Rick Deckard is the 'protagonist' in Ridley Scott's 1982 science-fiction film, Blade Runner. The character originally appeared in Philip K Dick's novel, "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" on which the movie is based. Rick Deckard was played by Harrison Ford.
Rick Deckard is a Blade Runner, a special member of the L.A. Police Department who is employed to hunt down and "retire" Replicants (genetically manufactured humanoids). Since they were declared illegal on Earth, it is up to the Blade Runners to "retire" any that find their way to Earth. At the beginning of the film, Deckard is called out of retirement after a group of six clever and brutal replicants hijack a shuttle to Earth, intending to pass themselves off as normal humans.
Deckard is reluctant to resume work, but is told he has no choice and must use some of "the old blade runner magic" to succeed.
There are lengthy debates among the movie's fandom on whether Deckard is a replicant himself. The Director's Cut DVD of the movie seems to lean towards the fact that Deckard is a replicant, as new footage was added that supports that side of the argument.
Deckard as ReplicantEdit
Is Deckard a Replicant? The question has been asked since Blade Runner was first released in 1982. Many people, including the director Ridley Scott and writer Paul M. Sammon, regard Dekard is a replicant.
- With the 2007 release of the Final Cut, some say the argument can be finally put to rest. Ridley Scott, with full control of the media, has put/left in the unicorn dream sequence as Deckard is sitting at the piano daydreaming. Thus, at the end of the movie, Deckard's knowing nod when he picks up Gaff's origami unicorn and recollection of Gaff's last comment concerning Rachael signifies Deckard's own realization of the facts.
- One interesting point that comes up is what Bryant really knows. Does Gaff know that Deckard is a replicant while Bryant does not? Or is it okay with Bryant that a replicant retirer is a replicant himself?
Ridley Scott has mentioned this matter in several interviews. BBC News ran a story about this in 2000, where he concludes that Deckard is a replicant. 
Also in a interview Ridley Scott did in Wired magazine in 2007, he explained this matter:
Wired: It was never on paper that Deckard is a replicant.
Scott: It was, actually. That's the whole point of Gaff, the guy who makes origami and leaves little matchstick figures around. He doesn't like Deckard, and we don't really know why. If you take for granted for a moment that, let's say, Deckard is a Nexus 7, he probably has an unknown life span and therefore is starting to get awfully human. Gaff, at the very end, leaves an origami, which is a piece of silver paper you might find in a cigarette packet, and it's a unicorn. Now, the unicorn in Deckard's daydream tells me that Deckard wouldn't normally talk about such a thing to anyone. If Gaff knew about that, it's Gaff's message to say, "I've read your file, mate." That relates to Deckard's first speech to Rachael when he says, "That's not your imagination, that's Tyrell's niece's daydream." And he describes a little spider on a bush outside the window. The spider is an implanted piece of imagination. And therefore Deckard, too, has imagination and even history implanted in his head.
Deckard as a HumanEdit
Many people involved in the original movie maintain that Deckard is human including Harrison Ford and the screenwriter Hampton Fancher. In the original Philip K. Dick novel, Deckard seems to be human and passes the Voight-Kampff test. Ford and Scott continue to argue about the issue to this day.
The original theatrical release did not include the unicorn daydream, so the evidence for Deckard as a replicant is weakest in this version.
- ↑ BBC News: Blade Runner riddle solved
- ↑ "Q&A: Ridley Scott Has Finally Created the Blade Runner He Always Imagined" Wired Magazine, Sept. 2007