The man known only as Blade came into the world 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 even 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 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 Dr. 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, Lilith, hired Blade's agency to kill Ghost Rider -- the leather-clad, motorcycle-riding Spirit of Vengeance -- and bad-boy John 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 Lilith, 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 Lilith and her demonspawn, the Lilin, in a supernatural contest with Earth as the prize. The Midnight Sons proved victorious, destroying Lilith and her brood.
Blade's desire to destroy supernatural enemies 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 hated 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.
Dracula soon returned. Blade was alerted by Bible John, and the two fought Dracula and later Marie Laveau, who was attempting to resurrect Varnae. It appeared that King and Drake had somehow been merged into Dracula when he was resurrected, but the two have since been freed.
Blade was also temporarily in SHIELD custody due to the machinations of SilverEye (SHIELD Division) as they sought to use him.
Following the Skrull invasion of Britain, Blade joined MI:13 to aid with the resurgence of evil forces, resulting from the Skrulls defeat. Blade failed to ingratiate himself, however, when he attempted to kill fellow team member, and part-vampire, Spitfire. Both Spitfire and Blade however settled their difference and pursuied a romantic relationship.
Due to the fact that his mother was bitten by a vampire while giving birth to him, Blade was born with an immunity the effects of vampire bites, the ability to "smell" supernatural creatures, a greatly prolonged lifespan, and sensitivity to bright light. However, after being bitten by Michael Morbius, The Living Vampire, Blade gained various superhuman physical capabilities similar to those of vampires. Yet Blade claimed to have been born a half-vampire and that Morbius' bite changed nothing, thus having his origin retconned.
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 full vampires, possesses an accelerated healing ability that allows him to heal mild to moderate injuries with much greater speed and efficiency than an ordinary human. Blade is capable of healing from severe slashes and puncture wounds within a matter of hours. However, he is not able to regenerate missing limbs or organs.
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.Limitations: 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 a specially designed serum that provides the same nourishment that blood would provide. If Blade doesn't drink the serum for an extended period of time, he will rapidly weaken and his self control will be stretched to the limit. He would be forced to attack a human and consume his or her blood. An extended period of time without consuming either blood or the serum will prove fatal.
Originally, Blade appeared to possess the normal human strength of a man of his age, height, and build that engaged in intensive regular exercise. However, after being bitten by Morbius, Blade's strength was increased to superhuman levels. At his peak, Blade is capable of lifting 1 ton.
Blade uses a small arsenal of weapons: teakwood daggers; titanium, acid-etched swords; Kevlar body armor; automatic and semi-automatic firearms converted for use with hollow-point, garlic-filled silver bullets; and a variety of portable, custom-designed weapons that employ silver, garlic, sunlight, ultraviolet rays and anti-coagulants.
Blade, exhibits a detached personality. Specifically in the movies, he has shown an emotionless attitude and has rarely shown any sympathy for those humans he has sworn to protect. His use of shades, could also be because of this disconnected persona he has built within himself.
In 1998, the movie Blade starred Wesley Snipes in the title role, Kris Kristofferson as Abraham Whistler, Blade's mentor, and Stephen Dorff as Deacon Frost. The film was written by David Goyer and directed by Stephen Norrington. While not an exact adaptation of the comics, the film was faithful to the spirit of the character as created by Wolfman and Colan. Unlike in the comics, Blade's half-vampire nature was very much apparent from the beginning, and he was constantly at odds with it. Deacon Frost was depicted as a much younger, stylish, more rebellious character than his printed counterpart.
Blade II (written by Goyer and directed by Guillermo del Toro) followed in 2002 and saw the Daywalker joining forces with his enemies to defeat a powerful new breed of vampire called Reapers.
The 'trilogy' concluded in 2004 with Blade: Trinity (written and directed by Goyer), which introduced very modified versions of Hannibal King (played here by Ryan Reynolds) and the Nightstalkers. Blade reluctantly joins forces with the group of vampire hunters (led by Abigail Whistler, the estranged daughter of his old mentor) to prevent the original vampire Drake (a younger version of Dracula) from creating a race of super-vampires.
Blade also appeared in the 1990's show of the Spider-Man Animated Series in the episode called "Neogenic Nightmare: Chapter 9: Blade the Vampire Hunter" In that episode, Spider-Man and Blade first met each other, and it also marked the very first appearance of Whistler in the Marvel Universe, as Whistler never appeared in a comic before. In this episode, Blade was hunting down Morbius. It was also revealed that Blade was the son of a vampire man with a human mother, but became orphaned after his mother left him in a foster home after she was bitten by a vampire. In the episode "The Immortal Vampire", Blade once again makes an appearance alongside Morbius. In the shows 4th season, in the episode "Partners in Danger: Chapter 7: The Vampire Queen", Blade returns and hunts down the Vampire Queen, who is revealed to be his mother. Blade made his final appearance in the show in the 5th season episode "Secret Wars: Chapter 2: Gauntlet of the Red Skull" where he was seen working side by side with Morbius and the Black Cat against the Vampire Queen until the Cat got "abducted" by Spider-Man to help him. Blade was voiced by J.D. Hall.
A television series based on the films aired on Spike TV and starred rapper/actor Kirk "Sticky" Jones as Blade. The series dealt with Blade fighting an evil vampire named Marcus van Sciver in Detroit, which is also Blade's birthtown (in the series). It has also been revealed that Blade's parents were named Vanessa and Robert Brooks, and that after his mother's death, Blade's father called his son "Eric".
Blade is playable in the two games based on the first two Wesley Snipes films. Blade is also a playable character in the action-RPG, Marvel Ultimate Alliance. In his simulation disk he goes to Mephisto's Realm to rescue Storm from Dark Spider-Man.