GABRIEL the DEVIL-HUNTER

Real Name: Gabriel (first name unrevealed; see comments)

Identity/Class: Human, magic user

Occupation: former Warrior for Heaven; former writer for World Gossip Weekly; former exorcist and priest

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Isaac Christians/Gargoyle (caretaker);
Desadia (former partner);
Asura and Ingenuity Lee (used him as a pawn);
the Reverend Joshua Crow, Fantastic Four, Agatha Harkness, Hellstorm, Red Wolf (Thomas Thunderhead), Franklin Richards, Avram Siegel (former allies);
father Artemis, Jennifer Christopher, Veronica Miller, Soulfire (treated by him); Mrs. Chesterton, Charlotte Christopher, Father Lazar, Esteban+family Maldonado, Dr. Craig Miller (friends+families of his victims)

Enemies: Ambassat, Belial, The Black School, Catherine, Mr. Chesterton, Jaine Cutter, Hellstorm, Salem's Seven, Satan (or a demon using his name), Nicholas Scratch, Vermiphage, We of the Darkness and Slime, and other unnamed demons

Known Relatives: Andrea Gabriel (wife, deceased), Desadia (common-law wife)

Aliases: Gabriel Rosetti (see comments)

Base of Operations: Fire Lake, Massachusetts; formerly the House of Blue Light; an office in the thirteenth floor of the Empire State Building, New York City

First Appearance: Haunt of Horror#2 (July, 1974)

Powers: Gabriel originally possessed training and mystical abilities enabling him to perform exorcisms. When he could not accomplish this, he could often contain or quiet a demon, to minimize the stress and damage it could cause. He frequently used the power of the emotion love as a weapon against the demons. Despite his abilities, Gabriel was almost constantly plagued by demons, who wished to possess him. This had a devastating effect on him over time.
Gabriel had the scar of a cross burnt onto his chest, which acted as an actual weapon against some demonic creatures, as well as a focus for his own will power and faith.
At least for a brief period, his spirit was augmented by the spirit of Andrea, his dead wife.
While serving the Asura, he possessed one of the two Breathing Guns (one of which had been used by Al Capone). This gun had the power to wound or kill demons, even those of great power. He also was chock full of (and quite heavily addicted to) the drug K, which made him susceptible to the control of the Asura.

Height: 6'3"
Weight: 215 lbs.
Eyes: (left only) Brown
Hair: Brown with white streak

History: (Monsters Unleashed#11(fb))-Gabriel was originally a scholar at Columbia University. He was happily married, and was expecting his first child by his wife, Andrea. However, one day Gabriel returned home to find his wife dead. She had been horribly mutilated, and much of the damage clearly had occurred after she had died. However, every door and window in the house was lockecd from the inside, and the murder weapon was still clenched in her own hand.
After months of grief, Gabriel could think of nothing worth living for, other than God, and so he took the vows of priesthood.

(MonstUnl#11(fb)/(HoH#2(fb))-Three months later, Gabriel was possessed by the demon Catherine, who forced him to tear out his own right eye. Catherine forced him to destroy the sacraments in his house and set them on fire. Gabriel summoned the will to grab a red host cross and push it against his bare chest. This act, and the faith it represented, drove the demon from Gabriel.
As Gabriel left the cathedral, Desadia stepped from the shadows to greet him for the first time, speaking the words and using the voice of his dead wife, Andrea.

Desadia became Gabriel's partner in his career as an exorcist.

(HoH#2)-<June 17, 1974>-Father Lazar called Gabriel to the Cathedral of Saint Benedict to exorcise the demon possessing Father Artemis. Gabriel quickly recognized the demon as Catherine, the former witch who had previously possessed him. Catherine again attempted to possess Gabriel, but his force of will prevented her. Without a body to possess Catherine ceased to exist...or so it would seem.

(HoH#3)-<August 13, 1974>-Dr. Craig Miller requested Gabriel's aid to exorcise the demons calling themselves We of the Darkness and Slime. The demons had possessed his daughter, Veronica, and she was now making sexual advances on him. The demons actually had attempted to possess Gabriel earlier that same day, but were forced out by the sudden appearance and distraction of Desadia. Gabriel threatened the demons while swinging a knife at Veronica. He told them that if he killed their host, they would die as well. The demons fled her body and Gabriel was able to stop his blade in time to save Veronica. The demons possessed Dr. Miller and assaulted Desadia, but Miller, anticipating this, had taken poison and died soon after being possessed. Desadia was freed with the death of the demons trapped within Dr. Miller.

(HoH#4/5)-<August 24, 1974>-Gabriel and Desadia traveled to London for an exorcism involving Mr. Chesterton, a satanist. While en-route, the demon attempted to possess Gabriel, but between the cross on his chest and his own will, he fought it off. The demon then possessed the pilot and forced him to strangle himself, but Gabriel flew the plane to safety. The demon took control of Desadia, but he was able to drive it out by shocking her with a hard slap across the face. They eventually tracked Chesterton to Stonehenge, from which he was leading a black mass. When Gabriel confronted the demon, who claimed to be Satan, it had taken control of Chesterton, and it slew the rest of the Satanists and mocked their worship. Gabriel used the power of his love to force the demon out, but it left Chesterton a corpse.

(HoH#5)-<Nov 30, 1974>-Desadia found Gabriel completely drunk in a bar after he had been missing for several weeks. He had been tortured by dreams and had sunken deep into despair. Desadia pulled Gabriel out of the bottle and got him back to work.
<December 2>-Gabriel and Desadia went to Harlem to help Charlotte Chrisopher, whose infant daughter, Jenny, had been possessed several days before. After some struggle, Gabriel was again able to use the power of love to cast the demon out. He did this by planting a big, fat kiss on Charlotte.

(MonstUnl#11)-<January 16, 1975>-Desadia brought Gabriel to the home of Mrs. Ramirez, who was being haunted by the corpse of her husband, Esteban. Gabriel discovered that Esteban's corpse was possessed by the demon Belial. He journeyed to Esteban's grave, from which Belial emerged. Gabriel called on the power of Heaven to assist him, and a bolt from above shattered a large statue in the graveyeard, causing it to fall on Esteban's corpse. Belial was cast out, but Mrs. Ramirez also died, after seeing her husband's animated corpse. As they returned home, Andrea Gabriel's death certificate spontaneously combusted (mmm...symbolic), and Gabriel finally accepted Desadia as his wife.

(OHotMU 2006#9 - BTS) - At some point in the 70s Gabriel worked together with Red Wolf (Thunderhead).

(Fantastic Four I#222-223)-Desadia notified Gabriel of the possession of Franklin Richards by Nicholas Scratch. Gabriel went to the Baxter Building and forced Scratch to reveal himself. He accompanied Agatha Harkness, Franklin, and the Fantastic Four on a trip to New Salem, to confront Scratch. Gabriel nearly exhausted himself keeping Scratch subdued on the trip. Upon reaching New Salem, they were all captured by Salem's Seven, whose power was augmented by Scratch. Scratch sought to use Franklin's power to expand the dark realm which imprisoned him, spreading it across Earth. Gabriel, together with Agatha Harkness, took the love felt by the Fantastic Four for Franklin, and forged it into a weapon to drive Scratch out. The Fantastic Four prepared to offer their thanks, but Gabriel was nowhere to be found.

(Marvel Comics Presents#106/4)-Gabriel, having long been plagued by demons, began to crumble under their relentless onslaught. He was so weakened that the cross on his chest, once the symbol of his strength, had been inverted, into a symbol of satanic worship. Desadia convinced him to help oppose the demon possessing Senator Bill Bohannon, who was a presidential candidate. As Gabriel struggled with the demon he realized it was Catherine, the demon who had forced him to pluck out his own eye in the past. Catherine assaulted the demoralized Gabriel, and taunted him with claims of his wife Andrea serving her in Hades. Andrea's spirit then separated from Desadia and joined with Gabriel, giving him the strength to fight off and exorcise Catherine. His strength restored, Gabriel's cross returned to its correct position. Desadia awoke without any of her memories, and Gabriel decided that hit was his turn to be strong for her.

Gabriel didn't do so well at being strong, and Desadia was somehow eventually lost to him, stolen by the forces of evil.

(Hellstorm#5(fb))-Gabriel exorcised the demons possessing Jason Maldonado (one of the demons remained within Jason, and later merged with him to become Soulfire).

(HellSt#1)-Gabriel had let his skills and faith atrophy again, and had abandonned his career completely. In addition to a career as a writer (doing mock occult stories for the World Gossip Weekly), he was perfomring mock exorcisms for people with a fetish for the occult. His charge for these performances was exactly one month's rent and the cost of a bottle of rum.
Gabriel received a notice warning him to "Beware the Black School," and contacted Avram Siegel, an expert on satanic cults. Siegel directed Gabriel to San Francisco, where, with the help of the courage provided by a large number of drinks, he infiltrated the School. Gabriel interrupted a ritual to save an innocent victim and found the leader to be Daimon Hellstrom. Hellstrom overpowered Gabriel and prepared to kill him, but then the real Hellstrom (now Hellstorm) attacked and defeated the fake one (a demon from hell). Hellstrom then revealed that it was he who had sent the note to Gabriel, in order to help him regain his faith, anticipating a need for his help in the future.

(Hs2)-As Gabriel struggled to regain his fate, he revealed that Desadia had been stolen from him by the forces of evil.

(Hs7-10)-Gabriel interviewed Rev. Joshua Crow, who had claimed to be able to revive people long comatose and thought to be braindead. After witnessing Crow in action (and apparently successful) Gabriel felt a strong resurrenge in his faith and promptly fell in line behind Crow. Deciding that Hellstorm might attempt to take down Crow, who was doing God's work, Gabriel bought a gun to defend Crow.
Crow was, in fact , filling the bodies of the comatose people with spirits released from Hell. Hellstorm learned of this and confronted Crow, who had to stop Gabriel from trying to kill Hellstorm. Hellstorm revealed the truth, and convinced Gabriel to help bring in the souls of the damned. Gabriel was sent to Queens to locate that resurectee, but it was killed by other spirits from Hell before he could locate it.
These events shook Gabriel's faith ever more. He got drunk again and was soon haunted by the spirit of Desadia, who pushed him to commit suicide. Gabriel actually had the gun in his mouth and was considering it, when Desadia told him that "Vermiphage is still laughing." Realizing that this was no hallucination, he shattered his bottle of liquor, and vowed to save Desadia (the real Desadia under control of demonic forces? demons possessing as Desadia? drunken hallucinations? Any or all of the above?).

(Hs12-14)-Gabriel's resolve soon collapsed, and he was next seen stinking drunk, his back covered with infected cuts from whipping himself. He was located by Ingenuity Lee, who brought him to the House of Blue Lights. There Lee got him hopped up the drug "K" which allowed his spirit to commune with the Asura, the Assassins of Heaven. They convinced Gabriel to become their servant.

(Hs18)-The Asura sent Gabriel to slaughter the Ambassat, aka the Ambassadors of Satan. He gladly attacked the Embassy of Satan, guns blazing, and wiped them out to the man (and woman). He stuffed the high priest's body with gasoline-soaked rags, filled his head with gunpowder, and burned down the Embassy. Thus he passed his test by the Asura, neither knowing or caring that the Asura had consumed the one woman he had sent to escape before his assault.

(Hs20/2)-Gabriel ambushed Jaine Cutter in her old apartment and stole the Breathing Gun, her weapon which could wound or kill demons.

(Hs21)-Gabriel ambushed Hellstorm at the door of his mansion in Fire Lake. Hellstorm reacted quickly, deflecting his first shot (with the Breathing Gun) with his trident, although it shattered from the bullet. Hellstrom struggled with Gabriel, who got off another shot, blowing a hole through his left leg. In their struggle, Hellstrom pulled Gabriel into the mansion, which contained wards preventing anything angelic or demonic from entering it. As Gabriel was pulled into Fire Lake, the "K" (made by, or maybe FROM angels) was forcibly pulled from his body. The sudden "Detox from Hell" left his an incoherent, babbling idiot. Hellstorm asked Isaac Christians, the Gargoyle, to look after Gabriel, who was now an invalid.

Comments: Created by Doug Moench and Billy Graham (not the televangelist)

Gabriel's first wife's name was listed as Andrea Gabriel on her death certificate, in Monsters Unleashed#11, indicating that Gabriel was his last name. His first name was never given. The Hellstorm series called him Gabriel Rosetti, which may or may not be his real name.

OHotMU Horror 2005 revealed that Gabriel Rosetti is just an alias and Gabriel's real surname was not revealed yet.
--Markus Raymond

Desadia will get the next profile. When she does, this link will work, and you'll be able to find out more about her.

I'm not certain, but I'm guessing that the Empire State Building has no thirteenth floor. I'd guess that would just add to Gabriel's mystery.

The years in the early stories are topical, but there's no reason why the months and days can't be correct. I don't know whether the dates have any significance.

Moench created Gabriel after being inspired by the movie, The Exorcist. He even detailed how events conspired against him to write the stories, as was the case in the movie...Spookie...well, not really, but it was probably intended to be, and you can read about it in Haunt of Horror#3.

Hellstorm was an outstanding series...the good news is, if you can find it, you can probably buy the whole run for about $5.00. All three writers Rafael Nieves, Len Kaminiski, and Warren Ellis saw good use for Gabriel. I wonder what the first two ultimately had planned for him. I'd especially be interested in getting some background (and follow-up) information on Vermiphage (translates as the Eater of Vermin), who is apparently the one who took Desadia.

Satan. I'd guess that the demon possessing Chesterton was just a poser.

Gabriel got an entry in OHOTMU Horror 2005.

Clarifications: Gabriel has no connection to:


images: (without ads)
(Gabriel the Devil-Hunter main image)
Hellstorm#1, p21, pan4 (Gabriel head shot)

Other appearances:
Haunt of Horror II#3 (September, 1974) - Doug Moench (writer), Billy Graham & Pablo Marcos (pencils), Frank Giacoia & Mike Esposito (inks), Tony Isabella & Marv Wolfman (editor)
Haunt of Horror II#4 (November, 1974) - Doug Moench (writer), Sonny Trinidad (artist), Tony Isabella & Marv Wolfman (editors)
Haunt of Horror II#5 (January, 1975) - Doug Moench (writer), Sonny Trinidad (artist), Tony Isabella & Marv Wolfman (editors)
Monsters Unleashed#11 (April, 1975) - Doug Moench (writer), Sonny Trinidad (artist), Don McGregor (editor)
Fantastic Four I#222-223 (September-October, 1980) - Doug Moench (writer), Bill Sienkiewicz (pencils), Joe Sinnott (inks), Jim Salicrup (editor)
Marvel Comics Presents#106 (1992) - Robert Campanella (writer), Bret Blevins (artist), Terry Kavanagh (editor)
Hellstorm#1-2 (April-May, 1993) - Rafael Nieves (writer), Michael Bair (artist), Fabian Nicieza (editor)
Hellstorm#5 (August, 1993) - Rafael Nieves & Len Kaminski (writer), Michael Bair (artist), Fabian Nicieza (editor)
Hellstorm#7-10 (October, 1993 - January, 1994) - Len Kaminski (writer), Peter Gross & Mark Badger (#9) (artist), Fabian Nicieza & Marie Javins (#10) (editor)
Hellstorm#12-14 (March-May, 1994) - Warren Ellis (writer), Leonardo Manco (#12-13) & Peter Gross (#14) (artist), Marie Javins (editor)
Hellstorm#18 (September, 1994) - Warren Ellis (writer), Leonardo Manco (artist), Marie Javins (editor)
Hellstorm#20-21 (November-December, 1994) - Warren Ellis (writer), Leonardo Manco (artist), Marie Javins (editor)


Last updated: 12/19/01

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