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05-15-10, 1:58 PM
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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. he 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).
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.
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 a pathetic piece of shit, now you are nothing but dog shit."
Alucard expressed disappointment that Luke was not a worthy adversary. He seems to long to fight an equal opponent.
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:
"For what they all seem to seek is to wage war, and endless desperate, blood-stained, struggles. Things quite close to crying loudly. I don't think they desire those things at all. On the contrary: all of this is their way of shouting and begging for death."
In conjunction, Alucard holds a great affinity for humans who take pride in themselves, expressing his desire to be killed by a human/mortal 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 catalogue of how pathetic they are.
"You've gone and taken all those lives, and not even because you were thirsty. Is it fun? Is that what it takes for filth like you to get off?"
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).
Modified by Isaro-kun, 05-15-10, 2:12 PM