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Bloodrayne is a female dhampir (a child who has one vampire and one human parent, and who has special powers allowing her to become an effective vampire hunter), who initially appeared in a 2002 video game. In the game, she is introduced as an independent, but effective, vampire slayer, which brings her to the attention of the Brimstone Society, an organization dedicated to ridding the world of vampires. They overcome their reluctance to hire anyone with any vampire blood in them, and eventually Bloodrayne, or Rayne as she is informally called, becomes their agent. In her initial gaming adventure, she goes against the Gegengheist Gruppe (or Counter-Ghost Group), an organization attempting to bring Hitler into Germany’s leadership through the use of occult artifacts, including an item that belonged to the Devil.
The initial game was popular enough to lead to a sequel, a ongoing set of comic books, and two movies. The comic books were produced by Digital Webbing. The first of the series appeared in 2004, picking up the story line from the comics and placing Bloodrayne in the 1930s fighting both vampires and Nazis. The initial story has her thwarting a plot to smuggle a Vampire King on board the Hindenberg airship as it is ready to leave for the United States. Bloodrayne quickly found a comic reading audience and several miniseries and oneshots followed annually. They became known for the excellent artwork, the print quality, and the many variant covers of each issue, a practice previously found in the Vampirella comics from Harris Publications and the many titles from Chaos! Comics.
The first Bloodrayne movie (2005) takes the slayer to eighteenth-century Romania where we learn that her career is launched when her vampire father Kagan kills Rayne’s mother. Rayne (played by Laura Bailey) has grown up, however, and is now hunting her father. A fortune teller informs her of a talisman called simply “the eye,” which Kagan is also seeking. Meanwhile, both Kagan and members of the Brimstone headquartered in a Romanian castle are searching for her, though for very opposite reasons. Rayne heads for the monastery where “the eye” is hidden and the convergence of her seekers at that place sets the stage for a final confrontation.
The relatively low-budget first movie found its way into the circle of top-grossing vampire movies, allowing Rayne to make a second appearance in BloodRayne 2: Deliverance (2007). Rayne (now portrayed by Natassia Malthe) finds herself in the nineteenth-century American West where she encounters the infamous outlaw gunslinger-turned-vampire, Billy the Kid, who has established his home in the town of Deliverance during the 1880s. Billy has taken the townspeople’s children hostage as his means of control and Bloodrayne must ally herself with sheriff-turned-vampire-hunter Pat Garrett to defeat vampire Billy and save the youngsters.