so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Feuerstein » Tue Apr 03, 2007 6:24 pm

In the Uncanny Xmen storyline "Days of Future Past" there is a gravestone in the future marked Rev. Wagner which was the first hint I ever saw of his religious tendencies (I'm fairly sure it was Rev. not Father).


What page is that on? I have that issue, but I only see "Kurt Wagner" on the gravestone. But I may be looking at the wrong page?
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Ult_Sm86 » Sat Dec 08, 2007 7:33 am

Originally posted by Saint Kurt
Originally posted by Angelique
I thought the whole idea of Kurt "studying" to be a priest needed to be better researched.


Actually, if you want to pick nits, his Catholicism needs to be better researched.

If one is to take the comics as totally true to life, then Nightcrawler is easily the most Protestant Catholic on the planet. Everytime he quotes from the bible it's from the King James Version, which for kind of complex liturgical/historical reasons isn't used by the Catholic Church. Whenever they show his bedroom he's always got a giant cross over his bed, but no corpus on it, what Catholic does this? Whenever they show him in a church, he just kind of wanders in and sits down instead of genuflecting... etc. etc. blah blah blah.

But I ignore all of this because on the whole, nothing is ever depicted in comics as it is in reality. I could write a short novel about comics as a visual shorthand and story telling medium or I could just say "read Scott McCloud's Understanding Comics" which is easier for everybody. The point is, Kurt's supposed to be a devout Christian which I definitely get from what I'm shown. I'm totally speculating here, but I think whoever added this aspect to his character chose Catholicism not because of some attachment to that particular faith but more because of the many recognizable symbols and gestures that could be exploited in the visual medium of comics.

Leaving the priesthood is also never as simple as "read the Breviary" or "you know the way out."


Oh Oh Oh! I know this one!

In a moment of randomness about 2 weeks ago I was asked a question by a random student playing a Catholic Trivial Pursuit type game while I walked through the lobby of the university's Newman Center. The question was "How does one leave the priesthood?"

I guessed correctly that while one can choose not to perform their duties - they cannot be "unordained". Once you're a priest you're one for life.

Except that Kurt wasn't really a priest, I think... Oh, I don't know...

I could, however, tolerate the CoH plot, because I knew there was nothing realy Catholic about them.


Same. Lots of people thought The DaVinci Code was real too.

-e


*phew* long quote.

well we all know who the most catholic character in all of marvel is next to Kurt, and who is probably the closest any of these FICTIONAL characters get to catholicism. Right?

It's :daredevil sillies. Poor Matt. Every grieved and burdened by...well everything.

Point is, I think (as a baptist who now calls himself a Buddhistian; meaning i follow buddhist values but abide by christian faith and "mythology" if you will) that regardless of Kurt's religion it was tainting the original character and what chuck austen did was, in my eyes, completely justified. Now how he did it is another thing. I think Azazel was overkill. His dad being the (without ever actually saying it) devil or demon close to Lucifer (or are he and Satan two different entities? I forget the details in Paradise Lost) point is, I thought that was stretching it a little much. Mutant or actual demon, which is he now? I mean you're to assume they were brought to "hell" but it also is just an underworld for off the radar crazed, fundamentalist-like, biblically insane mutants, but to assume they've been THAT OFF Xavier or Cerebro's radar for THAT LONG, so I sorta lean towards the biblical aspect. But all religious business aside, I wanted my swashbuckling elfy back and no more of this movie-esque dribble. Any character can be serious and goofy. Sometimes they have a serious personality but act out to change things up (daredevil, logan, not marvel but Superman) or sometimes they have a goofy personality and get serious when they need to (spiderman, kurt, angel, bobby).

Kurt had become progressively more and more serious to the point where he was acting a lot like Murdoch did post-Elektra and like Superman does everytime he loses another friend (no matter which multi-verse it is). Honestly, Austen I think loved Kurt, if not growing up then right when he started writing, and he saw the spiraling effect religion had on him as a character and he set out to change, and good on him. Who says someone has to be weighed down by their beliefs and though kurt may not have FELT that way in the story nor the authors at the time not wanting him to appear that way, it's very difficult (no offense i am dating a catholic) to write about a catholic who DOESN'T carry the weight of the world on their shoulders, especially (and more to the point) a priest. He did a very decent job researching the event so he could pull it off right and all the more power to him.

Where's Austen now anyways?

also i wrote this at two forty five and my grammar is TERRIBLE, please excuse.

[Edited on 8/12/07 by Ult_Sm86]
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Feuerstein » Sat Dec 08, 2007 7:42 am

Don't have time to read your whole post, but I will tomorrow, promise!

I just wanted to say I last heard that Austen is working on this manga-style comic that, judging by the cover, involved girls in bikinis and OC-style soap opera melodrama. Sounds right up his alley.
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby The Drastic Spastic » Mon May 19, 2008 9:08 am

Originally posted by Feuerstein
Don't have time to read your whole post, but I will tomorrow, promise!


So did you ever get around to reading that post?
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Angelique » Tue May 20, 2008 4:04 am

Originally posted by Ult_Sm86 Who says someone has to be weighed down by their beliefs and though kurt may not have FELT that way in the story nor the authors at the time not wanting him to appear that way, it's very difficult (no offense i am dating a catholic) to write about a catholic who DOESN'T carry the weight of the world on their shoulders, especially (and more to the point) a priest. He did a very decent job researching the event so he could pull it off right and all the more power to him.
[Edited on 8/12/07 by Ult_Sm86]


I, on the other hand, don't think it's difficult to write a Catholic character, even a priest, as a normal, balanced person. Or at least as normal and balanced as any other person could be. If Austen did thorough research, it looks to me like editorial ensured that the evidence didn't make it into the books. I don't think it was entirely Austen's fault. I mean, already, the Catholic Church was portrayed as a bunch of flat-earthers and pedophiles, but I also don't think he pulled it off right.

Still, his material was good grist for my personal fanfic mill, so I'm not complaining. :)
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Ult_Sm86 » Wed May 21, 2008 6:43 am

His research was bound to his profession sadly, and that research was well done. He went back and skimmed every damn page before he decided what to do and he was right. At no point had anyone actually confirmed Kurt as a priest, not outside of a church, and certainly not any team members.

I think (now that I've reread some of Austens work recently) My biggest problem with what he did with Kurt isn't the story. He's a *great* story teller. Austen's problem is he poops on characters. He changed Kurt but at the same time didn't leave us with a lot to go off of for a writer proceeding him so he got bumped to the back again. Plus what he did with Bobby, Northstar (didn't he have Logan kill JP?), Stacy X, etc....it's like he avoided core characters just to play around with others and have his shits and giggles with angel and husk or havoc and lorna...

:offtopic
that said, he did a good job getting kurt off the glorified church soapbox and onto sure ground again, one made of faith and not blind indifference. How he did it...was a little strange, but it was done all the same and some how marvel accepts that kurt realized he wasn't a priest.....but they're still digesting the whole "Azazel" storyline.
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so.... Was he a priest or wasn't he?

Postby Saint Kurt » Wed May 21, 2008 11:27 pm

I agree completely with your assessment of Austen Bamfman.

One of the cool things that Nightscrawlers has given me* was a conversation with Chuck Austen years ago about the Draco. An honest conversation where we all agreed that the story could have been awesome and for many many reasons, wasn't. I think if Austen had gotten a little more editorial freedom and the book had been its originally planned eight issues, it could have been a lot better. As it is, it was cut down to six issues, there were serious problems with the penciller and colorist not to mention they switched creative teams in the middle of the arc, and other story lines were forced in. I got the impression was that Austen wanted to create a story that was a revelation about Nightcrawler's character along the lines of the end of the Winding Way arc of Aquirre-Sacasa/Robertson's solo series and only ended up frustrated by the result: an arc that ended up seeming more like a character assassination of Nightcrawler with art that was a joke.

(*Nacht was there too. :) )

So it's too bad about all that really. Then again, by the time the Draco was published, Austen was getting death threats sent to his house over his portrayal of various XMen so I suspect maybe Marvel was being overly cautious?

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