notice in sci-fi-online.com's recent review of the Catwoman
graphic novel The
Replacements that Nick Smithson makes a very
valid point about Selina Kyle's new identity.
Why does she go to so much trouble to change her identity
(forging her own documents because she can't trust anyone
else with her secret) only to name herself after a character
in an old movie who changes into a cat? Surely, as Film Freak
hosts a regular movie show from Gotham, she must have figured
that at some point Film Freak would figure who she was.
Also, the fact that her old friends, like Slam, insist on
accidentally calling her Selina in public is a bit of a giveaway.
In one scene, Slam asks for Selina in a restaurant only to
be told that no one has booked under that name. He then asks
them to check under reservations for her new name and is shown
straight to her table. What if some criminal was in the vicinity
Selina was planning on complete retirement, the chances of
Film Freak ever encountering her were next to zero. Also,
it is only by chance that he sees Cat People at this
point in time. If he hadn't been watching it just days earlier,
he probably wouldn't have made what is quite an obscure connection.
Yes, Selina is trying to be too clever for her own good and,
yes, she probably should have chosen a different name - not
to mention some more intelligent friends who won't blurt out
her old identity left, right and centre.
Then again, secret identities containing clues to or inspiration
for the hero or villain's other name are a common occurrence
in the DC Universe (and the Marvel Universe, come to that
- think of Mr Freeze/Dr Victor Fries and Dr Octopus/Otto Octavius).
Perhaps so much so that what, to us, would seem like an ordinary
sounding name would actually be more likely to arouse suspicion
in comics land: "Shirley Perham? Hmmm, a false identity if
ever I heard one..."