The Incredible Nightcrawler
|Appeared in|| X2: X-Men United|
|Status|| Alive (Original Timeline)|
Alive (New Timeline)
|Actor|| Alan Cumming|
- "The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of the death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me."
- ―Kurt Wagner[src]
Kurt Wagner, aka The Incredible Nightcrawler, is a mutant who can teleport himself to wherever he wants as long as he knows where he is going.
A trapeze performance at the Szardos Traveling Circus in Canada goes horribly wrong when Amandas Sefton nearly plummets to her death, if not for a hasty rescue by the mutant teleportation ability of her foster brother Kurt Wagner, also known as the Nightcrawler. Nightcrawler receives a few broken ribs, and is chastised by his foster mother, Margali Szardos, for changing the cues in the middle of the performance before the net had been rolled out for the performers. Nightcrawler is not as concerned for his health so much as the heartache he feels over Amanda's relationship with the trapeze artist, Werner.
Nightcrawler visits a church, and Amanda Sefton follows him, without his knowledge. Amanda reveals that she cares for him more than a foster brother, and the two share a kiss. They make the decision to leave the circus, to find a new life together. Meanwhile, back at the circus, Margali interrupts Amanda and Werner making out in Margali's trailer. and Margali asks Amanda where her foster brother is. Amanda tells her mother she has no idea, and recommends she visit a local church.
In the nearby woods, Nightcrawler makes a dash for freedom with what he believes to be Amanda Sefton, unaware that his mind is under the control of one of William Stryker's telepathic prisoner, Mutant 12. Stryker's soldiers apprehend Nightcrawler, and transport him to the Weapon X facility in Alkali Lake. Mutant 12's power wears off, and Kurt finds himself in a cell with William Stryker, an inhibitor collar preventing him from teleporting to safety. Stryker interrogates Nightcrawler, but the mutant refuses to cooperate with him.
As Amanda and Margali worry about Kurt's whereabouts, Stryker's soldiers beat Nightcrawler to a bloody pulp for praying. Amanda and Margali are left no other choice but to leave with the circus, hoping he chose to go his own way, as opposed to the alternatives. Back at Alkali Lake, Nightcrawler attempts to comfort Lady Deathstrike in their cell. Kurt believes her dying following her Adamantium bonding process, and she unleashes her claws for the first time. Stryker's soldiers rush into the cell, and Kurt learns that that the Weapon X Project had her claws grafted with the indestructible metal, before they knocked him unconscious.
Amanda and Sefton argue over the choices that they've made being responsible for Kurt's sudden disappearance, Stryker gives Nightcrawler the opportunity to kill his abusive guards. Kurt declines such savagery, and reiterates that his love of God will see him through. Amanda and Margali come to terms that Nightcrawler may never return, and Kurt reassures a rapidly healing and unconscious Lady Deathstrike that they will escape from their cell. One of Stryker's guards reveals that Amanda's love for him was merely a telepathic illusion to fool the mutant, and that she could never love a freak like him. The information wounds him more than all of Stryker's physical torture.
Stryker then performs a medical procedure on Kurt to control his mind. He forces Nightcrawler to teleport to the location of the soldier responsible for the revelation about Amanda, where Kurt slashes his throat with a Bowie Knife. Nightcrawler returns to Alkali Lake, where Stryker proclaims it time for the mutant to visit the president. Later, Amanda visits a church in Calgary, and asks God to watch over Kurt, no matter where his travels may take him.
Nightcrawler is brainwashed with a fluid from William Stryker's mutant son, Jason, in order to attempt an assassination on the President of the United States. Nightcrawler engages the Secret Service, easily defeating them and nearly killing the President.
Later, Storm and Jean Grey are sent to find him and bring him back to the mansion, under Xavier's orders. They find Wagner at an abandoned church. After a brief struggle and examining his wounds, he agrees to return with them. After being contacted by Logan, they arrive at Bobby Drake's house and pick up the children, and he introduces himself. Later the X-Jet is attacked by military F-16s and a hole is made in the jet after a missile struck it and Rogue was sucked out. Nightcrawler then teleported outside and saved her. The jet was saved by Magneto and they settled in the woods for the night. Nightcrawler was the only one of the group who knew where Stryker was due to him previously being one of his experiments.
After arriving at Alkali Lake, Nightcrawler helps Storm save several children escape, however they, along with every mutant, are hit by pain when Professor X uses Cerebro to target all mutants and kill them, however this is only brief as Magneto quickly opened the doors to the room and ended their pain, only to redesign it to target humans and re-lock the doors. Nightcrawler and Storm teleport inside and stop Jason's illusions. When the dam begins to crumble, Nightcrawler teleports Storm and Charles out of the room and they escape to the X-Jet. The jet begins to malfunction and Jean Grey goes outside to save them, she prevents Wagner from teleporting out to get her and appears to have died in the water. Later, Nightcrawler and the X-Men inform the President of what could happen in the future between mutants and humans.
After the scuffle at Alkali Lake, Kurt takes up residence at Xavier's school and becomes the latest inductee to the X-Men team. Upon realizing Stryker stole crucial parts from Cerebro, The X-Men return to Alkali Lake to retrieve them. Given the fact the base had flooded, Kurt was selected as the best candidate to maneuver through the ruins, using his agility, acrobatics, and teleportation. Upon reaching Cerebro, Nightcrawler had to fight Sentinels. When Multiple Man attacked the Brooklyn Bridge, Storm and Nightcrawler come to stop him. Storm is left fighting the clones and Nightcraler finds the real one. He defeats him, sending him to a prison. During this time after Kurt is haunted by visions of Jason Stryker, having left him to die within Dark Cerebro. Originally rationalizing it as his guilt, he realizes it is truly Jason when Storm sees the apparition as well. After a while, Jason reaches out to him asking for help. Though he is indeed deceased, Kurt succeeds in helping Jason's spirit be freed. Later at the mansion, Nightcrawler tells Charles Xavier and Hank McCoy that he is a peaceful man and does not want to fight. He left to Germany to try and reconcile the violent lifestyle but was told that regardless of his choice whether or not to remain on the team, he was allowed to come back, and would always have a home at the school. Nightcrawler thanked the Professor before returning to his native land, taking his leave of absence.
Kurt was working in a Munich circus until he was captured and taken to a Mutant fight club. He tries to escape but the walls of the cage block his teleporting and he is forced to fight his opponent: Angel. Although initially he tries to dodge and avoid fighting, Angel tells him that if he doesn't fight they will both be shot, Kurt knocks Angel into the walls of the cage severely damaging his left wing. Mystique has found the fight club and shuts off the power to the fences allowing Angel and Nightcrawler to escape, Angel fights his way out but Kurt is taken by Mystique. Mystique takes him to Caliban in order to get a new identity to travel to safety. However, Mystique sees a news broadcast on Magneto and decides to go see Charles Xavier and she takes Kurt with him. At the school Kurt becomes friends with Jubilee who gives him a tour of the mansion, he also meets Scott Summers and Jean Grey. He tells Scott how he is unfamiliar what a mall is, so Scott decides the four teen mutants should skip school and go out and have fun.At the mall, Kurt gets to experience normal teen activities, he shops for records, sees "Return of the Jedi" and experiences "brain freeze" from a frozen drink at the food court. Scott then drives the four friends back to the mansion, only to find it has been attacked by Apocalypse and the Horsemen and Professor X has been taken. Willam Stryker also arrives and kidnaps Mystique, Quicksilver, Moira MacTaggert and Beast. Kurt hides in the rubble of X Mansion with Scott and Jean, who manages to use her telepathy to keep them cloaked from Strykers soldiers. The trio sneaks on the jet with the captured X-Men, to Alkali Lake Stryker's base for experimenting on mutants, to rescue their friends. At Alkali lake the trio is forced to hide from guards and encounter Wolverine locked in a cage, Jean sets him free and he goes on a killing rampage throughout the base.
While teleporting in various locations inside, Kurt eventually finds the captured heroes and Scott use his powers to blast open their cell. Kurt, Scott, Jean, Mystique, Quicksilver, Beast and Moira don armored suits and board a jet to fly to Cairo to save Professor X. The team is divided with Kurt tasked to retrieve Charles's body from Apocalypse before they transfer consciousness's, but he is attacked by Angel again. Nightcrawler defeats Angel again and retrieves Charles, the X-Men return to the jet and are preparing to escape but the Horsemen attack and Kurt is forced to teleport himself and seven others to safety, straining him and causing him to pass out. When he awakes, his fellow X-Men have defeated Apocalypse once and for all.
The mansion is rebuilt and Kurt stays on as a student permanently, also joining Mystique, Beast, Quicksilver, Cyclops, Jean and a reformed Storm as the new X-Men. Under the watch of Professor X. the team gathers in the Danger Room to train against an army of Sentinels.
Nightcrawler is a mutant from Germany, where he performed in the circus. He decorated his blue skin with "angelic symbols" which reflected his faith and devout practice of Catholicism. This form of artistic body modification was self-inflicted brands or scars; "One for every sin".
Powers and Abilities
- Teleportation: He can teleport anywhere. However, he only feels comfortable if he knows where he is going, otherwise he may end up in a wall.
- Prehensile Tail
- Superhuman Agility
- Storm - Friend and Teammate.
- Jean Grey - Friend and Teammate.
- Cyclops - Teammate.
- Wolverine - Teammate.
- Rogue - Teammate.
- Pyro - Former Teammate.
- Iceman - Teammate.
- Charles Xavier - Ally.
- Jason Stryker- Enemy.
- Charles Xavier - Teacher.
- Scott Summers - Teammate.
- Jean Grey - Teammate.
- Jubilation Lee - Teammate and friend.
- Raven Darkholme - Rescuer and teammate.
- Warren Worthington III - Enemy.
- Canon (2 films)
- Canon (1 comic)
- In X-Men: The Official Game which fills in the gap between X2: X-Men United and X-Men: The Last Stand, Nightcrawler tells Xavier he does not want to be an X-Man, for their lives are too violent and he is a peaceful man.
- It has not yet been stated who is Nightcrawler's father in the film series. Although he and Mystique had a brief conversation in X2, there was no reference to the fact that she is his mother like she is in the comics. However, the introduction of Azazel in X-Men: First Class, as well as the fact that both join Magneto's Brotherhood Of Mutants at the end of the film, means that a relationship between the two could be explored in a sequel.
- Another popular theory is that John Wraith, who appeared in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, is Nightcrawler's father due to his teleporting abilities. This was even confirmed in the movie's tie-in game but the game is non-canon.