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Subj: Re: Catwoman and Marvel's Black Cat
Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 at 05:48:15 pm EDT (Viewed 78 times)
Reply Subj: Re: Catwoman and Marvel's Black Cat
Posted: Sat May 01, 2021 at 03:42:47 pm EDT (Viewed 81 times)
Quote:I'm no expert on Catwoman, but I have been told that the similarities between Catwoman and the Black Cat weren't as great in 1979 compared to how they later became (e.g. at that time Catwoman did not wear a skin-tight bodysuit). In her first appearances the Black Cat also made a great deal of her supposed bad-luck powers.
Quote:Cf. these articles (I got them from a quick "Catwoman Black Cat rip-off" websearch):
Quote:FWIW, the second article poses the question "Who Ripped Off Who?", while the first one makes the interesting observation that Catwoman had been completely absent from the comics between 1954 and 1966 (this is backed up by the relevant wikipedia article) - so much for her "iconic" status, I guess.
Quote:They are entitled to their opinions but, in my case, it is very simple: who are Catwoman & Black Cat?
The sexy cat burglar that our urban hero has to hunt because she is an outlaw but, at the same time, he cannot help being attracted to because, well, she is so sexy. So, he has to stop her but, actually, he wants to redeem her because he would prefer to date her rather than put her into jail.
Quote:In my opinion, it is exactly the same pattern: "catch me if you can, my love", an amorous parade between the thief & the thief catcher.
Guess we'll have to agree to disagree on this matter. But if it's any consolation to you: I too used to believe Black Cat was a Catwoman rip-off.
Quote:Catwoman was already inspired by Irene Adler.
Not so sure, as this whole thing about Sherlock Holmes being in love with Irene Adler was added by later derivative writers. In the original Conan Doyle story Irene Adler outwits Sherlock Holmes and escapes, never to reappear. Skimming through the wikipedia article
it seems that the theory that they were lovers was first put forward in the 1960s by William S. Baring-Gould, whose pet theory was that Nero Wolfe was the son of Sherlock Homes and Irene Adler (this, I believe, qualifies as a "fanwank").
Maybe the "Dating Catwoman" trope goes back even further? In Alexandre Dumas' "The Three Musketeers" d'Artagnan has sex with Milady (although in a way that by today's standards could be called rape by deception, as he pretends to be someone else).
Quote:In the case of Spider-Man & Black Cat, the supposed bad-luck powers were added because of the infamous Parker luck.
According to her creator Marv Wolfman they were already present when she was still intended to be a Spider-Woman villain, and I see no reason to disbelieve him.
Quote:Besides, the Catwomen of the Batman tv show (1966-1968) did wear black skin-tight bodysuits.
Quote:Not to mention that female characters dressed up as cats are extremely common. Felicia Hardy is not even the first superhero comic character called the Black Cat (before her there was Harvey's Black Cat (Linda Turner), a character who goes back to the Golden Age), and Marvel already had the Cat (later Tigra) and Hellcat before the Black Cat. And you could say that Catwoman's black catsuit from Batman: Year One (the one with ears and a tail) ripped off Miss Fury's suit (which, incidentally, also inspired John Romita when he redesigned the Black Widow's costume).
Quote:Yes, they are. DC Comics also has the Cheetah.
And even some male cat-themed characters, Cat-Man and Wildcat.
Quote:In my case, it is the cumulation of the "catch me if you can" amorous parade and the cat motif that leads me to say that Black Cat is a rip-off.
For my tastes that is a little too vague, as both aspects are extremely common, so it would be like saying that every super-strong superhero who is also able to fly is a rip-off of Superman and every masked non-powered cape-wearer with a secret identity is a rip-off of Zorro. On some level it may be considered true, but it's not terribly useful.
Also, it seems it is easier these days to justify such cases as parody, at least in America.
You'll notice that Squadron Supreme has been around for quite some time.
At first, I think that the Squadron Sinister didn't pose any problem because they are supervillains.
But the Squadron Supreme...?
Interesting. But even in the mid 1980s DC didn't have a leg to stand on because the Squadron Supreme had been around since 1971 (and the Squadron Sinister since 1969), and DC should have complained within three years after the first appearance.
DC also didn't complain about the Shi'ar Imperial Guard (a spoof of the Legion of Superheroes co-created by former LSH artist Dave Cockrum), and IIRC also has itself done more than a few parodies of Marvel super-teams over the years.
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