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Avengers Spotlight #38: Review

Nov 1990
?, June Brigman

Story Name:

Curse of the Cat, People: Avengers Reborn Part 2 of 4

Review & Comments

4 stars

Avengers Spotlight #38 Review by (October 26, 2022)

Review: As with the last issue, Roy Thomas and the missus take on another second string hero and simplify her convoluted backstory presumably to make the character easier to employ for a new writer. In this case it’s Tigra who was stuck in small animal form by a previous writer and Roy steps in to unstick her while summing up her career to date. Not a bad tale as Tigra is a slightly more interesting character than Doctor Druid last issue. And she‘s the rare hero who came close to being put down by a vet. The best moment: how Miss Harkness was able to place Tigra’s bikini in just the right place that she was clothed when restored to her normal size so that this comic would be approved by the Comics Code Authority.

Comments: Title is a variation on the classic fantasy film CURSE OF THE CAT PEOPLE, which has no curses or cat people. Tigra was shrunk to house cat size in WEST COAST AVENGERS #49. Tigra is next seen in WEST COAST AVENGERS #66. Last of three widely spaced appearances of Tabur: the first two were MARVEL PREMIERE #42 and WEST COAST AVENGERS #15. Only appearance of Abigail Verpoorten, who appears to be named after Marvel inker/production manager John Verpoorten. Written by the husband-wife team of Roy Thomas and Dann Thomas.


Synopsis / Summary / Plot

Avengers Spotlight #38 Synopsis by Peter Silvestro

Sweet old lady Abigail Verpoorten loves to feed the stray cats outside her home. This day, Tigra, shrunk to the size of a housecat and with instincts to match, comes out for some food as well; the nearsighted lady notes that Tigra doesn’t sound like an ordinary cat but she can’t see that she looks different too. A bully lets his pit bull attack the cats; it kills one and goes for Tigra. Tigra manages to kill the dog but is badly wounded herself. Abigail hurries the injured Tigra to an animal hospital, witnessed by a black cat. The doctor, who doesn’t get a good look at Tigra, assumes she is too badly injured to survive and prepares to euthanize her. Suddenly, Agatha Harkness enters, accompanied by her black cat Ebony (see above) and claims Tigra as her own. The doctor then sees what a strange looking cat Tigra is; Miss Harkness leaves; the doctor and Abigail follow and discover from the receptionist that no one has entered the office since Abigail went back….

At Avengers Compound, Miss Harkness uses Hank Pym’s Pym Particle device to restore Tigra to her normal size; she tries to restore Tigra’s human consciousness by giving her (and the reader) a detailed summary of her comic book history. But the heroine is still badly injured and still acts like a cat, as instilled in her by the Cat People. Believing only the Cat People can help her now, Agatha Harkness summons the cat emissary Balkatar who turns out to be Tabur who knocks Agatha cold and uses a special amulet to heal Tigra and restore her human memories. She balks as she remembers Tabur was a bad guy; he explains that he was once an enemy of the Cat People, being one of the High Evolutionary’s New Men, but now he has conquered the Cat People and become their leader. And to legitimize his rule, he wants to mate with Tigra. Ebony then attacks him and is violently batted away and Agatha Harkness enters. Tigra decides Tabur is still a bad guy and they fight. But Tigra is still weak from her ordeal and she passes out. Agatha Harkness employs the cat amulet to transform Tabur into a regular house cat. Tigra awakens to find she is now just human Greer Nelson; Miss Harkness gives her the amulet, explaining that she can use it to become Tigra whenever she wishes….

June Brigman
Doug Hazlewood
Paul Becton
Steve Lightle (Cover Penciler)
Steve Lightle (Cover Inker)
? (Cover Colorist)
Letterer: Rick Parker.


Listed in Alphabetical Order.


(Greer Nelson)

Plus: Agatha Harkness.

> Avengers Spotlight: Book info and issue index

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