Chris Claremont Returns to the X-Men with "Nightcrawler" Ongoing Series

Chris Claremont will once again be telling the adventures of Marvel's X-Men, this time in an ongoing "Nightcrawler" solo series.

Announced Wednesday on Marvel.com, "Nightcrawler" will be illustrated by Todd Nauck, and is scheduled to debut in April. The series follows fan-favorite Kurt Wagner's resurrection in the current arc of "Amazing X-Men", and will also heavily feature Wolverine.

"If we presume that the Kurt who returns to the land of the living is fundamentally the same man who departed years ago, why would the experience affect his friendship with Logan at all?" Claremont, who has written Nightcrawler extensively in "Uncanny X-Men" and "Excalibur," is quoted in the article. "If anything, given how the two of them relate, it might cherish their time together as friends and teammates all the more."

Claremont is distinguished for his long and influential stints writing "Uncanny X-Men" and several of its spinoffs, most notably his 16-year-run on the flagship title from 1975 to 1991. Aside from last fall's "X-Men: Gold" one-shot, the most recent X-Men material written by Claremont was "Chaos War: X-Men" #2, released in early 2011.

Of late, Nauck has been busy illustrating "Invincible Universe" for Image Comics, but has drawn many Marvel stories over the years, including 2009's highly publicized Spidey/Barack Obama team-up in "Amazing Spider-Man" #583. The artist said in Marvel's article that the book will be a "fun action/adventure comic."

"Chris Claremont was the first writer I read on a regular basis," Nauck said in the interview. "It's a thrill and an honor to be working with who I feel is the godfather of X-Men comics. It was his stories that made me care about these characters and made me a lifelong fan of the X-Men."

Originally, "Nightcrawler" was slated to be the next version of the often-changing "X-Men Legacy," Marvel editor Daniel Ketchum disclosed in the piece -- writer Simon Spurrier has confirmed his individual run on that series ends with February's #24; March sees the release of a special "X-Men Legacy" #300 from Spurrier and multiple creators from the book's past.

"With all the excitement surrounding Kurt's return, the enthusiasm from both fans and creators alike, we ultimately decided that this book couldn't be called anything other than 'Nightcrawler,'" Ketchum said.

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