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In the season final of Supernatural (season 8), we see:

How all the angels fall down from the sky. And they all look like humans with wings (Which are lost during the fall).

We've seen our share of angels in the past and we know that they don't look humans in Heaven, they just posses human vessels when they come down to Earth, so my question is:

How come the angels falling all look human? Is this just a visual resource? A mishap (hardly doubt it) or is there another explanation?

Sorry for keeping the question as a spoiler, but I think it needs to be covered.

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    @moreover they were all male. what happened to females? – Shwetabh Shekhar Jul 4 '13 at 16:12
  • Note that not all of the angels have taken vessels; Bartholomew is working to get vessels to accept the angels that are still floating around bodiless. Presumably the ones we saw falling are the ones that already had vessels? – KutuluMike Nov 10 '13 at 20:58
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Angels don't seem to have a definite form in Heaven. However, the majority of scenes in Heaven have had the angels resembling their human vessels - the scenes between Castiel and Naomi in season 8, Castiel's flashbacks of the angels he killed that have been depicted in the last few seasons, et cetera. The one exception I can think of is the episode where Sam and Dean are in Heaven (I think it was season 5, I'd have to check later) and being chased by Zachariah, who took the form of a large spotlight for the majority of it, but also appeared in human vessel form near the end of that episode.

I think it's just a visual resource. From a show production standpoint it makes sense to have any scenes involving the angels in Heaven using the actors for their human vessels, so it's immediately obvious to the viewer who they are. Then, when it came to the finale and the scenes with the falling angels, the viewer was already used to almost always seeing angels as human so they continued with that.

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    in season 5, Zacariah tries to impress Sam and Dean by describing his "true form in heaven" (which sounds similar to descriptions of Angels in Relevations), implying that the angels do have a definite form in Heaven. However, it's suggested that any human looking at an angel's true form is left with their eyes burned out, so possibly the angels are just trying to be nice? – KutuluMike Jul 4 '13 at 15:22
  • Interesting answer.. I was going with Metatron kicking them out of Heaven and locking the door behind them as a Fall from Grace (why else would they burn?). I suspect they won't have access to the majority of their normal powers (as Castiel experienced when locked out of Heaven) in Season 9. All that leading to Graceless Angels looking an awful lot like humans. This is all conjecture and theory mind... – AerusDar Jul 5 '13 at 7:16
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the wings are probably symbolic of the angels inability to return to heaven

as to human form I would assume the spell Metatron used had a fail safe that forced the angels into human form before expelling them since seeing an angels true form burns out human eyeballs

guess we will have to wait for season 9 and see if they try to explain it

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Some angels that are in Heaven (Naomi, Zachariah, Metatron, etc) have taken a human vessel and are using that vessel while in heaven. What we saw were many of those angels falling from Heaven who already had vessels. There are also angels in Heaven who have no vessel, we just weren't as privy to their fall. The wings are there in the same way they were in Castiel's first reveal or after you kill an angel: they are just barely invisible, but have a way of becoming visible in certain circumstances (like, for instance, when they are being burnt away).

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I know this is an old question, but I feel compelled to give a good answer.

In "Dark Side of the Moon", Zachariah says:

ZACHARIAH: In heaven, I have six wings and four faces, one of whom is a lion. You see this because you’re… limited.

This implies that humans automatically see angels as the form of human, typically their vessel, because they are limited.

Because we, the viewers, are human, this is how our eyes see angels in the Season 8 finale.

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Supernatural never shows an Angel's true form.

Zachariah (Season 5 Episode 16 [Dark Side of the Moon]) describes his true form, "In Heaven I have six wings and four faces one of which is a lion."

An earlier episode (Season 4 Episode 20 [The Rapture]) shows an Angel's light entering the vessels on earth implying that an Angel creates Light (Castiel), the light travels to Earth, then possesses a human vessel (Jimmy.)

Later episodes show Naomi and her followers as Humans walking around Heaven (which is being run like an office.) Since Naomi has been running a sanction of Heaven, Angels have been walking around in human form so it's only logical that when they fell, they did so in their Human Vessels.

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    This is very difficult to read. Can you please format it better? – Izkata Sep 23 '13 at 10:56
  • I've attempted to reformat it and add links; revert it if needed. – K-H-W Sep 23 '13 at 13:26
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I think the writers just chose to portray them that in and falling from heaven as their human vessels to keep their true forms more mysterious (and of course, so a majority of us wouldn't have our eyes burned out)

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