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Alucard (Hellsing)

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Alucard is the main character and anti-hero of Hellsing. He is the Hellsing's Organization's trump card and is a powerful vampire. He is  Count Dracula who in his past life was Vlad the Implaler. He is loyal to his master Integra Hellsing, the long time friend of Walter C. Dornez and is affectioned to his fledgeling Seras Victoria. He is a vampire hunter due to being the servant of the Hellsing family and has been modified to stand against his own kind.

He is voiced by Joji Nakata in the Japanese version of the anime and Crispin Freeman in the English version, both of whom also voice Kirei Kotomine.

Appearance

His usual outfit is comprised mainly in a classic Victorian fashion, including a charcoal suit, leather riding boots, and a flamboyant, intricately knotted red cravat, covered by a long, red duster. He also wears a red fedora hat with a wide, floppy brim and a pair of circular, heavily tinted, wire-framed red sunglasses with goggle sidings. He has a vast range of supernatural techniques and is an expert gunfighter, his enhanced strength allowing him to wield pistols that most would consider heavy weaponry.

Personality

As he is immortal and invincible, Alucard is very egotistical. He freely taunts and belittles his opponents, often allowing them to inflict seemingly fatal wounds before healing himself and obliterating his enemy. One of his favorite methods is allowing himself to literally be shot to pieces before simply flowing back together.

It could accurately be said that rather than killing his opponents, Alucard breaks them. An example can be seen in volume 2 when Alucard fights Luke Valentine. When Luke gains an advantage over Alucard, victory seems within his grasp. The tides turn when Alucard transforms a part of himself into a hell hound. Alucard then shoots off a part of his leg telling him to regenerate them and pick up his gun and fight back. When Luke fails to do so, Alucard devours Luke, declaring him as little more than dog food.

However, even as an invincible vampire, Alucard can be taken by surprise, usually because of his arrogance. In his first meeting with Alexander Anderson, he assumed he had easily killed Anderson with a single bullet, but was caught off guard when he regenerated. Alucard also expressed deep disappointment that Luke was not a more worthy adversary. In the anime, he seemed concerned with finding a worthy opponent; in the manga however, it is revealed that he wishes to find an opponent, a human opponent, whom he can let defeat him.

However, underneath his cocky, arrogant attitude, Alucard seems deeply sad and envious of humans, for 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 that life needs death to make it precious. Alucard chose to become a monster to obtain power and escape death, and he regrets it. 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." He becomes infuriated as Anderson stabs himself in the heart with the Helena's Nail in volume 8 (because Anderson is making the same mistake that Alucard made), and when Alucard says that Walter's old, aged body was "a trillion times more beautiful" than his new, vampiric body in chapter 74. His desire for a worthy opponent may be connected to his regret, as well; it could be interpreted as a desire to finally die.

History

Origin

Alucard was once known as Count Dracula, also known as Vlad III Dracula, the son of Vlad II Dracul. Born in 1431, he later became known Vlad Ţepeş ("Vlad the Impaler") and as Kazıklı Bey ("the Impaling Prince") by the Turks, gaining a fearsome reputation throughout the lands. He is arguably the first vampire that ever existed.

It is revealed in Alucard's flashback in Chapter 70 of Hellsing, Castlevania (2) that he was enslaved by Ottoman conquerors when he was a child and sodomized by a high ruler. During the whole ordeal, he defiantly clenched a silver cross. When he became the Voivode of Wallachia, he launched an all-out war on the Turks which devastated both sides. Eventually, his troops were defeated, his people were killed (although mostly executed by his own hands), and his homeland was set ablaze. Vlad himself was to be executed. However, before he was beheaded, he drank of the blood from the battlefield and became a true vampire. When he accepted the powers of darkness, the silver cross he had always carried with him shattered. Centuries later, in 1897, the events of Bram Stoker's Dracula unfold in the backstory of Hellsing. Abraham Van Hellsing, Arthur Holmwood, Quincey Morris, and Jack Seward (Jonathan Harker, the last member of their group, is left out of the Hellsing version of the story) were able to defeat Count Dracula and killed those who served him.

He now goes by a new name, Alucard, as given to him by Arthur Hellsing, Integra's father. Alucard, along with a 14-year-old Walter C. Dornez, is sent on a mission to Warsaw, Poland, to stop _Organization Millennium' s vampire production program. Decades later, in 1969, Alucard was imprisoned in a dungeon in Hellsing manor by Arthur. According to Sir Hugh Irons, Arthur Hellsing came to believe that Alucard was "too powerful a drug to be used as more than the occasional medicine".

Present Time

Shortly after Aruthur Helsing's death in 1989, Alucard was awakened and resuscitated by his daughter Integra's blood after she came to his cell and her shoulder was clipped by a bullet. Alucard then blocked and shredded a bullet Richard shot at Integra, allowing Integra the opportunity to kill her uncle. She killed Richard and became the head of the Hellsing Organization, and Alucard became her most loyal servant. There he met his fledgling Seras Victoria, and later encounters Alexander Anderson of the Iscariot Organization in Volume 1.

Soon he hears of Millennium's return and prepares to go to war against them. In Volume 2, He fights Luke Valentine while Walter and Seras deal with Jan Valentine later, meeting Pip Bernadotte and the Wild Geese. He meets Enrico Maxwell in a Museum where Integra has a meeting with him and then was about to fight Anderson if it had not been for Seras. In Volume 3, he, Seras, and Pip were sent to Rio and Alucard Fights Tubalcain Alhambra and kills him. Volume 4 He is sent to the Queen's mansion to explain about Millennium and then Schrodinger shows up and uses the T.V. to let the Major message them. Alucard uses his .454 Casull to shot Schrodinger on the orders of Integra and then Schrodinger's body disappears. He then later appears alongside Integra and Walter aboard the eagle held by Rip van Winkle and easily kills her, he then laughs maniacally in Volume 5. In volume 6, Alucard uses the Eagle to transport him back to London.

In Volume 7, he finally returns to England to fight against Millennium and the Vatican special forces. In Volume 8, He jumps down from a building and encounters Anderson of Iscariot and The Captain of Millennium. he is about to enter his level zero mode, but the army factions tried to stop him, but it was too late as Alcuard summons his past familiars (including Alhambra and Rip) and easily crushing Enrico and Major's forces. Alucard, in his Vlad Dracula form, looks over and greets Integra and Seras however Anderson attacks Alucard in a sword duel. Alucard returns to his previous form using his Hellsing ARMS Jackal against Anderson and starts slowly wounding his Arm. As Alucard's Familliars were about to kill Anderson he was saved by a group of remaing Iscariot Priests led by Heinkel Wolfe and Yumie Takagi. Anderson and Alucard engaged in a staredown and Anderson uses Helena's Nail. Alucard knows what it is and what it does, he begs Anderson not to become a monster like him but Anderson still used it on his heart causing him to become a Creature of Thorns and vines called a monster of God by Alucard. Later they contiuned fighting and then Anderson used his new powers to stab Alucard and burn all his familiars. In Volume 9 Alucard was about to be defeated, but Seras intervened and awakened him, Alucard then rams into Anderson's heart and removes it, along with destroying the nail.

Anderson gave words of pity to Alucard before he dies. Then Walter as a Vampire jumps from the air and crushes Anderson's remains, followed by killing Yumie. Alucard and the others were shocked to see Walter betraying Hellsing and Integra orders Alucard to kill Walter. Alucard and Walter begin their Battle, Walter seemed to have the upper hand and Alucard's gun the Jackel was revealed to be made by Millennium as The Doctor uses his remote to destroy it. Alucard summons his last familiar, Luke Valentine and Walter using his wires to control him but his transformation was failing. Walter thought he killed Alucard but actually killed Luke and Walter became so young he reverted back to his 14 year old self from the Dawn and Alucard punches him from behind this time reverting to his female form from the Dawn. Alucard is figuring out why Walter has turned traitor, saying that his desire to kill Alucard consumed him. Alucard them absorbs all the blood from the city.

In Volume 10, Alucard is still absorbing everything and Walter attempts one last attack on him, but it is useless and Alucard then grabs Walter, mocking both him and Anderson for their failures, then Schrodinger after committing suicide, he was Absorbed by Alucard. The Major claims that Alucard has lost. Alucard mocks Millennium thinking he lost but seeing his past defeats and then all the souls inside him came out and the Major reveals to Integra that as long as Schrodinger can recognize himself he's everywhere and nowhere but because he is absorbed by Alucard along with many others he can no longer recognize himself and becomes a set of imaginary numbers meaning Alucard has been erased from existence. Integra orders Alucard not to disappear but Alcuard closes his eyes and bids farewell.

In the final chapter however, Alucard has returned by killing all his lives except for Schrodinger's soul to get back 30 years and Integra, now old, greets him home by offering her blood similiar how she gave Seras her blood.

Powers & Abilities

Alucard demonstrates, in various incarnations of the series Hellsing, an astonishing and overwhelming range of supernatural attacks; these include, but are probably not limited to;

  • Immortality: This ability is rather ambiguous, as Alucard himself has stated that immortality is a myth. However, what it most likely refers to is the human souls inside Alucard; it has been speculated that, when damaged with exceedingly holy weapons or a blow that might have killed or incapacitated him, is instead directed to his reservoir of souls. Though not directly the case, after Nail of Helena Anderson destroyed the rest of Level 0, Alucard was still able to regenerate on par with him. (Which was on par with Alucard before releasing Level 0. This contradicts the souls being his supply of immortality and regeneration theory, because he had released every soul inside him to fight for, and with him, and yet was still able to regenerate, even after all the souls were defeated by Nail of Helena Anderson. It is apparent because after his duel with Walter, Alucard states he's now "hungry", and starts to absorb the dead city of London, after which his soul count was equal to three million, four hundred and twenty-four thousand, eight hundred and sixty-seven.
  • Advanced Regeneration: Alucard's ability to regenerate is considerably greater than any other vampire's. He has regenerated from a pool of blood and from being blown to shreds by gunfire, incinerated completely, etc. When damaged to an extreme extent, his body simply turns into a shadow-like substance and reconstitutes.
  • Superhuman Accuracy: Alucard has been known to hit targets at great range using handguns while looking the other way. He does this by using his so-called 'third eye'. He states that "if you shoot like humans do, you'll only miss like they do."
  • Superhuman Strength: The extent is unknown, but Alucard can physically rip humans and vampires apart with ease. He also ripped through Tubalcain Alhambra's card, which was strong and dense enough to slice through uranium.
  • Superhuman Speed: He can move faster than can be seen, and is faster than Mach Speed.
  • Superhuman Reflexes: He caught a magic bullet within his mouth, which tore through an SR-71 (which is made of multiple alloys, including VARIOUS amounts of titanium) and crushed it with his teeth.
  • Intangibility: The ability to pass through solid objects.
  • Superhuman Agility: The ability to defy gravity to an uncertain limit. He is also seen leaping impossible distances and can go up vertical surfaces.
  • Shadow Manipulation: Manipulation of shadows into physical form.
  • Shapeshifting: Alucard can transform himself or parts of himself into bats, insects, snakes, hell hounds, other human forms including a little girl, an amorphous mass of darkness, and many other forms. Alucard has four known human forms, each with different characteristics and weapons. He also states that his form means nothing and that he can take any form that he chooses.
  • Weather Control: The ability to control the weather to an unknown limit, as demonstrated by the fog created when he returned to London aboard the H.M.S Eagle, although this might have been telekinesis.
  • Illusions: The ability to cast illusions, such as when he tricked Walter into seeing Luke Valentine as himself.
  • Teleportation:The ability to disappear and reappear somewhere else.
  • Telekinesis: In the manga, Alucard uses telekinesis to close a door on a fleeing SWAT officer, as well as throwing six or more other SWAT officers through glass doors and navigating them to flag poles where they are impaled. Alucard is later seen moving a broken down air-craft carrier from the Gulf of Italy to the Dover of London all in a little less than 40 minutes, only travelling at a few knots. Maxwell states that the air-craft carrier shouldn't be moving, and that he was amazed it was, especially since a recon jet ( the SR-71 ) was impaled in the air-craft carrier's flight-deck.
  • Telepathy: Alucard can speak telepathically to his fledgling as well as read people's minds.
  • Mind Control/Hypnosis: (fans sometimes call it the "Sex Beam" after a remark from Pip).
  • Summoning: The ability to summon familiars, the souls of those whose blood he has sucked in a variety of forms that either sprout from his body or swarm around him as an army numbering in the millions. These familiars can also include animals such as horses and the weapons and abilities that the familiars possessed in life, but Alucard can only use this ability when Control Art Restriction System Level Zero is released.
  • Blood Sucking: The ability to suck a person's blood and absorb their soul and, consequently, their knowledge and memories. (He learns more about Millennium after absorbing Tubalcain.) He can also absorb blood through his clothes and skin, as he does with Luke Valentine's blood after his hell hound had eaten Luke's body.
  • Hibernation: Alucard is able to survive long periods of time without consuming blood, but is able to fight at a usual level of strength after drinking even the smallest bit of blood.
  • Immunity to Vampiric Weakness: His abilities and health are not in any way compromised by such things as sunlight or silver. In fact, 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 (a nail, which was from the True Cross, which crucified Jesus Christ, and was blessed in his blood).
  • Supernatural Senses: The ability to sense supernatural activity (In The Dawn, a prequel to Hellsing, Alucard knew the Captain was a werewolf the moment he saw him, and in the OVA, he could see the blessings on Father Anderson's bayonets).
  • Combat Experience: In addition to his superhuman abilities, Alucard also possesses 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 death blow.
  • Schrödinger Powers: At the end of the series, Alucard has acquired Schrödinger's quantum reality manipulation omnipresent powers after absorbing him during the Millennium incident. This grants him the ability to exist wherever, however, and whenever he wishes, all at the same time, although it took him 30 years to be able to use this apparent power due to the complex nature of it. Though, due to the events surrounding it, it may have simply taken that long for Alucard to be rid of the souls that restricted him from using this apparent power and his defeat during the Millennium incident. As stated by Alucard, he rid himself of all the souls within him save one "and now I am everywhere and nowhere." It is apparent that Alucard has this ability because he's able to appear within the Hellsing mansion as nothing but a shadow, not alarming Seras's familiar shadow Pip whom covers the entire mansion. Because of this, Alucard may have become completely immortal and omnipresent.

Alucard's/Dracula's powers under Hellsing's control

It is not known what Hellsing changed on Alucard's/Dracula's original powers. However, the ghoul army formed by the devoured souls in Alucard can be one of these. Dracula didn't use this ability against Prof. Van Helsing and his crew according to the flashbacks in the manga (and of course according to Bram Stoker's novel, which is a base of Hellsing). In addition, Van Helsing admitted that they had destroyed all of the vampire's servants (which means these servants can't re-appear in 1999). Maybe by some process the Hellsing Organization made advantage of the terrifying amount of the souls restored in Alucard, and made it possible to release them on the battlefield in Control Art Restriction System Level Zero. (In the ending of Hellsing OVA II, which is a trailer of The Dawn, it can be seen that some of the WW-2 german soldiers are impaled much like the Millenium and Crusader infantry in the battle of London. Also, the Major seem to know much about Alucard's release states. However, it is yet to be revealed in the ongoing Dawn-series whether this assumption is true or not.)

In connection with this, it seems like that Alucard can't (or maybe just doesn't want to) turn his same-sex maled victims to "walking" ghouls like other vampires. All the same-sex maled victims are restored as devoured souls, but they can be summoned on the battlefield. The other possibility is that the ghoul-making ability of the Millenium's vampires is a weakened form of this restoration; they can't storage the souls like their exemplar, Alucard, but they can use the zombified victims in combat. (This theory can be true for other vampires as well, if Alucard was the first vampire walking on the Earth.)

Weapons

Alucard is an exceedingly lethal combatant even when unarmed, due to his extensive supernatural abilities and strength, but he also uses various weapons in battle. These have included swords, machine guns, and traditional vampire-slaying tools such as stakes and crosses. Additionally, Alucard has two signature weapons, a pair of oversized and overpowered handguns named the .454 Casull and the Jackal. In Hellsing: The Dawn, he wielded a Thompson Sub-Machine Gun.

Release States

There are shown to be six levels of restriction and six corresponding states, with lower numbers meaning 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. In the Gonzo anime's final episode, Integra is shown giving him permission to release to level one, the state where he is in a red version of the black straitjacket like garb he is shown in when Integra finds him in her youth.

In the manga Alucard is shown to be wearing a black leather jumper when he is at the Level One release state. Alucard can often be heard stating what level he is releasing immediately prior to combat ("Releasing control art restriction to level two"). This is, perhaps, a requirement of the release mechanism, but this has never been confirmed, and is likely a literary device. Another possible reason is that it is to unnerve his opponents as he goes into battle. Given what has been seen of his personality, this is quite likely. In the manga, Integra requests that Alucard's restriction system be released to Level Zero, the lowest level, allowing him full access to his most devastating powers. It is clear in the Gonzo series that Integra herself is in control of Alucard's release states, but in the manga she appears to have no physical control over his powers. Instead, a given release state appears to simply be an order like any other she might give:

"Releasing Control Art Restriction Systems three...two...one, approval of Situation A recognized. Commencing the Cromwell invocation. Ability restrictions lifted for limited use until the enemy has been rendered silent."

It is noticeable that Alucard's attire sometimes changes according to how much power he is using: as he charges up to engage in battle, first his sunglasses, then his fedora will disappear; in the manga he also removes his arms from the sleeves of his coat letting it simply just hang on his shoulders like a cloak whilst he fires from underneath it. It has been posited that these articles of clothing are direct physical manifestations of whatever system Hellsing uses to control Alucard, with his leather straight jacket 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 (Alucard's distinctive gloves are visible in the vast majority of his transformations, even when Alucard himself is not in a humanoid form).

However, in Hellsing OVA II, in the flashback scene where Alucard recalls being beaten by Abraham Van Hellsing, Alucard is still seen wearing these gloves, despite the fact that he was not yet under their control. This is a continuity error, because when compared to the panel from the manga, it shows normal white gloves. In his final release state, Alucard reverted to his original form back when he was still Vlad III Dracula. In this form he appeared as his former, 40-year-old self (as opposed to looking his early 20s) with a thick beard and mustache. He also wore heavy medieval armor with a huge tattered cloak and carried a long sword. However, he quickly returned to his normal form when confronted by Anderson. The gigantic amount of armies that accompanied him in this state, along with the souls of every single person he has ever drank the blood of, accompanies this form as well.

It is debated whether his younger form shown in The Dawn 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 making him into the vampire that he is in the manga. 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 Volume 4 of the Hellsing manga, we can see the young Walter 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". This could indicate that Alucard's appearance is controlled primarily by himself. Also, in Hellsing: The Dawn, chapter 5, Alucard states, "You must find it entertaining, I can change my shape into anything. The particular form I take...it means nothing to me."

Identity

Alucard's true identity - that of both the historical Vlad Ţepeş and the fictional Count Dracula - is only hinted at in the earlier volumes. Such early hints include his anagrammatic name (Alucard is Dracula, reversed), the title of the series and the name of Integra's family, and the impalement of the GATE officers in volume 3. From there, 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 Hellsing, which marked the beginning of his servitude to the Hellsing family. In volume 7, the narration alludes to the Count's arrival in London aboard the Demeter, from Bram Stoker's novel Dracula.

In volume 8, his full identity is made plain when Integra places his control level at zero and greets him with, "Welcome back, Count." Reverting to the body he had at the time of his "death" at age 45, he summons massive hordes of souls he had devoured during the centuries. These include his own Wallachian army, peasantry, Turkish Janissaries, war horses, and others. Throughout his battle with Anderson, Alucard frequently compares his rival to the man who defeated him a hundred years ago - Abraham van Hellsing.

Additionally, in Hundred Swords (3), the other protagonists are spoken of by Alucard - Abraham van Hellsing, Jack Seward, Quincey Morris, and Arthur Holmwood (Jonathan Harker is strangely omitted). The final chapter of volume 8 - Castlevania (1) - consists of a flashback of Alucard's life and "death" as the Voivode of Wallachia, Vlad III Dracula. Another indication that Alucard is Vlad is the fact that he frequently impales his victims; the priest and Leif with his bare hands in volume 1, the GATE officers in Brazil on flagpoles in volume 3, Rip Van Winkle with her own musket in volume 5 and hundreds of victims in London during the Millennium/Vatican siege.

Most of these revelations are not present in Gonzo's TV series. However, the final episode does feature a visual reference to Vlad Ţepeş, and Alucard refers to his name as being "a bit of an enigma" when speaking to Incognito before they fight. There are few obvious references to the character of Count Dracula. Also in the last few minutes of the anime's last episode Incognito is impaled. Impaling his enemies was common practice for Vlad III The Impaler (Vlad Ţepeş, also known as Dracula). Additionally, upon Incognito's defeat, a close-up is seen of Alucard with half his face shrouded in shadow. When lightning flashes, the other half of his face is revealed to be that of the Impaler.

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