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Critical Role: Caleb&#;s Complete List Of Self-Named Spells

As Caleb Widogast, resident Transmutation wizard of the Mighty Nein on Critical Role, burns his own mark (ba dum tss) in the world of magic, he occasionally attaches his own name to the spells he creates.

Inspired by Sam's reoccurring jokey-rant about Caleb naming all of his spells after himself, here is a complete list of Caleb Widogast's self-named spells so far.

Widogast's Vault of Amber

Widogast's Vault of Amber, affectionally dubbed "WVOA" by one Travis Willingham, is a spell in which Caleb can summon a large amber and store non-living contents (up to lbs.) for an extended period of time. Storing them in this manner seals the objects contained in time, preventing the contents from aging, weathering, or otherwise becoming damaged in this form.

This is a fourth-level Transmutation spell that lasts until the user chooses to dispel it. It requires 11 minutes to cast and can be cast only in the range of the user's reaching distance.

The requirements for casting the spell are:

  • the user must trace Transmutation sigils above the materials they wish to contain in the vault
  • materials: 5 small amber gems worth gold pieces
  • the user's Action chooses a word which then dispels the vault when spoken

RELATED: Dungeons And Dragons: 10 Ways To Deal The Most Damage

Widogast's Transmogrification

Warning for story spoilers for campaign 2 episode

An example of a successful casting of Widogast's Transmogrification spell.

This spell was first created by Essek Thelyss and Caleb Widogast, using notes from the archmage Halas, in an attempt to return Nott into her true body once and for all. Therefore, the spell's use is to transform a (humanoid) creature's body into another (humanoid) body permanently. This is a 6th level Transmutation spell that can only be used once per year. The casting time of this spell is 1 hour (however, once successfully cast, is performed instantaneously), so clearly this spell was made to be used outside of battle. The casting range is of the user's reaching distance.

In addition, the requirements are:

  • materials: damp clay of weight equal to the target of the spell and gold pieces worth of crushed gem dust
  • the user must encase the target in clay
  • the user must imagine what the target will look like after the spell is complete

One final side note: do not perform this spell in an expensive, porcelain bathtub (sorry, Marion!).

RELATED: D&D Wildemount Players Prefer The Echo Knight Subclass

Widogast's Web of Fire

Warning for spoilers for campaign 2, episode

Widogast's Web of Fire is a fourth-level Evocation attack spell in which the caster places their palms on the ground and summons a web of fire (5 streaks of fire) homing in towards the user's attacker(s). The target(s) are then required to make a Dexterity saving throw of 17, with a failed roll dealing 8 d6 fire damage and a successful roll dealing half that damage. The user can choose to target up to 5 enemies with these streaks of fire or converge the flames towards a single target (dealing instead 12 d6 fire damage on a failed roll, half the damage on a save). The fire can also reach five feet high and the damage of the spell increases by 1 d6 for each additional spell slot level after fourth. One Action is required to cast the spell and it takes effect instantaneously if all targets are in a range of 60 feet of the user.

The spell component required is:

  • a cat's cradle of thread or phosphorus-coated string

Caleb's Produce Flame

This spell, in particular, is one of Caleb's cantrips. It is similar to the spell Produce Flame from 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons, but has been specifically designated with Caleb's name in the D&D Beyond database.

Produce Flame requires one Action to use and causes the user to conjure a flame in their hand for 10 minutes. This flame can be used as a light source with a foot radius (10 more feet of dim light after that) or to attack targets within 30 feet of the user as a ranged spell attack. This deals 1 d8 fire damage to the target if it hits. Typically, this is a cantrip used by druids, which is likely why it was renamed for Caleb, possibly with some elements changed or altered since he is a wizard.

Critical Role is currently on a break due to COVID When they do start streaming again, you can watch them on their Twitch channel.

Source: Critical Role Wiki, @VoiceOfOBrien on Twitter, Roll20

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Characters / Critical Role Caleb Widogast

Main Character Index / Dungeon Master
Tal'Dorei (Campaign 1): Vox Machina (Grog | Keyleth | Percival | Pike | Scanlan | Taryon | Tiberius | Vax'ildan | Vex'ahlia)
Guest Party Members | Allies and Other Characters (Empire/Republic of Tal'Dorei) | Villains
Wildemount (Campaign 2): The Mighty Nein (Beau | Caduceus | Caleb | Fjord | Jester | Molly | Nott | Yasha)
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The Setting Of Exandria: Gods | Historical Figures
One-Shots (Exclusive): One-Shot Characters (Exclusive) | The Darrington Brigade
Exandria Unlimited: The Crown Keepers

Caleb Widogast

Played by: Liam O'Brien

"Well, my social anxiety is getting the best of me, I'm taking a walk. Goodbye."

Click here see Caleb before Level

Race: Human

Class: Wizard (School of Transmutation)

A world-weary and vagabond human wizard who has been traveling with Nott for some time. Possessing an aptitude for magic, a love of reading, a Photographic Memory and very little regard for personal grooming, Caleb's priorities are to expand his magical abilities and simply survive. His loyal familiar is Frumpkin, a fey spirit who usually takes the form of a patchy tabby cat.

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    Tropes A - H 

  • Affectionate Nickname: Nott's referred to him as "Cay Cay" in the past, but is currently trying to get "Lebby" to stick. The party is unimpressed.
  • All Witches Have Cats: Technically he is a wizard and not a witch, but Caleb is a talented magic user and he rarely keeps Frumpkin away for too long. He generally insists to keep his familiar in cat form for most of the time and he treats him as an actual pet even though Frumpkin is actually a minor Fey spirit. When he creates his magic tower he takes this tendency Up to Eleven, as he summons Fey cats as his servants. As implied by Episode , this is all because he used to have a cat himself when he was younger, who died (possibly due to the same fire that killed his parents).
  • Ambiguously Bi: While Caleb was previously involved with Astrid and is "uselessly in love with Jester" (as described by Liam on Talks), his interest in men is unclear. Liam has said on Talks that Caleb considers Essek handsome, and the nature of his relationship with Eadwulf has been left somewhat ambiguous.
    • Liam does inquire during the party's dinner with Trent if Eadwulf's forearms are as fabulous as he remembers.
    • Resolved on Talks Machina - Caleb is canonically attracted to both men and women, and Liam refers to him as bisexual.
    • Even less ambigious on Twitter - Liam confirms he was "romantically wrapped up with Astrid and Eadwulf".
  • Ambiguous Disorder: Caleb's behavior, in particular his brief bout of catatonia after witnessing the burning head of the Yeenoghu priest he killed, suggests that he has some form of post-traumatic stress disorder. Made less ambiguous in Episode 18; By his own admission he "broke" after being forced to kill his own parents via house fire when he was a teenager, and he spent eleven years in a mental institution afterward before one of the healers there used magic to clear his mind. Given how he described it, he likely has a severe anxiety disorder as well as some type of PTSD, of which fire and people burning is a trigger (possibly hinting at low level pyrophobia as well).
  • Animal Motifs: Cats. His familiar is a cat named Frumpkin whom he shares an Uncatty Resemblance to, several of his spells take on feline motifs (such as his modified Cat's Ire), and much like a cat he tends to be somewhat aloof and skittish, but clever and loyal.
  • Arch-Enemy: His former teacher, Trent Ikithon. Caleb isn't shy about telling him to his face that he'd like nothing more than to see him dead. Disturbingly, Trent encourages this attitude.
  • Badass Bookworm: He's an avide reader and forms with Beau the pair of Nerd of the Mighty Nein. He's also an accomplished wizard fully capable of sinking an entire ship by himself.
  • Badass Teacher: After retiring from a thrilling heroic career, Caleb settles down as a magic teacher at the Soltryce Academy (he also tutors Luc Brenatto on the side). Implied to overlap heavily with Stern Teacher, as his already dour nature is magnified by the seriousness with which he imparts moral and ethical lessons onto his students, in an attempt to break the cycle in which Trent raised him, Astrid, and Eadwulf.
  • Beware the Quiet Ones: As far as arcane practitioners go, Caleb is far from impressive at first glance, but get on his bad side, and you'll understand why one of the most powerful archmages of the Empire calls him a prodigy. During the Vergesson Sanatorium heist, he brutaly murders several guards with Gravity Sinkhole, a dunamantic spell he reverse engineered by himself.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Admits in Episode 8 that he sees Nott as his little sister. It extends to her son after he finds out about his existence.
  • Break the Believer: On Talks, Liam describes Caleb in his younger days as a patriot. As he puts it, he was raised that way and it formed a lot of his motivations when he initially became a wizard. His loyalty and patriotism to the Empire died along with his parents.

    Caleb (about his dedication to killing for the Empire): But we were— are— at war. Many of us felt that way— feel that way.
    Nott: Do you still feel that way?
    Caleb: I don't believe in anything now.

  • Bond One-Liner:
    • After dispatching Lorenzo.

      "You shouldn't have killed my cat."

    • And again after killing the Laughing Hand.

      "Get the fuck away from my friends!"

  • Byronic Hero: Prior to opening up to the group. Intelligent? Check. Handsome? Described as such. Hard to socialize? Check. Self critical to the point of hating himself? Check. Cynical? Check. After he opens up to the group he is slowly moving on from being this.
  • Cannot Spit It Out: When Nott tries to force him to admit that his drive to save the kidnapped party members might not be purely pragmatic in nature, he storms off.
  • Cargo Ship: He has quite a thing for high-quality paper and ink!
  • Cerebus Retcon: He reveals in Episode 22 that his dirtiness and smell is partially deliberate, to avoid drawing attention.
  • Characterization Marches On: His social awkwardness took a few episodes to become clear. It turns out that he was much more confident when he was a child, and that his current behavior is caused by the constant stress of being on the run from some people from his past that possibly want him dead.
  • Character Death: Killed during the Final Boss fight with Lucien. However, he's brought back by the rest of the Mighty Nein once Lucien is dead.
  • Character Development: After spending enough time with the Mighty Nein not only he gets some confidence back, but he gradually stops hiding and starts to wear clean clothes again, he is more open about using his spells just for the sake of having fun with his friends, and he decided to try and stop the corrupt system that brought him and many other children to be brainwashed into murder their own families instead of go back in time to prevent himself to kill his own parents as he was originally planning.
  • Character Tics: Meticulously counting things out loud. Obviously pops up mostly when money is being exchanged, but he even does it when pulling out the three crossbow bolts that downed him in Episode 8.
  • Child Prodigy: Was one, alongside Astrid and Eadwulf. The three of them being naturally talented for magic were sought out by Trent Ikhiton as soon as they entered the Solstryce Academy. It didn't go well.
  • Child Soldiers: Or rather Child Mage. After being accepted into the Soltryce Academy as a young teenager, he was taken into secret training to make him a covert executioner and torturer on behalf of the Empire.
  • Color Motif: Caleb's color palette is made up almost entirely of warm earth tones. His coat and leather-bound spellbook are brown and his spells and magical effects— particularly spells he crafts himself— are amber, symbolizing steadiness and warmth, both traits that become more prominent when he defrosts.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Is a Squishy Wizard and knows it, so expect him to stay far away from the front lines if possible. During the sudden appearance of a zombie at the carnival, he even pushed his way into a crowd of terrified audience members for cover.
  • Cynicism Catalyst: His mental "break" and time in the asylum made him far less trusting in people, and more prone to viewing acts of kindness as transactional rather than altruistic.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Clearly haunted by one. Caleb was apparently meant to go to the Soltryce Academy at one point, but "fucked it up somehow". He has also had traumatic experiences involving fire, judging by the semi-catatonic state he goes into from seeing the gnoll priest's burning corpse. It's fully revealed for the audience in Episode He was conscripted as a Child Soldier from the Soltryce Academy, and was tortured and indoctrinated to the point that he killed his own parents for conspiring against the Empire. Afterwards, he suffered a psychotic break that landed him in an asylum until he was cured of his madness by a cleric who also removed False Memories implanted by his mentor of his parents conspiring against the Empire.
  • Deceased Parents Are the Best: His parents supported his magical talents and were happy he got accepted into the Soltryce Academy. Downplayed, in that they were also very nationalistic and pro-Empire and passed that down to Caleb, which ended up leading to their own deaths as a way to prove his loyalty to the Empire.
  • Defector from Decadence: He was a trained child assassin and executioner loyal to the Dwendalian Empire, who was brainwashed into killing his own parents and snapped as a result. After regaining his sanity and realizing exactly what had been going on, he was driven almost singlehandedly by a desire for vengeance against his teacher, Trent Ikithon and the Empire (and it took him a LONG time for him to come trust that the Mighty Nein would help him). This ends up either being the Mighty Nein's saving grace or bane when Caleb offers up the dodecahedron to the Kryn Dynasty, all while declaring war on the Empire, to get them out of a sticky situation.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: A platonic male example. At first, the only person he liked or trusted was Nott, but he&#;s coming out of his shell around the rest of the party if only gradually.

    Caleb:(to Jester) I am slowly&#; ever so slowly&#; beginning to like you. Please do not fuck it up.

  • Dishing Out Dirt: He employs Maximilian's Earthen Grasp to great effect against a Gelatinous Cube in Episode
  • Disintegrator Ray: Learns the Disintegrate spell upon reaching high levels and utilizes it to great effect, particularly against Vokodo, where it's the finishing blow.
  • Driven to Madness: Hearing his parents burning to death inside of his house caused him to "break," ending up putting him in an asylum for quite some time. According to Liam in the Talks Machina for Episode 18, the break happened at age 17, and he was not cured of his madness until age 28, meaning he was insensate and insane for approximately eleven years. His madness was so bad that when another patient, a cleric, came and cured him, she was herself "stark raving mad" within fifteen minutes.
  • The Eeyore: Generally a bit sullen and anxious. In Episode 3, one gets the impression that he's regretting the decision to keep the company of somewhat eccentric individuals in an effort to divert attention away from him and Nott, as this put them at the center of an investigation into the strange murders at Trostenwald.
  • Energy Ball: Chromatic Orb tends to be his go-to spell in combat during the first few episodes. It remains a commonly used spell even at later levels.
  • Everyone Has Standards: As much as he dislikes The Empire, and finds them flawed, he is firmly against the group targeting the high Richter simply because she is a Jerkass, wanting them to only be involved if she truly is the corrupt individual others are claiming her to be. He'll agree to target those who deserve it, but he draws the line at targeting people who someone has a petty grudge against. Given The Reveal later about his past, it makes since why he'd be concerned targeting people based on false assumptions; it's what lead him to kill his parents.
  • Eloquent in My Native Tongue: Episode 70 is the first time we see him speaking fully in Zemnian to someone from that region. To represent this, Liam drops the German accent for that conversation, using his normal voice instead.
  • Fake Memories: While in an asylum after killing his parents, a woman put her hands on Caleb to cure his madnessand also unwittingly removed false memories implanted in Caleb of his parents plotting against the Empire.
  • Fiery Stoic: Caleb is one of the more measured and severe members of the Nein, and a talented pyromancer.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration: As revealed early on, Caleb has issues with fire due to his Dark and Troubled Past that gave him PTSD. In terms of gameplay, whenever Caleb kills with a spell with fire as its element, he has to roll a Wisdom check to see if he can keep himself composed after doing so. If he fails, he goes into a catatonic like state and becomes unresponsive for a period of time, usually requiring someone to snap him out of it.
  • Germanic Depressives: Liam affects a German accent for the role, and Caleb is generally very stern and morose.

    Caleb:(after saving against Twiggy's Hideous Laughter) Ja, I'm not a happy guy.

  • Given Name Reveal: Reveals his true name in Episode 49 to be "Bren Aldric Ermendrud".
  • Glass Cannon: He&#;s certainly squishy, but Caleb can deal huge amounts of damage with his spells. In Episode 8, he completely incinerates a bandit captain with a single Scorching Ray spell, and is then immediately knocked unconscious by three crossbow bolts striking him in the chest.
    • Taken Up to Eleven with episode 55, where due to falling under a succubi's Charm Person, he deals total damage to his own teammates. After he shakes off the spell, he's then knocked unconscious four separate times in the whole fight.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: After killing his parents, something inside of him snapped, and he spent eleven years in an asylum.
  • Gratuitous German: He occasionally peppers his speech with German phrases to represent the Zemnian language, which directly lead to Zemnians in general becoming a Fantasy Counterpart Culture of Germans.
  • Hair Color Dissonance: Liam describes his hair in game as reddish-brown, but his official character art usually portrays it as a brighter, coppery color.
    • Eventually, Liam does refer to Caleb as having "red hair", so it seems the copper colour stuck.
  • He Cleans Up Nicely: Most people (Jester in particular) admit that when Caleb shaves, makes eye contact, and makes the effort to smile, he's actually quite a handsome fellow, a fact backed up by his 16 Charisma (the second-highest behind Fjord). From episode 61 onwards he cleans up permanently, by buying new clothes and no longer deliberately smearing his face with mud.
  • He Knows Too Much: At the beginning of the campaign Caleb thinks that his former teacher Trent Ikithon wants to kill him for his escape from the Sanatorium after that he recovered his sanity. As Caleb was trained to be part of Trent's Secret Police and subjected to (possibly illegal) magic experiments during his time as a student, his worries seem to be founded. However, Trent Ikithonassures Caleb that he never wanted him dead when they finally meet again, but it is uncertain how much of the word of a seasoned Manipulative Bastard can be taken for true (especially considering that one of his Scourgers tried to kill Caleb when she had the chance). In episode , Caleb's suspicions are proved right as Trent appears at Caduceus' home dead set on killing Caleb before he can expose Trent—along with anyone else who gets in his way.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: Leaning toward self-hatred. Because of his Dark and Troubled Past, Caleb sees himself as a fundamentaly bad person and always downplays his own achievments, having trouble receiving compliments.
  • Hypocrite: Admitted by Liam himself in the Talks Machina for Episode 35, though he gets better over time.

    Liam: For Caleb, he wants to grow — selfish motivations — and if good things happen along the way, awesome. He's such a hypocrite, because this guy Algar creeped on Jester's mom. The things that Caleb has done are far worse, but he likes Jester, and he wants her to be happy and useful, and happy, and he wants to do all those things on the horizon line.

    Tropes I - P 

  • I Coulda Been a Contender!: By his own admission, he was a charming and intelligent young man for whom everyone had high expectations, but he "fucked it up somehow." In Episode 18, it turns out that the "somehow" was being brainwashed by his magic tutor into murdering his own parents for political dissidence.

    Caleb: You know, when I was younger, I thought I was going to be something. And now I, uh don't.

  • I Did What I Had to Do: Caleb doesn't enjoy solving problems with violence, but he can easily justify killing in self-defense or for the greater good, which disturbs Beau and Fjord.

    Caleb:(while interrogating NPC Gallen Westman in Ep 36) We want to just get along. We're all tired. I'm tired. Buuuuut, I'll go to work if I need to.

  • I Have Many Names: He admits in Episode 49 that "Caleb Widogast" is only one of his fake names, and it just happened to be the one he gave Nott when they met.
  • Infectious Insanity: An accidental, one-time, Implied Trope. When another patient cured him of his eleven-year madness in his backstory, she was herself stark raving mad within fifteen minutes. With no other evidence, Caleb's assumption goes unchallenged and the audience never sees the person involved. Later, per the Campaign Wrap-up, the situation turns out to be a once-cleric whose god (likely the Arch Heart) took pity on Caleb's catatonic state and allowed their acolyte to heal him. The woman simply returned to being an ordinary patient afterward.
  • Internal Reformist: He hasn't committed to any one path yet, but he's gone so far as to tell Astrid that he's open to returning to the Assembly if he thinks it can be changed for the better. At the campaign's end, he passes up an offer to join the Assembly, instead preferring to teach transmutation magic with a strong side helping of ethics at the Soltryce Academy.
  • Introverted Cat Person: Caleb fits this to a T, being rather closed off to most people, but openly affectionate towards Frumpkin. Beauregard at one point suggests his bond with Frumpkin gets in the way of him forming meaningful relationships with other people.
  • I Owe You My Life: Very protective of Nott because she saved his life prior to their arrival in Trostenwald.
  • Ironic Fear: The wizard with a large repertoire of fire based spells is also a pyrophobe. It becomes much less ironic when one realizes that he does that to never forget what he has done.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: He deliberately encourages Jester's feelings for Fjord, despite his own attraction to her.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: While not the same brand of jerk as Beau, who is generally blunt and at times outright rude, Caleb is distrustful, secretive and very concerned with his own survival, not to mention him calling his traveling companions lunatics on more than one occasion. However, it's clear from his interactions with Nott that once you get past Caleb's many walls, he can be very protective, caring and even quite affectionate.
  • Kill It with Fire: Caleb has access to fire-based magic, but because of his PTSD, whenever he actually uses fire to kill something, he risks falling into a catatonic state (represented in-game by a wisdom saving throw after a fire-based kill).
  • Mage Tower: Creates his own version of Mordenkainen's Magnificent Mansion in the form of Widogast's Nascent Nein-Sided Tower, a Pocket Dimension meant to serve as a home for the Nein during their travels.
  • Magic Is Mental: As is common for D&D. Caleb further exemplifies the relation between intelligence and magic by having both magical power, high intelligence, and a photographic memory thanks to his Keen Mind feat.
  • Master of Disguise: Can use Disguise Self and Seeming.
  • Mayfly&#;December Romance: Deconstructed with Essek. As a Drow, Essek will naturally outlive Caleb by centuries. While they get together after the events of the series, they eventually amicably split to avoid the pain of losing the other.
  • Meaningful Name: The name Bren comes from the German verb "brennen," meaning "to burn".
  • Minored in Ass-Kicking: He spends part of the first two episodes looking for books, he's The Smart Guy, and is an accomplished wizard.
  • Morality Adjustment: According to Liam, he used to be Lawful Evil, but has shifted to True Neutral by July , with the separation being his "break".
  • Mundane Utility: The more confident he becomes, the more Caleb is willing to use his magic even for mundane purposes. The most prominent examples are the Programmed Illusions he cast on Rumblecusp for the Traveler Con, and when he used Telekinesis to push Beauregard and Jester into two snowdrifts in Foren. Some NPC even commented about this, as Programmed Illusion and Telekinesis are considered high level spells and mages normally are not willing to waste them to entertain common people.
  • Never Going Back to Prison: When he is about to be arrested, Caleb has a habit of pulling out big, risky moves, from his Wall of Fire in Episode 42 to handing over the Luxon Beacon to the Bright Queen in Episode
  • No Social Skills: As a result of him living in isolation as a beggar for an indeterminate period of time before meeting Nott, he's had to become re-accustomed to interacting with others and generally comes across as somewhat awkward, though he can be persuasive if he really tries.
  • No Sense of Direction: Averted due to his Keen Mind feat, which allows him to always know which way is north.
  • Not So Above It All: Occasionally has these moment as he warms up to the rest of the party. By episode 90, he's loosened up enough to play a joke on Fjord that makes the guards see Fjord in a bathrobe when they arrive at the Bright Queen's castle.
  • Not-So-Badass Longcoat: He wears a dirty leather coat, under which he stores his books. In fact, it is deliberately unkempt to allow him to keep out of people's perception.
    • Gains a regular Badass Longcoat along with a nice outfit once the Mighty Nein become heroes in Rosohna.
  • Occam's Razor: Invokes this when defending the group from accusations of collaborating with the circus to coordinate the zombie infestations.
  • Ooh, Me Accent's Slipping: Invoked. Caleb has a pretty thick Zemnian accent and has admitted himself to be extremely bad at mimicking other people's voices.

    Caleb: (in an attempt to imitate Fjord) Aeldritch Blaaaest.

  • The Paragon Always Rebels: A unique evil-to-good example. Caleb was Trent Ikithon's most favored pupil at the Soltryce Academy, and, had he not left the fold, would have been groomed as Trent's successor. Instead, he had a nervous breakdown after being manipulated by Trent into killing his parents, spent a decade in an insane asylum, and has now dedicated his efforts to opposing Ikithon and all the worst excesses of the Cerberus Assembly.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Liam spends almost all the time in character with an extremely downcast frown. Lampshaded in Episode

    Caleb: (with a massive frown) I feel hopeful.
    Jester: (Beat) You look like you feel hopeful, Caleb.

  • Perpetual Poverty: As a wizard, Caleb ends up going through almost all his money when the group does shopping trips as he buys new spells to copy into his spellbook. This, combined with the cost to copy the spells at all, means he rarely has enough money to assist with larger money issues, and tends to rely on the others to take care of things.
  • Photographic Memory: Caleb has the Keen Mind feat, which allows him to perfectly recall any piece of information he's learned within the last month. Liam frequently takes advantage of this to ask Matt for information he himself forgot, and the rest of the group joke about it by occasionally asking Liam exactly what time it is or which direction is north.
  • Physical Scars, Psychological Scars: Caleb subconsciously rubs his arms when he's often stressed/anxious, or remembering the past.
  • The Pig-Pen: Noted to be filthy at the beginning of the first session, seemingly due to the events of Session Zero. Nott clarifies that they're usually not in one place long enough for Caleb to clean himself up. He also smells pretty bad - Liam clarified during the Episode 4 edition of Talks Machina that this was not part of his original design, but something Laura ad-libbed in the first session and everyone else ran with, much to his dismay. Subverted in Episode 8, when Pumat Sol uses Prestidigitation to magically clean Caleb, who also takes an actual bath in the next episode, but then slaps mud on his face following an argument with Jester, putting him pretty much back where he started hygiene-wise (albeit with cleaner clothes).
    • He cleans up a little more permanently after the group moves to Xhorhas, since at this point he realizes there's not much point in concealing himself when the group is now publicly affiliated with the Dynasty.
  • Playing with Fire: He knows at least one fire spell per level, from the cantrip Fire Bolt to the 4th-level spell Wall of Fire. He tends to have a strong leaning towards fire spells in general, though it also causes him issues listed under Kill It with Fire.
  • Polyamory: There are a number of hints that he was previously in a relationship with both Astrid and Eadwulf when they were all Trent's protegees, something that Liam has confirmedout of game.
  • Properly Paranoid: He obsessively casts Alarm before going to sleep, even if the group is sleeping in an inn. It pays off in Episode 8 when bandits slip past Mollymauk's dismal 6 Perception. He's got good reason to be paranoid: his former teacher, Trent Ikithon, is The Archmage and leads a magical Secret Police. Caleb murdered one of Trent's associates and stole a piece of jewelry that he says keeps him hidden from attempts to find him magically.

    Tropes Q - Z 

  • Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: The calm, serious, pragmatic Savvy Guy to Jester&#;s quirky, exuberant, cheerful Energetic Girl.
  • Saying Too Much: In his zeal to keep Nott out of harm's way, he accidentally tells the group that she's a goblin before they even think to ask.
  • Scars Are Forever: This trope is the reason he wears bandages around his arms and hands. When he was still Trent Ikithon's student the archmage experimented on him and his fellow students by driving arcane crystals into their arms and other body parts, and Caleb still bears the scars from these experiments over eleven years later.
  • Scholarship Student: Despite being poor, he was accepted to attend the Soltryce Academy with Astrid and Eadwulf due to their natural talents in arcane magic.
  • Self-Made Orphan: He killed his own parents as a child soldier for the Empire for the crime of being subversives. Years later Caleb discovered his memories of overhearing their revolutionary plans were fake.
  • Set Right What Once Went Wrong: Ultimately Defied. Pre-Character Development, Caleb's motivation for studying time magic was out of the hope that he could travel back in time and prevent his parents' deaths. When, at the campaign's end, he discovers what appears to be an actual time machine in the ruins of Aeor, he lays out to Essek a long, meticulously detailed plan about how he would pull it off without affecting the future, causing a Stable Time Loop then he casts Disintegrate on the chamber and burns everything that's left.
  • Shipper on Deck: A mild example, but in Episode 14, he seems to be trying to awkwardly play wingman for Yasha towards Beau, encouraging her to buy shuriken for Beau and telling Beau that Yasha was the one who carried them.
    • He's also shown to push Jester towards Fjord in multiple instances, despite his own feelings for her.
  • Ship Tease: He gets quite a lot with Jester, with his softer side coming more around her than the rest of the party.
    • After he and Essek spend more and more time together, they share a lot of romantic moments together, including feeling protective towards one another, sympathising and bonding over their shared flaws, and even physical affection, with Caleb in particular touching Essek's face a lot. They eventually enter into a romantic relationship after the campaign. They remain together for a time until their difference in aging leads to them amicably parting ways, albeit remaining lifelong friends and appreciating the time together.
  • Signature Move: Creates his own spell, Widogast's Web of Flame. A spell cast using a cat's cradle as a material component, which launches five streaks of flame across the ground that can either hit five different opponents or be made to converge on a single target for greater damage.
    • Because Bigby's Hand was Scanlan's signature spell in the first campaign, Liam flavored it differently by making his own Cat's Ire which is mechanically the same but summons a giant orange cat paw instead.
  • The Smart Guy: Possesses the party's highest intelligence and has a Photographic Memory.
  • Squishy Wizard: He has the lowest AC and HP among the party. Surprisingly, it is Molly who is the first to get knocked unconscious, but Caleb is soon to follow.
  • Stress Vomit: In Episode 10, his first response to Fjord cutting down one of the sewer rats attacking the group is to dry heave due to the noxious odor that emerges.
    • Implied to be the reason he vomits in episode 48 due to a combination of his past coming back to haunt him, and Nott using Guilt by Association on him because of said past.
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: Caleb is quiet and secretive and generally difficult to like, but around those he trusts — for instance Nott, Jester, and Beau — he's a much softer, more open person.
  • Survival Mantra: During stressful battles, most notably the second fight with Lorenzo and his Iron Shepherds, Caleb has a tendency to mutter to himself "This is going very well." Even if he's on the edge of death.
  • Teen Genius: Had a knack for the arcane at a young age, and attended advanced classes at the Soltryce Academy. (He possessed a high intelligence score of 18 at the start of the campaign).
  • The Lost Lenore: A Wrong Name Outburst while drunkenly dancing with Jester, along with his mention of having fallen in love during his studies both imply he has one: Astrid, one of his fellow students.
  • Thinking Out Loud: Has a habit of talking to himself, especially when alone. Whether this is Played for Laughs as with him having a conversation with a skull or Played for Drama depends on the scene, such as one powerful monologue when the party is asleep in Episode 26 while traveling in an attempt to rescue Jester, Fjord, and Yasha from the Iron Shepherds, showing him to be genuinely a bit unstable:

    Caleb: Look at the lot of you. Look at these people. I should go right now. I don't know you at all. Look at this one. He's like a walking rainbow, what is this? Why are you with him? It makes no sense. He's a circus performer, he's not going to help you. This oneyou told everything to, to try to get into a library. You learned nothing. On your gamble, you failed. You're stupid. Smart as you are, you're stupid with this. She could cave in everything. This three that have been stolen: yeah, they're nice. Two of them. One's weird.One of them tried to kill you. The other one, she's adorable, but— Stupid. This one here. What do you expect to do with her? How is she going to help you do what you want to do? She can watch your back— I know. Don't worry, you're fine. She's as much a liability as anything else. You know you're fucking mad when you're gesticulating this much. You should just go. You have told too much. I am going to go. It's time to go.

  • Thousand-Yard Stare: Falls into one of these when he fails a Wisdom saving throw after killing something with fire.
  • Token Evil Teammate: Downplayed in that he doesn't do anything particularly heinous throughout the story, but he WAS an imperial assassin and torturer, and originally teamed up with the rest of the Nein for selfish reasons. Liam stated in a twitter that Caleb's alignment was originally Lawful Evil, but partway through the game turned to True Neutral.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: He's really fond of boba, but stresses the importance of only eating one a day, lest your colon suffer.
  • Tyke Bomb: A failed one. He was groomed by Trent algonside Astrid and Edwulf to become one, but snapped after being forced to kill his own parents. Upon recovery, after eleven years in an asylum, he begins to formulate plans to get his revenge.
  • Unscrupulous Hero: Relative to the rest of the Mighty Nein, his plans and actions can be a shade darker on the Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism; proposing to deal with problems fast and violently rather than risk trusting the wrong people, and engages in Pay Evil unto Evil when getting revenge on those hurting his teammates. This attitude is addressed in episode 25, where he and Beau make a deal to keep each other from sliding too far into becoming evil people.
  • Vocal Evolution: His accent takes a bit of time to solidify. In the initial session, it's very subtle, to the point that many viewers were surprised when Liam identified it as German. In subsequent episodes, Caleb speaks with a more pronounced accent and regularly uses German words or phrases.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifter: Uses the Polymorph spell to great effect in battle, and can even use it for free once a day as of lvl10 due to his Transmuter's class.
  • Wham Line: In Episode 18, when he tells Beau and Nott about his Dark and Troubled Past. Marisha Ray's reaction says it all.

    Caleb:I am going to tell you the story of how Imurdered my mother and father.


Race: Fey Spirit (Cat)

Class: Familiar

Caleb's familiar, a magical fey spirit bound together with him through a magical pact. He usually takes the form of a patchy orange tabby cat, but Caleb can invoke a ritual to change Frumpkin into a number of other animals including a sparrow and an octopus.

    Tropes A - Z 

  • Animal Eye Spy: One of Frumpkin's powers as Caleb's familiar. Caleb is able to see and hear through Frumpkin, at the cost of becoming temporarily insensate to his own surroundings.
  • But Now I Must Go: In Episode , Caleb frees Frumpkin of his oaths and lets him go free, leading to him walking away and presumably returning to the Feywild.
  • Cat Scare: Invoked by Caleb to distract a guard in Episode In Episode 9 Caleb has Frumpkin give one to Beau and Fjord just for fun.
  • Cuteness Proximity: Zig-Zagged. Frumpkin's charms have worked on aloof and deadpan individuals such as Beauregard and Oremid Hass, who dote on him, but others aren't so easily moved; Fjord is allergic and not too fond of the cat, while the Crownsguard tend to try and kick at him.
  • Death Is Cheap: As a Familiar, Frumpkin can be restored if he dies, though the process is expensive. It has happened at least a few times in Caleb and Nott's past, with Nott apparently having eaten him twice.
  • Empathic Shapeshifter: Via Caleb's Find Familiar spell, he can take almost any animal shape (though he prefers the cat shape). Caleb transforms him into a sparrow for some reconnaissance, and has also transformed him into an octopus several times.
  • Expository Hairstyle Change: Or rather Expository Fur Color Change. As a symbolic gesture to allevites him from his familiar contract, Caleb changes Frumpkin's orange tabby fur to pure white, releaving him of his Replacement Goldfish status for Caleb's long dead cat.
  • Familiar: He's Caleb's, of course. Caleb can command him telepathically, look through his eyes, channel spells through him, and grant him short-range teleportation by dismissing and re-summoning him.
  • Fuzz Therapy: Provided this in Caleb's past, and is occasionally summoned for providing comfort to others going through rough times. Beau observes that this may be an impetus for Caleb's lack of close relationships.
  • One-Hit-Point Wonder: Depending on how Liam rolls each time he's summoned. In Episode 3, getting hit with a sack by an elderly gnome shopkeeper for 1 damage is nearly enough to do him in. A resummoned Frumpkin in Episode 9 does go down with one damage from a Crownsguard's kick, though.
  • Replacement Goldfish: Heavily implied to have been this to Caleb for his own cat he had when he was a younger boy.

    Caleb: Because you're not my cat. My cat is dead.

  • Silent Snarker: Being a cat, he can't actually speak, but displays an impressive amount of sass when Caleb orders him to do something especially ridiculous.
  • Telepathy: Caleb can communicate with him telepathically. For example, to distract Beauregard from an unwelcome line of questioning, he instructs Frumpkin to hop into her lap.
  • They Killed Kenny Again: According to Caleb, Frumpkin "has a good sense of humor" about his own frequent deaths.
  • Uncatty Resemblance: Frumpkin, like Caleb, is a ginger.
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Caleb Widogast

Full name

Bren Aldric Ermendrud

Gender IdentitySexual Identity


Una Ermendrud (mother)
Leofric Ermendrud (father)

Portrayed by

Liam O' Brien

Caleb Widogast is a bisexual character from Critical Role.


This section is in need of major improvement. Please help improve this article by editing it.

Caleb was born as Bren Aldric Ermendrud. He was a gifted kid, with magical talents, together with two kids from his town; Astrid and Eadwulf. At the age of around 15, the three of them were picked by the Soltryce Academy, the biggest magic school in the Empire, to attend and study there. After a while, they were picked by one of the teachers, Trent Ikithon, for 'special lessons', where they were more or less trained to be assassins.

They had to kill traitors to their country, in a way to prove their loyalty. The final test before graduation was the ultimate sacrifice, which was to kill their parents. After Bren succeeded, by burning his house down, he broke. Then he was sent to Vergesson Sanatorium, an asylum. After 11 years, he was healed by a random woman, who took away the fake memories of his parents being traitors. After having this revelation, he killed one of the guards and escaped the asylum.

He went on the run for 5 years, using different names wherever he went. When he met a small goblin girl in a cell one time, he was using the name Caleb Widogast, and he stuck with that name for the time he spent with her, which ended up being longer than he anticipated, because they met a few other adventurers, and they formed the group named 'The Mighty Nein'.


Caleb Widogast is a human wizard. He has blue eyes, a cleft chin which is covered by a beard most of the time, and reddish-brown hair. His outfit has changed a few times, but most of the time he wears long coats and scarfs. He also has two red-eye tattoos, one between his shoulderblades and one on the front of his right shoulder.


This section is in need of major improvement. Please help improve this article by editing it.

Caleb is reserved, and doesn't like to draw too much attraction to himself. He is focussed and ambitious.


This section is in need of major improvement. Please help improve this article by editing it.


This section is in need of major improvement. Please help improve this article by editing it.


Jester Lavorre

In episode 24, Jester and Caleb waltzed together, and his actor has confirmed that he has been "a little in love" with her ever since. But he feels that his feelings for her are "useless", or "a problem", and he feels that Fjord or Beauregard would be a better fit for her.

Astrid Beck

This section is in need of major improvement. Please help improve this article by editing it.

Essek Thelyss

This section is in need of major improvement. Please help improve this article by editing it.

The relationship between Caleb and Essek is partially that of a student and a teacher; Essek has taught Caleb a few dunamantic spells. Caleb has said: "the difference between you and I is thinner than a razor", in regards to their past wrongs, after which he kissed Essek on the forehead. After that, he also said "Maybe you and I are both damned, but we can choose to do something, and leave it better than it was before."

Out of character, Liam O'Brien has stated that "Caleb's relationship to Essek was many things, is many things.", which confirmed both his care for, and attraction to Essek.

"Attraction to Essek is real, and care for Essek, and like, intellectual attraction is real too."


  • Word of Gay - Was revealed to be attracted to multiple genders by Liam on Talks Machina.

See Also

Caleb Widogast



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Role caleb critical

Yes. I will remember this for a long time. whispered Dasha.

Caleb Widogast's tragic backstory Part 1 (Critical Role 2 Ep 18)

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Svetochka sighed.

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