Monday, August 2, 2010

Cat-Man vs. Dr. Macabre (Holyoke; 1946)

Hey, it's hot out there so like the grizzled old dude in the Dos Equis commercials says, "Stay thirsty my friends". Here is the final golden age story from Holyoke's Cat-Man Comics #32 (Aug.1946), written by Ken Fitch and illustrated by Bob Fujitani - and at last starring Cat-Man!

David Merryweather, was raised in Burma by a tigress after his parents had been killed. After living with tigers for many years, he gained super-human abilities, such as super-strength, enhanced agility, natural night vision plus the legendary "9 lives" of cats. Eventually, David returned to the U.S., where he was horrified by criminals preying on the innocent. To stop this, he first became a private investigator and later, he would become an Army officer. Assigned to stateside duties, he then donned a costume with a black cat's-head symbol and became Cat-Man.

Cat-Man soon encountered Katie Conn, an 11-year-old circus acrobat who had fallen under the guardianship of her unscrupulous uncle (after her parents died in a fire). The uncle forced Katie to steal things for him. Cat-Man intervened on her behalf and made sure her uncle was brought to justice and David adopted Katie. She tried to help him fight crime, sewing a matching costume and calling herself the Kitten. At first, Cat-Man tried to prevent her from helping him, but Katie eventually proved herself and they became partners.



Barry Sachs Illustration said...

Wow. Reading the description of this comic series reminds me of a superhero tv show that was on UPN in the 90s. It was called the Sentinel.
It was very similar, except the hero was in the army and after spending time in the jungle was given super senses and was made the protector. When he returned to the U.S.A. as a detective he used these abilities to fight criminals. It was a good series. Lasted about 2 seasons. You should look for it sometime and occasionally Sci Fi channel has marathons of it.

Anonymous said...

Is this the same Cat-man that would later become a Bat Villian?

Chuck Wells said...

That would be a "no"!

DBCooper said...

Catman and Kitten would be 28 and 16 years old by 1946. The two of them were ignored for decades because other comic companies may have been reluctant to pick up where these two future lovebirds were obviously heading.
I'd like to think this is Catman and Kitten's final costumed adventure. It's 1946, the war is over. Most men were mustered out this year, and David Merrywether's skills and experience were better suited for a Cold War career in either the FBI or CIA. The Catman identity was accepted by his Army superiors as a means to keep the Army out of any official involvement, if need be.
Katie Conn was never adopted, so she kept her last name. Besides, Merrywether was only 12 years older than her anyway.
Despite Kitten being drawn with a fully developed figure in the end, her height looked like it stopped around 5'2", making an adult crime fighting career unlikely.
I'll bet you anything the two of them were married before the 1940s were over.