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Origin

Vlad Tepes Dracula

Vlad Tepes was a Transylvanian warlord who gained the nickname "Vlad the Impaler" from his particular love of impaling his enemies. In life, he was a highly feared yet respected warlord who stopped at nothing to attain victory. When Vlad began having dreams about winning a battle against the Turks, he decided that his force should take on the invaders, thinking that his dreams were prophetic. Vlad's forces were supposed to lose the battle, due to the deceiving dreams being the work of Varnae, who is truly the first vampire and had chosen Vlad to be his successor, but managed to drive the intruders out using his superior strategic mind and abilities. However, the victory over the Turkish was short-lived, as Vlad's troops were mercilessly slain by Apocalypse and his Riders of the Dark. Vlad was the only survivor of the attack, and he just barely managed that. The warlord Turac had seen the assault, and sent one of his men to aid the injured Vlad, believing that he could use him to lead his military to global domination. Vlad was then sent to the residential healer, Lianda, who turned out to be a vampire. In order to heal Vlad, Lianda made him one of her own.

Lord Of The Vampires

Dracula then went on to live under the lordship of Turac in one of his towns, and did not realize his vampiric abilities until Turac and his men killed Vlad's wife, Maria. Infuriated by the homicide, Vlad brutally killed Turac and his men. After he had done so, he felt he needed to escape. He dropped off his son, Vlad Tepulus who was named after him, to be raised by a group of residential gypsies and attempted to leave the town. On his way out, he was confronted by a group of Varnae's agents, and was escorted to the lair of Varnae to make a deal with their master. Varnae put Vlad through a series of tests to see if he was truly capable of being the king of the vampires. He was forced to slay Nimrod, who had posed as the ruler of earth's vampires. He did this with some ease, but was soon after confronted and destroyed by a band of priests.

Varnae acknowledged the defeat, but did not give up on Vlad. Varnae resurrected Vlad with the blood of the niece of the head priest who had defeated Vlad. The king of the undead then aimed to kill the girl, but was himself killed by a grateful Dracula. Vlad then drank his blood, and became the king of the undead. This event showed Varnae that Vlad was fit enough to be the king of the vampires, so Varnae decided it was his time to go. After Varnae handmade an enchanted casket for Vlad, to protect him from the sun, he killed himself by walking into the sunlight unshielded. Thus began the reign of Count Dracula. Throughout the next few centuries, Dracula reigned supreme over many European lands. Dracula was often killed, but never stayed defeated; using his mystic and unholy abilities to revive himself upon death.

Character Creation

Marvel comics version was created by Gerry Conway and Gene Colan in Tomb of Dracula #1, in 1972.

Character Evolution

At the turn of the nineteenth century, Dracula fought Jonathan Harker, Abraham Van Helsing, Mina Harker, John Seward, and Quincey Morris. This conflict is chronicled in Bram Stoker's Dracula. After his apparent death, Dracula was resurrected by accident from the Frankenstein monster. Later Dracula caught wind of Clan Akkaba, which was a large following of the god-mutant Apocalypse, the same Apocalypse who brought about his downfall as Vlad the Impaler. Using his extensive resources to find more out about the Clan, Dracula began attacking them, killing off their members rigorously. He then manipulated the now vampiric Clansmen to do his will from within the clan, turning all but a handful of the members into Dracula's undead army, who also had mutant abilities thanks to the blood of Apocalypse flowing through their veins.

After many battles between the remaining Apocalypse followers, along with the vampire hunter Abraham van Helsing and Dracula's army, Apocalypse managed to impale Vlad through the heart. Apocalypse refused to take Abraham's advice, though, and did not do anything to keep Dracula permanently killed.

Major Story Arcs

Further Life

Dracula returned a few years later and killed Abraham, but unknown to Vlad at the time Abraham had a apprentice named Quincy Harker. He was the son of John and Mina Harker. Another century later, Dracula found himself in the United States. Much to his disgust, Dracula found Adolf Hitler and his Nazi followers imprisoning and slaying his own gypsy followers. In order to put a stop to this, Dracula teamed up with Nick Fury and his Howling Commandos and helped bring down the Nazi empire.

A few months after Dracula assisted in the Nazi downfall, he turned his attention to Castle Mordo in Transylvania. When Dracula began to turn some of the Castle's inhabitants into his vampiric slaves, Baron Mordo successfully managed to fend off the vampire lord. The year after this Dracula observed the transformation into his werewolf form of a man later found to be the father of Jack Russell. Dracula deduced accurately that the reason for this transformation must involve the notorious Darkhold, which was one of the only objects that could cure Vlad of his vampiracy. Vlad kept an eye on the lycan population from behind the scenes for the next few years, slowly building a strategy. Afterwards, Vlad tracked down the famed vampire hunter, Jamal Afari, who was also the mentor of Blade, and killed him. After the death, Blade swore to see to it that Dracula died at his hands. Many years later, Dracula again turned his attention to the home of Baron Mordo, but decided it unwise to attack the sorcerer, remembering his past encounter with him.

Dracula versus the Dracula Hunters

Clifton Graves awakening Dracula

Frank Drake would inherit the Castle of Dracula and go to its location in plans to sell it. Drake is occupied by his fiance Jeanie and friend Clifton Graves. Clifton stumbles across the corpse of Dracula and accidentally awakenings him. After being the only survivor Frank Drake almost commits suicide, but is stopped by Rachel Van Helsing. Drake is introduced to Quincy Harker. Quincy Harker soon advanced into Vllad's deadliest enemy as his successor Abraham Van Helsing was. Quincy had set-up a network of vampire hunters through-out the world. Vllad dwindled this number to only a few through the years. They were called the Dracula Hunters. Eventually Quincy died trying to rid the world of his evil in a final battle.

Dracula would get his revenge on another Dracula Hunter Rachel Van Helsing by turning her into what she hated and hunted and killed. Dracula would soon cross paths with X-Men and Storm who he had had obsessed over. He tried turning Storm into his new bride, but was stopped by the X-Men with the help of Rachel Van Helsing, who was now a vampire. Next the Six Fingered Hand would take control of Dracula and have him attack the superhero team Defenders. Dracula would get out of his control and allied himself with the Defenders against the Six-Fingered Hand saga.

Montesi Formula

Dracula would soon cross paths with the Mighty Thor, when he tried to turn Lady Sif into his next bride. A few of the Dracula Hunters (Hannibal King, Frank Drake, and Blade) would reunite to help Dr. Strange rid the world of vampires by using the Montesi Formula. This happened with Dracula's quest and craving for the Darkhold book's power brought him in control of the Darkholder's Cult, this would put the vampire Lord and the Sorcerer Supreme on a race to retrieve the book first.

The Montesi Formula lasted several years, until Blade returned the vampires by using the Darkhold. Upon his return, his daughter Lilith would control Charles Seward (Who is related to the late John Seward), who created a formula to stop the blood disease of vampirism. The formula backfired, and made a epidemic spread to normal people, but was stopped by Dracula himself.

He recently has had dealings with his daughter Lilith, duping her into calling a gathering of all the great leaders of the various vampire families and then slaying them single handily, by the sword.

Invading Britain

Dracula Invades England

Dracula then found himself a new castle on the moon, where he made plans to invade Great Britain. He made an allegiance with Doctor Doom - all of this seeming to be part of the Dark Reign started by Norman Osborn. He launched an attack on Great Britain in an attempt to establish a country for the vampire race with the aid of Lilith, mother of of Demons and Captain Fate. Despite careful planning, he was outmaneuvered by Pete Wisdom and MI:13. His armies were destroyed and Dracula himself was killed by Faiza Hussain with the sword Excalibur. In the end, he was unable to overcome the holy blade, despite his superior physical abilities and swordsmanship skills, resulting in him being stabbed through the chest and turning to ash.

His devotees quickly collected his ash and brought him back to life. Dracula then prepared for the vampire gathering, which takes place once every century. All the vampire sects gathered along with his two sons, Janus and Xarus. Xarus, with the help of the leaders of the Charniputra, Nosferatu and Atlantean Sects killed his father.

Curse of the Mutants

During the ' Curse of the Mutants" arc, he is brought back to life by the X-Men who hoped he would aid them against Xarus. He declined their offer and took his leave of them. Only to return at the end to reclaim his throne and torture his son.

Powers and Abilities

Vampires in general have superior strength and reflexes. Dracula being older and being the recognized Lord of Vampires should be considered to have Super-Strength and Super Reflexes. (He once back-handed Colossus, felling him with one blow.) Dracula has command over several natural elements, such as summoning storms, and control over the lesser creatures (Bats, Rats and Wolves). Dracula has very powerful abilities where hypnosis, suggestion and memorization are concerned, and only the strongest minds/wills (such as Professor X or Dr. Strange) would be capable of resisting him. Dracula's own will is practically indomitable and he himself is seemingly immune to any kind of will-controlling powers. This, combined with his powers of invulnerability, allowed him to nearly withstand the full fury of a mystic energy attack from Dr Strange at close range before finally falling. It is a credit to Dracula's powers that he was actually able to use mental suggestion upon Dr. Strange himself, making him think he had actually destroyed the Vampire Lord, thus allowing Dracula to escape complete annihilation.

Dracula has shape-changing abilities, such as turning into an insubstantial mist that can still direct itself about according to his will. He can also change into various animals, but prefers to travel as a bat. Apparently he can control the size and degree of transformation from a normal sized bat to one of monstrous proportion (6 foot wingspan) as well as a demonic looking half-humanoid were-bat variation. Dracula is invulnerable to all mundane weapons except the wooden stake (when thrust directly through his heart.) He has tremendous healing faculties, recovering from most damage, including magical damage, given time. Fresh human blood will accelerate healing and increase all powers temporarily.

He has complete control over lesser vampires and can command them as an army. Only a direct challenge and trial by combat by another vampire can unseat his authority.

Dracula is a master tactician and thoroughly competent in all the Knightly weapons of the 1400's, which seem to be his favorite choice when he decides to use something other than his bare hands, themselves being tipped with semi-long pointed fingernails. Combined with his super-strength and invulnerability they have been used with feral and bloody efficiency, even scoring metal upon occasion.

Dracula is also capable of recovering/resurrecting from utter destruction as long as his ashes or bones are recovered by someone. Usually some kind of magical ritual is necessary to activate this resurrection, though sometimes it can be as simple as the tears of a virgin being poured on his remains to bring him back to un-life. It is also rumored that Dracula drank women's blood because it was more pure than men's blood

Characteristics

Height: 6'5"

Weight: 220 lbs

Eyes: Red

Hair: Black

Chronology of Appearances

This chronology uses the notation ‘[1]’, ‘[2]’, etc. to denote which story in a multiple story issue is referred to at a given position in the timeline (so, for example, ‘#4[3]’ indicates the third comic story in the fourth issue, not counting unrelated reprints or text features); where only particular pages are significant, or where other appearances fit between panels of an issue, the notation ‘[pXXpnY]’ is used where ‘pXX’ is page XX and ‘pnY’ is panel Y on that page (so, for example, ‘p23pn2’ is the second panel of page 23); also note that when page numbers have been printed in the magazine, those are used, and if no page numbers were printed, the number refers to actual story pages, not counting pages with ads or editorial material; ‘[prose]’ indicates a text story as opposed to a paneled comic story; the years listed indicate the dates the stories take place (but only for stories taking place before THE TOMB OF DRACULA #1, Dracula's first appearance in the modern Marvel heroic age), either based on dates explicitly written in the text, or estimates based on historical events or persons, fashions, architecture, technology, etc., depicted in the stories.

At this writing, this chronology is a work in progress, and is therefore admittedly incomplete; feel free to fill in any omissions.

The story in BIZARRE ADVENTURES #33 takes place concurrently with the first story in DRACULA LIVES! #2 and the first story in DRACULA LIVES! #3, weaving in and out of the plots of those two stories.

STOKER'S DRACULA #s 1-4 reprints the first seven chapters of the adaptation of the classic novel that were originally published in DRACULA LIVES #s 5-8, 10, 11, and THE LEGION OF MONSTERS #1, as well as presenting new material that completes the adaptation. Alternate adaptations were presented in MARVEL CLASSICS COMICS #9 and MARVEL GRAPHIC NOVEL #26.

From Comics to History

Vlad Tepes actually existed and lived in Valachia during the 15th century. Renowned for his inflexibility and cruelty towards his enemies, he gave birth to the Dracula legend.

Dracula means "small dragon" in Romanian, for he and his father belonged to this order of saint knights.

The legend started when Bram Stoker read a part of his memories still stored at the British museum in the end of the 19th century.

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