Si Spurrier Does With Nightcrawler What Chris Claremont Wasn't Allowed
When Chris Claremont took over X-Men in the late seventies, it appeared that he had plans for Nightcrawler that never came to fruition.
- Chris Claremont's original plans for Nightcrawler's parentage were scrapped.
- Mystique and Destiny were intended to be Nightcrawler's parents according to Claremont.
- Various writers have taken different approaches to Nightcrawler's origin story.
- Si Spurrier's X-Men Origins: Blue may finally reveal Nightcrawler's true lineage.
Spoilers ahead! Nightcrawler was created by Dave Cockrum for Legion Of Super-Heroes at DC Comics but, when that didn't happen, he brought the character to Marvel for the Giant-Sized X-Men relaunch. When Chris Claremont took over writing X-Men in the late seventies, Chris Claremont intended that the Marvel demonic being Nightmare from Doctor Strange should be Nightcrawler's father, and that the sulfuric dimension that Kurt Wagner teleported would be that of Nightmare's realm. Doctor Strange writer Roger Stern forbade it. he told Back Issue magazine that "too many people in the Marvel Universe are secretly related to one another, and it's much more interesting when mutants have normal parents." Stern later became Claremont's editor on X-Men.
So Claremont came up with another plan, introducing shape-shifting mutant Mystique alongside Destiny for the Brotherhood Of Evil Mutants. She looked like Nightcrawler and dropped hints about Nightcrawler's parentage. A few years later, Claremont decided to return to that origin but told Comics Focus magazine, "we started to do his origin and the story died on us. We set up, we started it rolling, tried to hammer it into something of value, and it died… So, we rewrote the ending of the story and instead did one with Rachel Summers, Wolverine and the Hellfire Club, which led up to the Mutant Massacre, which turned out to be a much more powerful and effective storyline."
When Nightcrawler was part of the cast of Excalibur, Claremont promised Amazing Heroes magazine that he'd have another go. "One of the storylines we will seriously try to play with is Nightcrawler's origin. We would've done that in X-Men, but the story was such a dud, I decided not to do it. Hopefully now we'll try again and do it right. Everyone has been wondering why Nightcrawler and Mystique look alike." An Excalibur spinoff graphic novel was announced for 1990 by Claremont and Alan Davis, which promised "the biography of Kurt Wagner, Nightcrawler, from his birth to his rescue at the hands of Charles Xavier. We will finally learn more of the mysterious connection between Nightcrawler and Mystique." But it was never published. Something was going on.
Then Scott Lobdell wrote Nightcrawler's origin in the universally condemned X-Men Unlimited #4. He told Seriejournalen what had gone down. "It was always Chris' plan that Mystique and Irene Adler (Destiny) were lovers, and that Mystique at one point had transformed into a man and impregnated Destiny and she gave birth to Nightcrawler. So Mystique and Destiny were actually Nightcrawler's father and mother. The likelihood of either A, Mystique growing genitals with sperm that had a DNA-code, or B, Mystique being a guy who was perpetually in the body of a woman, I thought was pretty slim."
So Mystique was Nightcrawler's mother and his father was an unnamed German baron. Later Chuck Austen changed this with another much-mocked storyline, being the son of the demon Azazel.
But with Destiny resurrected for House Of X, alongside Mystique, defined as each others' spouses, the question about Nightcrawler's parentage arose again. With this week's X-Men Origins: Blue, part of the Fall Of X storyline, and spinning out of Uncanny Spider-Man which has seen Nightcrawler in a Spider-Man suit trying to handle his mother in New York, driven insane by losing her wife one more time (even though she is in the White Hot Room with most of the lost mutants) But promising the following;
X-MEN BLUE ORIGINS #1
(W) Si Spurrier (A) Wilton Santos, Marcus To (CA) Francis Manapul
THE DEFINITIVE NIGHTCRAWLER ORIGIN STORY! This is the one you can't miss, True Believer! You think you know how the beloved blue devil came into this troubled world? You think you know the tale of his mendacious mamma Mystique? You don't! Mother and son reunite in a mold-shattering tale that exposes secrets held for decades and redefines both characters forever. A collector's item in the making. Rated T+In Shops: Nov 29, 2023 SRP: $5.99
Will Si Spurrier be able to go where Chris Claremont was not? Well, from this image leaked online.. it appears yes. Yes, he has. Destiny and Mystique, however you wish to slice it, the biological parents of Nightcrawler.