Gladiolus Thrip is the recurring antagonist in the short-lived ITV show, Demons. He is a villainous vampire that appears in both the first and last episodes of the shows' only series.
In the fictional universe in which Demons is set, Half-Lives thrive on the planet. Half-Lives is a term used to describe all sorts of supernatural creatures, it is said they outnumber humans 7 to 1. Thrip is a Half-Life, specifically a vampire. He is Type 12 Half-Life, one of the most dangerous in the underworld.
He is determined to kill Luke Rutherford, the last living heir of Abraham Van Helsing and so a serious threat to the half-lives. In his attack on Luke, Thrip squares with Rupert Galvin, a Half-Live hunter and his old enemy. Being a high-ranking half-life, he is served by lower supernatural creatures. His lieutenant is the hideous Redlip, a Type 5 half-life who is a deformed humanoid feasting on cockroaches. He also has a pack of Type 4 Noisy Boys, humanoid Hyenas reminiscent of a ASBO gang.
Thrip is shrouded in mystery an enigma with a natty dress sense and a greasy quiff. But his attire does not come close to being the oddest thing about him. For Thrip has no nose. Theories on how he lost it range from ugly battle stories to a mangy disease. One thing is for sure though - you can guarantee he stuck it somewhere it wasn't wanted. So now in its place is a beak-like piece of carved ivory, intricately worked in scrimshaw, whatever horrors lruk beneath. Being a vampire, he is capable of superhuman speed and strength.
If the bizarre beak wasn't enough, Thrip's nails are fashioned into large talons, with an unnaturally large, sinister, and manipulative point on his index finger. And inside his mouth lies possibly the most terrifying thing of all, two sharp canines. Thrip is a Vampire, the most dangerous and deadly of all of the Half-Lives.
With a cockney twang and a colorful vocabulary, Thrip is undoubtedly something more than most of his half-life cousins. He is a bounty hunter with his fangs set on Luke Rutherford. Possessed of a dark and twisted sense of humor, Thrip enjoys taunting and mocking his victims before killing them in the most extravagant and inventive way possible. Stronger than many of the weapons in Galvin's artillery, it takes a lot more than your average 'grade 'em and smite 'em attempt to vanquish this monster.
In the first episode, They Bite, he sends his servant Redlip to spy on Luke. Thrip makes more moves on him during the episode. Rupert Galvin, Luke's godfather, comes to Luke and reveals that he and Luke's dead father used to track down half-lives. Galvin and Luke fight Noisy Boys and Redlip's mutant monkey. Thrip sends Redlip to kidnap Luke's girlfriend Ruby, to lure Luke. Luke takes the bait and comes to Thrip's lair, who casually welcomes him. Galvin soon arrives to confront Thrip, Galvin is accompanied by Mina, a blind vampire and Galvin's friend. They meet outside, and Thrip has Redlip give Luke to Galvin unharmed. Redlip then leaps up to attack but is swiftly disposed of by Galvin's pulse gun, designed to kill all Half-Lives. Thrip merely congratulates Galvin and provokes him into shooting him. To Galvin's shock, the gun has no effect on Thrip. Thrip announces it's "My Turn" and attacks Galvin with a sonic scream, sending him smashing into a car.
Thrip then speeds off to his lair. Luke, Galvin and Mina follow him, Luke sets Ruby free but is attacked by Thrip, who takes Ruby and threatens to stab her in the neck with his abnomrally long fingernail. Mina then tells Luke to use the pulse gun to shoot Ruby, then shoot Thrip. Luke is confused, but Mina tells him to believe even when it seems impossible. Luke shoots Ruby, who falls down to the ground. Luke aims at Thrip, who tells him to go ahead, "If you think you've got the umph, that is." Luke shoots Thrip, but it seems to have no effect, Thrip says "Oh Dear, Smitters aren't what they were.". Suddenly, Thrip feels a strange sensation, he then screams out in pain before exploding into green energy, seemingly destroyed.
Nothing Like Nebraska
Thrip returns and forces a medium to do his bidding. Luke comes to the medium who appears to allow him to talk to his dead father, but this soon is revealled to be a ploy by Thrip. Thrip hopes that this will fool Luke into believing that Galvin murdered his father. Galvin confronts Thrip and shoots him, this of course has no effect. Thrip tells him, "Remember what happens next? It's my turn.". Luke arrives and aims his gun at Galvin, saying it's his turn. Thrip claps to Luke, he says he doesn't know whether to throw flowers or throw up, he tells Luke to finish him "for gawd's sake". Ruby tries to convince Luke he's being tricked by Thrip, but he doesn't believe it. Thrip claims to be a "humble messenger" and tells Luke to "cut the crap and get on with it". Mina decides to take action and despite Galvin's request, drinks a vial of blood. This awakens her vampire powers, she notes that she and Thrip are one. She lunges at him, violently attacking him. Thrip is powerless to stop her, she holds him up against a wall and bites him in the neck. He cries out in agony before dissolving into slime on the floor.