"You better wake up. The world you live in is just a sugar-coated topping! There is another world beneath it - the real world. And if you wanna survive it, you better learn to pull the trigger!"
When Blade's mother was attacked by a vampire while giving birth to him, it resulted in him being born a half-breed, immune to all of the vampires' weaknesses and possessing all their strengths. When Blade entered puberty however the thirst also emerged. When Whistler realized that he wasn't a vampire, he took him in and the two have hunted vampires ever since. Blade is known among vampires as the infamous "Daywalker". Played by Wesley Snipes.
Anti-Hero: Though still heroic, Blade has no problems beating the tar out of vampire familiars. And robbing them after. You probably won't feel all that sorry for the folks selling out mankind. Though as the films progress and he begins viewing them within increasing hostility, killing them indiscriminately, Blade becomes an even darker anti-hero.
Berserk Button: Over the course of the films familiars just seem to rub Blade the wrong way. Understandable given they're selling out mankind and all. Blade's hatred of them only increases over the course of trilogy as he goes from beating them senseless (and occasionally robbing them), to straight up murdering their asses without so much as second thought. That said the familiars he meets every sequel continue to sink to new depths serving their vampire masters.
Celibate Hero: He shows no outward interest in the opposite sex. The Thirst probably has something to do with it. The second film marks the closest he's came to an actual interest in another woman. And it's clearly a mutual attraction. Sadly she dies in Blades arms and they never so much as kiss. There was scene filmed between Blade and Nyssa after they'd done the the deed, but it never made the final cut.
Establishing Character Moment: When the hapless victim falls at the feet of Blade, the terror on dozens of vampires is clear to see. His smile as they run for their lives or whisper in fear tells you all you need to know. The ass kicking that follows is truly one of the greatest character introductions ever.
I Am a Monster: A combination of the guilt from his younger years of feeding on people and being an outsider to the very humans he protects makes Blade feel this way, despite attempts to tell him otherwise.
Blade: There are worse things out there than vampires.
Karen: Like what?
Blade: Like me.
Idiot Ball: Blade picks this up when he somehow mistakes a human for a vampire in Trinity. This is kind of ridiculous considering he's instinctively able to discern between the two by how they look, act and even smell from a distance.
One Hero, Hold the Weaksauce: The tagline "All of their strengths, none of their weaknesses" is mostly true. However he does age like humans and he suffers from the thirst. The former means the vampires have the significant advantage of outlasting him till he dies of old age and the latter causes Blade no small measure of misery.
Roaring Rampage of Revenge: After Whistler's apparent death in the first film, Blade goes on one of these against Frost's fortress. Showing no mercy to even the familiars. However, given Blade's general M.O. against vampires, it's hinted his work is an everlasting Roaring Rampage of Revenge.
Scary Black Man: A rare heroic example. Especially terrifying to vampires and their allies.
Sociopathic Hero: His actions can come across as this, since he takes great enjoyment in some of his work.
Would Hit a Girl: Blade has zero qualms delivering beatdowns and death to female vamps. One of his first victims during the "Bloodbath Rave" was Racquel (who had just lured a human there for fun) and Blade shotguns her head off without a second thought. He even kills his own vampire mother. Considering what kind of women these vampires are is this is quite justified.
"You have to understand, they're everywhere. Chances are you seen 'em yourself, and didn't know it. On the subway or in a bar."
Abraham Whistler once had a wife and family before a vampire called round to visit. Since then he has dedicated his entire life to killing as many of them as he can. Mentor to Blade and the man responsible for crafting the various instruments of death the Daywalker utilizes in the war against vampires. Played by Kris Kristofferson.
Back from the Dead: Apparently killed in the first movie, he is later found barely alive and vampirized. He can still a lot of ass after his vampire cure takes effect. But then in Trinity, he was killed to give Blade time to get out of there and away from the FBI and SWAT.
Incurable Cough of Death: His bad cough actually tips Karen off that he's dying of cancer. Subverted in that it never gets the chance to kill him thanks to Frost and his time as a vampire eliminates his cancer altogether.
Only Friend: To Blade, and seemingly vice-versa. Whistler's social skills don't seem to be as poor as Blade's, which makes sense considering he used to have a normal life, and Blade never had a normal life.
Timeshifted Actor: In the TV series, Adrian Glynn McMorran plays him in a flashback to his and Blade's first meeting.
Antagonists - Blade
"We should be ruling the humans, not running around making back alley treaties with them. For fuck sake these people are our food - not our allies."
A human-turned-vampire who has been making waves in the underworld and his activities have caught the attention of Blade much to the annoyance of the vampire ruling elite. Deacon's ultimate goal is unclear to the Daywalker but there's no doubt he has big changes in mind for the vampire world. Played by Stephen Dorff.
Ax-Crazy: He's not exactly quite sane, but more in control than many examples.
Bad Boss: Played with. He kills his familiar Krieger and nonchalantly tells Pearl to at least die with some pride. However his familiar Krieger screwed up so monumentally that he arguably became more of a liability than an asset and Pearl is pretty much dead anyways. Not to mention he keeps screw-up Quinn around because he seems genuinely fond of him and does have a soft spot for his mistress Mercury too.
Berserk Button: Bringing up the fact he was merely turned a vampire and not born one.
Faux Affably Evil: Frost will often put on a facade of courtesy just before committing something suitably evil. The most notable being his final conversion with Dragonetti.
Deacon: When's the last time you stopped to appreciate a good sunrise? Oh, that's right, you were born a vampire so you've never had the pleasure, have you? It's okay. It's alright. Least we're here together. Share the moment. Which means a lot to me by the way, I mean that.
Transhuman Treachery: While it's pretty much a given for any vampire who's been turned to betray their former race, Frost takes it even further. He wants to abandon The Masquerade entirely in favor of subjugating mankind and relegating them to little more than cattle.
We Can Rule Together: Offers Blade a chance to stand with him. However Blade is already aware they need him to awaken the power of La Magra. It's unlikely Frost saw him as a potential ally and probably just wanted an easier means of capturing him. Though Frost did express disappointment in Blade denying his vampirism and protecting humans.
You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Twice. Firstly he feeds on Krieger after his failure to obtain Karen, not to mention leading Blade straight to them. And secondly Pearl just after Frost gets all the info he needs.
Younger and Hipper: The comic version is visibly much older, with grey hair and a beard. The film version...not so much.
"You can slice him. You can dice him. But the Quinn man just keeps coming!"
One of Deacon Frosts most high ranking minions. Whenever he's around it's a clear sign his boss is involved. A fact which earns him the frequent attention of Blade and comes with the implication that it's the only reason he's still alive. Played by Donal Logue.
Butt Monkey: Blade has apparently been abusing him on such a regular basis that by the events of the film he's grown bored of cutting him up and decides to set him on fire. Over the course of the film he suffers further punishment at the hands of Blade and even Karen at one point before finally being decapitated.
Good Thing You Can Heal: Considering what Blade puts him through regenerating skin and limbs is must have feature for any vampire constantly getting their asses kicked by the Daywalker. Not that it saves him in the end.
Quinn: "You took my arm man. But it's cool. I got a new one."
Co-Dragons: Alongside Quinn. Interestingly, despite being Frost's lover, she doesn't appear have more authority than Quinn and is in fact the more noticeably worried when Frost comes to speak with them after Blade escapes.
Audience Surrogate: Karen is pretty much how we learn about the setting and the nature of the vampires. Through her we establish that vampires own the police, politicians and have agents everywhere. She also gets a rundown of their weaknesses.
Karen: "So what do you use then? Stakes? Crosses?"
Find the Cure: Karen attempts to use her particular expertise to find a cure for the vampire virus before it turns her. Whistler tells her there is no cure or at least one that doesn't involve a eating a bullet. He's wrong as Karen succeeds and manages to cure herself. However the cure only works on people who were infected and thus the exact effects on Blade would be unclear. Karen believes it would either kill him or leave him a normal human.
Omni Disciplinary Scientist: Averted. Her expertise is strictly in hematology which is fortunate considering the problem is blood related.
Professor Guinea Pig: Lampshaded by Karen. Whilst she clearly ran a number of tests on infected blood samples first, when the moment of truth came she had to simply try it on herself. Wholly justified by the fact she was motivated by desperation and a lack of time. The fact she produced a viable cure at all before she turned was a miracle in of itself.
Sequel Non-Entity: Karen isn't mentioned at all in the next films. Though some of her work such as the vampire virus cure and discovering anticoagulants were lethal to vampires do in fact carry over, the fact she pioneered such things isn't mentioned.
Working with the Ex: It's made clear near the start of the film she'd recently broke up with fellow doctor Curtis at the hospital she worked for. Things were still a little awkward.
"I was born a vampire, as was every other member of this house. But you Frost... you were merely turned."
A vampire Elder who clashes with Deacon Frost over his lack of respect for their traditions and authority. He also looks down on him due to him being made into a vampire rather than been born a "pureblood" like himself. Played by Udo Kier.
Cruel and Unusual Death: Courtesy of being forced to witness the sunrise for the first time in his life by Frost, after having his fangs ripped out of his mouth.
Defiant to the End: Despite facing certain death he still doesn't think Frost will accomplish anything. Much to Frost's annoyance.
Dragonetti: Do what you want, Frost. It doesn't make any difference.
Fantastic Racism: Looks down on Frost for merely being made a vampire as opposed to being born one. No doubt Dragonetti belonged to a long line of "purebloods".
Dragonetti: "You will never be pureblood! You will never rule us!"
Pragmatic Villainy: He saw keeping the majority of humanity unaware of the vampires via The Masquerade and secret alliances with politicians as essential to their survival. Whereas he saw Frosts actions as dangerous and detrimental to a way of life that had kept them safe for thousands of years.
"He's going to kill me! You need me, Frost! You need me!"
A massively obese vampire who acts as record keeper. His talents are being utilised by Deacon Frost. Played by Eric Edwards.
Blatant Lies: "That's not research, it's a videogame. I can't quite remember what prophesy it's from. There's nothing important at all behind that huge sealed metal door."
"Who do you think God really favors in the web? The spider or the fly?"
Overlord Damaskinos is a powerful vampire elder who seeks out a truce with Blade in order to deal with the Reaper threat. It's clear from the outset however that his true intentions are far more sinister. Played by Thomas Kretschmann.
Alien Blood: Bizarrely due to censors demanding less gore to get an R rating. Considering all the gallons of bloodshed featured throughout, it seems pretty pointless.
We Can Rule Together: Attempts to offers this to Nomak to save his skin but he doesn't even buy it for a second and promptly kills him.
"Daywalker. What am I to you? Is the enemy of my enemy, my friend...or my enemy?"
The carrier of the deadly Reaper virus and immune to nearly all conventional vampire weapons except ultra-violet light. Nomak and those he has turned are a threat to the existence of vampires and humans alike. Played by Luke Goss.
Blood Lust: Significantly more so than regular vamps.
Big Bad Ensemble: Everything that happens in the story is a result of Damaskinos' plans, but Nomak is a power unto himself and proves to be the bigger threat after killing his father and becomes Blade's final fight.
Enemy Mine: He believes Blade should be fighting by his side against vampires. However, Blade is aware once the vamps are gone, the Reapers will turn on humanity to feed their blood lust.
Villainous Rescue: Sort of. Nomak murders every mook in his path trying to get to his father. In the process he accidently provides the distraction needed for Blade's rescue and actually kills off the main Big Bad Damaskinos in the process.
The Bloodpack is a group of pureblood vampire warriors originally assembled and trained for the purpose of killing Blade. However the threat of the reapers forces them work alongside their former target if they are to prevail.
"The only difference between us is that I made peace with what I am a long time ago."
Daughter of Eli Damaskinos, Nyssa is the level headed leader of the Bloodpack. She makes no apologies for what she is having been born a vampire and proves to be one of the more honorable members of the Bloodpack. Played by Leonor Varela.
Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter: Shades of this. Whilst she never gets together with Blade, she does confess to her father that she believes him to be a man of honor. And Nyssa does turn on her father for his actions.
Noble Demon: She's a vampire, yeah. But she is pretty much the only pure blood with any honor.
Shoot the Messenger: Narrowly averted but not for lack of trying. Whistler literally tries to shoot them but is disarmed and Asad manages to (eventually) tell Nyssa to back down before someone gets killed.
"Well, like my daddy said right before he killed my mom, 'Want anything done right, you gotta do it yourself'."
Played by Ron Perlman.
A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing: Considers his role "playing nice" with Blade and his allies to be this. He even says as much when he removes the "dud" explosive from his head. He may have also meant his deceased Bloodpack allies as well.
Reinhardt: "The wolf has lain with the sheep, long enough."
Explosive Leash: Has a bomb attached to his head courtesy of Blade, who threatens him with detonation if he steps out of line. Subverted in that it turns out to be a dud, courtesy of Scud's treachery and it was just to give Blade the illusion of power. But brilliantly zig-zags back when Blade coyly reveals "it's not a dud".
Two-Faced: After the UV-bomb badly burns half his face.
Underestimating Badassery: He's like this throughout the whole film, really thinking he can take Blade. Even in the climax when Blade makes short work of his men right in front of him. When it's finally his turn, he tries to attack Blade with his own sword. Blade catches it easily, reclaims it and and slices him in half with little effort.
Played by Matt Schulze.
Hot-Blooded: By far the most quick tempered and aggressive of the Bloodpack.
Scotireland: Yes, Curran is another example of a Scottish actor playing an Irish character (or at least one with an Irish accent) but in his defense it's actually a good Irish accent. So despite not sounding like it at all some people, including That Other Wiki, still think Priests accent is Scottish likely in part because the actor is. He probably shouldn't have bothered with the accent, sadly.
"Nobody goes cold turkey from the thirst in just one night."
Scud was saved by Blade from being torn apart by two vampires he thought were interested in a threesome. Afterwards he eventually took on the role left empty in Whistler's absence. Played by Norman Reedus.
Face-Heel Turn / Turncoat: Before the events of the film, Scud had defected to the vampires and became Damaskinos familiar. This was due to the fact that he felt they'd all be Daywalkers soon enough. And when that time came he'd "rather be a pet than cattle".
Evil Gloating: Engages in this when he reveals he's a traitor but it's cut short by the realisation he's about to explode.
Gadgeteer Genius: Scud is very skilled in his creation of weaponry and equipment. He even manages to make a UV grenade in a very short space of time despite others having failed beforehand.
Lover, Not a Fighter: He claims this is the is the reason he's not joining Blade and Bloodpack on their Reaper hunt. Though it's more likely he just prefers not being eaten.
He's firmly a Non-Action Guy anyways, so it's in everyone's best interest for him to stay behind.
Monster Progenitor: The first of his kind and creator of the vampire race. Drake's ability to shapeshift and superior strength may be unique to him but his immunity to sunlight was once a trait shared by all vampires.
Not So Different: He compares himself to Blade frequently, even implying a time when they were much more alike than Blade would care to know. When Drake warns him that the thirst always wins there does seem to be the indication he once resisted.
Drake: "But remember, sooner or later, the thirst always wins."
Passing the Torch: Drake believes that the future of his kind is safe in the hands of Blade and he is the new breed of vampire that they've been needlessly searching for. By the look on Blade's face, he doesn't seem too thrilled with this notion.
"The world's changed since your time. The humans have a new hunter... Blade."
Talos seeks out the father of the vampire race in the hopes he can unlock the key to her kind becoming Daywalkers. She also sets about framing Blade for murder and making him public enemy number one. Played by Parker Posey.
Bad Boss: Feeds her employees to Drake and takes her anger out on another due to her failure to kill Blade when he was at her mercy.
Distaff Counterpart / Expy: She share many traits with Deacon Frost. However not only was Frost more composed but he was notably more ambitious. Talos wants to become a Daywalker just as Frost did but with the main difference being he was willing to seize that ability on his own terms. In fact Deacon was willing to murder the vampire Elders to steal such power whereas Danica actually goes to The Older Immortal to ask him for it.
Faux Affably Evil: Attempts to put on a more courteous front with varying degrees of success but she always loses her temper eventually.
Genre Savvy: Talos decides the best way to flush out Blade isn't to go after him directly but to frame him on video for killing a human, handing said footage over to the media and then simply let the authorities hunt him down for her.
Danica: "We moved the humans around like pawns. We used them to flush you out."
Heel-Face Turn: Used to be a vampire before being cured and judging by the tattoo probably worked as a familiar for a while too.
Heroic BSOD: Goes through a severe one when Danica tells him:
Danica: "I'm gonna bite you again, King. And I'm gonna leave you here while you turn. I'm going to watch you, day after day, as the thirst keeps building and building. And then, when you can't stand it anymore... I'm gonna bring the little girl [Zoe] in here for you to feed on."
Made worse is that Danica does bring Zoe in on that cue and Hannibal's look is just heartbreaking.
Awesome, but Impractical: Archery probably isn't the best choice of discipline against superhuman speed, especially when theres more devastating firearms at your disposal. But still it looks cool. Sure listening to music while kicking vampire ass does sound kinda cool (ignoring the blatant ipod advert). But then you realize hunting super fast monsters while limiting the awareness of your surroundings isn't so great an idea.
Shown Their Work: Jessica Biel put a lot of effort into learning proper archery technique and actually got very handy with the bow. During one scene when she was instructed to "aim for the camera" whilst about 40 feet away and 50 feet up. She actually nailed it spot on in spite of a plexiglass cover protecting all but the small area in front of the lense. Destroying a $300,000 camera has never been so awesome.
Trick Arrow: She has a whole host of specialized arrows. Including one that shoots round corners.