What If John Byrne Designed Nightcrawler's Mother By Accident?

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This is Margali, the original mother of Nightcrawler, and Jimaine, the sister of Nightcrawler, before it all got changed later on. As things are want to.

Nowadays, Nightcrawler's mother is Mystique, his father is Azazel and his siblings include Raze, Creed, Charles Xavier Jr and Rogue.

But the designs for Nightcrawler's family? A member of the John Byrne forum uncovered the following artwork.

Comic Link recently auctioned the original art from page 26 of Uncanny X-Men #113. Unfortunately, I was unable to win it, not only because of the beautiful art on the front of the page, but because there appeared to be two full body pencil sketches of who appear to be Margali and Jimaine Szardoz. I know this page was originally published 2 years prior to those characters' first appearance in Uncanny X-Men Annual #4. Can you and would you be willing to tell me more about these sketches? They appear to be your work, and they are painfully beautiful. Were they intended as character designs for those characters? Were they intended for another purpose?

tumblr_n6gye9thez1s2u4wdo1_1280But Byrne replied,

Those were doodles, not meant to be specific characters. Sorry!

But the similarity was rather stunning, certainly compared with their first appearance drawn by John Romita Jr later in the X-Men run. Byrne replied,

First time I've seen those characters. It's not inconceivable that Chris made a xerox copy of the back-of-page doodles and gave them to JRjr and Nowlan as reference. Heck, he may even have asked me if he could do that. SO long ago, who remembers?

xxxxx

 

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About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.
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