White Tiger (Hector Ayala)
|First appearance||Deadly Hands of Kung Fu #19 (Dec 1975)|
|Created by||Bill Mantlo and George Pérez|
|Alter ego||Hector Ayala|
|Team affiliations||Sons of the Tiger
|Notable aliases||El Tigre Blanco|
|Abilities||Enhanced physical attributes and nearly superhuman martial arts skills via mystical amulets|
White Tiger is a fictional character in the Marvel Universe, and was created by Bill Mantlo and George Pérez. First appearing in Deadly Hands of Kung Fu #19 (December 1975), he is the first Puerto Rican superhero in the history of comics, and Marvel's first superhero of Hispanic descent.
Following his debut in Deadly Hands of Kung Fu #19, the character subsequently appears in The Deadly Hands of Kung Fu #20-24 (January-May 1976), #26-27 (July-August 1976), #29-32 (October 1976-January 1977), The Spectacular Spider-Man #9-10 (August-September 1977), Human Fly #8-9 (April-May 1978), The Spectacular Spider-Man #18-21 (May-August 1978), The Defenders #62-64 (August-October 1978), The Spectacular Spider-Man #22-23 (September-October 1978), #25-26 (December 1978-January 1979), #29-31 (April-June 1979), #51-52 (February-March 1981), Spidey Super Stories #57 (March 1982), Daredevil #38-40 (December 2002-February 2003), and Daredevil #69 (March 2005).
White Tiger received an entry in the original Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #14. He appeared as part of the "Sons of the Tiger" entry in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Deluxe Edition #12. White Tiger received his own entry in the Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Master Edition #11.
Fictional character biography
Hector Ayala was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico. As a college student at New York's Empire State University, he discovered the tiger amulets that were formerly worn and thrown away by the Sons of the Tiger. Donning all three amulets, he transformed into the superhuman White Tiger. He discovered that wearing all the pendants at once increased his strength and gave him nearly superhuman skill in the martial arts.
In his alter-ego, Ayala went into action for the first time against a street gang. He then battled the Prowler, who believed him to be a murderer. The White Tiger battled the Jack of Hearts who also believed him to be behind his father's murder. The White Tiger fought off unnamed costumed assailants of the Corporation crime cartel, who were threatening his sister and Jack of Hearts. Alongside Jack of Hearts, Shang-Chi, and Iron Fist, the White Tiger fought Stryke and other agents of the Corporation, and learned his brother Filippo was attempting to find employment with Fu Manchu. Hector then encountered the Sons of the Tiger.
Ayala was impersonated by Professor Vasquez, and battled Spider-Man in the confusion. Ayala's secret identity was later publicly exposed by the villainous Lightmaster. Alongside Spider-Man and Daredevil, he then battled the Masked Marauder, Darter, and Carrion. Ayala was later gunned down by Gideon Mace and nearly killed. He was operated upon to remove the bullets, and recovered. Having gained an unhealthy psychological and physical addiction to the tiger amulets, Hector abandoned his identity as the White Tiger. He gave the amulets to a private detective nicknamed Blackbyrd, who returned them to the Sons of the Tiger. Hector then moved out west with his girlfriend Holly Gillis.
After a while, the call to don the amulets and fight evil became too strong and Hector once again became the White Tiger. Soon after, Hector was wrongly accused of murder and convicted despite the efforts of his lawyer, Matt Murdock (a.k.a. Daredevil). Ayala was shot dead trying to escape, shortly before evidence emerged that belatedly proved his innocence.
Angela Del Toro, Hector's niece and an FBI agent, inherited the Jade Tiger amulets. Angela quit the FBI to understand the amulets, and was trained in the use of their powers by Daredevil, becoming the latest person to assume the White Tiger identity before being killed by the Hand and resurrected as their servant. Having been healed by Black Tarantula, she joined Daredevil in the Hand.
Hector's teenaged sister Ava Ayala later appeared as the new White Tiger.
Powers and abilities
As the White Tiger, Hector wore the three mystical tiger amulets (a head and two paws) from the extra-dimensional realm of K'un-L'un, which were originally worn by the Sons of the Tiger (Abe Brown, Bob Diamond, and Lin Sun). When wearing the amulets, Hector's physical strength, speed, stamina, agility, dexterity, reflexes & reactions, coordination, balance, and endurance were all enhanced. The amulet also conferred on him the experience and abilities of a master martial artist. The White Tiger only possessed his enhanced abilities when wearing all three mystical tiger amulets.
House of M
Hector appears in the House of M. He is captured by the Brotherhood, who threaten his family. He sends his family to South America and sends, in the mail, his amulet to Angela Del Toro.
In other media
- The Hector Ayala incarnation of White Tiger is seen in the Ultimate Spider-Man episode "Kraven the Hunter". In the show, it is established that Hector was the second White Tiger (after his father). After he was killed by Kraven the Hunter, his mantle passed to his daughter.
- "Micromails: Meet the Micro-Makers: Bill Mantlo," Micronauts #7 (Marvel Comics, July 1979).
- Sanderson, Peter (2007). The Marvel Comics Guide to New York City. New York City: Pocket Books. pp. 30–33. ISBN 978-1416531418.
- Deadly Hands of Kung-Fu #19
- Deadly Hands of Kung-Fu #20
- Deadly Hands of Kung-Fu #21
- Deadly Hands of Kung-Fu #22-23
- Deadly Hands of Kung-Fu #26
- Deadly Hands of Kung-Fu #31
- Deadly Hands of Kung-Fu #31
- Spectacular Spider-Man #9-10
- Spectacular Spider-Man #20
- Spectacular Spider-Man #25-31
- Spectacular Spider-Man #52
- Daredevil vol. 2 #38
- Daredevil vol. 2 #40
- Daredevil vol. 2 #69
- Daredevil vol. 2 #70
- Daredevil vol. 2 #113
- Daredevil #500
- Avengers Academy #21
- House of M: Avengers #3
- J2 #11
- White Tiger (Hector Ayala) at the Appendix to the Handbook of the Marvel Universe
- White Tiger (Hector Ayala) at the Marvel Universe wiki