|First appearance||The Amazing Spider-Man #194 (July 1979)|
|Created by||Marv Wolfman
|Alter ego||Walter Hardy|
|Notable aliases||John Hardesky|
The Cat (Walter Hardy) is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by writer Marv Wolfman and artist Keith Pollard, he first appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man #194 (July 1979). He is a world-renowned cat burglar and the father of Felicia Hardy, aka Black Cat.
Fictional character biography
Walter Hardy is the only one who knows the formula of making a so-called Super-Soldier. When he was a child, a group of Nazis (including the sinister Red Skull) used him to sneak inside a building where an experiment was taking place turning Steve Rogers into Captain America. Walter, who has a photographic memory, memorized the formula that made Captain America and brought it back to the Nazis. However, he refused to give them the formula after realizing that the Axis Powers would probably win World War II if they had it.
After Hardy's arrest, his daughter Felicia adapted his devices and methods as the Black Cat.
Powers and abilities
The Cat has a miniature grappling hook device, which enables him to swing from buildings in a manner similar to Spider-Man, though not quite as fast. He can also use the cable from this device as a tightrope, wall scaling device, swing line, and/or as a weapon in combat. He has photographic memory as well.
In other media
- The Cat appeared in the Spider-Man episodes "The Cat" and "The Black Cat", voiced by John Phillip Law. The character's name is changed to John Hardesky but is still similar to his comic counterpart. As a boy, he was tricked by the Nazis into spying on the Captain America experiment and had a picture-memory of it. When he found out who the real Nazis were, he evaded them and managed to give them the slip. Years later, he is shown in protective S.H.I.E.L.D. custody until the Kingpin had the Chameleon replace him so that Kingpin can get the formula to make his own super-soldiers. Upon discovering the formula, Kingpin decides to arrange a "family reunion" by having Doctor Octopus kidnap Felicia Hardy. She becomes a test subject to the super-soldier formula and is transformed into the Black Cat. After encountering Black Cat, Spider-Man follows her to Kingpin's hideout and rescues her and Walter. Walter destroys the super-soldier serum before Herbert Landon can duplicate it. With Kingpin's plan thwarted, Walter willingly returns to S.H.I.E.L.D. custody.
- Walter Hardy's character, amalgamated with the Burglar, appears in The Spectacular Spider-Man, voiced by James Remar. In a flashback accessed by the Venom symbiote, he is shown robbing Sullivan Edwards and escaping in the elevator. After Peter Parker's Uncle Ben is murdered, Peter investigates as Spider-Man and finds out that the murderer was chased to an abandoned warehouse. Though the burglar falls out of the window, Spider-Man saves him and leaves him for the police. In the episode "Opening Night", the burglar's identity as the Black Cat's father is revealed to Spider-Man. Black Cat arrives to bust him out of the Vault as Spider-Man is testing it out. Even though Black Cat wants him to escape with her, Walter decides to remain in the Vault to atone for Ben's murder.
- Comic Vine, Walter Hardy first appearance.
- Ultimate Spider-Man #53
- Walter Hardy at Comic Vine