for power by using Lucifer and Jack as tools proved to be an unrealistic goal he later came to regret. Crowley's heroic sacrifice indeed manages to earn him genuine respect and gratitude from not only Dean to the point of actually considering Crowley a friend as shown by how he was one of the people listed on Dean's list when he begged God to bring back all he had lost but even Sam, who previously held no trust of him whatsoever, as Sam does not hesitate to acknowledge Crowley's final acts as being truly genuinely helpful to Rowena. His greatest achievements include besting the Devil and ruling Hell for seven years.
Crowley's human appearance has so far only been shown in a portrait of him as a child. Here, he is shown to have fair skin and ginger hair. He was said to have been a handsome individual, with "very athletic calves". Upon his death and transformation into a demon, Crowley's true form became red smoke, a unique color unseen by any other demon. Whenever he takes a vessel, his true eyes are red.
Crowley's primary vessel is a man of average height, slightly round with dark hair and light skin. He grew a beard post-season 6. Crowley prefers to wear expensive, dry-cleaned suits of dark colors. Except during the time he possessed Linda Tran and when Crowley wore disguises, Crowley is rarely seen wearing anything else by choice. When Lucifer took him prisoner, he forced Crowley to wear bright-colored clothing as an insult.
Crowley is the most frequently recurring villain in the series. He is also the most frequently recurring demon in the series as well, appearing in more episodes than any other demons, including Azazel, Ruby, Alastair, and even Meg.
- Season 3
- Season 5
- Season 6
- Season 7
- Season 8
- Season 9
- Season 10
- Season 11
- Season 12
- Keep Calm and Carry On
- Mamma Mia
- The Foundry
- American Nightmare (mentioned only)
- Celebrating The Life Of Asa Fox (mentioned only)
- Rock Never Dies
- First Blood
- Stuck in the Middle (With You)
- Family Feud
- Somewhere Between Heaven and Hell
- The British Invasion
- There's Something About Mary
- Who We Are (mentioned only)
- All Along the Watchtower
- Season 13
- Season 14
- Season 15
- Supernatural: The Men of Letters Bestiary: Winchester Family Edition (non-canon, mentioned only)
- In a deleted scene for Family Feud available on the Season 12 box set, Gavin tells Rowena that Crowley ultimately drank himself to death when he was human.
- Crowley is the longest surviving and most recurring antagonist in the series, with his appearances rivaling that of Azazel's, Ruby's, and even Meg's.
- Crowley is third main character to be permanently killed off, following Ruby and Bela Talbot, who were main characters for Season 3. He was followed by Lucifer in Season 13.
- Crowley was among the multiple main antagonists of Season 6, the others being Raphael, Eve, and Castiel. He is also the main antagonist of Season 8. He served as an antagonist in Season 11 episode Our Little World, after which he became an ally.
- Crowley's name, as well as his initial characterization as a snarky British demon trying to derail the Apocalypse, is similar to one of the main characters of Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman's Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch (called Anthony Crowley, who is coincidentally also a demon).
- Mark Sheppard, who portrays Crowley in Supernatural, suggested in an interview that Crowley may not even be a demon, although this was disproved in the eighth season when Crowley's red demonic cloud form and red eyes (when he possessed Linda Tran) were finally shown on-screen. And in season 10 his eyes were shown again via his original vessel.
- Crowley is the longest running antagonist for five seasons (two of which he is the main antagonist). However, he is notably the "weakest" main antagonist, as despite being the King of Hell, he is still, in Dean's words, a, "punk ass crossroads demon." Though, despite this, Crowley seems to not be easily killed and has obtained multiple means of killing angels, such as numerous angel blades and even angel bullets for guns, which arguably puts him on par with a regular angel now.
- Crowley is the most recurring demon in Supernatural, stealing the distinction from Ruby.
- Unusually, his true form's color is a dark red cloud rather than black like other demons, as shown in What's Up, Tiger Mommy?, Road Trip, Blade Runners, Out of the Darkness, Into the Fire, Hell's Angel, We Happy Few and All Along the Watchtower. This matches his eyes as his eyes are red due to being a King of the Crossroads previously. However, other demons with different eye colors do not match their true form, as shown with Azazel and Lilith.
- Crowley has assigned nicknames for Sam and Dean (which often reference Sam's height). For Sam these include: Giraffe, Gigantor, Jolly Green and (most commonly) Moose. He has also given Dean the nickname: Squirrel, and the name "Not Moose" in his contact list on his phone. Their respective "Squirrel" and "Moose" nicknames are a reference to Rocky and Bullwinkle, who are called "Moose and Squirrel" by their antagonists. In the episode Inside Man Dean combats this by replying "Boris. Where's Natasha?" referring to Rocky and Bullwinkle's nemesis: Boris Badenov and Natasha Fatele.
- He is the third character to be the main antagonist for two seasons, the first being Azazel and the second being Lilith; however, he is the first one to have a break (seventh season) between those two seasons in which he is not the main threat and to survive even after the second season that he was the primary villain.
- He is the second demon whose past as a human has been revealed (the first being Ruby).
- In Weekend at Bobby's, he reveals that his favorite alcoholic drink is Craig scotch, aged at least thirty years.
- It is implied that Crowley and the angel Naomi had a sexual relationship in Mesopotamia. However the writers admitted that this statement was a mistake.
- Crowley also claims he owns "the real Mona Lisa" and to some extent Alaska.
- When Crowley calls the brothers, the number 666 flashes on the phone's screen. 666 is usually a number associated with the Devil. He also uses a devil emoticon while texting Sam.
- Crowley's ringtone is Baby Got Back by Sir Mix-a-lot.
- Crowley has been shown to be very good with obscure or difficult languages: he is fluent in Enochian and knows Elamite Cuneiform.
- Crowley is the only known demon to possess someone at the same time as an angel.
- Crowley has stated that the host he uses most frequently is a "moderately successful" literary agent from New York.
- Crowley seems to have an affinity for Adolf Hitler and/or the Nazi Party. In Abandon All Hope... he is seen watching Nazi silent films in his mansion and in The Man Who Would Be King a Hitler-esque portrait of Crowley in a Nazi uniform (with a Devil's Trident in place on his wrist band in place of a swastika) was visible in Crowley's new and improved Hell. He also showed Amara Hitler speeches to "educate" her.
- Crowley has so far possessed six individuals: A "moderately successful" literary agent from New York (his most common vessel), Linda Tran, Sam, Andre Devlin, Marnie and Castiel. However, he only possessed Linda to get the demon tablet and Kevin, possessed Sam to warn him about Gadreel, possessed Andre only to get information, possessed Marnie to get in contact with his minions so they could secure his first vessel and break Rowena's immobilization spell on it, and possessed Castiel to try and bring him to expel Lucifer from his vessel.
- Crowley, self-admittedly evil, states he has no virtues, but this is not strictly true. He has exhibited Ambition (striving to ascend to becoming the King of Hell), Diligence (delegating a lot of duties to his underlings and taking up tasks himself frequently), Honesty (while he enjoys loopholes, he demands that all demons honor their deals and maintain "consumer confidence" as well as integrity), Loyalty (he is not prone to betraying those with whom he makes alliances, something he calls out Castiel for doing) and Responsibility (commanding Hell's forces and fighting for the interests of all demons at heart as well as his own). However, Crowley has not truly exhibited patience.
- His name may be a reference to Aleister Crowley, an English Occultist, creator and self-proclaimed prophet of the religion Thelema who was born in 1875. He was denounced in the popular press as "the wickedest man in the world" and sometimes labelled a Satanist.
- His name also links to the crow, the bird of death, though this is unlikely connected to his character name and merely an amusing observation.
- When Gavin learned that his father had become a demon, Crowley quipped, "A lot can change in 291 years," implying that he had died as a human that many years ago. Assuming that the episode King of the Damned in which this information was revealed took place around the same time as its air-date (May 6, 2014), that would mean that Crowley died around the year 1723 and at around the age of 62, as he was born in 1661.
- Crowley displayed a possible fondness for Kevin Tran: when informed of his death, Crowley told Dean he warned Kevin it would happen if he didn't leave.
- While it is not known if his vessel was ever alive or was dead the entire time, after the events of Out of the Darkness, Into the Fire, his vessel is dead for sure as Castiel stabbed it with an angel blade after Crowley vacated it. Despite this, Crowley was still able to return to his vessel, so it may have been dead the entire time. During The Bad Seed, Crowley checks to make sure all of the demons in his lair are using dead vessels around the Darkness, further confirming this.
- Like Meg and Abaddon, Crowley displays a fondness for a particular vessel, always returning to his usual form even after vacating the body for various reasons. Even after he was forced to flee his body in Out of the Darkness, Into the Fire, Crowley had his demons remove the spell immobilizing his form rather than find a new vessel.
- When talking to Lucifer face-to-face, Crowley defined himself as "a mere acolyte, carrying Lucifer's torch", possibly indicating that Crowley holds some admiration for Lucifer's disturbed ideology and ways. However, this suspect gesture of humbleness may be just a product of Crowley's fear of the Devil, which makes pretty much sense, given that Crowley displayed fear even to the much weaker than Lucifer demon Cain.
- From his birth in 1661 to his death as a demon in 2017, Crowley was 356 years old.
- In an interview with SYFY wire, Mark Sheppard revealed Andrew Dabb originally planned Crowley's death in the episode Who We Are. Mark also expressed displeasure in his character's end calling it "the slowest, most painful death I've ever seen. I'd gone from being the smartest character on the show to being the dumbest character on the show in two seasons. They ran out of what to do." When Mark saw the first script for All Along the Watchtower, he requested it be re-written, Dabb agreed and additional dialogue was given for Crowley in the Men of Letters bunker. Crowley's original line in his final scene with Lucifer would have him say "Funny you should say that cuz even when I lose I win". However, director Robert Singer ultimately cut this and all additional dialogue.
- Along with playing Crowley, Mark Sheppard also played the demon Arnon in the show Charmed.
- Season 12 is the only season Crowley has appeared in where he does not have a villainous role in at least one episode.
- It can be seen in Abandon All Hope... and Trial and Error that Crowley mostly didn't tell his clients about the time and the way their soul would come to hell (especially not about the hellhounds).
- Crowley is the second recurring character to permanently commit suicide, the first being Ellen Harvelle.
- Crowley is the only demon whose human name is revealed in the entire series.
- Mark Sheppard guest starred in a 1993 episode of the X-Files, titled FIre. He plays a pyrokinetic man called Cecil L'Ively.