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Comic Vine Battle of the Week Results: Gambit vs. Nightcrawler

BAMF or KABOOM? The Comic Vine staff and community chime in on a battle between two agile X-Men! Plus, see if you can guess what next week's battle will be!

Kurt Wagner, the blue teleporter, takes on Remy LeBeau, the explosive X-Man. The Comic Vine community had all week to debate and vote on this match between two nimble heroes, and the result... well, it isn't pretty for one of them. Apparently, the community thinks Nightcrawler doesn't just win -- he downright dominates this fight. The fuzzy elf took a massive 65% of the votes. Gambit earned 29% and 6% thought this fight between heroes was simply too close to call.

"Too close to call" seems probable. A fair amount of arguments seemed to vastly underestimate Remy's abilities as a combatant or blatantly disregard Kurt being in charracter. With Gambit, we're talking about a guy who has shockingly impressive reflexes (the ability to block an entire clip fired by Forge and has even caught and thrown back an explosive round) and had no issue keeping pace with with Daredevil in a melee weapons battle across numerous rooftops. Additionally, GAMBIT & BISHOP: GENESIS revealed Remy has indeed studied his blue ally. When fighting a hallucination of Kurt, the Cajun ducked and was able to time his cards just right to create several small explosions right above him, hitting Nightcrawler right as he ported in. Now, this isn't saying Gambit automatically has the victory, but it is a potential outcome and there's no reason to believe he wouldn't attempt the tactic again. Additionally, he's a rather crafty and dirty fighter and this could certainly play to his advantage in a city setting. Even something like a trash bin could be transformed into a timed explosive.

Despite Gambit's reflexes, skill with a bo staff, and varied tactics with kinetic explosions, Wagner shouldn't be underestimated. The hero will absolutely not unleash a vicious blitz right away or tele-drop an ally under these circumstances, but he does indeed have what it takes to prove incredibly challenging thanks to his rapid teleportation abilities and own level of skill. Then there's his ability to port into the shadow covered alleyways (if needed, that is) and potentially use his prehensile tail in close range to quite literally trip Remy, throwing him off his game momentarily.

Nightcrawler has a fair amount of options at his disposal, but Gambit's consistently superb reflexes, agility, and numerous ways to utilize his power should absolutely not be overlooked, either. He's not going to simply stand there, spam explosives, and then be totally useless in close range. Both are quite agile and with Gambit's advantages (melee reflexes, knowing his opponents methods and cheap use of powers), this could prove to be a very interesting encounter. Both have the potential to turn the tide with one strong connect... it's just a matter of who lands the best hit first -- and that's most definitely up for debate. This is yet another case where a reasonable argument can indeed be made for either character.

Viner Argument of the Week for Nightcrawler is by Power NeXus

STRENGTH

As I've been saying, I believe Nightcrawler has a small edge in physical strength. When he was created, superhuman strength was intended to be one of his powers. Despite the fact that it has been forgotten about in all official handbooks, it still shows in some of his feats. Its unfair to assume that Nightcrawler still has superhuman strength, but his feats of strength and durability are a level above Olympic-level athletes. This is not a HUGE advantage for Nightcrawler, but being able to hit harder and take more hits than your opponent is always an edge.

REACTION TIME

Ok fine. Maybe Gambit has slightly better reaction time than Nightcrawler. Maybe he doesn't. Both of them have excellent feats (for Nightcrawler's, see the scans of him casually dodging bullets without teleporting, or teleporting away from a bullet before it leaves the barrel) and the point could be debated all day, but its honestly too close to matter. No matter which one of them is superior, they are not superior by enough of a margin that it would make any impact on the outcome of the fight.

PREDICTABILITY

I can't even recall any specific times during which both Gambit and Nightcrawler were X-Men at the same time. It probably has happened at some point (I'm not an encyclopedia of the X-Men's history), but it would have to have been a very brief period at best. And I have already presented two reasons why Nightcrawler would probably not be overly predictable in a fight such as this. 1) Nobody has commented on his predictability in a long time. He's grown up, gotten more skilled, and gotten more experience since the last time one of his teammates said that. Were he still so predictable, his fights against Sage and Death/Wolverine (for which I've already shown scans) and Rogue and Colossus (for which I can provide scans in a later post) would not have gone nearly as well for him. 2) As evidenced in his fight against Sage (for which I have already provided scans), Nightcrawler shows that he's intelligent enough to alter his combat tactics when fighting someone who knows him. Its stated pretty much verbatum in that fight that he chose not to teleport at all simply because he knew Sage would be expecting him to do so. This is why Gambit's feat against the Nightcrawler robot is not really valid. The robot was meant to be like Nightcrawler, but had no actual mind of its own. Thats why it was predictable. Nightcrawler, as shown, thinks creatively against opponents who know how he usually thinks. I don't think there's a single X-Man who knows Kurt better than Wolverine does, but Kurt has already proven he's now capable of disarming/hurting Death Wolverine in two panels.

AGILITY

Not much to debate here. I think we can all agree they are on roughly the same level.

SKILL

I'll admit that Gambit is superior in this area. However, I do not think he is superior by a large margin. While Nightcrawler's teleportation was severly weakened while he was with Excalibur, he was forced to spend an extensive time making up for his loss of power by amping up his skill. That's when he added rapiers to his standard arsenal and began more serious training in hand-to-hand combat. While Gambit certainly has more impressive feats/fights involving raw h2h combat, Nightcrawler has proven himself very competant in that area as well.

UNCOMMON TACTICS

Nightcrawler can drop an enemy from two miles up in the air. Nightcrawler can dismember enemies via teleportation. Nightcrawler can teleport solid objects directly into an opponents' body. Nightcrawler can grab enemies who aren't used to teleporting and take them on a multi-port ride that leaves them nearly unconcious.

But he almost never does.

Gambit can make living matter explode. Gambit can make objects he's not physically touching explode (There's one thing I can't help but point out though. In that scan where he supposedly charged the plate with his eyes... he was holding the plate. :/ ). Gambit can increase the effectiveness of his staff by charging it up.

But he almost never does.

When debating for or against a character, you can't just take the feats you like the best and say he's definitely going to do it again in this situation. There's a difference between what Nightcrawler COULD do to beat Gambit, and what he PROBABLY WOULD do to beat him. The same applies to Gambit.

Due to the number of times they've performed these feats on panel, its not a good argument to say that Gambit explodes Nightcrawler's body or Nightcrawler teleport's Gambit's hands off. When trying to determine the probable outcome of a fight, one should not look at the improbable feats.

SCENARIO AS I SEE IT

Since they start 20 feet apart, in a street, visible to each other, I think its highly probable that the fight is going to start with Gambit spamming a few cards at Nightcrawler right off the bat. Using his explosives in such a basic manner will get Gambit nowhere. You can talk about Gambit's accuracy all day, but I still see multiple scans where Nightcrawler casually dodges bullets from close range without even having to teleport. Avoiding projectiles is like half of all Nightcrawler ever does... like ever. He does it all the stinking time. I'm not saying Gambit isn't going to hurt Kurt, but I am saying he's not going to do it with just a regular card throw.

Since Gambit is never going to hit Kurt from long range, and Kurt can't do anything at all from long range, I don't think its going to take more than a few seconds until Kurt teleports in close and the fight goes mano e mano.

Now, as we all know, they both have their own advantages in h2h combat. Gambit has a weapon and superior fighting skill. Nightcrawler has teleportation and superior strength/durability. Now, I'm still of the opinion that this fight is very close, but Nightcrawler's feats just make me think his advantages are slightly better than Gambit's. He took on Sage in hand-to-hand without even teleporting. He put Death Wolverine on his knees in two panels, disarming him and breaking his armor before he could even react. He's durable enough to tank a backhand from Sebastian Shaw, and strong enough to make Captain Britain and Spider-Man say ouch. He can teleport in the space between a gun being fired and the bullet leaving the barrel (I know I keep coming back to that one, but that really is an exemplary example of his reaction time).

I'm not saying this is a landslide by any means. Gambit's superior skill and his bo staff make the melee aspect very close. He also has a chance of winning if he manages to do something really creative and tricky with his cards other than just throwing them like he usually does. They both have a good chance of winning. However, I think if these guys fought 100 times, Nightcrawler might win 55 or 60 of those fights. It's still a very close fight that could go either way, but I give Nightcrawler a small majority.

Corey Schroeder, Comic Vine writer

These two combatants are definitely light on their feet, but have pretty substantial glass jaws. They seem like the type to roll with the punches rather than take them head-on, so I think this would be over with one solid hit. But that hit won't exactly come easy as Remy starts off tossing his deck of 52 (pre-reboot!) cards at Kurt, but if there's one thing Mr. Wagner's good at, it's evasion. Unfortunately for him, he's also predictable and teleporting behind Gambit lands him on the business end of an adamantium staff hit. It's not a critical one, though, and Nightcrawler knows how to roll with it, teleporting while still having some momentum, appearing on Gambit's vulnerable side, slamming into the Ragin' Cajun. This isn't enough either, though, as it's a wild, unfocused hit, so while Gambit's recovering, Nightcrawler decides to get some distance, BAMFing his way across the battlefield. This plays right into Remy's hands as he sends out a swarm of cards, rocks and random debris to turn the battlefield into a blasted wasteland...which plays right into Kurt's hands as he's teleported behind him and gives him one good whack upside the head. Gambit goes down and Kurt just shakes his head with a sigh. "So angry. So chaotic."

Lastly, here's a tease for next week's battle. Could it be Galactus vs. Squirrel Girl? Or maybe it's Stilt-Man vs. Darkseid? Remember to check the homepage on Monday to see who they are!

Let the guessing games begin!

Previous 'Comic Vine Battle of the Week' results

Want to suggest a battle? Feel free to comment below or send it to Gregg via Twitter.

56 Comments
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Posted by Overlander

YES! Nightcrawler FTW!

Posted by Saren

Lastly, here's a tease for next week's battle. Could it be Galactus vs. Squirrel Girl? Or maybe it's Stilt-Man vs.Darkseid? Remember to check the homepage on Monday to see who they are!

Mystery solved. Silly k4tz! When will you learn internet?!?

Moderator
Posted by The_Titan_Lord

Nice. I voted for Kurt.

Posted by Jmenna07

Wonder Woman vs. someone else I can't make out haha.

Edited by TheIggies
Posted by Mr_Winchester
Posted by dondave

@citizenbane: He actually fooled you I believe the character on the left is New 52 Wonder Woman

Posted by k4tzm4n
Posted by Saren

@k4tzm4n:

@dondave: It's a very common pose. Search Storm's gallery and you might find it.

Moderator
Posted by Captain13

Lastly, here's a tease for next week's battle. Could it be Galactus vs. Squirrel Girl? Or maybe it's Stilt-Man vs.Darkseid? Remember to check the homepage on Monday to see who they are!

Mystery solved. Silly k4tz! When will you learn internet?!?

Looks like a fakeout. I think it's Wonder Woman from the cover of JL issue 3

Online
Posted by dondave

@citizenbane: I'm going to have to disagree with you, The silhouette has the same hair style as the Justice League cover and you can see her bracer protruding on her right arm in the silhouette as seen in the Justice League cover

Posted by Deadpool_9

Love these battles. I look forward to them each week! Thanks for doing them.

If it is Iron Man vs WW next week, WW dominates it (IMO).

@k4tzm4n: "(the ability to block an entire clip fired by Forge and has even caught and thrown back an explosive round)" Just an FYI... it's a magazine, not a clip :-)

Posted by DrunkVader

yeah nightcrawler does dominate easily in this fight

Posted by GodDamnIronMan

So Wonder woman vs Iron Man?!!

@k4tzm4n well, I assume you'll give them prep time?

Edited by Lvenger

Lastly, here's a tease for next week's battle. Could it be Galactus vs. Squirrel Girl? Or maybe it's Stilt-Man vs.Darkseid? Remember to check the homepage on Monday to see who they are!

Mystery solved. Silly k4tz! When will you learn internet?!?

Though I remember seeing a Storm image like that, one can't help but see the resemblance to New 52 Wonder Woman. If it is Storm though, then she's going to win by a large margin. The 'raindrops' as they call themselves will be out in force to make sure of that. Hopefully it won't be a popularity contest that decides who wins.

Edited by BritishMonkey

Storm vs Iron Man next? Ok. I think it might be close but I don't think Tony might have an rmour to go its fullest against the weather so Storm could well win this one.

Posted by k4tzm4n

So Wonder woman vs Iron Man?!!

@k4tzm4n well, I assume you'll give them prep time?

The scenario rules in this segment always stay the same. Sometimes starting distance gets a small modification, but that's it.

Posted by Dernman

It does seem like WW to me.

Posted by FlashDamn

@k4tzm4n: pls do a battle which has a transformer

ex:Grimlock,Optimus,Starscream,Soundwave,Shockwave,Megatron,Ratchet,Ironhide

any chance?

Posted by Xwraith

Way to go, Kurt!

Edited by XImpossibruX

Ok... results. 65% to 29% is not a close call..... and shouldn't even be acknowledged as one.

and Wonder Woman I fear has too little feats for the next battle.

Fighting Supergirl was the best thing she has ever done.

Edited by k4tzm4n

@ximpossibrux said:

Ok... results. 65% to 29% is not a close call..... and shouldn't even be acknowledged as one.

and Wonder Woman I fear has too little feats for the next battle.

Fighting Supergirl was the best thing she has ever done.

So, I'm not allowed to disagree with the poll? MADNESS.

Posted by k4tzm4n

@k4tzm4n: pls do a battle which has a transformer

ex:Grimlock,Optimus,Starscream,Soundwave,Shockwave,Megatron,Ratchet,Ironhide

any chance?

I can't promise anything, but I'll consider using a more popular character way down the road.

Posted by FlashDamn
Posted by Shallbecomeabattoo

OH!OH! If it is Wonder Woman against Iron Man, its a GREAT match up and I will participate again! After a few weeks finally two characters I know enough about to give a big post.

Oh and YEAY for Nightcrawler! As a German he is pretty dear to my heart, since he is the only mayor German superhero!

Posted by RedQueen

The image on the left is definitely Wonder Woman from JL #3: recognised it the moment I saw it. This was certainly a great fight.

Edited by EvilPenguin543

The silhoutte on the left is definitley Wonder Woman from Justice League #3, and I believe the one on the right is Iron Man, though I'm not sure what issue.

Posted by CRTrobinson

It is Juggernaut. Wonder Woman vs Juggernaut.

Edited by evilvegeta74

That could be Black Adam but I think that is Ironman vs WW!

Posted by QuantomMan

It's WonderWoman and Simon Baz I think

Posted by k4tzm4n

@k4tzm4n: thank you

For sure. Not going to lie, though, I'll need A LOT of time to research and make sure it's balanced.

Posted by Admiral_IronBeast
@k4tzm4n said:

@goddamnironman said:

So Wonder woman vs Iron Man?!!

@k4tzm4n well, I assume you'll give them prep time?

The scenario rules in this segment always stay the same. Sometimes starting distance gets a small modification, but that's it.

Then its not WW vs. Iron Man. without prep he'd get his butt kicked, and that's coming from an Iron Man diehard (hence the IronBeast=avengers team up...)

I also think Iron Man would have one heck of a hard time with storm without prep time &k4tzmn normally only does street level peeps...but we will see

Edited by Teerack

I don't know how Storm could do anything but get beat my Iron Man. His suits have been Insolated for decades so her lightning would probably just boost up his uni-beam. And her weather powers could be nulled out by controlling the local temperature, something T'Challa was able to do with a few thousand nano bots, so of course Tony could do it.

Edited by Meteorite

Squirrel Girl vs. Galactus would be a curbstomp. Galactus wouldn't last two seconds.

Posted by henrik

It's Storm vs Iron-man, 'cause that's the pictures name LOL

Posted by Miss_Garrick

Good for you Nightcrawler!

Edited by GraniteSoldier

I agree with @k4tzm4n so many of the arguments made in favor of Nightcrawler really ignored the whole "in character" rule. I saw many "teleports him a mile up", "teleports him under the ocean", "tele-dismemberment", and so on. All of which are incredibly out of character for normal Nightcrawler. Gambit is just a dirtier player, with arguable better skill and reflexes. Which is really what this battle would come down to I think: speed. Neither is known for taking a punch very well.

Good battle, though. Very interesting.

Edited by AllStarSuperman

WW vs Ironman or WW vs a green lantern (John Stewart or Simon Baz)

Edited by mewmdude77

It's Wonder Woman versus Juggernaut I bet. The head on the right is way too wide to be Iron Man.

Edited by ComicBookCoby

That would be a great matchup! Gambit's been my favorite comicbook character since I was a kid, so I'd definately have voted for him to win! Then again, all Nightcrawler would have to do is teleport behind the Ragin' Cajun', grab him, then teleport up 50 feet in the air and drop him (a la Kurt's dad, Azazel, in X-Men: First Class).

Posted by Lvenger

It's Wonder Woman versus Juggernaut I bet. The head on the right is way too wide to be Iron Man.

New 52 Wonder Woman vs Juggernaut would be an extremely unfair match up. I can't see Gregg putting these two together despite his unfamiliarity with powerhouses over street levellers. Now New 52 Wonder Woman vs Iron Man is a much stronger possibility and closer match up IMO.

Posted by Zemn

It's a longshot, but you guys think the one on the right is Luke Cage?

Edited by k4tzm4n

Keep in mind, it's possible the version won't be the same as the image used and if so, that will be plainly stated on Monday :D

Posted by M3th

MetH does not believe tHat tHat is IronMan. Can it be Mar-Vell? Danvers? Richard Rider?

-m3th.O.D.-

Posted by IndieComicsFTW

Wow. Nightcralwer won? He was so terrible in the movie.

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