Drax! The Destroyer! Played by wrestling superstar Dave Bautista, this is one of two members of the Guardians of the Galaxy with a green complexion. To describe Drax as part of the team, think of him as the “Wolverine” of the group. Dark, brooding, and typically a loner by trade, Drax has one mission and one mission only: to destroy the Mad Titan, Thanos. Whether or not this will remain true in the Marvel film, aptly titled Guardians of the Galaxy, is yet to be seen. But rest assured, Drax’s hot temper and solitary personality most assuredly will. Of the Guardians, Drax probably has the most appearances in the Marvel universe under his belt, and this article will help to shed some light on the one man army. Hit the jump to read on.
Drax the Originator
Drax first appeared in an Iron Man comic in 1973, created by writer Mike Friedrich and artist Jim Starlin, as a man named Arthur Douglas. That’s right, Drax is as human as Peter Quill (Star-Lord), only with some minor adjustments here and there. Arthur Douglas was driving with his daughters as a spaceship manned by the villainous Thanos crashed into his path. The accident seemingly killed all three, until Arthur was brought back to life by higher powers realizing that Thanos was a threat that needed to be eradicated from the universe. Taking up the name Drax the Destroyer, Arthur used his newfound abilities to track the mad titan from planet to planet, doing everything in his power to put an end to his villainy. Later, one of Drax’s daughters would be found to have survived as well. Raised on a foreign planet, gaining powers of her own and eventually becoming the hero known as Moondragon, she would also go on to join the Avengers herself. Remember kids, 99% of people who die in comics make their way back to the land of living at some point or another.
While Drax’s first incarnation was sleek and intelligent, when The Destroyer was killed in a battle with Thanos, he was resurrected into a much more powerful body, albeit lacking the intelligence of his previous incarnation. That’s right, Drax had effectively become the “Space Hulk”, large, green, and unable to string sentences together, The Destroyer smashed his way across the galaxy and aided heroes wherever he could. He eventually found himself a part of the Infinity Gauntlet saga, where the crazed villain Thanos came into possession of the gauntlet, essentially making him God, fighting back both heroes and Gods and eventually being defeated. Alongside Gamora, the female assassin of the Guardians, he joined a band of space heroes called, “The Infinity Watch” and was given one of the Infinity Gems, which he swallowed in order to keep safe. Drax wasn’t exactly the brightest bulb in the drawer.
The Drax we know today appeared during the Annihilation saga, where the other Guardians had resurged as well, as his old body passed away in a firefight. No longer introducing himself in the third party, “I am Drax!”, the green war machine resumed his war against Thanos, even managed to kill him once and for all, until of course the villain was resurrected in a later storyline. Such is comic books after all. Drax sees the Guardians as more of a “you scratch my back, and I scratch yours” scenario, not really caring for the betterment of the galaxy, as long as he gets his crack at Thanos.
Drax the Powerhouse
What couldn’t this guy do? Originally, when Drax first hit the scene, he could do a LOT more than he can do now. Flight, super strength, energy blasts, healing factor, and super speed, Drax was the swiss army knife of super heroes. When he was resurrected the first time, he became even stronger, even going toe to toe with the Hulk from time to time. All his powers were escalated to outlandish levels, although again, he could hardly handle all of them with the intelligence of a third grader backing him up. This was especially true after he had swallowed the Infinity Gem which controlled “Power”. He could essentially be as powerful as he wanted, but again, thanks to his broken mind, was unable to do much with as part of the “Infinity Watch”.
Drax’s current form, while nowhere near as powerful as his past incarnations, allows him to harbor a strategic, sharp mind. There’s a frightening cunning behind Drax at any given time, and it sometimes makes his teammates uneasy, as they’re never quite sure if they can 100% trust him, as at the end of the day, the team is really just a means to an end for him. Brandishing to large knives, Drax will usually hurl himself into a battle, hacking and slashing his way out of it just as quickly. Don’t expect to see Drax flying or shooting energy blasts from his hands any time soon in the movies, or swallowing an infinity gem for that matter, but the bloodthirstiness and cunning will be there all the same I’d imagine.
Drax the Celebrity
Dave Bautista, who will be bringing Drax to life in the film, does not have the same amount of acting experience that the other actors in the film have. That said, before dipping his toes into Hollywood, Bautista wrestled alongside The Rock and Stonecold Steve Austin in the WWF and had made his start in the prior WCW. He started with roles in television series such as Smallville and Chuck and splashed onto the scene with The Scorpion King 3: Battle for Redemption and The Man with the Iron Fists. Batista has even continued wrestling, recently appearing in WWE’s Wrestlemania event.
As for Drax, we’ve yet to see exactly what his motivations for the film will be, but considering Thanos will be pulling the villains’ string from behind the scenes, I don’t expect we’ll be seeing them differ far from his comic book origins. We’ll see if Drax can destroy box office records this August.