Friday, May 18, 2012

The Cat Man-Irwin Hasen-1940

Not to be confused with the Catman who has a young girl named Kitten as his partner, this particular hero has the gimmick of having nine lives. He sometimes gets killed in his adventures only to revive for  a few more lives. Very early art by the still with us Irwin Hasen who would later go on to draw the DONDI newspaper strip.


Daniel [] said...

I believe that the reader was supposed to see this Cat Man (aka “Cat-Man”, aka “Catman”) as the same fellow who later ran around with Kitten. Both Cat-Men were named “David Merrywether”, and both were published by the same (evolving) group of folks, with about half a year between the story above and the first issue of Cat-Man Comics.

DBCooper said...

This IS the same Cat-Man who would get a sidekick named Kitten about one year after this story. This story is only his second appearance, which is 1940. The cheap store bought looking costume, him being a “new agent”, and his three deaths in his early days indicates we are looking at a young, inexperienced man fresh out of college, and merely beginning his career. We know he has a degree because it’s required to be a federal agent, and his career as an Army officer next year. Six months would pass before we see Cat-Man again in Cat-Man Comics #1, while this Crash Comics title was cancelled. His own title is essentially the same book, but the publishers wanted a headliner hero. The six months absence is a perfect way to explain him going for Army officer training. When we see him in uniform for the first time in December 1941, he is already job qualified.

christopher perguidi said...

They're the same character . The narrator would Number his deaths as he died and the numbering continued and was consistent through the catman series. The tiger that raised him and brings him back to life appears in both series. Bob Fujitani revamped the origins to make Catman the son of circus performers and extended that cat abilities to kitten. He also changed the tigers to leopards. Until this soft reboot the series is pretty consistent.