Tag Archives: nightcrawler


30 Aug

(I’ve been using the term panorama for this piece, but I have a nagging feeling that’s the wrong term… collage maybe?)

Here in its entirety, courtesy of Demon Geek, is the whole Danger Room Test Seqeuence composition that had been comprised of cards 91-99:

To read the capsule reviews of these cards, check out the previous 3 entries:

Looking at all 9 cards together actually looks much better, now that you can see how the various details spill over into each card, making them feel less like individual half-assed cards. For example I never noticed how Wolverine, Cyclops, and Gambit were all attacking the same robot (which Colossus may have thrown at them from the bottom right).

The top three cards are a little more disparate, with Nightcrawler and Archangel not doing much of anything at all. It would’ve been great if Nightcrawler had teleported into his current spot from a previous spot (between Wolverine and Cable, for example), and we saw the bamf explosion from where he disappeared; Meanwhile, Archangel could’ve been unleashing his feather blades, which would’ve nicely crossed over into several cards.

And finally, it’s hard to not notice Storm being the only woman of the nine characters, since Lee seemed to relish drawing women. I wouldn’t even necessarily count Storm as being the most popular female character at the time (Rogue, Jean Grey, and Psylocke could all be in the running), though she can definitely hold her own.

Trivia 1: there are 26 individual female character cards (counting Jean and Dark Phoenix as separate cards), compared to 50 male cards (counting the robots as anthropomorphically male, including Widget, but not counting the Brood), which means proportionally three of these nine cards should’ve been occupied by women.

Trivia 2: If someone were to ask you how many characters are in this composition, the correct answer is ten: Professor X can be seen in the window behind Gambit.


91,92,93 – DANGER ROOM: Nightcrawler, Archangel, Storm

24 Aug

Note: I had debated whether or not to do full entries for each of these cards, or whether I should just do the following nine cards as one post, since they’re all repeats of previous characters, and the nine cards come together to form one big image of various characters in the Danger Room. I decided to split the difference and do three cards at a time.

Subject: Nightcrawler

Immediately with this image you can see that the entire 9-part drawing won’t be a masterful effort; When I met Lee at a signing early this year, before the blog premiered, he had said he’d drawn the cards on 6×8-ish postcards; with this 9-parter, I’d almost accuse him of also just drawing the one image on a 6×8 card… it looks action packed and not cramped, but I’m seeing little detail so far.

The side-B text alternates between talking about the character’s skills as well as the purpose and aspects of the Danger Room; funny cause at this point in time Nightcrawler’s across the ocean from the X-Mansion, so he can’t really do too much Danger Room practice, no?

Subject: Archangel

Archangel fares a little worse than Nightcrawler in the drawing detail portion here; given the perspective of the overall shot you just can’t let Archangel really spread out, so instead he looks like he’s cramped up (I mean, he IS in an enclosed room, I guess that’s normal to feel when you just wanna fly). His side-b portrait fares much better, finally giving us that stoic and brooding Archangel look that typified his tormented state at the time.

The X-Tra Fact talks about Shi’ar technology augmenting the original Danger Room capabilities, presumably its holodeck-abilities of projecting any environment or situation. Before that it just manifested obstacle courses and robots. Its actual capabilities and operations continue to baffle me (if the holograms are tangible, why do they fight robots at all? Seems like Wolverine would shred through a baker’s dozen of expensive robots every session).

Subject: Storm

Storm fares the best of the first three cards as far as art goes, with posing that’s both dynamic and regal. Even her side-B portrait is alluring. Her side-B bio however takes up a mere two sentences, just reiterating what her powers are, which everyone must know by now.

The X-Tra Fact refers to the Danger Room’s aforementioned holodeck abilities.


18 Jul

Subject: Excalibur
Roster: Captain Britain [Team Leader], Meggan, Nightcrawler, Phoenix, Shadowcat, Widget, Lockheed
First Appearance: Excalibur Special Edition #1, 1988

I’ve said plenty over the course of this blog about Excalibur, mainly that I haven’t much to say about them at all. So let’s not rehash that, and this time, let’s just focus on the art of the card.

First of all, it’s the best team card we’ve seen since the first team card, X-Men: Gold Strike Force. This Excalibur card doesn’t reach the same compositional strengths of the Gold team card, but it benefits from not being too overcrowded, and thus helping to give the members some stronger silhouettes. That is, except for Phoenix (Rachel Summers), who gets delegated to peeking over the shoulders of Kitty and Captain Britain, when there could’ve clearly been room between Kitty and Nightcrawler had Meggan moved over a little.

Oh, and the tippy top of Lockheed is on the bottom left, obscured behind the Excalibur title. Oopsies!

Speaking of which, the team roster refers to two other members missing from this card (I guess that’s how they kept the card from being overstuffed): Widget, and Kylun, whose individual card lists him as an Excalibur member but is not included in this roster. Not surprising.

Captain Britain’s portrait in the Team Leader profile makes him look far too brooding, and he’s got Magneto’s squint and cheekbones, aka it’s Jim Lee’s stock brooding face.

Excalibur is also the first team card to get a Headquarters picture, of their mushroom-shaped lighthouse. The card refers to it as haunted, but makes no mention of it being a dimensional nexus for the Captain Britain Corps.