Nathan was a subject in a government program named project Next Men. The members of the project had been kept in a government facility in huge metal chambers. While in these chambers they were immersed in The Greenery, a virtual reality. The subjects perceived that they were in an ideal world. For the most part this simulated world was peaceful and idyllic. However, ever so often they would be attacked by war machines without notice. They were able to generate weapons and armory to ward off these attacks. Nathan questioned the virtual world, perceiving that something wasn't right. Like the others, Nathan was awoken in the government facilities' metal chamber by Jack. Nathan's powers started to manifest in The Greenery, but it was in the government facility that the group learned that he had x-ray vision. Nathan's eyes allow him to see all the wavelengths of light. He and the other survivors of the project escaped from the government facility.
Based on the comic books that Danny had been reading they were given superhero identities, Nathan became Scanner.
Nathan was created by John Byrne as a member of the Next Men. Nathan's mutant ability is his can see all the wavelengths of light. Byrne's makes a subtle commentary regarding power's impact on a person. As Nathan's power grows, the greater the disfigurement of his eyes. The glasses used to protect Nathan's eyes are very similar to those of X-men's Cyclops. This comparison, along with the similar name, apparently was controversial. However, because the team and origin were vastly different the project was allowed to continue without any legal issues.
Major Story Arcs
During the shutdown of the Next Men Project by Senator Hilltop. The Senator was doing so to hide his involvement in the project.
Having been raised in The Greenery, a virtual world for educating and training the team, the Next Men were very naive about the real-world. They work with Antonia's and her boss, Control, to prepare for real world missions. During this time Nathan takes on the code name of Scanner.
One of their first missions they embark upon is to battle the similarly created Russian mutant team. The team was captured during this mission, and while awaiting certain death Nathan and Jasmine "danced". During this time, Danny leaves on his own to search for his birth mother. He finds his half sister, birth mother and the real identity of his father. Danny and his half sister, Chrissy, went to New York.
The team re-unites in New York and emulates the superhero teams of the comic books that Danny reads. This attracts attention from the law, and the team is arrested for the crimes committed during the escape from the Next Men Project's government facility. Jasmine finds herself pregnant with Nathan's child. Helped by Antonia Murcheson (aka Tony), the team escapes and goes underground. They stayed with Father Michael Benedict and his colony of lost souls. The underground compound was attacked, and the team splits-up.
Jasmine is confronted with a number of dramatic events, including the termination of her pregnancy. She was approached by an armored figure, told not to worry, and the next moment she finds herself with Nathan and Danny in the distant past. It is a world that is filled with dangerous dinosaurs. They escaped to a cave, only to learn that their powers are fading. Jasmine awakes from a dream, remembering that there was a meeting of the Next Men in the future. Nathan is still looking for the missing Danny. Jasmine starts to question if they are in a virtual world, Nathan vanishes.
Nathan re-appears, alone, somewhere in Nazi Germany during World War II. The other members of the team are in various time periods. Nathan is captured and experimented on in a Nazi prison camp. Blinded in the camp, the time traveling continues and he finds himself in Roman controlled territory. He is captured, but is saved by the members of the Next Men, from the future.