Then it hit me. This comic, under Marvel’s Midnight Sons (snicker) imprint, was published four years before the movie. Is it possible that Blade was in part inspired by this comic, Blade The Vampire Hunter #2?
I only ask because, holy shit, this comic is so bad.
Sure, in the comic there is no shower of blood and the vampire rave isn’t in a meat packing plant, but there are some weird similarities. In the opening fight scene in Blade, Donal Logue’s vampire character points a knife at Blade and yells: “Blade! Gonna jack you up!” or something to that effect. In the club scene in Blade The Vampire Hunter #2, our hero gets jumped by a sword-wielding British Nazi punk vampire who says – well, just read it:
“Gonna bleed you hard, man!”
I don’t even know what the hell that means. How do you bleed someone hard? That makes even less sense than “jack you up.”
I can just imagine Blade screenwriter David Goyer reading this comic and thinking, “This is brilliant! I’m going to use that scene in my movie!”
Okay, I’ll admit it, aside from that one scene, Blade the Vampire Hunter has little in common with the Blade film, which I loved. It has little in common with any quality comic, either. It has that stench of suck that pervades many books published during the mid-Nineties, the Dark Age of Comics. Rushed looking art, heavy inks, horrible computer coloring, and awkward dialogue. God, the dialogue…
For example, here’s Blade in da club, bottle full of bub, when he senses Dracula’s presence:
I don’t think that’s Dracula in his guts, I think Blade stopped by a taqueria truck on the way to the club. You gotta watch that shit, Blade – even daywalkers can fall prey to E coli.
But seriously, what kind of line is that? “I can sense him, like a viper of burning razor wire uncoiling in my guts!” It’s like that was written by a random metaphor generator. “I sense his presence, like a toothbrush made of lava scrubbing my perineum!”
Of course, Dracula does show up, as you might have guessed by the cover, above. Blade The Vampire Hunter #2 offers a new take on the legendary vampire. Here he is a muscular dude with huge hands, a cat whisker moustache, and a face like an ass. Behold:
Love the belt buckle; it looks like Dracula shops for accessories at Hot Topic. What the hell is he wearing, anyway? Take a look at his cape, the way it goes behind his arms. How could he even lift his arms wearing that? And how does he make his collar stick out like that? A lot of starch and under wiring, I imagine. It looks like his collar would bob and bounce as he walked, which I think would inspire snickers instead of dread. At the risk of sounding like a metrosexual, Dracula’s outfit is an utter disaster.
Fashion catastrophe aside, Dracula is still a bad-ass. He grows HUGE HANDS and mops the floor with Blade. Here’s Dracula in action, disemboweling Blade with his oversized mitts:
That panel is a really good shot of Dracula’s distinctive moustache, which defies gravity just like his collar and his hair. He reminds me of somebody, but I just can’t put my finger on it…
Blade The Vampire Hunter #2 may have been the partial inspiration for a scene in the Blade film, or it may not have. Regardless, I think anybody who has actually read this hackneyed comic will agree that it epitomizes that nadir of comic quality we know as the mid-Nineties. In other words: it sucks.
Who wrote it? Who did the art? Ah, heck – does it really matter? I don’t want to beat anybody up, I just want to mock the comic they produced. But when people wonder why Blade can be a popular film and TV character but can’t carry his own series – well, this is the reason why.
I leave you with one last look at Dracula’s hideously deformed mug, and I bid you, gentle reader, a good night.