"For your crime. You will die like vermin. I will hunt you down. At the end of the earth I will find you. Your skin charred and your fats rendered. Your kind exterminated. In the end, I will feed your flesh…to the furnace."
―Frau Engel to B.J. after being wounded by Herr Faust.[src]

Obergruppenführer Frau Irene Engel is the secondary antagonist of Wolfenstein: The New Order, and the main antagonist of Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus.

History[edit | edit source]

A leading figure behind Bund Deutscher Mädel (League of German Girls), the female wing of the Nazi Party, Frau Engel has dedicated her life to the Nazi cause. Having done her duty, raising six, according to her definition, "Aryan" children to serve the Fatherland and exhibiting steadfast loyalty to the Nazi Party, she quickly rose up to their ranks.

She was extremely abusive to her daughter Sigrun, due to her kindness and benevolent nature, which can be a cause for her future downfall. According to herself, her fanatic faith to the Nazi causes is more important than her own daughter. In June 1956, Irene and Sigrun met Adolf Hitler, but he chastised Sigrun for her weight to her mother, causing Irene to slap and humiliate her daughter two days before her birthday.

The New Order[edit | edit source]

"No one leaves my camp."
―Frau Engel to the resistance before their escape.[src]

Frau Engel is first seen on the night train to Berlin accompanied by her lover Hans Winkle. She and Hans enter the same compartment as the undercover Blazkowicz. She pressures B.J. into sitting with them before proceeding to "test" his Aryan purity with a series of seemingly random pictures. After a few minutes of the test Irene confesses that the whole setup was a playful joke, since she can spot an "impure" by looks alone, and that a spy would have chosen to attack her instead of playing along. Engel then allows B.J. to leave, ignorant of the situation's irony.

Frau Engel does not appear again until Blazkowicz enters Camp Belica near Zagreb in Annexed Croatia. She is seen walking on the balcony, overseeing the delivery of new prisoners. After Blazkowicz is caught trying to steal the Detronic battery, Engel is present as Blazkowicz, Set Roth, and the other prisoners are about to be executed by Herr Faust. B.J. and Roth manage to seize control of the robot and use it to attack Engel and her soldiers. Engel survives but her face is horrifically disfigured. She taunts Blazkowicz before the robot tosses her aside. Just as Blazkowicz and the prisoners try to escape, Engel reappears with two assault rifles and opens fire on the fugitives, shouting "No one leaves my camp!" in a rather slurred, guttural voice, indicating that as a result of her scars, her vocal chords were somewhat compromised.

She later spearheads the assault on the Kreisau Circle's base, leading to the deaths of Klaus Kreutz and several others. She is last seen on a computer screen in Deathshead's compound as Blazkowicz is ambushed by Bubi and injected with a powerful tranquilizer. As Bubi attempts to gut Blazkowicz while Engel watches, B.J. bites Bubi in the neck and stabs him to death. Engel looks on in shock and horror via video feed and then shuffles away whimpering, never seen again afterwards. This is meant to imply that his death has pushed her past her breaking point.

The New Colossus[edit | edit source]

"You think you're a hero? William Joseph Blazkowicz?"
―Frau Engel to an incapacitated Blazkowicz[src]

Frau Engel returns as the main antagonist of the game. She is shown to have had her jaw completely fixed (with some scars on her jaw, a crooked left eyebrow and an inability to close the left side of her mouth) and has had ver vocal chords seemingly repaired, as she is shown to be able to speak perfectly, as opposed to her slurre, guttural voice, as heard in The New Order.

and has been relentlessly hunting down BJ. Judging by her collar insignia, she was promoted to Obergruppenführer (Lieutenant General) . It is revealed that Hitler gave her the command of the Ausmerzer to hunt down the Resistance group and she is shown to be tyrannical and extremely bossy to her subordinates, demanding that everyone submit to her will while she is in charge of the flying fortress.

Having witnessed Bubi's death at the hands of B.J. Blazkowicz in the previous game, Engel spends the next five months ruthlessly hunting the Kreisau Circle, culminating in an assault on the Eva's Hammer in the north Atlantic.

Once B.J. surrenders and is brought before her, Engel mocks his new crippled state, seemingly unaware of the fact that some of her troops were slaughtered prior to this, while gloating about her plans to publicly execute him. She then hands her daughter Sigrun a fire axe and browbeats her to decapitate Caroline Becker. After Sigrun refuses to do her dirty work, she mocks her daughter and proceeds to chop off Caroline's head. When she is about to chop off Fergus/Wyatt's head, Sigrun spontaneously realizes she can no longer tolerate her mother's evil ways and rushes at her, causing Irene to accidentally chop something off her intended target ( an arm for Fergus, an ear for Wyatt ). Despite her so-called perfect and healthy able-body based on Nazi's ideology, she is helpless against an adrenaline-induced Sigrun as her enraged daughter pins her to the ground. Irene then desperately cries out the nearby Super Soldier to successfully help her from Sigrun's choke and cowardly runs away from the scene.

She later manages to capture B.J. with help from his treacherous father, though the latter is killed during this endeavour. Weeks later, Engel decapitates him on international television, but B.J. is revived thanks to the efforts of Set Roth in a head transplant operation.

Irene later appears in Los Angeles as a guest on The Jimmy Carver Show, alongside the English band Die Käfer ( The Beatles ). After BJ and the Resistance take control of the Ausmerzer, BJ and the rest of his team (minus Sigrun due to her pacifist nature, although she gives them permission to kill her mother) infiltrate the talk show studio to finish her. At first, she gloats about B.J.'s execution to Carver and "bemoans" her daughter's defection. At the end of the interview, she warns Jimmy Carter to conduct his next interview in German, with the implication that there would be severe consequences, should he not do so. However, B.J. reveals himself before any repercussions could take place. Engel is visibly horrified. She shoots at B.J. with her outdated Luger pistol (the player can take five shots before dying if they stand idle ) but he manages to chop her right hand off. She tries to use her remaining hand to draw a knife and stab BJ, but he splits her face open with his hatchet, ending her cruel life and avenging Caroline and Super Spesh, along with his original body.

In order to make sure her legacy dies completely, Grace Walker asks B.J. to assassinate all Übercommanders under her to tie up loose ends so no one can be her successor to continue her work in the occupied USA.

The Freedom Chronicles[edit | edit source]

Engel does not directly appear as a character in Curtis Everton's graphic novels. in The Adventures of Gunslinger Joe Volumes 1 and 2, she is seen on propaganda posters around the streets of Springfield, Illinois, in the Secret Police Headquarters in the town, and in Roderick Metze's hideout at the Topeka Space Center. A novel titled "Irene Engel: Victory" bears her name and face on its cover in The Diaries of Agent Silent Death Volume 1; it is unknown if this book exists in the Wolfenstein universe, or only within the in-universe fiction that comprises the Freedom Chronicles.

Military Ranks[edit | edit source]

  • Group Leader of the Bund Deutscher Mädel (1936 - 1939)
  • Reich Leader of the Bund Deutscher Mädel (1939 - 1948)
  • Commandant of Belica Labor Camp (Wolfenstein: The New Order)
  • Obersturmbannführer (Wolfenstein: The New Order)
  • Chief der Polizei (Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus)
  • Commander of the Ausmerzer (Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus)
  • Obergruppenführer (Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus)

Appearance[edit | edit source]

In The New Order Irene is a fairly aged woman with blonde hair, blue eyes and fair skin, fitting the Nazis' “Aryan” description. She is dressed in a black-colored Nazi uniform, with a Nazi armband around her left arm. After the events at Camp Belicia, most of her face was able to be reconstructed, with the exception of large, visible scars around her mouth. In The New Colossus, the only notable difference in her appearance is her face, with her scars still visible, but nearly healed, and her face being somewhat younger-looking.

Personality[edit | edit source]

Frau Engel is little more than a psychopath with serious mental instability and sadistic tendencies. In fact, it is implied that she is such a psychopath that if Adolf Hitler died, despite him being her superior, this would only reinforce her mental instability, meaning that unlike other Nazis, she is not dependent on Hitler to maintain her position in power. Throughout the games, in particular The New Colossus, Irene proves to be a cruel, vicious, violent and merciless woman who kills anyone she deems inferior or traitorous with child-like glee, and has little to no tolerance for mistakes among her subordinates, implying that if she had been aware of her troops being slaughtered by a wheelchair-bound wheelchair, she would have likely reprimanded them for their failure.

She is intensely sadistic, reveling in the killing and suffering she inflicts on others, as shown with Caroline, Super Spesh and B.J. Engel rarely, if ever, demonstrates compassion or consideration for others, even her own daughter. The only people Irene seems to care for and respect are Deathshead, Bubi, and other members of the Nazi party. Their deaths move Engel to spend months hunting for B.J.. However, whether or not Engel truly cared for Bubi is questionable, as she recovers quickly from his death and never mentions him again. Similarly, her presumed ex-husband with which she had her six children is never mentioned either, and it is unknown if he is even still alive or not.

She is very abusive to her child, Sigrun. In an interview with Jimmy Carver in Hollywood, she admits she considered euthanizing Sigrun simply because of her weight. One of her quotes aboard the Eva Hammer suggests that Irene only wanted Sigrun to become healthier in order to improve her own image as a general, not out of any real concern for the well being of her daughter. When being interviewed, she puts on the facade of a caring mother who loved her daughter and was devastated by her defection. Despite being domineering towards Sigrun, Irene shows real fear and panic when Sigrun finally stands up to her; pinning Irene down with the fireaxe and prompting Irene to order a Supersoldier to save her. This is the first hint at Irene's cowardly nature and her unwillingness to be violent in any instance where she does not have total control of the situation.

Irene is otherwise totally disrespectful and condescending towards others ( especially non-Germans ). If B.J. listens during her interview with Jimmy Carver, Engel can be heard angrily correcting Jimmy for not pronouncing a German word correctly, and warning him to either do his next interview completely in German, or face the consequences.

An interesting aspect of Engel is her relationship with B.J.; Despite her initial hate for him due to her disfigurement and the deaths of Bubi and Deathshead, she appears to develop some physical attraction towards B.J. This is shown when Irene sings a song in German to an incapacitated B.J. in a seemingly affectionate, yet condescending tone, subtly implying that his verdict had already been determined and that his trial was merely a sentencing hearing(in reference to Kangaroo courts). Afterwards, she puts her handgun in his mouth, in a fashion similar to the "Human Ashtray" sexual act, muttering: "That's it... how does it taste? The gunpowder of the bullet that killed your friend. ( ... ) You're so boring." This, along with the fact that Irene had a relationship with Bubi, who was nearly thirty years younger than her, implies Irene possesses some degree of sexual deviance.

Finally, her fatal flaw is revealed in the end: ego. After "executing" Blazkowicz publicly, she believed that nothing could stop her from reigning over America. Therefore, she completely blocked all the communications from High-ranked Nazi officers and attended the Jimmy Carver show out of selfishness and to flaunt about her accomplishment. Due to her flaw, she was unable to be informed that the Ausmerzer was stolen and that Blazkowicz returned from the dead. Consequently, during the middle of the live television show, she was publicly killed by Blazkowicz.

Quotes[edit | edit source]

Main article: Irene Engel/Quotes

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Main article: Irene Engel/Gallery

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • Frau Irene Engel carries a gold Handgun 1946 that can be collected as a treasure during the chapter 8 Camp Belica level.
  • Her name translates to 'Mrs. Angel'.
  • Her first name, Irene, is the Greek word for "peace", which is ironic.
  • Because she is not physically present during the final assault on Deathshead's compound, Frau Engel is the only surviving antagonist of The New Order.
  • According to the prisoners at Camp Belica, she is known there as the "Angel of Death", both referencing her surname and merciless attitude. This nickname is also shared by the infamous Nazi scientist, Josef Mengele.
  • Frau Irene Engel's cruel and inhumane treatment of her camp's prisoners might have been based on Nazi Commandant Ilse Koch, the notorious warden of Buchenwald.
  • After extensive surgery, a team of medical experts, led by Deathshead himself, managed to recreate most of Frau Engel's face. However, scars still remain.
  • She is the mother of Sigrun Engel. Her abusive treatment of her daughter backfires, since Sigrun reveals every military secret of the Nazis to B.J. and the Resistance.
  • Her demise is similar to Rip Blazkowicz; they both mistreated their own children and are similarly murdered with a hatchet.
  • Frau Engel has 6 children, including Adalwardus and Sigrun.
  • Frau Engel has served in the Nazi Party for 29 years.
  • Her rank on the killing board is General, despite her different collar insignia.
  • In Wolfenstein II: The New Colossus, during B.J.'s execution, Frau Engel says to B.J. "We would have been... so good together. Darling... you're breaking my heart." This may imply that Frau Engel may be envious of B.J.'s aptitude and affinity for violence. Frau Engel also refers to B.J. as "Darling" in earlier scenes, and even puts her gold Handgun 1946 in his mouth with obvious BDSM inferences. It can be roughly implied, with this kind of behavior, that Frau Engel has a hidden sexual attraction to Blazkowicz. It may also simply be her insanity seeping through, however. Furthermore, it is also shown that Bubi is nothing more than a sexual object to her than a true lover since she recovers from his death very quickly and never seems to mention him to B.J.
  • Engel’s attraction towards B.J. is further implied in an image released by Bethesda, which depicts her licking the left side of B.J.’s face while he remains incapacitated.
  • Engel's blood type is O-.
  • If the player attempts to draw a firearm in the rafters of the Jimmy Carver Show set, B.J will flippantly remark that Engel's death, from his perspective, absolutely must be up close and personal, whilst firmly gripping his hatchet, on account of being enraged at Caroline Becker's death.
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