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This article is about Nightcrawler, the comic book superhero. For the animal nightcrawler, see Lumbricus terrestris.

Nightcrawler (Kurt Wagner) is a comic book superhero in the Marvel Comics universe, and a member of the X-Men. He first appeared in Giant-Size X-Men #1 (May 1975).


A native of Germany, Nightcrawler is a mutant, born with blue skin and fur covering his body, 2 fingers plus a thumb on each hand, and only two toes, as well as long canine teeth and yellow eyes. Abandoned as a child, he was taken in by the gypsy witch Margali Szardos and raised as one of them. As a teenager, his mutant nature also bestowed on him superhuman agility and reflexes, the ability to see in the dark and to become near-invisible in the dark, and the power to teleport short distances, leaving behind the smell of brimstone. This ability is known informally as bamfing. When he teleports in the comics, he leaves behind a cloud of smoke which is usually lettered with the sound effect *bamf*, the noise of air rushing in to fill the space he has just vacated.

Wagner spent some time in the Munich circus, but eventually his appearance left him persecuted and hunted. He was rescued from a mob by Professor Charles Xavier, who invited him to join his second team of X-Men. Wagner adopted the name Nightcrawler.

With the X-Men, Nightcrawler at last found a home and a family, and his humorous, swashbuckling Errol Flynn-like nature came to the fore. He also found a close friend in his fellow X-Man Wolverine.

After some years with the X-Men, Nightcrawler departed to join the group Excalibur, but he eventually returned to the X-Men.

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