- "Just frightened people ripping each other's throats out. I really haven't had to do too much; take out a bridge here, lay in a little hallucination there, sit back, pop some corn... watch the show. Frankly, you're really vicious little animals, Sam! [...] Last week, this was Mayberry. Now these people are stabbing each other's children. Honestly, people don't need a reason to kill each other. I mean, you seen the Irish? They're all Irish! You think I'm a monster. I'm jello shots at a party; I just remove inhibitions."
- ―War's view on humanity's violent capacity and tendency.[src]
Manifestation of war and coflict
|Status :||Alive; inactive|
|Appearance(s) :||Good God, Y'All!|
|Actor/Actress :||Titus Welliver|
War is one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, who is responsible for conflict and war among humanity in the natural order. War manifested for the Apocalypse, but was rendered powerless when he lost his ring.
War is a force of nature embodied and a very powerful being. As the horseman who manages and embodies war and fighting, War possessed supernatural abilities which allowed him to directly or indirectly manipulate humans into turning on each-other; War could cause people within miles of him to mutually hallucinate each-other as certain kinds of enemies which would drive them to turn on and attack each-other (such as demons), and he could guide and direct these hallucinations (i.e., strengthen the illusion's integrity, and control who was hallucinated as an enemy and who wasn't) by activating his ring.
However, War's illusions usually just affected how the affected people visually saw each-other, and didn't alter other factors such as dialogue or physical reactions, which could give a clue to the truth away. It was also possible to break War's hold over a person if they were directly convinced of the truth and the fact that it was a hallucination. Among his other abilities, War was capable of reading people's minds with a look and seeing their own internal temperamental conflicts. He could also biokinetically manipulate his own corporeal form so as to cause minor injuries to appear on him in order to further fool the affected people.
While War, as a force of nature embodied, couldn't be killed, he could still be incapacitated and severely crippled by separating him from his ring. (Good God, Y'All!)
According to the Book of Revelation and the prophecy of the Apocalypse, War would rise with the other horsemen when Lucifer walked the Earth, and would serve as one of Lucifer's primary weapons for his genocide against humanity. As described in Revelation, War's and the other horsemen's arrival would be immediately preluded by Star Wormwood passing overhead and by the river below Wormwood becoming polluted. (Good God, Y'All!)
War has existed throughout time as a force of nature, and his effects have been felt by humanity throughout history in the form of humans' weakness towards self-destructive conflict, war and fighting. (Supernatural: The Official Companion - Season 5)
In 2009, when the Apocalypse began after Lucifer was freed from his cage, War manifested on Earth within a matter of days, his arrival being immediately preceded by Star Wormwood. War targeted River Pass, Colorado, killing a local man called Roger and taking his form, before cutting the town off and then causing the townsfolk to mutually hallucinate each-other as demons; which led to the people ravaging the town fighting each-other, and dividing up into sheltered survival groups led by hunters, with War playing both sides in the affected people's war against each-other by posing as Roger.
After Sam and Dean Winchester came to River Pass to back up the hunters there in the war against the supposed demon infestation, when Sam realized the truth behind War's illusion while held captive by Rufus Turner and Jo Harvelle's group, and when Dean and Ellen themselves discovered the truth on their own, War successfully manipulated the townsfolk into abandoning the hunters' salt and holy water in favour of fatal, live ammunition by causing the townsfolk groups to hallucinate Dean and Ellen as demon infiltrators.
With both sides among the remaining townsfolk preparing to launch a final attack against each-other, thus the town being set to wipe itself out, War slipped away in the chaos to move on to the next town, but was intercepted and captured by Sam and Dean. Since War couldn't be killed, the brothers instead cut off his ring finger; causing War's illusion to immediately lift and ebb away, while War himself quickly vanished. (Good God, Y'All!)
According to Brady, after War lost his ring, he's reduced to a withered, bony husk, "fetal position on the floor." Brady also indicated that even getting his ring back would not do War any good. (The Devil You Know)
War was a being who, embodying and witnessing all of humanity's capacity for and acts towards war and barbarism, had no faith in humanity and regarded them as vicious animals who at heart just wanted to kill each-other for no reason. He believed that he did nothing but remove humanity's inhibitions over their own innate hatreds and conflicts, and he cruelly enjoyed the war, slaughter, fighting and destruction he caused among humans, treating it as an art or an enjoyable show. War was also a very good actor and highly manipulative, preferring to trick and deceive humans to turn them on each-other, and succeeding, by playing both sides under the disguise of an innocent and traumatized civilian. As he was war itself incarnate, War was extremely laid-back and confident even in the face of his enemies due to the absolutenesss of his immortality, although his arrogance could get the better of him and cause him to fail to realize that his foes could work out another way of defeating him.
The horseman upon which War is based is described in Revelation, 6:3-4. According to Revelation, it is the second one of the Four Horsemen to be released, riding out when the second of the seven seals is opened by Jesus Christ. The second horseman is also described as riding a red horse, and as wielding a great sword. The red rider is generally recognized as representing War (often specifically civil war, unlike Conquest), or alternatively Slaughter. Some commentators have also suggested that the second rider could represent persecution of Christians.
- Due to how War seemed to be free-roaming in Good God, Y'All! without any demons or other apparent affiliation with Lucifer, some fans have suggested that War probably, due to having only just manifested a few days before, hadn't yet been bound by Lucifer like the other horsemen would be. Supernatural: The Official Companion - Season 5 states that Lucifer had already bound the Four Horsemen millennia ago.