It can be assumed that Belasco's origins are similar to that of Earth-616 Nightcrawler and although there is no evidence that proves that the Belasco that has been seen in Earth-616 was ever the Nightcrawler of Earth-9997; however, as Belasco is an extra dimensional being that exists in Limbo, which has access to all times and dimensions and seems to defy all realms of logic, it is possible that this statement is both true and false.
Much of the history of the Belasco from Earth-9997 matches with that of Nightcrawler and Belasco of Earth-616.
During the time of the mutation of every human on the planet that was caused by the release of the Terrigen Mists into the atmosphere, Nightcrawler was a member of Excalibur. During one of their missions they battled the Grey Gargoyle, who turned the entire team into stone, Nightcrawler and Captain Britain managed to escape. Nightcrawler did so by teleporting away, however he lost one of his arms in the process. Captain Britain used the sword Excalibur to slay Grey Gargoyle in a fit of rage, later realizing that he acted rashly and he could have forced the Gray Gargoyle to change everyone back to human form. Captain Britain then brought his comrades trapped in stone back to his base in Buckingham Palace (including the stone "Bamf" cloud containing Nightcrawler's arms).
Captain Britain was unaware that Nightcrawler had escaped (part of these events were seen by X-51 and Uatu the Blind Watcher however) who had appeared in a town. Either due to the trauma of losing his arm in teleportation, the effects of the Terrigen Mists or the manipulations of Mephisto, Nightcrawler appeared in this town as a pure human. Once seen by the villagers, he was instantly attacked for being normal and was left for dead.
The dying Nightcrawler was approached by Mephisto (disguised as Mr. Church) who convinced Nightcrawler that everyone thought of him as a freak and used him for their own personal gain and offered him the chance for revenge. In this capacity, Mephisto brought Nightcrawler to Limbo, transformed him to appear as Belasco and clouded his memory to lead him to believe that he is the Belasco written of in Dante's Inferno. He was then put in suspended animation and frozen in ice for later manipulation. It is quite possible that Mephisto manipulated the three tier level of mutation in Nightcrawler's mutant physiology. First reverting him back to a human form, and then mutating him to the third tier in which a person's mutations is determined by those around him. Thereby Mephisto making everyone believe that Nightcrawler was Belasco, he indeed became Belasco.
Sometime later, when Captain America and the newly reborn Captain Mar-Vell were on a quest to collect items in Marv's quest to destroy Death, their travels brought them to the Savage Land. There with the aid of Ka-Zar, Shanna the She-Devil they traveled to the portal to Limbo. Cap, Marv and Ka-Zar soon came into conflict with members of the alien Dire Wraiths species and were rescued by Rom the Spaceknight (who for reasons unknown travelled to Limbo to battle his long time foes whom he banished to this realm).
After the Wraiths were fought off, Mephisto appeared to the group and they took notice of Belasco, frozen in ice.
Mephisto told the heroes that Death was following them, and tempted Cap with a magic orb that would allow them to travel back to any point in history and change any wrongs that have happened in his life. Cap resisted this temptation and swatted the orb from Mephisto's hand, causing it to strike the frozen Belasco and send him backwards in time. With this objective completed, Mephisto soon disappeared.
It was later revealed that either way, Mephisto's intended goal was completed, as his temptation was a means to create yet another divergent reality to escape his judgment at the end of time. It didn't matter who used the orb, it was the act of the orb being used that accomplished this goal.
However, to this end, the imprisoned Belasco was sent back in time to a (divergent) past where he is awakened by Shanna The She-Devil (much like how he was awoken on Earth-616) there in the past, Belasco would repeat the same events that he was responsible for in the Earth-616 universe. It was later theorized by Kyle Richmond & Gargoyle of Earth-9997 that Mephisto chose to turn Nightcrawler into Belasco, because Nightcrawler was a demonic-looking being that believed in Christianity and worshiped God, and that it possible made the devil (whom Mephisto believed himself to be) look bad. They also theorized that Belasco's targeting of the X-Men, and Colossus' sister Illyana Rasputin in particular was a subconscious plea for help. That and training Illyana into becoming Magik was possibly an attempt to redeem himself, as he subconsciously knew that she would someday succumb to the Legacy Virus and taught her a method in which she could cheat death (which she later passed onto her brother Czar Colossus of Russia).
Much later into the events of Earth-9997, Belasco eventually returned to Limbo (the exact point is unknown, as Limbo is a timeless place) and somehow gained mastery over the Dire Wraiths who lived there.
Later when the people of Wakanda and the X-Men had relocated to the Savage Land following a battle with an army of Wendigos, Belasco traveled to Earth's dimension through the Savage Land portal with an army of Dire Wraiths.
Mar-Vell, with a number of heroes learned of these events through the eyes of Kyle Richmond and traveled to the Savage Land to their aid. There, Mar-Vell stopped the fighting by telling Belasco that he is really Kurt Wagner. Hearing this stunned Belasco long enough for Mar-Vell to wrap his cloak around him (this cloak once belonging to Cloak of Cloak & Dagger, somehow maintained its properties long after its user had died) where his past was revealed to him.
Unbelieving, Belasco ran away from his former comrades back to the portal way to Limbo. Once in Limbo he found the frozen body of Kurt Wagner inside (how this is possible probably has something to do with the timeless nature of Limbo) which jarred him enough to make him begin to believe that he was Kurt Wagner.
Belasco was also present at the wedding of Medusa and Captain Britain. Later that night when a Captain U.K. brought a Grey Gargoyle from another reality and freed the members of Excalibur that were frozen in stone (both these beings turned out to be Mephisto who once again was attempting to create tragedy that could possibly prompt someone to use time travel to fix the past to a more desirable outcome in order to create another alternate reality in which he could escape into) among the members of Excalibur who were freed, so was Nightcrawler's long amputated arm. It was preserved in the stone well enough for one of Captain Britain's biologically engineered Union Jack soldiers to offer to have it surgically reattached to Belasco's arm. If this procedure was ever completed is unknown.
Much later, when Jude was allowed to become the new Death, Belasco became a central part of determining life or death in the Earth-9997 reality. Those who were deemed unworthy of the gift of death from Jude were banished to Limbo by Belasco to become victims of the Dire Wraiths that lived there (part of Mar-Vell's original plan was that Limbo were to become the new Hell).
Belasco was last seen delivering Klaw, the Master of Sound, to Limbo. Belasco currently resides between the palace of Jude and Limbo.
Powers and Abilities
As Nightcrawler, Belasco had the same abilities of his Earth-616 counterpart. As Belasco is assumed that he had the same abilities of his Earth-616 counterpart as well. When his past as Nightcrawler was revealed, somehow Belasco became able to teleport himself along with others to Limbo without artificial means, much in a similar fashion as Nightcrawler could teleport (in this case however, the "bamf" smoke is red as opposed to purple).
It was later revealed by 4-D Man (Kyle Richmond) that Nightcrawler's teleportation technique was unique in that Nightcrawler's teleportation was a form of time travel. However, unlike most forms of time travel in the Marvel Universe, Nightcrawler would travel in a way that would not create a divergent reality.
- As Nightcrawler, Belasco had only 3 fingers (including an opposable thumb) on each hand, and only 2 toes, each longer than an ordinary human's, on each foot, a prehensile tail about 3 1/2 feet long, which can carry his own weight, had pointed ears and pronounced fang-like canine teeth. His spine is more flexible than an ordinary human being's, allowing him to spend much of his time in a semi-crouching position without damaging his posture and enables him to perform contortionist-like feats.
- As Belasco, he has red skin, horns protruding from his forehead, a prehensile tail and pointed ears. His feet and hands however were much like a humans. Belasco is also missing his right arm, however it may be possible that his right arm can be surgically reattached to his body. It is unknown if this procedure has been done, however it is assumed that this arm would resemble that of Nightcrawler, unless Belasco is aware enough of his level of mutation in which he could then reshape his arm to resemble the rest of his body.
- 16 appearance(s) of Kurt Wagner (Earth-9997)
- 3 mention(s) of Kurt Wagner (Earth-9997)
- 3 image(s) of Kurt Wagner (Earth-9997)