- "Embrace your dreams. If you want to be a hero you need to have dreams... and honor."
- —Angeal Hewley
Angeal Hewley (アンジール・ヒューレー Anjīru Hyūrē) is a 1st Class SOLDIER, approximately 25 years old. He is the son of Gillian Hewley, created by Dr. Hollander for Project G. He plays the role of Zack Fair's mentor in Crisis Core, and passes down the Buster Sword to him. His true character is stoic and serious, but he has a playful side, calling Zack "the puppy". Angeal gets along well with the 1st Classes, Sephiroth and Genesis. He bears two white wings on the right side of his back, which seems to cause him some uneasiness as he considers them the traits of a monster. He has a small fanclub in Crisis Core, called the Keepers of Honor. He is voiced by Kazuhiko Inoue in Japanese, and Josh Gilman in English.
Appearance and Personalitysửa
- "Use brings about wear, tear and rust. And that's a real waste."
- —Angeal about his Buster Sword
Angeal is a tall man with broad muscles. He has black hair slicked back except for two bangs of hair (one on each side), in a style similar to that of his mother Gillian. Angeal wears a standard SOLDIER 1st Class uniform and carries a standard SOLDIER sword, along with his Buster Sword, which he only uses on special occasions. Later in the game, Angeal gains two white wings (one large wing on top and a small one underneath).
Angeal is a moral and dedicated character. He prides his membership in SOLDIER, and cherishes it more than almost anything else. He is honor-bound to protect as many people as he can, and nearly nothing can stand between him and his honor and pride. He views the sword that was gifted to him as a symbol of his dreams and honor, and therefore, to damage it would represent damage to his honor, so he refrains from using it as much as possible. He is also shown to have a subtle sense of humor at times, calling Zack a puppy.
As it is later revealed by Lazard after his transformation, Angeal had a stronger sense of justice than he ever let on. He wanted to help the entire Planet, to save the world from monsters like the one he had believed to become.
Angeal is also an influential member of SOLDIER. Many members of the corps look up to him as a mentor and idol, the ideal SOLDIER operative. He is even considered by many to be SOLDIER's spiritual leader. His influence passes on to Zack, who takes up his role as mentor to the recruits.
When he learns of the process through which he was created, Angeal comes to resent himself, feeling he is truly a monster, unworthy of dignity or honor. He exiles himself from SOLDIER because of this, and often makes references to his self-hate, although he still considers himself a SOLDIER at heart.
Before Crisis Coresửa
Before the events of Crisis Core, Gillian Hewley worked with Dr. Hollander in the experiment of her namesake, Project Gillian, which was a branch of the Jenova Project to create a Cetra-human-hybrid. Gillian was injected with Jenova Cells (whom Hollander thought to be a Cetra) and her cells were later injected into other test subjects. The result of this was Angeal Hewley. During his childhood he lived in Banora Village. His family was poor in comparison to his best friend, the son of the village's landlord, Genesis Rhapsodos, who was also a test subject in Project G. They would grow up together and become great friends.
Mentor to Zacksửa
- "Zack...Embrace your dreams. If you want to be a hero you need to have dreams...and honor."
- —Angeal to Zack
Many years later, Angeal has become a SOLDIER 1st Class, and is a mentor and role model for many lower class SOLDIER members, in particular Zack Fair. He owns the enormous Buster Sword, a gift from the man who raised him when he joined Shinra Electric Power Company, though he rarely uses it for fear of it gathering "wear, tear, and rust." He thinks of it as a representation of his family's pride and honor.
Angeal appears at the beginning of Crisis Core during an attempt to recover a Shinra train in Midgar which has been taken control of by Wutai troops who are dressed in Shinra MP uniform. Both he and Zack Fair, a 2nd class SOLDIER, land upon the moving train, and he tells Zack to be careful before he allows Zack to recover the train by himself. Zack would later receive a call from Angeal on his cellphone after the train has been stopped at the station and where Crisis Core begins. Angeal tells Zack that they were Wutai troops using fake uniforms and ID, and also tells him to watch out for any other intruders. As Zack moves onward through the train station, Angeal is not seen until Sephiroth takes down Zack by slicing his blade in two and flooring him. As Sephiroth raises up his blade, he lunges towards Zack's chest, but is stopped by Angeal holding Zack's broken sword. As Angeal looks at Sephiroth, he pulls out his cellphone and scrolls down and selects the choice "Mission Abort". Suddenly, the image of the train station, Midgar, and Sephiroth fade away piece by piece and it is revealed to having been a training exercise.
Shocked and annoyed by Angeal's choice to end the "mission," Zack complains he was only getting started. Angeal says nothing, handing his disappointed sidekick back his broken sword, and walks toward the exit of the Training Room. Stopping and tilting his head towards Zack, Angeal gives him a few words of wisdom: Not to let go of his dreams, pride, or honor. He leaves the room, leaving Zack disgruntled and confused.
Assault on Fort Tamblinsửa
- "Don't make me regret this, Zack."
- —Angeal, on Zack's promotion
Shortly after, Angeal calls Zack's cell phone, telling him to report to the Briefing Room. Once they arrive, Director Lazard greets them and goes right to the point. Angeal stands listening as Lazard explains Zack's first mission. They are to go to a temple of Wutai to help bring an end to the war. Understanding the situation, Zack is surprised to hear Angeal mention at the end of the briefing that he has recommended him to go on this mission and receive a promotion to SOLDIER 1st Class. Lazard chuckles to himself as Zack gets childishly excited, embracing Angeal with the words "I love you man!" before being pushed away.
Once in the forest outside Wutai's Fort Tamblin, Angeal explains to Zack they should hurry because the other strike team has already moved into position. Suddenly, Wutai troopers spot them, and Zack willingly offers to take them out. After the Wutai troops have been dispatched, Angeal turns to Zack asking if he knows of the "dumbapple". As Zack tells him that he does not, Angeal shockingly tells him that he is like one and will never make SOLDIER 1st Class at this rate.
Making their way up close toward the Tamblin fortress, Angeal then explains that the "dumbapple" is the Banora White, and that the nickname came from how they grew on the trees randomly throughout the year. He also shares that his people were fond of them, and that once a year they hand-picked the apples. Zack jokingly tells him he is a thief for doing that, but Angeal seriously tells him that back then, he and his family were poor. Even though Zack still jokingly does not believe him, Angeal continues to share more about his past. Apparently, the largest White Banora apple tree was the one that grew outside the house of the richest family in the village. He had a lot of honor back then, and tells Zack he could never take one, since their son was his best friend. Zack, now surprised, asks why did not he just go and ask his friend, but Angeal says, "Honor can be quite a burden at times." After Zack asks him what the story had to do with him, Angeal sarcastically says, "No story is not worth hearing," and walks away laughing with Zack in pursuit.
Eventually, arriving outside Fort Tamblin, Angeal explains that when Team B set off the bombs, that will be their signal to enter, and plant the bombs inside. He then moves on to Zack and tells him he must go around the front of the fortress to keep the Wutai soldiers distracted. Zack, now excited, watches Angeal as he holds the Buster Sword and mutters words to himself. Zack tells Angeal he has never seen him use the sword, and asks if its a waste if he does such a thing. However, Angeal says that if he uses it, it would bring wear, tear, and rust and then be a real waste. He then goes on to explaining he is a poor man after all and can be cheap at times.
Suddenly a loud explosion is heard, and Angeal turns to Zack, stating the mission has begun. He is not heard of again until Zack takes down two monsters inside a Wutai dojo, when he answers his cellphone. Quickly informing him he is almost done and will be back in five minutes, Angeal finishes his call. Back in the dojo, Zack is knocked down by one of the monsters and is about to be killed. However, Angeal appears behind the monster and slices it down with his treasured sword. Nevertheless, Zack was sorry Angeal had to use the Buster Sword, now knowing how much Angeal treasured it. Telling him that Zack's life was a little more important than his sword, but just a little.
Whilst going back to a helicopter, Zack and Angeal meet up with Lazard, who too went on the mission. Lazard speaks to Zack, asking him what the difference was between 1st and 2nd Class. He states it is to ask for nothing more than more difficult work as your reward, before announcing to Zack that Sephiroth is waiting. Almost at the camp, Angeal, Zack, and Lazard are attacked by some strange soldiers. Angeal agrees to handle them while Zack protects Lazard before the helicopter to inform Sephiroth of this new development. Zack does as he is told, leading Lazard to the front of the helicopter where a pair of scouts plan to take the executive the rest of the way. When Zack returns to help Angeal, he is nowhere to be found and engages Ifrit in battle. Sephiroth appears and defeats Ifrit after it gained the upper-hand. Together, he and Zack learn the two strange soldiers from before were Genesis Copies. After Zack tells him of Angeal's disappearance, Sephiroth begins to brand Angeal a traitor as he had gone missing like Genesis had.
- "Angels dream of one thing... To be human."
In his next mission, Zack along with Tseng visit Angeal's and Genesis' hometown of Banora Village. As Zack prepares to fight Genesis, Angeal walks in, takes the sword, and points it at Genesis.
As Genesis walks towards Angeal, he tells him he respects his childhood friend's wishes, however, he then asks Angeal if he could really live in that world before walking out the door of the apple juice factory. Angeal turns around and plunges Zack's blade into the ground before following Genesis. When Zack eventually runs into Gillian Hewley's house, he finds her dead on the floor. As he turns, he finds Angeal staring at his mother's lifeless body while holding the Buster Sword. In rage, Zack takes a hold of Angeal and slams him up against the wall and shouts in his face about how and why he did this. When Zack questions Angeal's honor, Angeal states his mother had no reason to live, and he, too, is guilty of the same crime. Zack does not understand, so he tells Angeal to speak properly, but he is interrupted by Genesis. Genesis tells Zack he has told him that he cannot live like that anymore. Picking himself up off the ground, Angeal places the Buster Sword on his back before walking off into the village.
Angeal appears in a flashback scene when he, Genesis, and Sephiroth train together in the Virtual Reality Training Room which took on the image of Junon's cannon. Even though he and Genesis took on a confident Sephiroth, Genesis wanted to take on Sephiroth alone, claiming he too wants to become a hero. During the fearsome and destructive duel, the pair come close to killing each other. Angeal attempts to stop Genesis, but is sent falling down to the waters of Junon after Genesis casts a fire spell in his face. The fight continues until Angeal steps in between them pair as they charge at each other, blocking Sephiroth with the Buster Sword's hilt and Genesis with his Shinra SOLDIER sword. Genesis sustains an injury after cutting through Angeal's blade, accidentally wounding his shoulder. Angeal later willingly gives up some of his blood to help Genesis recover, after Sephiroth is told his blood is not compatible with Genesis's.
During the Genesis Copy raid in Midgar, Zack chases after Dr. Hollander after both he and Sephiroth searched through his records. Within the Sector 5 Plate Interior, just as Zack is telling Hollander to come to his senses, the Buster Sword appears from behind a column and blocks Zack's path. Surprised and shocked to see Angeal, Zack questions him asking what does he plan to do. Angeal only replies with "World Domination". Unhappy, Zack tells him to stop with the boring jokes, and so Angeal then replies with "Revenge". Curious, Zack then asks what for, but Angeal can only say what he feels. He reveals his wings and answers that he has become a monster, feels like a monster, and as a monster, he can only think about those two objectives. Zack tries to help him by telling Angeal they are not the wings of a monster, they are angel wings. However, Angeal still does not listen, and continues to question what dreams should angels have.
Angeal explains that angels only have one dream — to be human. He thrusts Zack and sends him flying. Zack stands back up but shows no will to fight. Angeal demands Zack to defend himself, but Zack carries on smiling and shakes his head. Inside Zack is saddened by the fact he cannot save his friend. Angeal casts a spell at Zack and the floor beneath Zack breaks apart and sends Zack falling downwards towards the slums.
- "But Zack, no matter what happens, I have to protect my honor. As long as I hold the Buster Sword."
- —Angeal, after choosing a side
Appearing on the Sector 0 Highway of Midgar, Angeal confronts Zack outside the Shinra Building and asks him to join him, stating that their enemy is all that torments the world. Once at Shinra Headquarters, they find Sephiroth dealing with Genesis Clones. Whilst Angeal handles things outside, Sephiroth holds the current floor, Zack heads to the next floor to check if Giáo sư Hojo is alright. A few minutes later, Angeal appears in Hojo's laboratory and tells Genesis to stop. Hojo seems surprised to see both Genesis and Angeal with wings, and talks to himself, saying that this is quite the sight.
Genesis begins to recite a line from LOVELESS Act 4. Hojo claims that Act 4 is the scene where the best friends duel each other, and says he had read all the research materials on it, but found it to be worthless. Angeal asks if there was ever an end to the duel, but Hojo says that it is unknown since the final act of LOVELESS is missing. Before Genesis makes a hole in the wall, he claims there is an end to LOVELESS, then asks what does the Gift of the Goddess hold for them. Angeal takes hold of Zack once more, before flying after Genesis. Zack notices he is casting a summon. Angeal drops Zack on top of the building, and gives him confidence and says he knows he will beat it before flying off to face Genesis, leaving Zack to face Bahamut Fury.
Once Genesis has been defeated, Angeal swoops down towards Zack in the slums and apologizes to him about leaving him to fight alone, and explains that Genesis and Hollander had gone to Modeoheim. Zack asks if he plans to come back to SOLDIER, but Angeal does not know, and flies off.
- "Zack, I am perfect. A perfect...monster."
Later on, Angeal is met one final time in the Modeoheim Public Bathhouse after being informed by Tseng it was Angeal who knocked out Cloud and himself. Angeal tells Zack it should have been him to fight Genesis, but he intended to prepare Zack for his next fight. After Zack tells Angeal to stop attacking, he asks Zack whether or not someone is waiting for him, possibly implying he had somehow learnt of Aerith and Zack's relationship. Suddenly Dr. Hollander enters the room and tells Angeal it is time to take his revenge for their family, but Angeal replies saying his father is dead. Hollander tells him to take revenge on his mother's behalf, but Angeal tells him his mother was so ashamed of her past she took her own life. Dr. Hollander questions this and states she even used her own name for the project code name: Project G, otherwise known as Project Gillian. He goes on to explain that the Jenova cells were injected into Gillian. Her cells were directly injected into the fetus known as Genesis. But Genesis was a failure. However, Angeal received her cells directly, and so was branded perfect.
Angeal turns back to Zack, and explains to him that he is nothing more than a perfect monster, and for him, it is possible to pass his traits and abilities to other people. Interrupting, Hollander adds that Angeal developed a two way conduit, which means that he has completely received Jenova's ability to absorb other creatures' traits and implant his own into monsters.
Angeal spoke to Zack, and asked him if he remembered their promise, that they would fight against anything that causes suffering on the world. He replies that he does, but Angeal does not cause suffering. Angeal tells him that he caused his own suffering, summoning several different Angeal Clones drop from above. Though Dr. Hollander shouts to him to stop, warning him he cannot assimilate the creatures all at once, Angeal forcefully pushes Hollander away as he uses the monsters to turn himself into a chimera composite called Angeal Penance. Zack stands confused as the monster stretches out his trident and scratches Zack on the face. Zack realizes he has no choice but to fight. He goes through one of the toughest battles of his life, mentally and physically. But somehow he makes it through, and defeats Angeal.
Defeated, Angeal lies dying and speaks to Zack his last words. He tells him he did well, and that he is counting on him to do the rest. He gives his Buster Sword to Zack, and tells him that it is for him to keep. His life ends with the words: "Protect your honor, always."
- "You call yourself SOLDIER? You tarnish the SOLDIER name."
- —Angeal appears to Zack in Nibelheim.
After Angeal's death, a surviving Angeal copy (a wolf with two wings similar to his) appears at Aerith's church, when Zack arrives to visit. He believes the monster is trying to harm Aerith and leaps forward to protect her, but instead of attacking, the copy defends them from a Shinra attacking robot. Injured and weak from the clash, the copy flies to the church's heights and stands vigilant. Before leaving to build a flower cart for Aerith, Zack warns the copy to stay put.
During the years that Zack lays imprisoned in Shinra Manor, sightings of Angeal appear all across the world. Four years after the Nibelheim Incident, Zack sees a physical manifestation of Angeal (caused by a reaction to the immense concentration of Jenova Cells and Mako energy). It speaks to him, questioning how Zack could call himself a member of SOLDIER. Zack's heightened emotions allow him to break free of his containment tube to try to reunite with his mentor.
As he travels to Gongaga Village, Zack sees Angeal once again. However, it is revealed that this vision, and the many sightings reported, were actually Director Lazard, who had somehow received Angeal's cells and became an Angeal Copy. He had been gifted not only with Angeal's physical appearance, but with his morals and sense of justice. However, he did not receive Angeal's strength, nor his immunity from degradation, and had been deteriorating just as Genesis had.
While Zack is away, Lazard/Angeal and the last wolf-like Angeal copy use the last of their strength to defend Cloud from Shinra. They both pass out and fade into the Lifestream before Zack's eyes as he eats a Banora White.
Only at the end of the game when Zack starts his own journey to return to the Planet, does the real Angeal descend from the sky as a true angel and helps him start that journey.
Fighting and Abilitiessửa
Angeal, fearing the Buster Sword gathering "wear, tear, and rust," hardly ever uses it, except in emergencies. However, when he does use it, he shows exceptional skill, able to wield its great weight with ease. Otherwise, he uses a general issue SOLDIER sword, or simply fights with hands and feet. If he has any particular skill in magic, he does not show it in-battle. His great physical strength makes up for the magic he does not use, able to take down monsters in a single blow, and interrupt a duel between the powerful Sephiroth and Genesis.
After learning of his origins in Project G, Angeal learns a whole host of new abilities. As a successful recipient of Jenova's power, he becomes a two-way genetic conduit, able to transfer his genetic material onto both monsters and humans, shaping them in his image, as well as being able to absorb the qualities of the same monsters. Similar to his fellow "sons" of Jenova, Angeal eventually sprouts two white wings, both on his right, that allow him to fly.
Angeal's name is most likely derived from the word "angel", tying into his white wings. Also tying into the Judeo-Christan traditions are Angeal Penance's special attacks, which are named after the Seven Deadly Sins; Unleashed Wrath (his DMW), End of Gluttony, Wings of Pride, Charge of Greed, Thunder of Envy, Defense of Lust, and Rage of Sloth. Hewley is derived from the Greek word "hyle", which is translated as "Materia" in Latin.
- Angeal's design seems to be based on Tetsuya Nomura's original design for Cloud Strife.
- His clones were generally composed of the Ahriman, Griffon, Guard Hound, and Sahagin.
- It is believed that the last Angeal Copy was born out of Angeal's will on the Planet and that he controls it from within the Lifestream in order to continue helping Zack. This is foreshadowed when, after a Genesis copy attack on Costa del Sol, Tseng speculates that Genesis might be controlling his copies from beyond the grave.
- There are several moments where a single white feather is visible. It appears to symbolize Angeal's spirit.
- According to his fanclub, Angeal's favorite hobby is "Doting over dogs", he loves nature, and his most valued skill is cooking with leftovers.
- It is implied a few times in Crisis Core that Angeal would rather fight barehanded than use the Buster Sword. This is supported by Angeal's DMW limit. However, he is sometimes seen with a basic SOLDIER-issued sword for backup use, for example, during the fight between Sephiroth and Genesis.
- Out of all those born from the Jenova Project, Angeal was the first and only one to have more than one wing and have them be a color other than black.
- The scenes of Angeal and Zack grabbing hands in Wutai and the ending FMV are reminiscent of Aerith and Cloud grabbing hands during the fight against Bahamut SIN in Advent Children Complete.
- Out of the three initial 1st class SOLDIERs, (Genesis, Sephiroth, and Angeal) Angeal is the only one to wear what seems to be the basic SOLDIER uniform, while the other two have custom clothes.