Blade (Eric Brooks) is a fictional character, a superhero vampire hunter in the Marvel Comics universe. Created by writer Marv Wolfman and penciller Gene Colan, his first appearance was in the comic book The Tomb of Dracula #10 (July 1973) as a supporting character . The character went on to star or co-star in several comic-book series as well as a film and television series. Actor Wesley Snipes portrayed the vampire hunter throughout the film series while Kirk "Sticky Fingaz" Jones took on the role for the television series.
Comic Book History
The man only known as Blade came into this world as an orphan. Bitten while in labor by the vampire Deacon Frost, his mother died during childbirth. Blade was taken in and raised by his mother's friends. Determined to avenge her death, he fashioned himself into a vampire hunter before he reached adulthood.
After stalking the night on his own for a number of years, Blade became leader of a small band of like-minded individuals hunting Dracula. He first encountered the dark lord while in Japan, after many months of searching. Blade lured Dracula into an ambush, and the vampire was slain with a wooden stake. However, Dracula soon was resurrected by his servants and exacted revenge by murdering Blade's entire band of vampire hunters.
Blade pressed on, often fighting alongside a team led by Quincy Harker, the great vampire hunter. The company's members included Rachel Van Helsing and Frank Drake. Later, Blade teamed with vampiric private eye Hannibal King to hunt down and destroy Frost. Blade, King and Drake helped Doctor Strange, Master of the Mystic Arts and Earth's Sorcerer Supreme, cast a spell that destroyed Dracula and all the vampires on the planet. Following their victory, King was cured of his vampirism. Subsequently, he and King formed a private-investigation firm.
The mother of all demons, Lilth, hired Blade's agency to kill Ghost Rider -- the leather-clad, motorcycle riding Spirit of Vengeance -- and bad-boy Johnny Blaze, the fiery skeleton's former host. After a protracted battle, Blade and company realized they had been duped. The team joined with Ghost Rider and Blaze against Lilth, battling her monstrous minion Meatmarket. Blade, Drake and King continued their partnership with Ghost Rider and Blaze. Along with Dr. Strange, Morbius, the Living Vampire and the Darkhold Redeemers, they formed the Midnight Sons, a group dedicated to preserving the boundaries between our world and the dark realms. The Midnight Sons clashed with Lilth and her demonspawn, the Lilin, in a supernatural contest with Earth as the prize. The Midnight Sons proved victorious, destroying Lilth and her brood.
Blade's desire to destroy supernatural creatures led him to be tricked into using the Darkhold. As 'switchblade' he attacked a number of supernatural beings and stole their power in the 'Midnight Massacre'. Eventually, Blade was stopped and another page of the Darkhold was used to restore things back to normal.
However, the team was unable to prevent its hatred quarry, the vampire, from returning to the Earth realm. Blade, Drake and King, who again had become afflicted with vampirism, began their crusade anew to cleanse the world of all bloodsuckers. Blade and his partners clashed with dread lord Varnae -- supposedly the first vampire, the demon who had visited this hellish curse upon men. King and Drake were slain in a bloody and futile battle. The loss of his compatriots only strengthened Blade's resolve to rid the world of vampires, regardless of the circumstances of their creation.
Blade (along with Morbius) was featured in the Amazing Spider-Man cartoon.
Seen in the movie trilogy.
Powers & Abilities
Human-Vampire Hybrid Physiology: Blade was born a half human/vampire hybrid, the enzymes in Blade's blood made him immune to normal vampire bites, uniquely attuned to sensing the supernatural and resistant to aging. Since being bitten by Morbius, Blade has gained many of the traditional powers of the vampire without developing their weaknesses. He has superhuman strength, senses, and stamina, plus an accelerated healing factor.
- Superhumanly Acute Senses: Blade's sense of sight and hearing are heightend to levels comparable to those possessed by true vampires. He is capable of seeing objects with perfect clarity at much greater distances than an ordinary human. He retains this same level of clarity even in near-total darkness. Blade's hearing is similarly enhanced, allowing him to detect sounds that an ordinary human can't and to be able to hear sounds an ordinary human can, but at greater distances. Blade is also able to sense the presence of supernatural beings or forces, whereas an ordinary human would be oblivious to them.
- Superhuman Strength: Blade is supernaturally strong and is capable of lifting about 1 ton.
- Superhuman Speed: Blade is capable of running and moving at speeds greater than even the finest human athlete.
- Superhuman Agility: Blade's agility, balance and bodily coordination are enhanced to levels that are beyond the natural physical limits of the finest human athlete.
- Superhuman Stamina: Blade's musculature generates less fatigue toxins during physical activity than the musculature of an ordinary human. He can exert himself at peak capacity for several hours before fatigue begins to impair him.
- Regenerative Healing Factor: Blade, like true vampires, possesses an accelerated healing ability that allows him to heal mild to moderate injuries with much greater speed and efficiency than ordinary humans. He is capable of healing from severe slashes and puncture wounds within a matter of minutes to hours depending on the severity of the wound. Wolverine himself stated that his regeneration was almost on par with his during his fight with Blade in the Civil War. However, he is not able to regenerate missing limbs or organs.
- Prolonged Lifespan: Although not a pure vampire, he does have the advantage of being a Hybrid. This includes a Pseudo-Immortality, or a greatly enhanced lifespan. This has also been noted in the Superhuman Registration act as one of his abilities. Also, no change of his appearance has been seen during his time on Earth, besides losing his hair sometimes.
- Immunity To Vampire Vulnerabilities: True vampires have numerous and very particular supernatural vulnerabilities, most of which Blade is totally immune to. For instance, Blade is unaffected by direct exposure to sunlight, whereas most vampires are either rendered comatose during the daylight hours or are quickly incinerated when exposed directly to sunlight. Vampires are also highly allergic to silver, supposedly because of the metal's mystical purity. As a result, silver blades or bullets are capable of killing vampires. If not killed, and merely injured, it will take a vampire much longer to heal than if the injury had been inflicted by another material. Blade himself could be injured by a silver weapon, much as an ordinary human would, but his healing powers would be able to heal it as if it were an ordinary wound. Blade is also immune to the effects of religious icons, such as crucifixes, whereas vampires are rendered almost powerless when confronted by them.
- Master Martial Artist: Blade is a master martial artist proficient in practically every form of weaponry known to man. After training with Jamal Afari and various other private instructors, his main form of combat is a mixture of Kung Fu, Capoeira, Shotokan Karate, Wing Chun, Escrima, Silat, Shaolin Kung Fu, Kenjutsu, and Tum Pai.
- Expert Marksman: He can throw most projectile weaponry with great aim and is well-versed in the use of firearms.
- Expert Swordsman: His particular specialty is the use of edged weapons, be they teakwood daggers or swords.
- Weapons Proficiency: Blade is practically proficient in every form of weaponry known to man. His particular speciality is the use of edged weapons, be they teakwood daggers or swords. Blade is a master in the use of small bladed weapons and can hurl knives with great accuracy. Blade also shows great skill with firearms, including both automatic and semi-automatic, which he often modifies to fire hollow-point, garlic-filled silver bullets. He is also a skilled jazz trumpeter.
- Multilingual: Blade is fluent in English, German, Romanian, and Japanese. He might be lingual in other languages.
- Expert Vehicular Driver: He is proficient in driving cars, motorcycles, and various other vehicles when needed.
- Blade does possess one weakness common to all vampires: the need to ingest fresh blood in order to stay alive. However, rather than consume blood, he ingests or injects a specially designed serum that provides even better nourishment than blood would provide. If Blade doesn't drink the serum for an extended period of time, he will weaken and his self-control will be stretched. He would be forced to attack a human and consume his or her blood if this period is more than a week. Blade does have a huge amount of blood-serum in his inventory and actually never runs out of energy. One serum is enough for 24 hours of extended combat or he can use it to quickly recover from grave wounds. Although he has a special meditation to maintain his self-control An extended period of time without consuming either blood or the serum will prove fatal.