If you’re like me, you’ve spent a good portion of this weekend watching Marvel’s Jessica Jones Netflix series. You’ve come to love and hate some characters the show has introduced you to. One character I was happy to see was Patsy “Trish” Walker. In the show she’s Jessica’s closest ally, she’s got quite the history in comics too. So who is Patsy and what’s a Hellcat? Let’s find out!
Patricia “Patsy” Walker was the daughter of Jonathan and Dorothy Walker. Her mother, Dorothy was a comic book writer and created a hit series based off a fictionalized take on her daughter. Patsy became famous for her exploits in the comics (which in reality were her Golden Age adventure from back when Marvel was called Timely Comics). Surrounded by comics, Patsy became fascinated with superheroes and dreamed of one day being one.
Patsy would go on to marry a long time sweetheart and go live on a military base with him. While there, she would meet and befriend Hank McCoy, aka Beast. When she discovered his secret identity she made him promise her that when the time came, he’d help her become a superhero as well. Her marriage would end badly but the bright side of this was now Patsy could try to be a superhero, her natural athleticism helped her working with the Avengers.
Just as Patsy is about to join the Avengers when she is offered a chance to train further in martial arts and develop psychic powers on Jupiter’s moon, Titan under the tutelage of Moondragon. Upon her return to Earth, Patsy would join the Defenders and eventually lose her psychic powers but retain her martial arts training. While with the Defenders she would meet the son of Satan, Daimon Hellstrom and the two would fall in love.
Daimon’s demonic influence would be cured and Patsy would marry him soon after. They’d retire from the Defenders and general heroics to move and become occult investigators. There time away from heroes was short lived as the two would eventually be helping the West Coast Avengers with mystical problems. Sadly, Daimon’s demonic influence would return and just by gazing up the event, shattered Patsy’s mind leaving her in a vegetative state. When a spirit offers Patsy a peaceful death, she accepts, planning on finding a way back to the land of the living again.
While in the afterlife, Patsy is forced into gladiatorial combat in hell until she can find her exit. When Hawkeye of the Avengers attempts to resurrect his wife, he ends up being tricked into bringing back Patsy instead. Now returned to life on Earth, she’d have the powers she’d developed in hell and would try to make a new life for herself.
Still fighting supernatural threats, she’d fight her old teenage rival along with demonic influences in her hometown. She’d register under the Superhero Registration Act and train new recruits at Camp Hammond. On one adventure, Patsy would team up with magical bears and witches. I will say no more so that you go read that.
Recently, Patsy has become an regular human again with exceptional physical ability and using her skills as a private investigator working for She-Hulk’s law firm. The two working together to deal with a variety of superhero legal adventures.
There you have it! Patsy’s pretty great and I was so glad to see her make her MCU premiere and to learn she has a new comic series coming out in a few months. To see a character go from teen romance hero to butt-kicking vigilante then mystically powered monster hunter, Patsy has a long and wild history. See you next time!
Miss America Magazine #2
Fantastic Four Annual #3
Patsy Walker: Hellcat