September 26, 2010

Marvel Snapshot: Character Spotlight: Blade

Hey party people, what’s happening? Here we go with another character spotlight from Marvel’s horror vault in Marvel Snapshot. This week, I’ll be focusing in on Blade, the Vampire Slayer! That’s right, the foremost authority on killing nightstalkers is going to be front and center this week, and I for one can’t contain my own excitement!

OK, so I’m sure everyone thinks…”Hey, I know all about Blade, I’ve seen the movies.” Wrong again, folks. There were many things in the movies that were not correct (as usual), and I’m setting the record straight. Blade made his first appearance in Tomb of Dracula #10 (1973), and was created by Marv Wolfman and Gene Colan. Now, for those of you who don’t know, Blade is not a full on vampire. His origin is different than any other. His mother was bitten by a vampire during labor and the subsequent attack (by Deacon Frost) led Blade to be born with vampiric abilities, but not their weaknesses. Blade was also just a youth when he fought his first vampire. He witnessed an attack, where three vampires were trying to kill a dude named Jamal Afari. As the two fought off the vamps, Jamal realized there was something different about Blade. This is the real character that trained Blade in the art of killing bloodsuckers.

Blade grew up under the watchful eye of Jamal, but eventually traveled the world in search of vampires. He encountered plenty of them, too, but his real nemesis, Dracula, always seemed to defeat or elude him. After a lot of solo stuff, Blade ran into Quincy Harker and his band of vampire hunters. Rachel Van Helsing, Frank Drake, and Taj Nital. The team didn’t really accept Blade at first because of his brash attitude, but eventually they even worked well enough together to kill Dracula! Ok, of course it wasn’t permanent, but whatever is in comics? After some more team-ups, Blade fought another nemesis named Morbius. The two hated each other, and fought on more than one occasion. Early on, Blade had a girlfriend named Safron. She was ultimately turned into a vampire, and Blade had to kill her.

In the 90s, Blade was a part of the Midnight Sons story line, and then a new ongoing called Nightstalkers. The premise of the book was that Blade, Hannibal King, and Frank Drake had an investigative service (Borderline Investigations) that would help people with paranormal problems. The series only lasted eighteen issues, but definitely had some good issues. There was an issue that featured Hannibal King fighting Morbius that was really cool in my opinion.

Recently, Blade has been seen hanging with Captain Britain & MI13 over in England. At first, he tried to kill Spitfire, but then the two ended up becoming lovers. The recent Spitfire one-shot was really cool, too. If you didn’t pick that one up, don’t waste any more time thinking about it. In the last couple of months, Blade has shown up in the pages of the X-Men, to try and help them defeat Dracula’s son, Xarus. Xarus has killed his father, and assumed control over all the different vampire clans. It’s been quite an entertaining read at times, so definitely pick it up in trade.

In closing, I’d like to say that Blade is definitely one of my favorite characters in the horror genre. His attitude and ability to kill vampires makes him an undeniable asset to the nightstalking community. The stories in Tomb of Dracula are nothing short of spectacular, and a definite must read for any horror fans out there. Blade: Black & White is also a decent read as well.

That’s it for now, but come right back next week for a look inside the life of another great Marvel Horror character! See you then.

Recommended Reading
Blade: Black & White – Tpb
Essential Tomb of Dracula vol. 1 – Tpb
Vampire Tales #8, 9 (1973)
Nightstalkers #1-18 (1992)
Doctor Strange #61, 62, 67 (1974)
Captain Britain & MI13 #5-15 (2008)




  1. Kristin

    “Now, for those of you who don’t know, Blade is not a full on vampire. His origin is different than any other. His mother was bitten by a vampire during labor and the subsequent attack (by Deacon Frost) led Blade to be born with vampiric abilities, but not their weaknesses.”

    Sounds like Stephanie Meyer has read some Blade. Except that instead of being bitten by a vampire, Bella has sex with one. Their child has all of a vampire’s strengths, but none of the weaknesses.

  2. Hudson

    Too bad they didn’t add Blade to the Noir series. Might have made for an interesting offshoot.

  3. Billy

    @Kris- Is that from one of the later books? I haven’t read them, but my wife has. I’ve gone to see the movies with her but I guess the movies aren’t that far along yet.
    @Hudson- That would have been a great idea. I only read the X-Men Noir book and it was OK, but most people I know raved about the Spidey and Iron Man mini’s. Thanks for stopping in!

  4. @Kristin You did not just compare Blade to Twilight!…..Really?

  5. Marvel really disappointed with the Blade series that came out during Civil War but it was good to see him in the M13 book and getting some time in with the X-Men. What’s with that mustache though? lol

  6. Kristin

    She gets preggers and has the baby in the last book. It’s absolutely ridiculous. I barely made it through that volume without gouging out my eyes. And it has the worst pay off ever. No one even dies. πŸ™

    Yes, but only to suggest that Meyer has no original ideas.

  7. Billy

    @NIck- Hey, yeah really! lol
    @Speech- He’s growing that stache as a throwback ot his porn days.
    @Kris- Jeez, no deaths? Isn’t that not only status quo, but cool too?

  8. Kristin

    Yeah, everyone gets to live happily ever after, with absolutely no consequences for all the stupid shit they did.
    Worst ending ever. Personally, I wanted them all to die in a big, bloody, knock out battle. But…nothing. πŸ™

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