Bigby Wolf is a Fable – a character of myth and legend who has assumed several guises both in his native Homeland, as well as in the public consciousness on Earth. In the Homelands, he is most renowned for terrorizing three small pigs, resulting in the destruction of their homes, and also for stalking a young girl through the woods and impersonating her grandmother in the hopes of baiting her into a trap.
When a being known as the Adversary began to conquer the Homelands, Bigby, as well as many other Fables, conducted a mass exodus to Earth where they established an underground Fable community called Fabletown. Under the auspices of Mayor King Cole, Bigby was elected to the position of Sheriff of Fabletown. On Earth, Bigby possessed the means to assume human form. Mundane human beings (derogatorily referred to as "mundies") are unaware of Bigby's true heritage as a Fable. He occupied a small office at the Woodland Building in Manhattan and longed for the chance to prove his worth as a real detective.
The "Murder" of Rose Red
As the Sheriff of Fabletown, Bigby finally landed the "case of a lifetime" when Rose Red, sister to Fabletown deputy mayor Snow White, became the alleged victim of a gruesome murder. Rose Red's lover, Jack Horner, came to Bigby's office in a state of panic and exhaustion, claiming that Rose Red had been murdered. Immediately, Bigby had suspicions about the validity of this case. He first alerted Snow White to the matter then personally inspected the crime scene. What he discovered at Rose Red's Greenwich apartment was a veritable orgy of blood. The room was in complete disarray and all four walls were spattered with copious amounts of blood. Bigby performed a cursory inspection and ordered the room sealed off from mundie law enforcement. He then accused Jack of the Tales of murdering Rose Red and arrested him. After interrogating him at length, Bigby discovered that Rose Red was once romantically involved with another Fable, Bluebeard. Bigby and Snow White visited the reclusive Bluebeard at his suite and interviewed him. Bluebeard confessed that Rose Red was once contractually obligated to marry him. In exchange, Bluebeard provided Rose with a large dowry. Rose left Bluebeard however to be with Jack. During the interview, Bigby angrily accused Bluebeard of murdering Rose Red. Aside from the fact that he simply didn't like him, Bigby wanted to see Bluebeard's reaction, but Bluebeard maintained his innocence.
Bigby then had the Fables Boy Blue and Flycatcher recreate the crime scene in a neighboring apartment to every detail. This way, he was able to determine exactly how much blood Rose Red lost. With each step of the process, he discovered more and more clues concerning the crime. One obstacle he didn't expect however came from Bluebeard. Bluebeard was convinced that Jack of the Tales was guilty of killing Rose Red, so he bribed his way into the prison cell with the intent of seeking retribution. When Bigby learned of this, he transformed into his full wolf form and squared off against Bluebeard. Snow White and her staff intervened before the two could come to blows and Bigby arrested Bluebeard. Before long, Bigby had all of the results that he required. In a showy rendition of the "parlor scene" from various crime novels, revealed his findings at the annual Remembrance Day celebration at the Woodland Building. He publicly revealed that one of the attending guests was actually Rose Red - alive and well. Rose and Jack conspired to fake her demise so that she could get out of her contracted nuptials with Bluebeard without having to pay back any of the money she received from him.
Revolution At The Farm
While Bigby wasn't allowed to step foot on The Farm according to Fable law, he did assist Boy Blue in rounding up a posse to investigate after communications were cut and Cock Robin had been found dead.
He was also sitting at Snow White's bedside when she woke up from her coma after being shot in the head. He had been the one to fill her in on the events at the farm after the revolution was quelled, though he noted that since he himself was banned from the area, it was all second-hand talk.
Bigby was the first Fable to speak with the mundy journalist, Tommy Sharp, who revealed that he was going to write a story on them, exposing their seemingly immortal existence to the world. Though Sharp revealed that he thought Bigby and the other Fables were vampires, a hypothesis that Bigby found amusing, he still warned Sharp to stay away.
That night, Bigby sent Briar Rose, better known as Sleeping Beauty, into Sharp's apartment building while he, Jack, Boy Blue, Flycatcher and Bluebeard waited outside. Briar Rose pricked her finger on a needle and sent herself, along with everyone in the building, into a deep sleep. Once satisfied that the spell had worked, Bigby and his crew snuck into Sharp's apartment and began taking every document and photo that included any mention of them. Unfortunately, while deleting files on the computer, Jack discovered that Sharp sent out back-up copies of all his research to secure locations on the internet, which were beyond his ability to hack. Bigby was not happy that his plan had essentially failed, but Jack told him he had an alternate plan, depending on how "evil" Bigby was prepared to get.
The new plan was for Bigby to convince Tommy Sharp that he was now in their vampiric "Thralls" by leaving two puncture wounds on his neck. With a few threats about what they would make him do to himself, Bigby finally pulled out some very compromising pictures he took of Sharp with a young boy (actually Pinocchio, while Sharp was still asleep) and got Sharp to swear that he would never try to expose or bother any one of them again or his life will be ruined forever.
Sharp was later murdered by Bluebeard, though Bigby didn't know anything about it, at first.
When Bluebeard's harboring of the fugitive Goldilocks was threatened to be exposed by a mouse police spy, he put Bigby and Snow White under an enchantment and sent them away on a vacation before they could find out. The spell lasted for two days, Bigby unconsciously camping out in the cascade mountains with Snow, before both suddenly regained their senses. Believing their enchantment to be a simple prank of Jack's, Bigby nevertheless feels uneasy about their situation. His fears are proved warranted when their vehicle is shot at and sent careening down a hillside.
While they were hiding in the wilderness from their pursuer, Snow White worries that they may have slept together in the same tent during the enchantment, but Bigby says it isn't likely as there were wolf tracks all around the campsite, hinting that he probably spent all the time outside in his natural habitat. Snow then asked Bigby why he chose her, of all people, to go on a date to the Remembrance Day gala with. Bigby answers that it was because, despite all his efforts to avoid the many scents of living in the city, hers was the only one he couldn't ignore. She had a pleasant smell to him, which is why he allowed her to live when they first met, back in the Homelands. Since moving the Fabletown, he's been able to track her by scent alone, always knowing where she was, and how she was feeling at the time due to subtle changes in her natural musk. Snow asks him to stop,but Bigby responds she shouldn't ask if she doesn't want to hear the answer.
Bigby finally picks up the scent of their hunter and realizes that it's Goldilocks. He first makes sure that Snow White is safely sheltered under an arch of boulders where he tells her to wait while he uses a trick he hasn't done in awhile, the "old huff and puff". He uses his breath to blow the forest down, trees and all, blowing Goldilocks off her motorcycle in the process. The blast didn't kill her, nor did Bigby truly believe it would, but it did achieve his two objectives; to create a path leading directly to them, and to get the local wind under his control, so he can keep Goldilocks upwind at all times.Bigby managed to momentarily surprise Goldilocks in his large wolf form, but she soon fired several buckshot rounds into his body. Bigby was wounded, but didn't die, he told her that only a silver bullet could kill him. He kept her attention on him while Snow sneaked up behind her and stuck a hatchet in the back of her head. It took several more blows from her cane before Goldilocks fell off the cliff, got hit by a truck and fell into the river. Bigby noted that because of her popularity with the mundies, she wouldn't have been easy to kill.
When they arrived back in New York City, Snow White told Bigby that she'd be willing to go out to dinner or a movie sometime next week, if Bigby would simply ask. He smiled in response.
Later, however, he had been called to her apartment, where Snow angrily yelled at him. Doctor Swineheart had just given her a check-up and told her she was pregnant. Bigby counters that he couldn't even remember what happened while they were under the spell, but she asks him to leave her alone.
The Battle of Fabletown
Bigby was immediately suspicious when Red Riding Hood came into town with her claims that she had escaped the Adversary. His suspicions were mostly based on her story that she came through the Oz gate to the Mundy world, specifically Canad, when Bigby knew for a fact that the Adversaries forces had sealed that gate long ago.
Bigby left Fabletown to investigate the northern gate Red had come through. As a result, he was unavailable for most of the battle between Fabletown and the Wooden Soldiers led by Red Riding Hood, who was actually Baba Yaga. But he made it back in time to blow the remaining soldiers out of Fabletown, thusly ending the battle.
Bigby again showed his knack for keeping his own secrets from the other Fables, by holding Baba Yaga, thought killed in the battle, in a chamber deep down beneath Fabletown's City Hall. Only himself and Frau Totenkinder know of Yaga's imprisonment.
- Immortality: As a Fable, Bigby is effectively immortal, having lived a lifespan that encompasses several hundred years. It was over two-hundred years ago when he , along with every other Fable, left the Homelands in exile. His eternal lifespan is also granted by the witch who had the power to give people the fate they want, after Bigby forced her.
- Transformation: Bigby possesses the ability to instantly alter his form from that of a wolf to that of a human and back again. Although he spends the majority of his time in human form, his natural shape is that of a wolf. When he shape-shifts into a wolf, Bigby's physical body increases in size and mass. He also grows sharpened canines, claws and pointed ears.
- Superhuman Strength: Bigby's Strength level depends on his current form, with his strength increasing the more wolf-like his form becomes. In the past, however, he has shown sufficient strength to lift up a car, tear the arm off an opponent, throw dumpsters with ease, rip fuse boxes off walls and lift an anvil with enough ease to use it as a weapon. His wolf form allows him to go toe-to-toe with dragons, sorcerers and giants. He can wipe out hundreds of armies in one battle.
- Enhanced Senses: Bigby has naturally acute senses, in particular, his sense of smell. He can correctly identify an individual merely by smelling a sample of their blood.
- Superhuman Durability: Bigby's Durability is dependent on his current form. However, he transforms into his next form presumably automatically if he sustains too much damage. In his human form alone, he has been shown to take multiple shotgun blasts and only be briefly incapacitated and be thrown out a first story window, smash into a lamp-post on the way down and fall onto a car, only to be briefly knocked unconscious. In his werewolf form, he has been hit by cars, only to immediately get back up and keep running. Dr Swinheart himself has stated to Bigby that he can "eat as many metal shellings as you see fit"
- Accelerated Healing
- Wind Powers
- Powerfull Huff and Puff: As the titular Big Bad Wolf of legend, Bigby can "huff and puff" powerful hurricanes from his mouth. This power is strong enough to demolish whole forests, armies and big infrastructures and building.
- Superhuman Speed: Being the North Wind's son, Bigby has the speed and agility of the wind. Bigby's superhuman speed can only be seen in his wolf form. He's fast enough to travel across the globe. Once he ran for two months without resting, and crossed from Canada to New York in just a day.
- Superhuman Stamina
- Interrogation: Bigby Wolf uses intimidation and violent outbursts of emotion when interrogating suspects. Sometimes, he will blatantly accuse someone of an outrageous crime just to gauge their reaction.
- Investigation: With the aid of his keen analytical mind as well as his canine senses, Bigby is an extremely competent detective. Although he personifies himself in the style of a classic 1930s gumshoe detective, Bigby admits that his chosen profession is a fairly unglamorous one. In over two-hundred years as a detective, he has never been in a gunfight, or even fired his gun. He's never even learned how to drive, much less experienced the thrill of a high-speed car chase. In his own words, "Even the number of times I've had to chase a suspect on foot can be counted on one hand".
- Psychic and Magical resistance: Bigby's magical nature allows him to resist magic, although there were times where his human form resists weaker than his wolf form. He can also resist psychic attacks, such as when Nurse Spratt tried to control his mind but Bigby somehow keeps resisting.
- Hand-to-Hand Combat (Basic): Bigby, whilst presumably lacking any training other than what he was taught in his military service during World Wars 1 and 2, has shown some basic Hand-to-Hand skill. He has been shown to be able to disarm opponents (Shown in his brawl with the Woodsman), dodge and block blows, and on occasion use his environment as a weapon ; in his fight against Grendel, who had superior strength, he attempted to defend himself with both a ceiling fan, a tankard and a pool cue.
- Vulnerability to Silver: Being injured by silver weaponry can easily incapacitate or potentially even kill Bigby.
- Bigby Wolf is based upon the antagonist from two famous fairy tales. He is the Big Bad Wolf responsible for tormenting the Three Little Pigs and he is also the predator who stalked Little Red Riding Hood and masqueraded as her grandmother. A flashback of the Red Riding Hood incident can be glimpsed in Fables #4.
- Bigby is a chain smoker, though he claims it's to "deaden his senses enough to avoid a sensory overload from living in the city".
- Bigby is not the first wolf archetype in popular culture to assume the title of Sheriff. In the 1973 Walt Disney film Robin Hood, the part of the Sheriff of Nottingham was personified by a wolf.
- 40 Appearances of Bigby Wolf (Fables)
- 41 Images featuring Bigby Wolf (Fables)
- 6 Quotations by or about Bigby Wolf (Fables)
- Character Gallery: Bigby Wolf (Fables)