John Slade (Also known as The Dark) is a fictional character in The Dead of the West as the Grim Reaper also known as Death.
John Slade is described as a pale, slender, averagely built figure that haunts his enemies to instill fear and intimidation and uneasy tense that would drive them into a trauma without any sanity and would leave victims stone cold with fear and darkness. He has very pale facial with short lengthy black hair. He dons a pair of Aviator styled sunglasses (but rarely wears them) and his eyes are never seen, but will occasionally glow ether dimly lighten or brightly to instill intimidation into victims, when in a vengeful or in a state of anger they turn bright red. His clothing apparel describes him to be ether like an outlaw or a marshal from the Old West.
Original version (space)
Slade was once a former captain that served alongside his soldiers of the Galactic Treaty of Union, the battle was fought on a planet that was set to be destroyed by hostile forces. His forces fought back but to no avail and he was the only sole fighter to take down no more then the rest of the remaining enemy forces that heavily outnumbered him, how he fought them is unknowingly mysterious. He later seeks revenge on his superiors as he had found out that they had intended to leave him there stranded to fight an endless onslaught. He was also a big game hunter that gave him the title "The Hunter From The Darkest Void".
The Dead of the West
John was a United States Sergent during the American Civil War and served during a battle which had cost him his life. John was ripped to shreds by gunfire and was presumed dead at the scene. John woke up finding out that he had been resurrected by a mysterious figure and gave him a scroll with a broad list of those who commit serious evil. John then took the role as the new Grim Reaper and has extraordinary abilities with his new role. John would travel to various locations throughout the globe and meet popular figures of modern times.
His clothing consists of a black trench coat or dusters and wears a wide dark brimmed hat with a brown band around it, others include steel tipped boots with straps around the ankles and black leggings, he wears a white shirt with a copper silk vest and a black tie. At times he wears a black vest. He also dons a pair of sunglasses similar to Aviator design but occasionally wears them.
During his time as a Union soldier, he used a pair of Colt Walkers as his primary sidearms during the battle of Fort Buford until his death. Years after, during his role as the Grim Reaper he switched to a pair of Colt Peacemakers and in the 1890s acquired a Buntline Special from Wyatt Earp until he discontinued their use in 1911. In 1912 he then switched to a pair of M1911 pistols given by John Moses Browning himself as gifts until he disliked their stopping power and sought to create a better one. He then later built custom versions chambered in a modified rimless .45 Colt cartridge and elongated the slide and frame of the original design possibly as tribute to the Buntline Special Peacemaker revolvers and has since used them against supernatural beings. John also used a variety of shotguns and big game rifles during his trip to Africa hunting lions and other big game animals to which he started to favor to use of the Holland & Holland rifles which he used to fight off creatures of the undead.
Often times John uses his custom Winchester 1887 lever-action shotgun and a sawn-off shotgun as holdout firearms and has used many Winchester lever action repeaters until later in the 20th century.
John Slade is heavily inspired by characters portrayed by Lee Van Cleef and Clint Eastwood from Sergio Lenone's films For A Few Dollars More and The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly. John is also inspired by Batman in which the character uses fear and intimidation methods against criminals. He is also inspired by Allan Quartermain from H. Rider Haggard's novel King Solomon's Mines. Another inspiration is the titular character from Sergio's Corbucci's 1966 film Django and influenced by Image Comic comic book series Spawn and the Street & Smith/Condé NastComic book character The Shadow.
This character was originally was going to be used in an unwritten fan fiction of Outlaw Star. Meant to be Hilda's long lost half brother but the story was never written. He was to be a nearly identical twin of Hot Ice Hilda seeking revenge of her death. He was instead used as a trademark and set to be used in the science fiction The Dead of the West.
The Dead of the West
John is set to appear in T.C's horror/epic western The Dead of the West as an outlaw hunter who takes the role as the Grim Reaper (known as Contract Reapers).