Abyss (comics)

Abyss (comics)


Art by Steve Epting.
real_name=Nils Styger
species=Human Mutant
publisher=Marvel Comics
debut=As Nils:
"Cable" vol. 2, #40 in Feb. 1997
As Abyss:
"Uncanny X-Men" #402 in Feb. 2002
(technically first appeared as Abyss in "X-Men: Alpha")
creators=Scott Lobdell
Mark Waid
Roger Cruz
Steve Epting
alliances=X-Cell X-Corps
partners=Renee Majcomb
powers=Dimensional transportation

Abyss (Nils Styger) is a mutant in the Marvel Comics universe. An alternate universe's counterpart of the character first appeared in "X-Men Alpha", and the heroic Marvel Universe version of the character first appeared in "Cable" vol. 2, #40.

Fictional character biography

Nils Styger first appeared as a protector for Genoshan researcher Renee Majcomb, whom he had been assisting with research into the Legacy Virus from which Abyss suffered. ["Cable" vol. 2, #40] However, he did not die due to the actions of Colossus, who sacrificed himself to release an airborne cure to the virus which had taken his little sister Illyana's life several years prior.

Abyss was later seen in Berlin, Germany battling the former Gene Nation member known as Fever Pitch. Both mutants were captured by Banshee's mutant militia known as the X-Corps.Comic book reference | Writer = Joe Casey | Penciller = Ron Garney | Inker = Mark Morales | Story = Utility Of Myth | Title = Uncanny X-Men | Issue = 402 |date=March 2002 | Publisher = Marvel Comics | ] While being held by the X-Corps, Abyss witnessed Sunpyre's murder.Comic book reference | Writer = Joe Casey | Penciller = Sean Phillips | Inker = none | Story = Army Ants | Title = Uncanny X-Men | Issue = 404 |date=May 2002 | Publisher = Marvel Comics | ] When the terrorist Mystique revealed herself and her intentions to use the X-Corps, the wounded Banshee freed Abyss from his confinement. Abyss then sucked Mystique through his interdimensional void, and, unable to shut off his power, almost swallowed Banshee also. The timely arrival of some other members of X-Corps stopped that however. Abyss admitted that he had no idea where Mystique was transported to or if she would ever return.Comic book reference | Writer = Joe Casey | Penciller = Aaron Lopresti | Inker = Mark Morales & Danny Miki | Story = Staring Contests Are For Suckers | Title = Uncanny X-Men | Issue = 406 |date=July 2002 | Publisher = Marvel Comics | ] ["Uncanny X-Men" #406]

Abyss later resurfaced when his father Azazel psychically summoned his many children to attempt to release his army from the Brimstone Dimension that he had been banished to hundreds of years before. In an attempt to loose himself and his comrades, Azazel had traversed the dimension barrier many times and sired children in the hopes that one of them would be able to breach the dimensional barrier. Abyss joined forces with the X-Men to avert Azazel's attempt to bring his army into Earth's dimension and succeeded in foiling his father's efforts. He was subsequently revealed to be Nightcrawler's half-brother, as both were sons of Azazel.Comic book reference | Writer = Chuck Austen | Penciller = Philip Tan | Inker = none | Story = The Draco Part 1 | Title = Uncanny X-Men | Issue = 429 |date=October 2003 | Publisher = Marvel Comics | ]

Abyss is one of scores of mutants who lost their powers after the events of the "House of M",Comic book reference | Writer = Brian Michael Bendis | Penciller = Mike Deodato | Inker = Joe Pimentel | Story = The Collective Part 2 | Title = New Avengers | Issue = 18 |date=June 2006 | Publisher = Marvel Comics | ] as he was shown to be among a list of other mutants who lost their powers in New Avengers. Abyss is currently a member of the X-Cell. He was repowered by Quicksilver ["X-Factor" vol. 3, #20] . When the side effects of the Terrigen Mist began to take effect, he flung Fatale and Reaper into the Brimstone Dimension and followed them. What happened to them after that is unknown.

Powers and abilities

Abyss is a mutant who can unwind his body into highly tensile strands that can be stretched or used to ensnare a victim. While holding them he can absorb anything within the shadowy confines of his form, akin to what the superhero known as Cloak does. His body is actually a portal to the same dimension that Nightcrawler temporarily enters when he teleports, later dubbed the "Brimstone Dimension" from the side-effect of Nightcrawler's powers. He is able to drain the strength of the captives he holds in his form and can deposit them in this dimension permanently, but it is unknown if anything can survive there. He has limited telepathy.

Artists often differ in the way that they portray Abyss (in fact his appearance has drastically changed within single story arcs, though no other character seemed to think this was odd). Sometimes, Abyss will have a green face and a black body. Sometimes, Abyss will be blue and have a body structure similar to Flatman. During the storyline "The Draco", Abyss appeared very similar to Nightcrawler. This trend has caused some fans to joke that Abyss has the "power" to never appear the same twiceFact|date=January 2008.

Other versions

Age of Apocalypse

A variant of Abyss appeared in the alternate timeline of the "Age of Apocalypse", in which he was one of Apocalypse's Horsemen, a nihilist with a warped sense of humor. This Abyss has a slightly different appearance but essentially the same powers and is "evil". The "Age of Apocalypse" version of the character appeared prior to the mainstream Marvel Universe version.

Abyss was rumored to have been a prisoner of Sinister's Breeding Pens, from which he broke out. But instead of rebelling against Apocalypse, he joined his forces, attaining the rank of Horseman after killing Bastion. Abyss became attached to the religious institutions of Apocalypse's regime: the Brotherhood of Chaos and The Madri. He joined them in their attack against refugees escaping from North America and was defeated by Quicksilver and Storm. Seeking revenge, Abyss faced Banshee and Quicksilver at the Temple of the Madri, though Abyss died when Banshee sacrificed himself by flying inside of the Horseman's void and activating his powers.

In other media

Video games

* The final boss in the video game "" goes under the name Abyss, although the two bear no real similarities apart from the name.
* Abyss appears as one of Apocalypse's Horsemen in "" voiced by Quinton Flynn.


*"Cable" vol. 2, #40
*"Marvel Encyclopedia: X-Men"
*"Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z 2006" #1
*"Uncanny X-Men" #402-405, 429-434


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