In the Ultimate Universe, Morbius has a very different origin from the conventional one, and actually acts like a vampire hunter, more or less in Blade’s way. But calm down, today we are going to talk about the history of this character.
It all starts when Spider-Man is patrolling New York at night when he sees a man running from someone who is firing shots at him. The Spider believes it is a crime, so he attacks the attacker without a second thought.
Despite the alleged assailant’s protests that he is committing an idiotic act, Spidey webs him and goes to the man he believed to be the victim, to see if he was all right. That’s when we realize – and Spidey too – that it was a vampire. The vampire then attacks Spidey with superhuman strength and tries to bite him, almost succeeding were it not for the other man to break free, killing him with a sword.
Furious, the man introduces himself as Blade and freaks out at Spider-Man, saying that the next time the arachnid touches him or even looks at him, his heart will be devoured. Blade then disappears, leaving Spidey completely at a loss for what just happened.
Vampires in New York
The next morning, at the Daily Bugle, Peter Parker witnesses a conversation between Ben Urich and J. Jonah Jameson, where Jameson says he will not publish a story by Urich about vampires in New York, as he thinks it is too fanciful. Peter, after his bizarre experience the night before, takes an interest in the subject and asks Urich to read up on the story.
The story was actually an interview with a 21-year-old girl named Jennifer Grunwald, who worked at the New York Public Library. She claimed that one day, while she was doing errands normally, a mysterious man approached her, and with just a few words he was able to hypnotize her. She was taken to an alley behind the library, and without having any control over her actions, she remembered only being bitten in the neck.
Jennifer woke up that same night in her own bed, confused and disoriented. That’s when her maid decided to call reporter Ben Urich, who found that she hadn’t been raped in any way, except for the two circular marks on her neck. Jennifer was too traumatized to go back to work and didn’t want to go to the police, but she believed that the man who attacked her was not just a fetish freak, but a real vampire.
Later, Urich decided to go back to Jennifer’s apartment to try to find out more information, but was surprised to see how completely different she looked, wearing sexy clothes and with a much bolder attitude. She hypnotized Ben Urich with just a look, and addressing someone in the dark, declared that she was hungry. The voice then replied, “Then feed,” and Jennifer immediately bit Urich’s neck.
Upon returning to the Daily Bugle, Peter Parker encountered police officers and learned of Urich’s disappearance. Having read the journalist’s story about Jennifer, Parker knew where she lived, so he decided to start his investigation there. But when approaching the building as Spider-Man, he came across a direwolf being thrown out of a window. And not only that: the wolf turned into dozens of bats in midair, which upon returning to the window, turned into a wolf again. Let’s face it, something to be investigated.
Spidey then entered the apartment, only to find Jennifer and the direwolf fighting over who would devour Urich. Of course, the arachnid hero got involved in the fight, but at that moment he had his attention caught by a vampire who was behind him, saying “Get out of here, boy. You cannot win this fight.” It was Morbius.
Of course, Spider-Man took little notice of the warning, and with his friend lying on the floor bleeding, he joined the fight with two vampires and a dire wolf, because, well, that’s what he does. However, in the midst of the fight, the wolf creature turned into bats and fled the scene, but not before declaring to Morbius, “I don’t care who your father is, I’ll still kill you with my bare hands.”
With Spider-Man down and with only Jennifer as an adversary, Morbius pulled out a wooden stake and killed her, apologizing for having no other way to free her from the curse. Meanwhile, Spider-Man took the opportunity to grab Ben Urich and flee the scene.
The Origin of Morbius Ultimate
Peter took Urich to the hospital, but at night, Morbius appeared at the journalist’s bed, saying that the pain would soon pass. However, when Morbius was apparently going to bite Urich, Spider-Man, who was on the lookout, appeared at the scene to prevent him.
However, Morbius explained that he was there to save Ben Urich’s life, and that although he was a vampire, he was one of the few who fought the curse. Morbius explains that if he bites Urich again, he has the power to stop the infection. That’s when we learn a little more about the character’s origin in the Ultimate Universe, which is quite different from the regular universe.
There, Morbius was a scientist who, when trying to cure a blood disease, ended up becoming a vampire-like creature. But here, he is a real vampire, the son of Dracula himself. He reveals to Spider-Man that he swore on his mother’s grave that his life’s purpose would be to prevent his father’s curse from taking more lives.
However, when Morbius goes to bite Urich again to save him, Spider-Man once again stops him, and is thrown out of the room. At that moment, three vampires appear behind Morbius, and end up biting Spider-Man. However, the vampire who bites him vomits, saying that her blood is “contaminated”. At that moment, Morbius himself appears and eliminates the three vampires, saving Spider-Man’s life.
Peter obviously goes into despair, saying that he was bitten and that the vampires destroyed his life and that he is now one of them. However, Morbius analyzes the wound and reassures the boy, saying that his blood is contaminated, which is why he does not allow the vampirism infection to take possession of his body. Obviously, this is due to the genetically modified spider that granted him powers.
Before leaving, Morbius shows Peter Parker that he managed to save Ben Urich’s life, as he said he would. The next day, Mary Jane realizes that Peter is traumatized by something, and he reveals to her the bite marks on his neck. It’s a very beautiful scene, by the way, where Peter reveals the burden of being Spider-Man and being constantly exposed to all kinds of weirdness and is comforted by Mary Jane as she cries.
Unfortunately, this plot of Morbius and the vampires, which seemed like it would be explored later, ended up being completely forgotten in Spider-Man’s stories. Morbius never appeared again and we had no further mention of Dracula. Blade, who only appeared at the beginning of this story and then had no participation, was extensively explored later in Mark Millar’s New Ultimates series when the vampires organized an attack on the Ultimates’ headquarters. But that’s another story.