Marvel's fan-favorite vampire hunter Blade is headed back to theaters, but this time it'll be Mahershala Ali playing the Daywalker. First announced a couple years ago, the Blade reboot brings opportunities to show the character in a new light, as well as re-introduce audiences to the lore of vampires that exists in the Marvel universe. With that opportunity comes a chance to re-tell the stories of the original Wesley Snipes-led trilogy in a new light, or even with entirely different details.
Whatever decision Marvel Studios makes, we all agree there are plenty of vampires we'd love to see appear in the MCU. The following are some top picks, all of which could spice up a Blade movie, if not the entire franchise, considerably.
As if there were any doubt this guy would be on the list. Dracula isn't just a character that's been around in pop culture for over a century – he's been prominently featured in the Marvel Universe for decades. Though not the oldest vampire in existence, he is the most powerful, with scores of vampires under him and an influence that reachs around the world. He can be killed, but doing so is no easy task, and even if he is felled, he can be resurrected through various rituals.
Dracula is not only a big foe of Blade, as the legendary vampire has clashed with quite a few prominent heroes in the Marvel Universe. Everyone from Deadpool to Wolverine has gone toe to toe with Vlad Dracula, so including him in the Blade reboot could eventually lead to bringing in other Marvel characters (or for Blade to work his way into other movies). It would be amazing to see an ensemble movie where some Marvel heroes are transformed by Dracula, and the remaining heroes have to fight them off. First, we'd need the character in a Blade movie, though, and it seems like a fair bet that he will be eventually.
The MCU is a universe that can make us laugh, cry, and keep us on the edge of our seats. Typically, it strives to do all three, though one has to wonder how many laughs can be gotten in a Blade movie where its protagonist is mostly serious and there are evil vampires everywhere. How do you keep things intense but still inject a bit of levity to ease the tension? The answer is Hellcow.
Hellcow is a bovine named Bessie that was bitten by Dracula in the 1600s. As such, she became a vampire and has roamed the world for centuries feasting on the blood of humans. She has most all the powers of a regular vampire, though she turns to mist and can fly with a cape rather than transforming into a bat. Hellcow even has a history with Howard The Duck and Deadpool, so there's an opening for either one of them to appear in a Blade movie just simply to make things a little more fun.
Dracula is objectively evil, but even he despised the Nazis. Baron Blood may not be as powerful as Dracula, or even as popular, but his past as a Nazi certainly makes him an evil Marvel villain that would make Blade shake his head in disgust. Blood is mostly the same as most vampires in Marvel, though he has the ability to shoot "knockout gas" from his nostrils that can even take down heroes as powerful as Namor.
Perhaps we shouldn't be surprised that Baron Blood once collaborated with Baron Zemo – they're both Barons after all. This collaboration once put Baron Blood on a collision course with Sam Wilson's Captain America, so once again there's some groundwork being laid that Anthony Mackie's character could be worked into a collaboration with Blade. I know I keep bringing up collaborations, but there's really no understating it when it comes to the crossover potential in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Vampires are a part of the Marvel universe, are we only supposed to expect them in Blade movies? Still, it would be great to see him get his start on the big screen squaring off against the Daywalker.
Janus Tepes is one of the weirder characters of Marvel's vampire universe, and his story is a bit complicated. Essentially, Dracula and his wife Domini had a child, but then that child was killed during an attack on Dracula. Dracula then used a spell to merge his dead son's body with a golden angel he killed and revived his son but also turned him into a full-grown man. The story is a bit odd, but the end result was a Janus Tepes being half-angel and half-vampire, which is badass.
It's the type of thing I'd love to see in a Blade movie, though perhaps he would be best included a few films down the line. I mean, Marvel hasn't even officially introduced Mephisto into the MCU, so to bring in Dracula's literal angelic golden child into the mix could be a bit bizarre. Rest assured though this is canon, and if Blade is as big a hit in the MCU as we think he could be, Marvel can get real weird with it.
We often talk about vampires, but we don't often discuss the first vampire. Marvel tackled that with Varnae, an Atlantean sorcerer who was transformed as he died ahead of pre-Cataclysmic Atlantis. The transformation allowed Varnae to freely live above Earth. He's been around so long he feuded with Conan the Barbarian and Red Sonya, and he's one of the most powerful vampires in Marvel lore.
Admittedly, I think Hollywood struggles with characters that are as old as time itself because it's so hard to encapsulate what that means to a species that more often than not won't live more than a century. With that said, if there was anyone who could accurately depict just how brilliant, skilled, and powerful an immortal being like Varnae could be since he's been around since biblical times, it's Marvel. At the very least, they could make him about as interesting and powerful as he's billed to be, so I'm on board with featuring him, and he could be a fascinating antagonist for Blade.
Like the case with Dracula, did you really think I was going to go through this entire list and not name-drop Deacon Frost? Honestly, it feels almost impossible to tell Blade's story without detailing the character's origin, of which Frost plays a big part. For those who aren't familiar, Frost killed Blade's mother and inadvertently created the Daywalker in the process. Killing someone's parents isn't always the best way to be the most prominent villain in a hero's lineup, but it definitely works in Frost's case.
While Deacon Frost may not be the most powerful vampire Blade could go toe to toe with, he already has mainstream recognition with fans who remember the Wesley Snipes movie where he was played by Stephen Dorff (who most definitely will not be reprising the role). Marvel Studios could make an effort not to include Frost right off the bat, though one would obviously question why they'd want to. Deacon Frost is the obvious villain for a Blade origin story, and the two's rivalry could certainly continue in future films and appearances.