About Nightcrawler (Mania.com)

By:Chad Derdowski
Date: -
Source: Marvel.com


A longtime member of the X-Men, Nightcrawler is known for his good nature, his Catholic faith and his teleportation ability as well as the blue fur that covers his body and his prehensile tail.


Nightcrawler was originally created by Dave Cockrum to be a member of a team set in the Legion of Superheroes' 30th century. After the character designs were rejected, Cockrum too his creations over to Marvel where Nightcrawler became a member of the all-new, all-different X-Men. Nightcrawler has been a member of the X-Men almost exclusively since then, not counting a stint in Excalibur. His first appearance was in Giant Size X-Men #1 (1975). He has since appeared in several incarnations of the X-Men cartoons as well as in the film "X2: X-Men United" where he was portrayed by Alan Cumming.


Born in Bavaria, Kurt Wagner is the son of Raven Darkholme, also known as the shapeshifting mutant, Mystique. Unlike most mutants, whose powers manifest at puberty, Kurt Wagner was born looking pretty much the way he does now: covered in blue fur, with pointy ears, fangs and a tail. When an angry mob threatened to kill Darkholme and her son, she tossed him over a waterfall and fled. Kurt was saved by his father, an ancient mutant known as Azazel, and delivered to Margali Szardos, a sorceress and gypsy queen. Margali worked as a fortune teller for a circus and that is where Kurt spent the formative years of his life. His natural agility led him to work as part of the trapeeze act. Circusgoers always assumed Kurt was wearing a costume but when he was discovered, he once again was hunted by an angry mob. Thankfully, Professor Charles Xavier intervened and invited Kurt to join the X-Men.


Kurt fought evil as an X-Man for many years at times even coming into conflict with the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, led by his (unbeknown to him) mother, Mystique. Over the years, Kurt grew more skilled in his teleportation abilities but during the event known as the Mutant Massacre, he was severely injured and from that point forward, using his powers caused him great strain. While he was recuperating, the rest of the X-Men were believed to have died. Kurt, along with fellow X-Men Shadowcat and Phoenix, relocated to England where they formed Excalibur with Captain Britain and his girlfriend Meggan. The team lasted for several years and still exists today with a different lineup. Eventually, the X-Men were revealed alive and Kurt rejoined them. His powers were eventually realigned when Dr. Doom used a malfunctioning electromagnetic scrambler in an attempt to disrupt Kurt's power. Not withstanding a short leave of absence when he became ordained as a Catholic priest, Kurt has remained with the X-Men ever since.


Nightcrawler possesses the ability to teleport by opening a portal to another dimension, traveling through it, and returning to his home dimension. This is done almost instantaneously via an unconscious direction-finding sense. When teleporting, Nightcrawler leaves behind a small portion of atmosphere from the other dimension which escapes with a muffled "bamf" noise and the smell of brimstone. Kurt is capable of transporting himself and several others with him approximately 2 to 3 miles, though too much mass and/or distance causes a greater strain on both himself and the passengers. In addition, he can cling to solid surfaces with his hands and feet and render himself nigh-invisible by blending in with surrounding shadows. Nightcrawler is an Olympic-level athelete with a spine so flexible, he can perform contortionist-like feats. He is a skilled hand-to-hand combatant and is trained in fencing, which he can even perform with his tail, which is strong enough to support his entire body.


Nightcrawler typically fights unarmed but has utilized a pair of swords in the past. He uses an image-inducer to disguise himself as a normal looking human when in public.