In her youth, Paula Brooks had idolized Paul Kirk (aka the second Manhunter) and his hunting skills. She spent hours upon hours practicing with the bow and arrow, to be a hunter like Kirk, only more of a specialist. From her Japanese gardener, Brooks learned the art of jujitsu. When she was ready to seek out Kirk, she designed a cat-like costume and carried a crossbow of her own design. Now calling herself Tigress, Brooks began shadowing Kirk. On one occasion she tracked him down at a charity All-Star game of baseball featuring various members of the All-Star Squadron and their youthful members the Young All-Stars.
It was during a mission in search of the Green Lantern Alan Scott that Brooks’ presence was discovered by Fury of the Young All-Stars. She explained her admiration for Paul Kirk and asked him to sponsor her for membership in the All-Star Squadron. After finding Green Lantern and aiding in a confrontation with the Baron Blitzkrieg, Brooks was made a provisional All-Star and accompanied the Young All-Stars on their war bond tours.
Paula Brooks was created by Mort Meskin. She was originally introduced as the Huntress, a recurring villain for the golden age DC Comics hero Wildcat. She first appeared in Sensation Comics #68, published August 1947. Meskin intended the Wildcat/Huntress relationship to emulate the popular Batman/ Catwoman dynamic. During the Wildcat run in Sensation Comics, Huntress would appear in another six issues. Huntress would be introduced as a member of the Injustice Society of the World in the pages of All-Star Comics #41 (June 1948) in a story written by John Broome. As DC Comics entered the Bronze Age, writer Roy Thomas sought to bring retroactive continuity to DC’s stable of golden age heroes. He created the All-Star Squadron, a retconned super-hero team that operated during World War II. After a number of years of publication, All-Star Squadron spun off to become the Young All-Stars, which followed the teenage sidekicks of the All-Star Squadron. Thomas re-introduced us to Paula Brooks, giving her an actual name. Here, Brooks was the Tigress. Over the course of the 26 issue series, Thomas followed Brooks’ descent from being a heroine (Tigress) to a villainess (Huntress). Meanwhile, in the pages of Infinity Inc, Thomas introduced us to Artemis Crock, the daughter of the Huntress and the Sportsmaster.
Silver Age / Earth-2
The Huntress continued to plague Wildcat into the Silver Age. As a member of the Injustice Society, she fought the Justice Society of America in the pages of Justice League of America and the revived All-Star Comics. In the pages of The Brave and the Bold #62, the Huntress is introduced side-by-side, and married, to fellow Injustice Society teammate the Sportsmaster.
Post-Crisis on Infinite Earths / New Earth
In the wake of the Crisis on Infinite Earths, the DC multiverse was condensed into a universe. Because of that, Paula Brooks’ history changed. With a single Earth, there was no longer an Earth-2. All of Paula Brooks’ exploits took place during the unified Earth. She also never faced the Helena Wayne, who no longer existed in this new continuity.
Major Story Arcs
Silver Age / Earth-2:
Paula Retires from crime
When the JSA retired in the late 1950s, she retired from crime. However, the JSA’s return brought her out of retirement as well. During her period of inactivity, Brooks married her Injustice Society teammate “Crusher” Crock, aka the Sportsmaster. The two of them returned to crime as Mr. and Mrs. Menace, but they were defeated by the golden age Starman and Black Canary.
Paula lose the name Huntress
Trying to protect her legacy, Brooks learned that another hero had debuted with the name Huntress: Batman’s daughter Helena Wayne. Brooks confronted the new Huntress, who defeated her with ease. Helena Wayne won the right to the name Huntress, and Brooks entered permanent retirement.
Tigress teams up with Young All-Stars
Tigress fought alongside Earth-2’s Young All-Stars through World War II. As a member of the youthful team, she faced the Millennium saga as the Young All-Stars found themselves facing Dan Richards and Brooks’ idol Paul Kirk. She helped teammate Neptune Perkins discover his origins during the Dyzan Inheritance, and she protected scientist Albert Einstein against Axis Amerika. During the battle against the evil Axis Amerika, Brooks was killed by the Owl. She was given a second chance at life when the Valkyrie known as Gudra made a deal with Iron Munro to trade Brooks’ life for that of her beloved Ubermensch. This event forever changed Brooks’ view of the world. The Young All-Stars soon disbanded.
Injustice Society of America
After her death and rebirth, Brooks decided to no longer be a “non-profit do-gooder.” For a small time, her idol Paul Kirk tried to sway her away from the dark side by bringing her to Africa. While there, she learned the skills of the hunter. She and Kirk temporarily teamed up with the Justice Society against the Stalker. At some point in time, she and Kirk split ways. She returned to America, where started a life of crime, and renamed herself the Huntress. As the Huntress, she found herself fighting former All-Star Squadron ally Wildcat. Huntress and Wildcat fought numerous times. She was recruited into the villainous Injustice Society of America, where she joined the Fiddler, the Icicle, the Sportsmaster, and the Wizard in a series of “patriotic crimes” that was stopped by the Justice Society of America.
Post-Crisis on Infinite Earths / New Earth:
Paula has a daughter
During their first retirement, Brooks and Crusher Crock had a daughter that they named Artemis. Both parents taught Artemis Crock their skills, and she continued the legacy of the parents. First simply calling herself Artemis, she joined Injustice Unlimited. She later permanently took the name Tigress, and had continually fought the JSA as a member of various incarnations of the Injustice Society.
Paula comes out of retirement
Since the Crisis on Infinite Earths, Brooks remains in retirement. She occasionally comes out of retirement, however, especially when her daughter is in need; in one case, she traveled to Australia to try to take out her daughter’s main competition, Cissie Jones-King (aka Arrowette) in an archery competition.
Powers and Abilities
Paula Brooks was a superb hand-to-hand combatant. She possessed a remarkable agility, and was a highly skilled athlete. She was also a master tracker, capable of tracking down her prey with uncanny skill. In addition, she had great skill in training wild animals to help do her bidding. She often used these animals to help track her prey or help commit crimes.
As the Tigress, Paula Brooks wielded a hand crossbow. This crossbow was lightweight, and was equipped to fire either regular or specially-tipped bolts. As the Huntress, Brooks possessed sharpened claws that she used in melee combat.
Height: 5’ 6”
Weight: 119 lbs
Paula Brooks is a major character in James Robinson’s Elseworld mini-series Golden Age. In the story, Tex Thompson built a new American super-team in the shadow of World War II, and with the support of the House Unamerican Activities Committee. He offered amnesty to any villain that wished to join, and the Tigress took him up on his offer. She met, and fell for, Captain Triumph. When a number of the Golden Age heroes suspected something fishy about Thompson, Tigress became their spy in his ranks. She broke into his office and stole his diary, which revealed Thompson’s brain to have been replaced with the Ultra-Humanite. When the Humanite’s scheme was revealed, Tigress fought Humanite’s henchman Robotman, while most of the other heroes fought Humanite’s creation Dyna-Man. In the wake of the fight, most of the heroes including Captain Triumph died. Triumph’s death sent Tigress off the deep end, and back to a life of crime.
Batman Beyond Unlimited
Following the Batman Beyond TV shows, Tigress and her gang of splicers take on Jokerz gang.
A futuristic version of Tigress appeared as a villain in Batman Beyond. She was an African American teenager who was granted superhuman abilities after having her DNA spliced with that of a tiger.
Batman: The Brave and the Bold
Tigress appeared in a cameo role in the episode "Aquaman's Outrageous Adventure!" She was shown going on a family vacation alongside Sportsmaster and Artemis, with all three villains still wearing their costumes.
In this version Paula Crock is the mother of the Young Justice (TV series) version of Artemis Crock. She's also the wife of Lawrence Crock aka the Sportsmaster. She lives in Gotham City with her daughter, after being recently released from prison after six years. Paula is Vietnamese and is confined to a wheelchair due to her former life as the villainess Huntress. After returning to Gotham, she kicked her husband out of their apartment for refusing to give up his life of crime for the sake of their daughter. It is later revealed that she is also the mother of Cheshire, who followed in her mother's footsteps by becoming an assassin.
In the second season, she mourns Artemis after she is supposedly killed by the rogue Aqualad. In reality, Artemis has faked her own death in order to infiltrated Black Manta's organization, which she does by posing as an assassin named Tigress.
Corresponding to her change in ethnicity, this version of Paula has the maiden name of Nguyen rather than Brooks.