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Many people, meeting Aziraphale for the first time, formed three impressions: that he was English, that he was intelligent, and that he was gayer than a treeful of monkeys on nitrous oxide.

–Page 165, Good Omens (novel)

Aziraphale is one of the main characters in Amazon series Good Omens. He is an angel who doubles as a rare book dealer. He's looking to prevent the apocalypse because he enjoys humans and he likes his life on Earth. There are restaurants on here, for a start. Furthermore, he does not find the idea of listening to The Sound of Music for eternity very appealing. He is best friends with the demon Crowley, and perhaps feels something a bit more, though he'll try to deny it.

Background

Aziraphale was sent to guard the Garden of Eden with a flaming sword but later gave it to Adam and Eve when they were thrown out of Eden. As Aziraphale watched the two depart into the wilderness he first met Crowley - then Crawly - who had transformed himself into a snake to tempt Adam and Eve. The pair wondered whether they had done the right thing - giving up the sword - and the wrong thing - tempting Adam and Eve - respectively. After being asked, Aziraphale reluctantly told Crawly he had given up his sword, much to the latter's amusement, and they watched Adam use it to fend off a lion. Aziraphale sheltered Crawly with his wing from the rain beginning a 6000 year old friendship between the two.

The pair met again just before the Flood when the animals were boarding the ark. Aziraphale told Crawly about the imminent event to which the demon replied it seemed something Hell was more likely to do. Aziraphale seemed visibly uncomfortable with the approaching extinction of humanity but was optimistic at the new concept of a rainbow.

Aziraphale was present at Jesus' crucifixion where he again ran into Crawly, who had now changed his name to Crowley. 8 years later in Rome, the pair met at a tavern where they discussed oysters.

Aziraphale later became a knight in King Arthur's court and went out to confront the Black Knight - who turned out to be Crowley causing chaos which was neutralized by Aziraphale being good. Despite being initially put off by the demon's suggestion that they could do nothing and achieve the same result as they were doing now, it was later revealed by the time of Shakespeare that they had come to an arrangement - when two of them needed to go to the same place, only one of them would go and do both blessings and curses. Aziraphale responded enthusiastically to the staging of Shakespeare's Hamlet that otherwise seemed destined to be a flop until Crowley eventually cast a miracle so that it would be a success.

During the 1700s, Aziraphale started a bookshop. In 1793, he also decided to pop over to France for some crepes but was mistaken for an aristocrat and almost guillotined before he was rescued by Crowley.

In 1862, Aziraphale refused to provide Crowley with holy water believing the demon needed it as a 'suicide pill' if Hell found out about their deal.

In 1941, Aziraphale teamed up with who he thought was British Intelligence to break up a Nazi spy ring in Blitz Era London, this turned out to be a trap set by Nazi spies to claim valuable prophecy books though Aziraphale had been unable to find The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter. The British Intelligence officer turned out to be a Nazi spy as well and Aziraphale was almost discorporated before Crowley stepped in using a miracle to aim a Nazi bomb at the church they were in killing the three spies but sparing him and Aziraphale. Aziraphale was dismayed at the loss of his precious books but Crowley used another miracle to save them which touched Aziraphale deeply.

In 1967, Aziraphale discovered Crowley was planning to rob a church to get Holy Water after Aziraphale had refused to give him any. Worried Crowley would get hurt, Aziraphale gave him Holy Water in a thermos and suggested that in the future they go on a picnic or have lunch at the Ritz.

Eleven years before the end of the world, Aziraphale went to a sushi bar where he discovered from Gabriel that Crowley had delivered the Antichrist to an American diplomat's family. Crowley later called him and tried to persuade him that they should try and stop the end of the world from happening by both influencing the Antichrist - named Warlock - neutralizing good and evil in him so he would grow up normal and not end the world. Though initially against the idea of disobeying Heaven's orders, Aziraphale agreed becoming a Gardner at the estate and teaching Warlock only good things whilst Crowley posed as a nanny who taught him only bad things.

On Warlock's eleventh birthday, Aziraphale put on a magic show at the party whilst he and Crowley waited for the appearance of the Hellhound hoping Warlock would turn the dog away and avert the Apocalypse. However, the Hellhound never showed up revealing that Warlock was not the Antichrist who had been misplaced at birth thanks to a mixup by the nuns at St Beryl's.

Aziraphale began looking for the real Antichrist with Crowley to try and avert the Apocalypse. The pair went back to the Monastery to find records of the Antichrist's birth only to find the place had been turned into a paint balling facility after Hastur burned it down eleven years ago. On the way back to London, Crowley's car hit Anathema Device who was cycling past; Aziraphale healed her and fixed her bike, convincing Crowley to give her a lift home. Anathema accidentally left her copy of The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter behind in the car which Aziraphale found and used to track down Adam Young, the real Antichrist, in Tadsfield.

Instead of telling Crowley, Aziraphale went to Heaven and posed a "hypothetical" of a missing Antichrist only for Gabriel to say that no matter what, the Apocalypse was going to happen. Aziraphale again tried to persuade Gabriel that a war didn't need to happen but was quickly dismissed. Due to his strange behaviour, Michael investigated and discovered that Aziraphale and Crowley had been working together.

Aziraphale set Witchfinder Shadwell to track Adam Young before he was accosted by Uriel and Michael - they eventually departed leaving Aziraphale to call Crowley that he had found the Antichrist but the demon hung up on him immediately due to his own problem. Aziraphale tried contacting God to try and convince Her to stop the Apocalypse but instead reached Metatron. His conversation was overheard by Shadwell, who believing Aziraphale was a demon, accidentally pushed him into an incomplete transportation circle disincorporating Aziraphale from his body. Shadwell left in a hurry and missed a candle falling, which then set fire to the bookshop.

Back in Heaven, Aziraphale managed to transport his disincorporated self back to Earth where he found a drunk Crowley grieving his "death". He was incredibly saddened to hear that his bookshop had been destroyed but Crowley revealed he had saved Agnes Nutter's book which had Aziraphale's notes on Adam Young. Aziraphale went to find a body to host him landing in Madame Tracy during one of her seances.

In Madame Tracy's body he travelled with her and Shadwell to Tadsfield airfield where they were joined by Crowley in his burning Bentley. The four watched as Adam and the Them cycled into the airfield before Crowley's car exploded. Aziraphale noticed a soldier pointing a gun at them and tried to get Crowley to deal with him because he was "the nice one". However Crowley was busy "having a moment" over the loss of his car so Aziraphale made the soldier disappear himself hoping he didn't send him anywhere too nasty.

Inside the airfield they, along with Anathema and Newton, arrived to stop the end of the world. Aziraphale took Shadwell's weapon to kill Adam but Madame Tracy intervened preventing him from doing it. Adam then separated the two giving Aziraphele his normal body back. Aziraphale and the others witnessed the Them defeat the Four Horseman with Aziraphale's flaming sword - with the exception of Death - and Crowley returned The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter to Anathema. A piece of burned paper flew from the book which Aziraphale grabbed, stating that they would face fire and need to choose their faces wisely.

Beelzebub and Gabriel arrived still wanting the war against Heaven and Hell to go ahead and tried to force Adam to start the Apocalypse. Aziraphale then intervened stating that if God's plan was truly "ineffable" as it was so thought then really they couldn't know that the war was what God actually wanted. Crowley backed this up and Beelzebub and Gabriel departed angry but satisfied that they knew who to blame and that Adam's father would hear about this.

As soon as they disappeared, Aziraphale watched as Crowley collapsed with pain due to Satan himself rising up and being incredibly angry. Aziraphale tried to motivate Crowley not to give up threatening to never speak to him again if he didn't do something. Crowley stopped time transporting himself, Aziraphale and Adam to a desert where the angel and demon's wings were visible. The two told Adam about his real father and that Adam would need to do something before restarting time and they watch as Adam faced Satan, stating that he was not his real father and never had been causing the Devil to vanish.

Aziraphale showed Crowley the prophecy that he had caught as the two boarded a bus back to London. At some point the pair altered their appearances to look like the other before they arrived. Aziraphale, as Crowley, went to Crowley's apartment and discovered that Adam had reset reality meaning the demon's Bentley was intact before he met up with Crowley, who looked like him, in the park they frequented. Aziraphale discovered that his bookshop was also restored and bought the pair ice creams before the angels abducted Crowley - whom they thought was Aziraphale. Aziraphale chased after them but was knocked to the ground by Hastur and taken prisoner to Hell where he was tried - as Crowley - and sentenced to execution by Holy Water brought by Michael.

The Holy Water of course did not harm Aziraphale and he asked for a rubber duck. Still in the guise as Crowley, he suggested that Hell leave him alone and asked Michael to miracle him a towel when the angel returned.

Aziraphale and Crowley switched back their appearances in the park with the latter suggesting that this Apocalypse was just the precursor for a bigger battle; Humanity vs Heaven and Hell. The angel seemed disconcerted by the idea but brushed it off before the pair went to the Ritz for lunch where a table for two had 'miraculously' become free. Aziraphale suggested that Crowley was at least a little bit of a good person to which the demon good naturally responded that Aziraphale was at least a little bit of a bastard and that's why they were friends. The two toasted 'to the world' and had lunch.

Aziraphale's Sword

Aziraphale with his sword

The flaming sword was Aziraphale's divine weapon with which he was supposed to defend the Eastern Gate of Eden. He gave it away to Adam and Eve upon their expulsion from the Garden, in hopes that it would help protect them from wild animals and keep them warm in the cold desert nights.

The sword later turned up in the run-up to the Apocalypse, the signal to War that the End Times were nigh.

Quotes

"Get thee behind me, foul fiend....After you." - "In the Beginning"
"You know, Crowley, I've always said, you really are a nice-" - "The Book"
"You can't kill me! There'll be paperwork!" - "Hard Times"
"Oh...fuck." - "Saturday Morning Funtime"
"Not just a Southern pansy...THE Southern Pansy." - "The Doomsday Option"
"Although, I believe that none of this was possible if you weren't-at least a tiny bit, of a good person." - "The Very Last Day of the Rest of Their Lives"

Video

Notes and trivia

  • He doesn't like people buying his books, and has a load of weird methods to chase away customers.
  • He enjoys tartan patterns.
  • He's described as fussy.
  • As stated in the novel, Angels and Demons have no inherent gender or sex, however they can choose a gender if they so please. Although it's never explicitly stated that Aziraphale identifies as a man, he consistently presents himself as a male and uses he/him pronouns.
  • A good part of the fanbase, as well as Michael Sheen, support the theory that Aziraphale is in love with Crowley.

References

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