It’s easy to be in agreement with Samantha Clair of MovieWeb that it’s exciting to see Mahershala Ali be cast as Blade for the MCU’s Phase 5, but there is one thing I do hope, that others might hope, will happen before we see any footage. Ali kind of needs to bulk up a bit. There, I’ve said, it’s out, and anyone that’s offended about it can take to the keyboard and either agree or not. Truthfully, Ali is one of the best choices by far since Wesley Snipes is getting a bit too old and his star power has definitely waned, and Ali is able to play a sinister but effective character as he’s proven in the past. While he hasn’t really played a character that is seen to be quite as ruthless as Blade is, no matter what anyone says, he’s got the talent and the look that will no doubt serve him well as he takes on the role of the half-breed vampire hunter and starts mowing down bloodsuckers left and right.
It’s uncertain just how Blade is going to be introduced into the MCU, whether he’ll be brought into another movie for a cameo or if he’ll get his own standalone movie to start with. All that’s known at this point is that he’s coming, and it could possibly be after Phase 5 as Adam Chitwood of Collider has reported, though a lot of us hope that this isn’t so. Blade is after all one of the first successful Marvel heroes to hit the big screen, and whether people like it or not, he preceded Black Panther as the first black hero on the big screen for Marvel by quite a few years. Wesley Snipes built up a lot of expectation that was unfortunately not replicated in the second and third Blade movies, and the TV series that came along sometime after didn’t seem to last all that long since it was kind of there and gone. With Ali coming on as the famed vampire hunter though one has to think that Marvel is really putting a lot of faith in the franchise and might pair Blade up with a couple of other MCU heroes that could be a benefit to his continued popularity. When you think about it the fact of Blade and Morbius meeting up would be a great idea and is possibly something that could spark a lot of interest in a different aspect of the MCU. Let’s face it, Blade is a story that clings to the horror genre and as it’s been said, Doctor Strange 2 seems to be lauded as the first actual horror movie of the MCU, so it almost seems fitting that Blade would be coming in hot on the heels of such a movie.
Another big draw, aside from the vampire angle, is that Blade is a very physical character. He’s not the super-intelligent type but he’s definitely not stupid. He’s aggressive to such a degree and powerful enough that he could take on quite a few individuals in the MCU. In fact there’s even a Blade vs. Wolverine comic that sounds like one great matchup that would split fans right down the middle. In fact, given the idea that both Blade and the X-Men are coming to the MCU it could be a matchup that a lot of people might like to see, though of course eventually the result would be met with some resistance by those that think one way or the other. Even a draw between the two characters would be dissatisfying to be honest since a lot of people want to talk up their favorite heroes. But on the big screen, it could be a big deal. Think about how excited comics fans get when their favorites are allowed a crossover in the books, and then amplify that by ten to a hundred when it hits the big screen.
The inclusion of Blade into the MCU is just one small part of a bigger whole that will no doubt be revealed in the years to come, but all in all it’s still exciting since fans have seemed to want Blade to return for a while now. Wesley Snipes was actually excited to try and put his hat in the ring for this role, but while the first movie was something great, the last two were just horrid. You know a movie’s bad when Ryan Reynolds can’t even bring the mood up with a few well-placed quips. But now that the MCU has a firm hold of it and is ready to develop the movie into something great you can simply imagine that it’s going to be a feature that will be highly anticipated when the trailers start coming out. The only thing is, who in the world is he going to be fighting? We’ve seen Blade take on the blood god, the reavers, and even the original vampire himself, but considering all that, it’s a giant question as to who he’s going to be facing off against this time. But it’s going to be fun to theorize.