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Catwoman's Sex Appeal
DC Comic Books
What do Julie Newmar, Halle Berry, Michelle Pfeiffer, and Anne Hathaway have in common? These actresses, along with Lee Meriwether and Eartha Kitt, all played the role of ‘Catwoman’ in the Batman television series or Hollywood movies-Ms. Hathaway being the newest addition in the yet to be released, ‘The Dark Knight Rises’, directed by Christopher Nolan.
Anyone growing up in the ‘50’s knew who Batman was through the literary genius presented by DC comic books. Through DC the world of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and other valiant figures, came to life. Within the colorful pages of those stories we lived fantasies of being our favorite super heroes.
Not every child had the opportunity to read comic books, but in our home it was a form of literature that my parents allowed. The message was: READ! The support was evident throughout our home and vehicles we travelled in. Books, magazines, and newspapers were found everywhere.
Within our gang of neighborhood kids we could buy, swap, and borrow the latest DC books from each other. A common scene on a rainy, Saturday afternoon was that of bodies sprawled in various poses on the basement floor and furniture, silently reading the latest adventure. The only arguments you would hear was if someone was hanging onto a book too long, refusing to pass it on.
A hero to many...
Growing up with Batman
Our basement was typical of those found under the Midwest ranch houses. It created that extra living space that growing families needed. Dad was a creative genius when it came to design and kid appeal. He painted the cement walls with oversized objects, such as a Royal Flush, and profiles of a king and queen. He added a bathroom complete with a clown he made from wood ‘holding’ up the bathroom sink. It was devised to keep the sink from being torn from the wall when we would sit or stand on it, as he knew kids did. For us, it was one more example of his art work.
But, the best part of the basement for our recreational use was when he divided a third of the space as a ‘kid zone’. Then, he divided it into three individual rooms-one for each of the two sets of oldest and youngest boys, and one room for the girls.
We had the freedom to make this shared space into whatever we wanted it to be. For the older boys this meant turning their space into a replica of the Bat Cave and we all partook on the adventures that my oldest brother would masterfully create. He was Batman, and Robin was the youngest of the six; while my brother Mike, if I recall, played the Joker-a perfect role for him.
As for my sister and I-we were designated the role of ‘Catwoman’ and whoever he would create as a second female character.
Feline Sex Appeal
Those memories live on, along with the ongoing interest in the latest Batman movie and whether Catwoman will appear. From Julie Newmar’s 1966 sexy appearance as Catwoman in the television series we, as an audience, have been keenly observant of the feline costume and character that has been portrayed.
So, here is a line-up of actresses who have taken on the role of Catwoman and a description of their costume. I will leave a poll at the end of the Hub inviting you to vote for your favorite one.
Julie Newmar, 1966, starred in the Batman television series with Adam West playing Batman. Julie wore a black, metallic bodysuit, offset with a wide gold belt and medallion necklace. Add long, ‘clawed’ gloves, cat ears and black heels and you have the making of a hot, sexy feline!
Sexy Julie Newmar
Lee Meriwether was a former Miss America and took the first Catwoman movie role in 1966. She wore a similar outfit choosing to don a black, half mask to the attire. She had a long career on the Barnaby Jones series about the detective agency.
Miss America turned Catwoman
Eartha Kitt, the songstress with the sultry sound, was the first African American to play Catwoman in the television series in 1968. Although the costume was the same, Eartha brought her own flair to the role, purring tantalizing innuendos to Batman.
Purrrfect Catwoman: Eartha Kitt
Then came Michelle Pfeiffer in a sleek new look. The metallic body suit was replaced with a smooth costume made of a material that looked like rubber. A full head mask replaced the ears and half mask; short, full tipped gloves and a bodice that brings to mind a leather biker look. In a word this costume is HOT! Michelle played Catwoman in 1992, opposite Michael Keaton in the movie: Batman Returns.
Meow! Michelle Pfeiffer
Halle Berry took the role of Catwoman in the movie of the same name in 2004. In this film, separate from the Batman movies, Berry plays the part of Patience Philips, a shy, graphic designer of a cosmetic company, who inadvertently steps into her destiny when she is caught in the middle of a corporate conspiracy. Shy turns sexy as this Catwoman prowls around for answers dressed, (or perhaps ‘half dressed’ is more appropriate), in black leather bra, pants, heels and over the elbow gloves. The head covering may hide her identity from her enemies, but we can easily recognize the shapely sexy figure of Halle Barry.
Catwoman Halle Berry bares all
In the upcoming 2012 film, The Dark Knight Rises, Anne Hathaway will show us her rendition of Catwoman. She will co-star with Christian Bale in the planned summer release of the next Batman adventure. It will remain to be seen whether Ms. Hathaway’s costume can come close to those of her predecessors regarding sex appeal…she has much to live up to. The leather look is back, however, the bare look of Barry’s costume has given way to a tight, leather body suit offset with a black ‘utility’ belt. Gloves, perky cat ears and black stilettos seal the deal. I’m hoping to be pleasantly surprised when it airs this summer.
The Dark Knight Rises with Anne Hathaway
Recently, I watched the latest Batman movie on DVD, The Dark Knight Rises. I had intended to see it when it first came out, but could not bring myself to see it following the massacre in the Colorado movie theatre, on opening night.
Watching it from my home did not have the same wide screen affect, however, it provided enough action for me to glimpse Anne Hathaway's performance. Frankly, I enjoyed her character over all of the characters, including Batman, that I observed.
She was gorgeous, proficient in her style, and her movements were light and precise-just like one would imagine from a cat. I enjoyed her less than lethal emotional status, and her wavering desire to stay or flee; help or harm.
I give her a two thumbs up on her performance as Catwoman in the final episode of Batman.