A nightmare created in the time of the Old West to remind humans of the horror of living with one another and the terror that an idea might one day trump human life, Judge Gallows became an inhabitant of the Dreaming concerned with the prosecution and punishment of crime. Some time after his creation he was sealed away in the Black Chest due to his growing ability and inclination to convince dreamers to harm themselves out of guilt.
Judge Gallows was created by Dave Wood and Curt Swan. he made his first appearance in The Unexpected #113.
In his original appearance in the late Silver Age, very little was known about Judge Gallows, but he was presumed to be an ordinary human. Once a respected judge, he was forced into retirement because of his increasingly unstable and erratic behaviour, and his growing fixation with delivering his version of justice in even the strangest cases. This remained unchanged through the Bronze Age.
In the Modern Age the character was reimagined as an inhabitant of the Dreaming. It is unclear if any element of his original history was retained in this incarnation. During this age he was at some point consigned to a cell in the House of Secrets, presumably as a response to his growing instability.
Rebirth officially did away with Judge Gallows' human origins in establishing his current history, and changed his first name from Quentin to Ezekiel.
Major Story Arcs
Now operating out of a "court" in his basement, Judge Gallows recounts unexpected tales of supernatural and strange cases that were brought before him when he was a judge.
Trial and Error
Judge Gallows is summoned by Abel to try Cain for the multiple murders Cain has committed against Abel. He presides over the resultant trial, and when the jury reaches a verdict of guilty he sentences Cain to be banished from the Dreaming. He refuses to reverse the decision even in the wake of growing instability in the Dreaming and the waking world. When Abel attempts to return Cain to the Dreaming despite his orders, he enters the waking world himself and sentences Cain, Abel, and Matthew to death. Cain goads Gallows into attacking him, which brings the curse of the mark of Cain upon him. He is killed by a taxi which suddenly drives into him.
Gallows is released from his imprisonment by Merv Pumpkinhead in an effort to counter the growing instability of the Dreaming caused by Dream's protracted absence. Stepping into the void left behind, Gallows seizes stewardship over the Dreaming for himself.
Powers and Abilities
Judge Gallows is very intelligent and charismatic, and he possesses a fine legal mind. However, he is also dangerously unstable.
Weapons and Equipment
Judge Gallows is generally seen with his gavel, a sentient skull named Bigmouth. Its usefulness, besides as a traditional gavel, is unknown.