Vampires usually fear pungent garlic, and the symbolism of crucifixes and holy water. Those neck obsessed, fanged fellows can handily dispatch most any mere mortal with a flick of a wrist or flap of a batty cape. However, when they face off opposite a karate fighter, Ninja, kung-fu warrior or any self respecting martial artist, things don’t always go so well for them. Even perky cheerleaders like Buffy, who are martial arts trained, can beat back the bloodthirsty beasts.
These are a few cool martial arts movies and TV shows – which also double as great vampire stories.
Legend Of The Seven Golden Vampires (The Seven Brothers Meet Dracula) 1974
Count Dracula vs Bruce Lee? Ann Rice’s Lestat vs Jackie Chan? This nifty little Hammer film poses the question – can some of China’s most ferocious and fabled martial artists kick the bloodthirsty butt of the Transylvania Lord of the Undead? Peter Cushing stars once again as vampire bane Van Helsing, but Christopher Lee doesn’t flesh out Dracula. John Forbes-Robertson does a serviceable job as the vampire king, but the real star is the stunning martial arts fights pitting the kung-fu experts against truly creepy vampire minions.
Buffy: The Vampire Slayer (1992)
She’s a cheerleader and a vampire killer – all in a day’s work for Miss Buffy Summers. The character first appeared in a 1992 movie – which basically flopped – starring Kristy Swanson and Luke Perry as her love interest. The movie was promptly resurrected as a TV series, and a modern vampire legend, and martial arts favorite was born. Buffy and her ‘Scooby gang’ would prowl the local graveyard, in search of freshly animated corpses. When encountered, Buffy would usually dispatch the dead dudes quickly, with potent combos of fisticuffs – including her trademark flurry of karate kicks and punches.
David Boreanaz is the title character of “Angel” – a vampire – who’s a pretty good guy. He actually is very protective of his own ‘Scooby gang’, as the TV show is a spin-off of “Buffy: The Vampire Slayer.” Angel and his companions were all either skilled in martial arts, or at least were pretty good at faking it. So when the vampires, or demons or unmentionables came calling, Angel and his crew came out on top.
Vampire Hunter D (1985)
Even animated vampire hunters use martial arts. Here, a mysterious stranger named D, complete with cool cape and hat, roams a gloomy countryside, searching for vampires to battle. He uses a wicked sword and his own ‘talking hand’ to complete his violent, but noble mission. A sequel Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust was released in 2000.