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Public Domain Super Heroes

Cat-Man (Holyoke)

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Cat-Man
Cat-Man 8
Cat-Man Comics #8

Real Name

David Merrywether

First Appearance

Crash Comics #4 (1940)

Original Publisher

Holyoke

Created by

Irwin Hansen

Golden Age Origin

The Merrywether family was traveling through the jungles of Burma when bandits killed the mother, father, and sister. Young David was the only survivor. He was found and raised by a Tigress and gradually gained all the powers of the cat family. When he became an adult, he decided to return to the United States. Upon arriving there, he was appalled to discover that the city was full of crime and evil he found. He decided to fight it, both as a private eye in his civilian identity and as the costumed Cat-Man.

In Cat-Man Comics #4, David encountered Katie Conn, an 11-year old orphan. Her unscrupulous uncle was using her to help him steal. After putting her uncle behind bars, David took Katie in as his ward. He was initially reluctant to let her fight crime with him, but after she put on a costume and fights as Kitten and helped him defeat the latest villain, David changed his mind.

When World War II broke out, David joined the military. He was never deployed. A year before the war ended, he was discharged under unspecified circumstances and he and Katie moved to Center City, home of the Deacon. While their sidekicks were already good friends, the two crime-fighters barely interacted. They only teamed up on two occasions.

David and Katie continued to fight crime as Cat-Man and Kitten until Cat-Man Comics was canceled.

Cat-Man had cat-like powers -- he can see in the dark, leap many times his length, and climb anything. He also had nine lives. He was watched over by a guardian angel in the form of a tigress who brings Cat-Man back to life if and when he is murdered (He had seven lives left as of Cat-Man Comics #3). Some of his more supernatural powers were de-emphasized over time. He originally carried a silent-firing pistol called the Power Gun.

Notes

Not to be confused with the Australian version of this character, the recurring foe of Batman (who wore a very similar costume, but with leggings), or the Cat Man from Centaur Comics.

Golden Age Appearances

  • Cat-Man Comics #1-32
  • Crash Comics #4-5

See Also

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