In Mortal Kombat II, Hornbuckle is the name fans have given to the character opposite Blaze in the background of the Pit II stage. Upon closer inspection, it is clear that "Hornbuckle" is nothing more than a palette swap of the sprite used for Liu Kang in the main game, wearing pants with a green trim and a green headband rather than Liu Kang's normally red-colored outfit. The name Hornbuckle comes from the hints that Jade and Smoke, two secret characters in the game, would randomly give before matches.
One of Jade's hints was "Hornbuckle Who?". This was a reference to someone named Leanne Hornbuckle who appeared in the credits for Mortal Kombat II. However, fans interpreted this as the name of the character in the background. The character in the background of the Pit II stage was later added to Blaze's storyline, presumed to be one of the "holy men" who captured and forced him to guard Onaga's egg. Hornbuckle appears in Shaolin Monks during the fifth quest given by Smoke. The Pit II area shows Hornbuckle and Blaze sparring in the background.
- The man on fire fighting Hornbuckle in the background of Mortal Kombat II was then named "Torch" by fans. Later games revealed that the name of this character is "Blaze".
- Hornbuckle and Blaze never actually fight in Mortal Kombat II. Their animation simply consists of standing in a fighting stance.
- Blaze's Bio. Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance, Midway Games, 2002.