John Greycrow is a mutants fought during World War II for the United States, but was executed for scalping eight of his fellow officers. As he was blindfolded and tied to a stake to be slaughtered he spat on Nick Fury as his last words and for it almost got beaten. However, he was lucky and instead of being victim to Fury's wrath he was shot by the firing squad who believed him to be killed and so buried him. Yet, unbeknownst to the US Army, John survived thanks to his healing factor and was found and recruited by Nathaniel Essex - Mr. Sinister - while he emerged from the grave.
Scalphunter was created by Chris Claremont, John Romita Jr and Bret Blevins in 1988 and first appeared in shadow in Uncanny X-Men # 210. Scalphunter's full appearance was in Uncanny X-Men # 211.
Major Story Arcs
After being found by Sinister, Greycrow is caught off guard and asked how Sinister knew when he sees the man was waiting for him. Sinister tells him it his business to know, then reaches out his arm to Greycrow, pulling the man out of his grave. It is from that moment on that their pact comes into existence.
John becomes his shadow, accompanying him everywhere and helping him with all his jobs and experiments but is also the lesser evil of the two obviously as he sometimes objects to Sinister's dark thoughts or ideas, though discretely as he is still a dutiful servant of Essex, even through the decades.
Much later, now calling himself Scalphunter, he was part of a group of of assassins called the Marauders, lead by Sinister.
Sinister first sends the Marauders to kill the entire population of the underground community of mutants called the Morlocks. Scalphunter found and followed a young Morlock named Tommy and shot her from behind when they found the entrance to the alley. In the course of the massacre the team fought against the X-Men and the original X-Factor, as well as Thor and Power Pack, but was successful in killing the majority of the Morlocks. They team escaped relatively easy, but one member, Riptide, was killed in a fist of rage by the X-Man Colossus. At this time, it was revealed that Mr. Sinister had cloned the entire Marauders team. This way, members of the team who had died could be instantly replaced with an exact replica. This was done to the Marauder teammate Riptide who lost his life during the fight against the X-Men.
The next time the Marauders fought the X-Men was when they attempted to assassinate former pawn of Sinister, and now X-Man teammate, Madelyne Pryor. They where unsuccessful this time. Sinister also send Scalphunter and the Marauders to battle the X-Men during the time of the demonic invasion of New York City known as the "Inferno". Scalphunter managed to live throughout his encounters with the X-Men but when the Marauders later fought the time-displaced Nate Grey, aka X-Man, he was killed. After his death, Scalphunter was cloned by Sinister.
The clone of Scalphunter took in refugee at the Xavier Mansion after the fall out of M-day in witch most mutants lost their powers. Because 'this' Scalphunter was a clone, and technically had no part in the murders on the Morlock mutants, he was taken in. He soon became part of a mutant group on the compound calling themselves the 198. He still retained his powers. When Apocalypse returned to life and asked the mutants who still had their powers to join him, Scalphunter accepted. When Havok warned him, Fever Pitch, and Skids that they were in way over their heads, Scalphunter replied that Apocalypse had explained it all to them and was on their side.
After he gotten away from Apocalypse, Scalphunter returned to his old boss Mr. Sinister and his team the Marauders. There he was part of the events known as the "Messiah CompleX". Being a clone, Scalphunter was loyal to Sinister and he helped him and his old Marauder teammates kill a lot of innocent people in the town of Cooperstown, Alaska. In this town the first new mutant baby was born since M-Day and Sinister didn't want to take any chances on getting the child, even if it meant killing everyone who got in their way.
After these events, Scalphunter soon went of the radar. Ashamed of his actions he started to work at a road-restaurant somewhere in a desert. Fearful everyday that the X-Men would find, and kill him for what he had done after they had been so generous at giving him a second chance in life. The X-Man Nightcrawler found Scalphunter after some time, and told he him he COULD have killed him, and he would still do it, if Scalphunter would ever hurt someone else, ever again. He didn't do this now because he thought that, since he was a clone, he never really had an honest start in life. After giving him this hard message, Nightcrawler left. Leaving a baffled Scalphunter behind.
During the hunt for infamous aged assasin Cape Crow in Elektra (vol.3), Scalphunter was eaten alive by the mother of monsters on Monster Island.
Powers & Abilities
Scalphunter has technomorphic abilities which means he can restructure any technological device. He usually wears a form of armor with numerous weapon parts that he can assemble weapons from. He is very well-trained in fire arms of any sort.
He also has a healing factor that heals wounds and represses aging. He has survived several executions and burials. He is at least 80 years old, probably older.
Scalphunter is one of the few mutants that retains his powers after M-Day.