Characters / Preacher

Jesse Custer

  • Badass Beard: In the TV show, perhaps as not to interfere with Dominic Cooper's role in Agent Carter.
  • Badass Creed: Jesse Custer learned his from his father, cribbed from John Wayne;
    John Custer: Don't take no shit off fools. Judge a person by what's in 'em, not how they look. An' you do the right thing. Be one of the good guys. 'Cause there's way too many of the bad.
  • Badass Normal: Before being possessed by Genesis.
  • Badass Preacher: Even though he never wanted to be a preacher, he still wears the collar even after his church is incinerated.
  • Berserk Button: Be it animals, women, or children; DO NOT abuse the defenseless in his presence.
  • Bully Hunter
  • Character Development: Gradually stops seeing the world in such a black-and-white viewpoint.
  • Combat Pragmatist: He won't hesitate to go for a nutshot in a fight.
  • Compelling Voice: due to being possessed by Genesis
  • Eyepatch of Power: After he inexplicably loses his eye in the War In The Sun arc.
  • Good Old Fisticuffs: Jesse's preferred fighting style, but can also be a Combat Pragmatist when the situation calls for it.
  • Heroes Fight Barehanded: Although he's a crackshot with a gun, he prefers to stick to his fists.
  • Likes Older Women: Tulip is three years older than him.
  • Literal Genie: All orders that Jesse issues using his "Word of God" power are interpreted this way.
  • Morality Chain: For Cassidy, whose nasiter side shows once Jesse seemingly dies. Tulip, while depressed, does attempt to move on eventually.
  • Only Sane Man: Jesse is this in relation to everyone else in the book, except maybe Tulip. Word of God says this is why he's the hero of the piece.
  • Papa Wolf: Not too pleased when he finds out De Sade is trying to use a child in his porno.
  • Rage Against the Heavens: His childhood kind of soured him on the idea of a loving God, and he intended to make God answer for the state of the world even before he found out all of the things he's responsible for.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: He gets these whenever he uses the Word.
  • Semi-Divine: As the result of having the "Word of God."
  • Significant Anagram: Jesse Custer = Secret Jesus. Also, of course, his initials.
  • Southern Gentleman: Has some elements of this, which are a source of endless entertainment for Amy and Tulip.
  • Story-Breaker Power: "The Word" has the potential to be this, allowing Jesse not only to control someone's mind but their bodies as well such as when he caused his grandmother's enforcers to spontaneously combust just by telling them to "burn". However, Garth Ennis managed to avoid this by giving Jesse's power some very believable limitations. 1) They have to be able to hear him 2) They have to be able to understand him; making the word powerless against those who don't speak English, animals who aren't trained to respond to verbal commands, or those who are either deaf or can drown out his voice.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Looks a lot like his father, but has his mother's eyes and some of her body language.
  • What Beautiful Eyes: Large brown eyes, which some of the female characters are all too happy to comment on. They automatically draw the readers' attention, a handy thing when they indicate his powers by turning red.

Tulip O'Hare

  • Action Girl: She's Hell with a firearm.
  • Audience Surrogate: Somewhat, since she's the only non-supernatural protagonist and has the most normal backstory.
  • Badass Normal: Unlike Jesse or Cassidy, she has no powers. She still manages to fight her way through anything they encounter.
  • Daddy's Girl: She was very close with her father, and considers him one of the most decent guys she's ever met.
  • Does Not Like Guns: She hated guns for a time because her dad was shot in a hunting accident. She rediscovers her love for him when she's forced to use them to fight the Grail's assassins.
  • Does Not Like Men: She generally had bad experiences with men until she met Jesse. She got worse after he apparently dumped her, although she was unaware that it was against his will.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Amy does.
  • I Just Want to Have Friends: As a child, the girls didn't want her because she liked boy things, and the boys didn't want her because she was a girl.
  • Missing Mom: Due to Death by Childbirth.
  • Raised by Dudes: Raised by her dad, and influenced by his buddies.
  • Straw Feminist: At her worst. Although she has been messed with a lot by men.
  • The Determinator: Her hand is stabbed and stuck to a dashboard with a knife, but she still gets up to warn Jesse. And she later overcomes drug addiction with sheer willpower.
  • The Gunslinger: But she's reluctant to pick up a gun again at the start of the story.
  • Race Lift: Tulip is a white blonde in the comic, but African-American in the TV show.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: The tomboy to Amy's girly girl, though it's downplayed.
  • Violently Protective Girlfriend: Mess with her man and you'll find out.
    • Platonically for Amy.

Cassidy

  • The Atoner: After being brought back to life as a human in the final issue, Cassidy decides to follow Jesse's example and "act like a man".
  • Car Fu: Attempted to drive a pickup into the Saint Of Killers, to no effect.
  • Cool Shades: Never seen without his sunglasses. They cover up his wrinkled, bloodshot eyes.
  • Cursed with Awesome: His view of being a vampire.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: He's experienced a lot of trouble over his long life, most of it self-inflicted.
  • Does Not Know His Own Strength: He's well-aware most of the time, but in the past, smacked a woman across the face, breaking her jaw. The shock on Cassidy's face implies he didn't mean to go that far.
  • Everyone Has Standards:
    • Horrified by the Reaver-Cleaver's actions, even vowing to kick his ass when he finds one of the mutilated (and still living) victims. And this is before he realizes the Reaver-Cleaver has hurt Tulip.
    • He was disgusted to find out that Eccarius was feeding on his own followers, and killed him by putting him out in the sun.
  • Exposition of Immortality: He's a vampire and was made one during the Easter Rising in Dublin 1916 at the age of 16. He tells Jesse all about how he was turned and how he came to America and all the friends he's left behind and lost to old age through the years during a long conversation on top of the Empire State Building. Turns out he missed a few details, though.
  • Face–Heel Turn
  • Good Thing You Can Heal: He takes decapitation in stride. This is used against him when Herr Starr, furious at the depth of his error in kidnapping Cassidy instead of Jesse, calls in his old friend Frankie to continuously shoot him to near-death, then wait for him to heal, then repeat.
  • Hidden Depths: Some better than others, but a more benign example would be that a note he leaves for Tulip apologizing for his actions reveals he has really nice handwriting.
  • Karma Houdini: After all of the skeletons in his closet are revealed at how much a monster he is, he pulls it off by making a deal with God to capture Genesis. The last pages show him alive, with his curse removed. To be fair, he also demanded that Jesse would survive no matter what happened as one of the conditions. He also lets himself burn to "death" in the sunlight. Before that, Jesse beats the shit out of him. It doesn't really make up for everything he did in the past, but at least he doesn't get away without some pain.
    • He's also going to have fun dodging the many enemies he made around the country when he was too strong to care, now that he's relinquished that super-strength.
  • Man Child: Cassidy is impulsive, arrogant, self-centered, and hedonistic.
  • Never My Fault: When called out on his actions, he likes to gripe about living with the guilt and experiences of the things he's done, ignoring that most of it is his own fault. As Jesse says, "Way you make it sound, you had alla that done to you. 'Steada you bein' the one that did it."
  • Our Vampires Are Different: Loves garlic, is unaffected by holy water and crosses and survives decapitation. He can also enter a church, can't turn into anything, and doesn't need invitations to enter anyplace. He doesn't even have any fangs, just regular teeth. The sun's a killer, though.
    • "I tried (turning into a bat) once. Broke both my legs."
  • Redemption Equals Death: He decides that the evil he's done can't be forgiven, and that he has to burn it out. After committing suicide by standing in the sun, he's brought back to life as a human, and intends to be a better person.
  • Selective Obliviousness: Does this repeatedly, causing much grievous harm to other people. When Jesse calls him out repeatedly, he gets self-righteous.
  • Suicide by Sunlight: Subverted. He appears to do this, but it turns out he already made a deal with God that will ensure his survival.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Especially after the events of War In The Sun
  • Who Names Their Kid "Dude"?: "So I got kind of a question. 'Proinsias'?"
  • Would Hit a Girl: He has a bad history of domestic abuse, and because of his strength, usually ends up crippling the girl.

The Duke

  • The Faceless: His face is always kept in shadow.
  • Imaginary Friend: He likely isn't real, but Jesse still uses him for support.
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: We never see his face, and he's only referred to by name once.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: We never find out for sure if he's a hallucination or the actual ghost of John Wayne. However, Jesse admits that he started seeing him four years before John Wayne passes away, so it seems more likely that Jesse developed him as a coping mechanism.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: Guy's a dead ringer for John Wayne.
  • The Obi-Wan: Sort of became this after Jesse was possessed by Genesis.

Saint Of Killers

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/saint_of_killers.jpg

  • Anti-Villain: As frightening as he is, he makes no excuses for what he's done and it's thanks to God himself that he lost his family, and any good he may have had left in him.
  • Badass Boast: "There ain't worse than me in all of Hell. Go an' look." (Gunshot)
  • Badass Grandpa: He was old even before he became immortal, but you wouldn't want to have messed with him then, either.
  • Badass Longcoat: Always wearing an old fashioned duster.
  • Bottomless Magazines—His guns never need reloading, never miss, never jam, and with the exception of Cassidy, every shot is fatal.
  • Death Glare: He scares the hell out of people who don't know anything about what he is, just by having a very mean stare.
  • The Determinator: He never gives up. Ever.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: He shot the Devil in the face, and God as well.
  • The Dreaded: Even Jesse-whose entire goal is to find and call out God for the shape of the world-is terrified of him.
  • Exposition of Immortality: The Saint Of Killers got a four-issue mini-series all of his own to tell us about his mortal life in the Civil War and the terrible winter of 1878. He dumps a silver dollar with just that date on the counter of a bar in Gone To Texas, too.
  • Gun And Sword: When he was mortal, he sometimes fought with a pistol in one hand and a saber in the other.
  • Implacable Man: Nothing can stop him.
  • Instant Death Bullet: Nothing that gets shot by him survives. Unless they're already dead.
  • Nigh Invulnerable: Minus the "Nigh." Nothing, and I mean NOTHING, harms him, not even having a nuke dropped on him.
  • The Power of Hate: The hate he had for his killers is what allowed him to keep his sanity when he went to Hell. His hate ended up freezing the entire place, and not even being tortured by Satan could drive the hate from his heart.
  • Quick Draw: The Saint of Killers can draw his guns faster than a man can see. He uses this to shut down Jesse's Word the second time they meet.
    Saint of Killers: "I'm bettin' I can clear holster 'fore your words hit the breeze, preacher. First twitch I see...that's what I'm gonna do."
  • Rage Against the Heavens: After Jesse reveals to him his backstory.
  • The Sixth Ranger: Becomes this to Jesse and his group after meeting the angel who sired Genesis in Vol 3.
  • Super Strength: In addition to the invulnerability and magic guns, he's much stronger than the average person too.

God

  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: When The Saint finally cornered him, he begged for his life
  • Big Bad: Everything, Genesis coming into Jesse, the war with the Grail, was all done as a long-winded way for God to see how loved and adored he was.
  • Dirty Coward: If it would mean any possible harm to him, he won't take a chance facing it
  • God Is Flawed: It is eventually revealed that all of the world's problems are caused by being created by a guy who grew up in total solitude (because there wasn't any universe yet!) and thus developed what could be considered a narcissistic personality disorder as well as any number of related mental problems.
  • Jerkass God: The world's a shithole because God's a dick.
  • Let's Get Dangerous: You really do not want to piss Him off.
  • Love Hungry: God's fatal flaw.
  • Pet the Dog: He really didn't have to keep up his end of the bargain and Resurrect Cassidy and Jesse but he did anyway and even restored Cassidy's humanity as well.

Herr Starr

  • Butt Monkey: Undergoes a Humiliation Conga like no other. At the time of his death, this is the sum total of his injuries (deep breath:) One of his eyes is blind, one of his ears was shot off, a scar was carved over his head making it look like a gigantic penis, cannibals ate his leg and a rottweiler bit off his genitals. Oh, and he's bald and has a harsh voice, too. Since childhood. He literally becomes this when he is anally raped by Bill Glover.
  • Compensating for Something: After losing his genitalia Herr Starr feels the need to get a bigger gun. And then stand in front of a mirror with it, muttering "Doomcock. Doomcock."
    • In a way, that turns out to be his downfall: if he was still using his old nine-millimeter pistol, he wouldn't have run out of ammunition in his final gunfight with Tulip.
  • Determinator: Hops his way out of the desert on one leg, falling every few steps.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Got his scar, voice, and baldness from a childhood incident where a gang of schoolboys cut his eye out with a piece of glass. They all ended up dead before his tenth birthday. This incident got him the job as the Sacred Executioner of the Grail.
  • The Starscream: To D'Aronique, who thinks being Genre Savvy about this will make using him anyway less risky.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: He started out as one. He hated the chaos of the world, and he would kill anyone to bring about his vision of order.

Arseface

  • Appropriated Appellation: He took his name from a comment from Cassidy. Even though he didn't know what an "arse" was.
  • Cigarette Burns: His dad put a cigarette out on his arm after he caught him with marijuana on his shirt.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": We never do learn what he was called before he took on the name "Arseface". All we can say for sure is that his last name is probably Root. The AMC series reveals his real name to be Eugene.
  • Happily Failed Suicide: Arseface tried to kill himself because he was sad and lonely, and his idol Kurt Cobain and his only friend had both just killed themselves and the friend had told him to do the same. After the failed suicide attempt, he does all he can to turn his life around, but can never get away from his face being horribly mutilated by the shotgun blast that so fortunately missed his brain.
  • Name-Face Name: Arseface. Or as he would say it, "Uhfuh!"
  • Nausea Fuel: Was this In-Universe to most people he met, causing them to involuntarily vomit upon seeing him.
  • The Unintelligible: Thanks to his facial injury, he's hard to understand.

Allfather D'Aronique

  • Adipose Rex: The leader of the Grail, and so fat that he needs his follows to help carry him.
  • The Dreaded: Is this to his own people as well as major world leaders, requiring them to call him daily and thank him for allowing them to remain in power. Starr himself, despite his revulsion towards D'Aronique, has good reason to be scared shitless of him.
  • Evil Uncle: Jesse's grandmother Marie L'Angelle was Allfather D'Aronique's aunt. It turns out that one of the reasons the Grail leadership supported Starr's pursuit of Jesse was because D'Aronique wanted to punish Jesse for killing his "Aunt Marie".
  • Fat Bastard: Very fat, and very evil.
  • Genre Savvy: Despite his appearance, D'Aronique is not only a sadist but is ruthlessly clever, knowing that Starr intends to assassinate him but keeps him close anyway to better keep an eye on him and allowing him to pursue Jesse so he could pursue his own retribution against him.
  • Jabba Table Manners: He's usually seen eating. And he's bulimic to boot.
  • Villainous Glutton:
    Marseilles: God he (D'Aronique) disgusts me, what do you suppose he's thinking about?
    Starr: His favorite subjects-mass murder and big pies.

Marie L'Angelle

  • The Dreaded: Was this to Jesse his entire life. Just hearing her name mentioned in the first volume was enough to make him freeze in terror.
  • Evil Matriarch: The head of the L'Angelle line, and determined to make Jesse follow the path she's chosen for him.
  • Evil Old Folks: She's around a century old.
  • Improbable Age: Had Jesse's mother at 60, and is likely over 100 in the current story. To put it in perspective, she's older than Cassidy.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Not only cruel to Jesse- her idea of diciplining Jesse as a child was to lock him inside of a coffin and submerging it at the bottom of a river with only an airhose to keep him alive, but was to his mother, her own daughter, too.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: After all of her Kick the Dog moments, watching her flaming corpse getting blasted into the sky when the fire Jesse set to her house blows up her oxygen tanks is EXTREMELY gratifying.

Jody

  • Badass Normal: Once killed a gorilla with a baseball bat.
  • Corrupt Hick
  • Evil Mentor: To Jesse.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Is completely loyal to Marie and hates those who don't stand by their own.
  • Lack of Empathy: He called Jesse a crybaby after he shot his dad in the head, and didn't understand why Jesse got so upset when he nailed his dog to a fencepost. He also resents Jesse because he feels that Marie never showed Jody the same "kindness" she showed Jesse.
  • Made of Iron: Even in his current advanced age, he can still tank a ton of hooks to face, kicks to the stomach, and being set on fire. Even having nails puncture his jaw doesn't make him look more than mildly annoyed. It takes Jesse breaking his spine in half to keep him down for good.
  • Pet the Dog: An extremely minor one. When Jesse tells him he caved T.C.'s head in, Jody stops talking and looks honestly upset.
  • Psycho for Hire: His family worked for the L'Angelle's and he's devoted to Marie.
  • So Proud of You: To Jesse right after Jesse breaks his back. Doubles as his Famous Last Words.
  • Villain Protagonist: Along with T.C. in the one-shot "The Good Old Boys."

T.C.

  • Anything That Moves: And in some cases, anything that doesn't.
  • Ax-Crazy: He's pretty sadistic, and a lot more outspoken than Jody.
  • Badass Normal: He and Jody show an uncanny knack for surviving in the swamp, if need be.
  • Psycho for Hire: Like Jody, he does any dirty work Marie needs.

Jesus De Sade

Odin Quincannon

  • Bald of Evil: Not a hair on his head.
  • Corrupt Hick: A native Texan, and a nasty son of a bitch.
  • Evil Old Folks: It's not obvious, but he's seventy-five years old.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: To the point that even some of his fellow Klansmen were disturbed.
  • The Napoleon: He's about four feet tall, but that doesn't stop him from throwing his weight around.
  • Rags to Riches: In his own words:
    Ol' Odin never had no fancy education, no sir! Odin Quincannon started out so poor he had to wipe his ass with his hand! But he pulled himself up by his bootstraps an' made something of his life, an' by God he did it alone! Odin cleans his crack with smoothest silk today, an' he didn't get there by exploiting' contacts an' callin' in favors from no faggy fuckin' law school! He got there by hard fucking' work!
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The red to his brother Conan's blue.
  • Third-Person Person: He likes referring to himself in the third person. Jesse finds it annoying.

Conan Quincannon

  • The Atoner: Comes to Salvation to help atone for the damage his brother, Odin, caused.
  • Cool Old Guy: Offers Arseface a job simply because Lorrie asked him to.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The blue to Odin's red.

Hugo Root

  • Abusive Parents: He regularly beat his son whenever he pissed him off.
  • Ate His Gun: In his last encounter with Jesse, he uses The Word to tell him to go fuck himself. He does just that with his own severed penis. He asks his son to hand him his pistol, and blows his brains out right in the ambulance. Eventually, this is one of the factors that leads Jesse to be more discriminating with the use of his power in future.
  • Badass: As much of an asshole as he was, he was no coward. He doesn't take shit off of an FBI agent who makes fun of his story about Jesse and the Saint, and he gets the drop on Jesse and Tulip and threatens to shoot either of them if they don't surrender. The only person who manages to scare him is the Saint of Killers.
  • Conspiracy Theorist: He thinks the FBI is hiding a ship with a dead Martian in it, and stayed up firing his rifle into the sky to scare off any aliens who tried to abduct him. He also thinks that Jesse's Word and the Saint of Killers are the result of government experiments.
  • Corrupt Hick: Because of his position as sheriff, nobody in town could do anything to stop him from assaulting suspects or beating his son.
  • Don't Make Me Take My Belt Off: He regularly beat his son with his belt whenever he was angry with him.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: He once hit his son just for starting a sentence with "I don't see".
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: He likes to talk about the threat of "Martian niggers", and doesn't seem too fond of the regular kind either.
  • Teeny Weenie: When he wife left him, she ended her note by telling him that she lied—three inches is below average.

Jacob "Jake" O'Hare

  • Cluster F-Bomb: Somewhat averted, as he never really drops the f-bomb:
    "Damn wife died. Damn baby's a girl."
  • Cuteness Proximity: After meeting his daughter for the first time:
    "Aw, so you're a girl. That needn't be so bad."
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He's redneck as you can get, and he's not one for political correctness. But he was a very loving father to Tulip.
  • Papa Wolf: Even though he wanted a son at first, he never failed to stand up for his daughter when necessary.
  • Rated M for Manly: A guy who liked hunting, fishing and sports. He and his friends laughed at the idea that his wife would ever have a girl.
  • Verbal Tic: "Damn" among his friends, although he avoids it when speaking to Tulip.

Satan

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