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Alucard
Alucard Hellsing

Alucard in the TV series
Publication information
Publisher Young King OURs
First appearance Hellsing volume 1
Created by Kouta Hirano
In-story information
Alter ego Vlad III Dracula
Team affiliations Hellsing, Protestant Church, British Crown, Order of the Dragon, Eastern Orthodox Church, Catholic Church
Notable aliases Count Dracula, Vlad Ţepeş, Kazıklı Bey, J.H. Brenner, No-Life King/No Life King
Abilities Superhuman strength, speed, stamina and durability,
Immortality,
Phasing,
Shapeshifting,
Teleportation,
Telekinesis,
Telepathy,
Hypnosis,
Regeneration,
Summoning familiars

Alucard is a fictional character in the Hellsing anime and manga series created by Kohta Hirano. He is the main protagonist of the Hellsing franchise.

It is implied Alucard is the most powerful vampire currently in existence. He usually dresses in a Victorian fashion, including a charcoal suit, leather riding boots, and a red bowtie, covered by a long red overcoat. He also wears a red fedora with a wide, floppy brim and a pair of circular, wire-framed sunglasses. He does wear other outfits. He has a vast range of supernatural techniques. His enhanced strength allows him to wield pistols too heavy for humans to handle. He fights with ferocity and often extreme cruelty, rarely shooting to kill until his target has been disabled and humiliated. He frequently gives enemies more than one chance to kill him before retaliating, if only to demonstrate his powers. He admits he is a "monster". He is devoted to his master, Integra Hellsing, and seems to have a friendship with her butler, Walter C. Dornez. He harbors feelings of fatherly affection towards his fledgling, Seras Victoria.

In the anime (both TV series and OVA) Alucard is voiced by Nakata Jouji (中田譲治). In the English dub of both series, he is voiced by Crispin Freeman.

Creation and conception Edit

Name Edit

There is some disagreement on how Alucard's name should be written. In the original Japanese material, his name is アーカード, romanized Ākādo. Since Japanese generally uses a long 'a' to represent the sound of syllable-final English 'r' (e.g. dokutā for "doctor"), Ākādo would normally correspond to English "Arcard". The spelling "Alucard" is justified because of the "Dracula" anagram, although the sounds of "Alucard" would normally be represented by arukado in Japanese. The spelling "Arucard" may be based on the romanization used in the Japanese edition of the manga when he first introduces himself to Integra.[1] The Japanese language doesn't distinguish 'r' and 'l', causing variations in this and other names. 'Alucard' was used in the official translation of the Hellsing manga, while the TV series used 'Arucard' (in the subtitles; it is still pronounced 'Alucard' when spoken in the English dub). While both are official, the correct name would have to be 'Alucard' if the anagram is to make sense (Dracula spelled backwards).

History Edit

According to Hellsing canon, Alucard was born in the winter of 1431 as Vlad III Dracula, the son of Vlad II Dracul. He became known as Vlad Ţepeş ("Vlad the Impaler"), and as Kazıklı Voyvoda ("the Impaling Prince") by the Turks. He lived and reigned intermittently as the Voivode of Wallachia until his death in 1476, at the age of 45. The circumstances of his death and vampiric transformation are shown in chapter 70, but how he became a vampire is unknown. The Ottoman Empire captured him as a child and he was sodomized by an unknown ruler. When he became the voivode of Wallachia, he launched a war on the Turks which devastated both sides. Eventually, his troops were defeated, his people killed (many by his own hands), and his homeland set ablaze. Vlad himself was to be executed. Before he was beheaded, he drank of the blood from the battlefield and became a true vampire. Accepting the powers of darkness, the cross he had always carried with him shattered.

Centuries later, in 1893, the events of Bram Stoker's novel Dracula unfold. Abraham Van Helsing, Arthur Holmwood, Quincey Morris, and Jack Seward (Jonathan Harker is not mentioned) defeated Vlad (then known as Count Dracula). In a flashback dream sequence, Abraham remarks that Mina was freed from the Count's grasp, just as she was in the novel. It is at this point where Alucard's backstory begins to deviate from Bram Stoker's novel. The Count was staked in the heart, but not destroyed. It is unknown if he was forced into servitude or if he was willing. Either way, the Count became a servant for Abraham and his descendants.

The next account of Alucard's life is during World War II, in 1944. Integra's father, Sir Arthur Hellsing, gave him the name Alucard. He, along with a 14-year-old Walter C. Dornez, were sent to Warsaw, Poland, to stop Millennium's vampire production program. The results of this mission are yet unknown, as it is recorded in the ongoing prequel to Hellsing, Hellsing: The Dawn. In 1969, Arthur imprisoned Alucard in a dungeon in the Hellsing manor, as Arthur came to believe that Alucard was "too powerful a drug to be used as more than the occasional medicine". Shortly after Arthur's death in 1989, Alucard was awakened and resuscitated by Integra's blood when she came to his cell seeking refuge. After 20 years of imprisonment, Alucard saved Integra (then only 12 years old) from her traitorous uncle, Richard, and became her servant.

Personality Edit

As he is nearly immortal and almost invincible, Alucard is very egotistical. He taunts and belittles his opponents, often allowing them to inflict seemingly fatal wounds before healing himself and obliterating them. It could be said that rather than killing his opponents, Alucard breaks them. When Luke Valentine fights Alucard and gains an advantage over him, victory seems within his grasp. The tides turn when Alucard shoots off Luke's legs, telling him to regenerate them and pick up his gun and fight back. When Luke fails to do so, Alucard transforms a part of himself into his hellhound and devours Luke, saying:

"As a vampire you were just a worthless piece of shit, now you're nothing but dog shit."

Alucard seems to long to fight an equal opponent, expressing disappointment in Luke's weakness.

Despite his arrogance, he can be humbled. In his first meeting with Alexander Anderson, he assumed he had killed Anderson with a single shot to the forehead. A regenerator, Anderson recovered and took him by surprise.

Underneath his arrogant exterior, Alucard seems sad and envious of humans. They are blessed with the gift of death, while he himself is unable to die and must walk the Earth for eternity. Over the course of his existence, Alucard has come to realize life needs death to make it precious. He regrets becoming a monster to obtain power and escape death. All of these feelings are shown at various points throughout the series, such as when Alucard tells the Queen that she is "that same saucy filly from 50 years ago" and that she is "truly beautiful now", when Anderson stabs himself in the heart with the Helena's Nail (because Anderson is making the same mistake Alucard made), and when Alucard says that Walter's old, aged body was "a trillion times more beautiful" than his new, younger body. His desire for a worthy opponent may be connected to his regret; it could be a desire to finally die in battle.

Arthur Hellsing explains it best in chapter 72:

"Many of them crave conflict. Gory struggles. It becomes something akin to weeping, longing. Their screams are not born of a desire for combat... but a desire for death."

In conjunction, Alucard holds a great affinity for humans who take pride in themselves, expressing his desire to be killed by a mortal human which would be the ultimate irony and truth. This would explain why Alucard expressed such joy when facing off against Anderson (though his respect for Anderson is limited since he recognizes Anderson is a parallel to himself and that the technology Anderson is imbued with makes him a monster too, and Alucard says himself that he cannot be killed by a monster.). He often respects certain humans for their bravery, for choosing to remain mortal and accept death.

Alucard expresses extreme disgust with the vampires he hunts, especially when they kill without purpose. When commenting on the "Bonnie and Clyde" early in the story, he lists the two vampires' pointless killing in his catalog of how pathetic they are.

"No nobility, conviction, or rationale. You can't transform into mist or bats. You can't even recover from the wounds you take. You kill women and children when you don't even need to feed. And lastly, you can't even fight once the bullets run out. You still think you can be Nosferatu? What a disgrace!!"

He is not entirely against immortality. He believes it must be earned and is limited only to certain personalities or characters of sufficient will. He views suicide as the lowest of human choices, offended when a GATE officer commits suicide to avoid death by his hand. He gave Seras immortality despite his self-reflection, possibly due to her indomitable will, courage, and unwavering resolve, as she willingly allowed herself to be shot through the lungs in order to exterminate the vampire holding her hostage. He also viewed Walter in the same regard for a time, even indirectly offering him immortality. He may believe Walter "took" immortality rather than "earned" it.

Another important aspect of Alucard's personality is his relationship with God. As a human, he was a crusader, a knight who fought against the Muslim Turks to spread Christianity. As a warrior, he believed that words were not enough; that one must accomplish deeds in order to attract God's attention, a belief shared by his rival, Alexander Anderson. In accordance with this belief, he never asked God for favors. He became famous for punishing evildoers in his own lands and abroad, for waging a war against the Muslims in hopes of bringing down "the New Jerusalem," and for sacrificing his troops and his people to achieve his own goals. When he lost his war and was captured by the Turks, he realized that he had failed. Feeling abandoned by God, he abandoned God in turn. In a moment of perfect despair, he drank up the blood of his scorched and besieged homeland and became a vampire.

It's possible that Dracula's plan in England, which began with invasion and may have ended in conquest, was a way of avenging himself against God, whom he blamed for his own mistakes (this is similar to how Count Dracula was portrayed in Francis Ford Coppola's film, Bram Stoker's Dracula, which Hirano has cited as one of his greatest sources of inspiration).

Powers and abilities Edit

Alucard demonstrates a range of supernatural attacks, including:

  • Immortality: Like other vampires, Alucard is immortal in that he does not age. It is also nigh-impossible to injure him in any way that actually compromises his health.
  • Regeneration: Alucard's ability to regenerate is greater than any other vampire's in Hellsing, and may be due to the Hellsing family's experimentation. He has regenerated from a pool of blood and from being shredded by gunfire.
  • Superhuman senses: Being a vampire grants him massively enhanced senses as well as the combined senses of the souls with him and it was then increased to an even more after absorbing Schrödinger.
  • Incredible accuracy: Alucard can hit targets at great range using handguns while looking the other way.
  • Superhuman strength: Extent is unknown, but Alucard can physically rip humans apart with ease.[2]
  • Superhuman speed: He can move faster than can be seen.[2]
  • Intangibility: The ability to pass through solid objects.[3]
  • The ability to defy gravity to an uncertain limit.[4] He leaps impossible distances and can travel up vertical surfaces.
  • Manipulation of shadows into physical form.
  • Shapeshifting: Alucard can transform himself or parts of himself into bats, insects, snakes, hellhounds, other human forms including a little girl,[5] and an amorphous mass of darkness. He has four known human forms each with different characteristics. He seems to be able to harden his body to such a degree that he can shred Alhambra's cards with ease (these cards could cut through depleted uranium cannon shells with impunity)[6].
  • The ability to control the weather to an unknown limit, as demonstrated when he covered all of Dover in fog while aboard the H.M.S Eagle.
  • Teleportation
  • Telekinesis: In the TV series, Alucard lifted a FREAK chip and loaded the Jackal and pulled its slide mentally. In the manga, Alucard psychokinetically shut and locked a door to prevent the escape of a police officer.
  • Telepathy: In the anime, Alucard can speak telepathically to anyone he chooses, but in the manga, his telepathy appears to be limited to his fledgling.
  • Mind reading: In the television series, Alucard can read the mind of anyone he chooses.
  • Mind control or hypnosis (fans sometimes call it the "sex beam" after a remark from Pip).[7]
  • Summoning familiars, the souls of those whose blood he has sucked either sprout from his body or swarm about him as an army numbering in the thousands. These familiars can include animals such as horses and the weapons and abilities that the familiars possessed in life. This ability can only be used when his last seal is released. This storing of souls may be the primary reason for Alucard's apparent immortality. According to the last chapter, Alucard possessed hundreds of millions of souls after the Millennium attack, and has since killed them off in order to exist with Schrödinger's abilities.
  • The ability to absorb a person's soul through their blood and consequently gain their knowledge and memories. He can also absorb blood through his clothes and skin.
  • Hibernation: Alucard survives long periods of time without consuming blood. After absorbing Schrödinger, he eats nothing for 30 years but appears perfectly fine upon his return, albeit hungry.
  • Apparent immunity or great resistance to the weaknesses most vampires possess. He is not compromised by sunlight or silver. It appears that the only weapons capable of harming him to any real extent are the most holy of Christian artifacts, such as Father Anderson after augmenting his abilities with Helena's Nail.
  • The ability to sense supernatural activity (In The Dawn Alucard knew the Captain was a werewolf the moment he saw him).
  • Centuries of combat experience. While he usually relies on crushing his opponents with sheer power, he does at times use strategy. When he fought Alhambra, Alucard used shadow duplicates to distract him, allowing Alucard to close the distance between them and deliver the deathblow.

Weapons Edit

Template:Unreferenced section While Alucard is a lethal combatant unarmed, due to his supernatural abilities and strength, he usually relies on his two signature weapons, a pair of oversized and overpowered handguns named the .454 Casull and the Jackal.

  • Hellsing ARMS .454 Casull Auto - The size of this semi-automatic pistol is debated as either 29 cm or 39 cm in length. The Casull's size makes it too heavy and unwieldy for a human to use, yet a perfect match for Alucard's strength. It fires custom-made explosive .454 Casull rounds, with the steel bullets bearing a core made from the melted silver Christian cross from Lancaster Cathedral. One estimate places the number of rounds in the magazine to be around fifteen, based on counting the number of rounds fired before reloading was required. For that to be the case, the magazine would have to be double-stack. Such would pose issues stemming from the physical features of the .454 Casull round such as the incredibly large dimensions of the grip and reliably feeding rimmed ammunition from a box magazine which is an issue even with single-stack magazines. In addition, neither the weapon nor its grip is depicted as being particularly wide when compared to the barrel. Thus, the weapon most likely has a single-stack magazine meaning a capacity of 7 rounds as seen in other .45-caliber handguns with single-stack magazines such as the M1911 and SIG P220. There is no official magazine capacity. Although Alucard has reloaded it several times throughout both the manga and anime, Hirano has joked that "They're all cosmoguns that can hold a million rounds". This is evidenced in the first OVA, where Alucard takes out a large group of ghouls without reloading. One plausible explanation is that as the Casull is clearly custom-made, it would not be unreasonable to assume that it has an enlarged capacity. It can also be argued that he reloads it "off-screen" or too quickly to be seen.
    • In the original fan-translation of the second Hellsing manga volume, the translators incorrectly translated Walter's line referring to the gun, making him call it the "Joshua" even though the Katakana reads "KASURU", which would be the correct Katakana for "Casull". Many fans have perpetuated the name, so much so that ADV (the Official European Distributor for the TV Series) called it "Joshua" on their Official Website, the Special Features, and the booklets on their DVD release. Regardless, this name is incorrect as it never appears in the Original Japanese version of any media or official translations of Hellsing, not even ADV's, as they use Geneon's dub and subtitles.
  • Hellsing ARMS 13 mm Auto Anti-Freak Combat Pistol 'Jackal'<span id="Jackal"/> - With a length of 39 cm (Almost 1' 4"), weight of 16 kg (35.2 lbs), and made of black gunmetal, it is not a weapon a human could even hope to wield, but as Walter noted, "It was never meant for a man." It fires special 13 mm armor-piercing, explosive, Mercury-core baptized bullets, with casings of Macedonian silver, powered by "Marvell's Chemical Cartridge N.N.A.9." It has six rounds per magazine. It was designed almost exclusively as a weapon against Iscariot's Alexander Anderson, who shrugged off the Casull rounds with ease. The words 'Jesus Christ is in Heaven now' are engraved upon it, similar to a statement on Anderson's gloves. The weapon does have a pistol slide; there appears to be none since the entire upper assembly is the slide, and moves only a minimal distance (relative to the gun's length). The Jackal's ejector port is at the left-hand position (ejecting towards the left), suggesting it is meant to be used in conjunction with the Casull. Alucard is usually shown wielding both guns. In the ninth volume of the manga, Walter planted a bomb in the Jackal as part of his betrayal to Millennium, which is activated by the Doctor in Alucard and Walter's brutal battle in London.

Much like Seras with the Harkonnen, Alucard experiences a bizarre dream in the manga and OVA where he meets the "spirit" of the Jackal; a man who bears a striking resemblance to John McClane from the film Die Hard. Considering that the actor who portrayed John, Bruce Willis, acted in the 1997 movie The Jackal as the titular character, it is an obvious reference to him. The character is known by fans as "Willis" (due to his strange habit of ending everything he says with "Willis"), and makes several references to movies starring the actor in both the OVA and manga.

Release states Edit

Alucard's powers are controlled by the heir to the Hellsing family (currently Integra Hellsing). This is apparently enforced by a "control art restriction system." There are six known levels of restriction and six corresponding states, with lower numbers representing greater levels of power. Under certain circumstances, Alucard can release some of his greater powers himself; a component of his restriction system called the "Cromwell Approval" seems to influence this ("Cromwell" probably relating to Oliver Cromwell, an English military and political leader). He can lower his higher-numbered seals at will, to an extent. He sometimes states which level he is releasing immediately prior to combat ("Releasing control art restriction to level two"). This may be a requirement of the release mechanism or a ploy to unnerve his opponents, but it has never been confirmed. In the manga, Integra requests that Alucard's restriction system be released to Level Zero, allowing him full access to his most devastating powers. In the series' final episode, Integra gives him permission to release to level one, where he dons a red straitjacket-like garb. In the manga he wears a black leather jumper instead.

"Releasing Control Art Restriction to level three... level two... level one. Situation A. The Cromwell approval is now in effect. Hold release until target is eternally silenced."

Clothes and release states Edit

Alucard's state of dress seems directly related to the amount of power he uses: as he charges up to engage in battle, first his sunglasses, then his fedora will disappear; in the manga he sometimes removes his arms from the sleeves of his coat letting it simply hang on his shoulders whilst he fires from underneath it. These articles of clothing may be direct physical manifestations of whatever system Hellsing uses to control Alucard, with the straitjacket representing his true nature. His gloves, which are engraved with the Hellsing seal (a pentacle decorated with occult symbols and several mottoes, reading: "Hell's Gate Arrested / Gott Mit Uns / And Shine Heaven Now") are also thought to be part of this mechanism and the source of Hellsing's control over him (his distinctive gloves are visible in the vast majority of his transformations, even the non-humanoid forms). In the second OVA, in the flashback scene where Alucard recalls being beaten by Abraham Van Helsing, Alucard is seen wearing these gloves, despite the fact that he was not yet under their control. This may be a continuity error. (When compared to the panel from the manga, which shows normal white gloves, this seems likely.)

In his final release state, Alucard reverted to his original form when he was still Vlad III Dracula. He appeared as his former, 40-year-old self (as opposed to looking his 20s) with a thick beard and mustache (in the manga Seras Victoria seemed fixated on the fact that he had a mustache). He also wore heavy medieval armor with a huge tattered cloak and carried a long sword. He quickly reverted to his typical appearance when confronted by Anderson. A gigantic army of souls accompany him in this state. He once assumed the form of a gigantic black eye, with a huge amount of tendrils, drinking the blood of all the dead within what is left of London.

GirlycardOVA71734

Alucard in the form of a young girl (often referred to as 'Girlycard').

It is debated whether his younger form shown in The Dawn (nicknamed Girlycard) is a 'state of release'. Some fans claim that the Hellsing family suppressed Alucard's powers, sealing them away into a much smaller body, in order to conduct scientific experiments on him, eventually producing his current state. Others say that he chose this form on his own accord, simply because he can take any form that he likes. In a flashback scene in the fourth volume of the manga, a young Walter stands alongside an adult Alucard after the destruction of the Nazi vampire research program. In volume 9, in his 'Girlycard' form, Alucard also admits "There's never any meaning in the form that I take", which could indicate he controls it himself. Kouta Hirano has not released the reason for the young girl form. Since the Dawn is incomplete, readers may never discover the reason or significance.

During Alucard's defeat flashback, Abraham Van Helsing wears a similar outfit to Alucard's typical dress. This may suggest that Alucard's regular state is his most humane as it mimics the one who defeated him.

Identity Edit

Alucard's true identity - that of both the historical Vlad Ţepeş and the fictional Count Dracula - is only hinted at in the earlier volumes. His anagrammatic name, the title of the series and the name of Integra's family, and the impalement of the GATE officers in volume 3 hint at his identity. The hints become much less vague, and his identity as the fictional Count Dracula is brought to light. In volume 4, a dreaming Alucard recalls his defeat at the hands of Abraham Van Helsing, which marked the beginning of his servitude to the Hellsing family.[8] In volume 7, the narration alludes to the Count's arrival in London aboard the Demeter, from Bram Stoker's novel Dracula.[9]

In volume 8, his identity is made plain. Reverting to the body he had at the time of his "death" at age 45, he summons massive hordes of souls he devoured over the centuries, including his own Wallachian army, peasantry, Turkish Janissaries, and war horses. Throughout his battle with Anderson, Alucard frequently compares his rival to his previous victorious foe - Abraham Van Helsing. Additionally, in Hundred Swords (3), Alucard speaks of the other protagonists of the Dracula story- Jack Seward, Quincey Morris, and Arthur Holmwood (Jonathan Harker is strangely omitted).[10] The final chapter of volume 8 - Castlevania (1) - consists of a flashback of Alucard's life and "death" as the voivod of Wallachia,[11] Vlad III Dracula. Another indication of Alucard's identity may be his frequent impaling of enemies with his hands.

Most of these revelations are not present in the television series. There are some hints. The final episode features a visual reference to Vlad Ţepeş, as well as impalement of Incognito, a practice of Vlad III The Impaler (Vlad Ţepeş, also known as Dracula). Alucard refers to his name as being "a bit of an enigma", referring to the anagram.

Reception Edit

Template:Expand Anime News Network praised Alucard for being "a refreshing change from the traditional, mopey, woe-is-me vampire anti-hero"[12], and called him "quite the cool figure". T.H.E.M Anime Reviews describes Alucard as "anti-hero through and through, but you just can't help rooting for him even when it's obvious he's not really a good guy at all..."[13]

Crispin Freeman, the actor who voices Alucard, enjoys voicing him. "...Who wouldn't want to play Alucard! Well, I love characters who are on the edge of madness for one reason or another..." Since he enjoys playing highly sexual characters, he adds "...Alucard is just the most sexually predacious of any anime character I think I've played..."[14]


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