[[caption-width-right:350:Catwoman -- in Action! As drawn by [[http://www.justsayah.com/ Adam Hughes]].]]

'''Catwoman''' is a fictional character associated with Creator/DCComics' ''{{Franchise/Batman}}'' franchise. Historically a supervillain, the character was created by Bill Finger and Bob Kane, partially inspired by Kane's second cousin by marriage, Ruth Steel. Kane, a frequent movie goer also mentioned that Jean Harlow was a model for the design. The character first appeared as '''The Cat''' in ''"Batman''" #1 (Spring, 1940). The code name Cat-Woman (sic), and the first of her cat-suits were introduced in issue #2. Her civilian identity of Selina Kyle was introduced in subsequent appearances.

The character had regular appearances in the Batman titles for much of the Golden Age, both as a villain, and as a reformed criminal (or at least attempting to reform.) She disappeared from the franchise for over a decade in ''"Detective Comics''" #211 (September, 1954), for fears that her depiction violated the recently introduced [[UsefulNotes/TheComicsCode Comics Code]]. In 1966, over a decade later, the character was revived for the ''Series/{{Batman}}'' television series.

The character turned popular again and revival in the comic books soon followed. Starting with ''"Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane''" #70 (November, 1966). Where she uses magic to turn ''Comicbook/{{Superman}}'' into a cat. LoisLane then gets to fight Catwoman to rescue her love interest. Regular adventures of this version continued to the [[TheEighties 1980s]]. With an Earth-One version of Catwoman firmly established, the DC staff then reintroduced the original as part of the Earth-Two AlternateUniverse. Or at least its backstory. According to ''"DC Super-Stars''" #17 (November, 1977), the Golden Age Catwoman eventually married Batman. She was killed while performing OneLastJob. Her daughter Helena Wayne, donned the cape of the ComicBook/{{Huntress}} to avenge her death.

PostCrisis, Catwoman got a revamp in the ''ComicBook/BatmanYearOne'' storyline (1987), which established a new background for Selina as a former prostitute who learned martial arts and the art of burglary to improve her life. She got a mini-series of her own in 1989. Then a regular Catwoman series started in September, 1993. From the [[TheNineties 1990s]] until 2008, Catwoman featured in an eponymous series that cast her as an anti-hero rather than a supervillain. In 2009 this was replaced with a ''ComicBook/GothamCitySirens'' title that put her in a morally-ambiguous team with Poison Ivy and ComicBook/HarleyQuinn. In 2011 this was dropped and a new ongoing ''Catwoman'' title (again casting her as more of an anti-hero than a villain) began as part of the {{New 52}} universe-wide revamp.

Outside of the comics, the character has featured in a multitude of Batman-related media. She was a recurring villain in the iconic Adam West ''Series/{{Batman}}'' series, famously portrayed by several different actresses including Julie Newmar and Eartha Kitt. She was a major character in ''WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries'' and appeared as a villain in both ''WesternAnimation/TheBatman'' and ''WesternAnimation/BatmanTheBraveAndTheBold''. The character was featured in ''Bat Man of Shanghai'', a series of {{Wuxia}}-inspired AlternateUniverse shorts on the WesternAnimation/DCNation block that [[RaceLift reimagined Catwoman as a Chinese thief]] in the [[TheGreatDepression 1930s]]. For the AnimatedAdaptation of ''Batman: Year One'', she was voiced by Creator/ElizaDushku.

On the film front, the character was portrayed by Creator/MichellePfeiffer in the 1992 film ''Film/BatmanReturns''. In 2004, a standalone Film/{{Catwoman}} movie starring Creator/HalleBerry was released, but the movie was a flop that had [[InNameOnly little in common]] with the comic character. She is played by Creator/AnneHathaway in 2012's ''Film/TheDarkKnightRises'', although she's only ever named on screen as "Selina Kyle" and "The Cat", with the name "Catwoman" only being used in merchandise and other supplemental materials - perhaps to [[OldShame sever ties from the aforementioned Halle Berry flop]] or possibly just because of the trend in both the MarvelCinematicUniverse and ''Film/TheDarkKnightSaga'' that ComicBookMoviesDontUseCodenames.

She has also appeared in numerous video games, specifically featuring as a playable character in ''VideoGame/MortalKombatVsDCUniverse'', both ''[[LegoAdaptationGame Lego Batman]]'' games, ''VideoGame/BatmanArkhamCity'', and ''VideoGame/InjusticeGodsAmongUs''.

The character has been one of Batman's most enduring love interests, and is seen as possibly the most natural one to him. Many modern writers have also interpreted her activities and costumed identity as a response to a history of abuse.

Is the only character to make it onto ''both'' of IGN's lists of the 100 Greatest Comic Book ''Heroes''(at #20) and ''Villains''(at #11).
!!This series provides examples of:

* AbsurdlySharpClaws: She wears gloves with diamond-tipped claws.
* AbusiveParents
* ActionGirl: One of the earliest examples in comics.
** ActionMom
* AllWomenAreLustful: Selina's first run-in with Superman [[http://i111.photobucket.com/albums/n152/Runespoor7/BraveBold016-06precut.jpg has pretty humorous results.]]
* AnimalThemedSuperbeing: Except for the ''super'' part. She's skilled enough for {{Roofhopping}}, sure, but she has no superpowers.
* AmbiguouslyEvil: Considering that she has both AntiHero ''and'' AntiVillain entries here she definitely qualifies.
* AntiVillain: One of the earliest examples thereof. Mixes traits of [[SlidingScaleOfAntiVillains all types]].
* AntiHero: All of her heroic appearances have elements of this. Yeah, Catwoman is kind of... complicated.
* ArbitrarySkepticism: Catwoman has difficulty believing her sister is possessed by a demon.
* ArchEnemy: Black Mask became this to her in her 1990s/2000s solo series.
* BadassNormal
** Becomes an EmpoweredBadassNormal in ''DC vs. Mortal Kombat''.
** And in ''Videogame/InjusticeGodsAmongUs'' thanks to [[AppliedPhlebotinum enhancement pills]]. Gameplay-wise [[UpToEleven she's able to go toe to toe with]] the like of {{Superman}} and WonderWoman.
* TheBeastmaster: Limited to felines. She has been shown to have a knack for dealing with not only house cats, but also [[PantheraAwesome big cats]], such as lions. Her empathy is so great it extends to ''hyenas''.
--> '''Catwoman''': Funny thing about hyenas, Ivy -- They're a lot closer to '''''cats''''' than most people realize.
* BerserkButton: Harming her loved ones is a sure way to see a very angry kitty.
* BettyAndVeronica: The Betty to [[TheVamp Talia Al' Ghul]]'s Veronica.
* BigBad: [[spoiler:Surprisingly, she's shown to have become this to Batman by the time of ''[[ComicBook/BatmanEternal Batman Eternal]]'', having single-handedly taken over the entire criminal underworld of Gotham, from grifters to supervillains.]]
* BiTheWay: A recent storyline reveals Catwoman is bisexual. There have been leanings toward this direction before but it is implied this is a recent discovery even for her.
* BlackAndGrayMorality: Even as an AntiHero she tends to do some ethically questionable things, but she's got nothing on some of the villains she goes up against.
* [[ByronicHero Byronic Heroine]]: A very RareFemaleExample.
* CatGirl: Duh.
* ClassyCatBurglar: One of the most triumphant examples if not the TropeCodifier.
* CombatPragmatist: As an unofficial member of the Bat-Family, it kind of comes with the territory.
* ComicBookFantasyCasting: Adam Hughes draws her as Creator/AudreyHepburn ([[http://adamhughes.deviantart.com/art/Catwoman-83-Detail-144639873 example]]).
* ContinuitySnarl: No one is quite sure what Catwoman's backstory really is. Is she an orphan turned thief, an amnesiac air stewardess, a prostitute, a socialite, a product of an abusive marriage, the daughter of Carmine Falcone, or some combination thereof?
* CutLexLuthorACheck: Subverted, really. In most incarnations, she knows about this, and steals for thrills more than anything else.
* DatingCatwoman: the TropeNamer. Though from her side of the relationship, shouldn't it be "Dating Batman"?
* DeadpanSnarker
* DeathSeeker: Controversially introduced as an element of her personality for the {{New 52}} version.
* {{Dominatrix}}: In at least one version of her backstory, she worked as one before becoming a thief, and supposedly picked up [[WhipItGood her preference for whips]] after using them on her "customers". Though not all writers like to acknowledge that bit of her backstory, her current costume design (skintight black latex, with a whip for a weapon) still pretty clearly invokes a {{Dominatrix}} vibe.
* DuctTapeForEverything: In the Pfeifer run, she carried a roll of duct tape on her person. It came in handy during her fight with {{Zatanna}} and she frequently used it to restrain enemies and hostages.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness: In her first appearance, she was billed as "the Cat" but didn't wear a cat-themed costume, just a green dress, although she did disguise herself as a much older woman for a few panels. She also shot a guy, which was {{retcon}}ned out as she had a stated [[ThouShaltNotKill no-kill]] policy basically through the Bronze Age.
* EasilyForgiven: Averted with {{Zatanna}}. Selina still hates her for the events of ''ComicBook/IdentityCrisis'' (or more precisely, her actions thereafter).
* EvilIsSexy: [[InvokedTrope Invokes]] this every chance she gets. She's certainly one of the most famous examples, too.
* FemmeFatale
* GiveHerANormalLife: Helena
* GoKartingWithBowser: The entire ''ComicBook/GothamCitySirens'' series is this. Either that or her relationship with Batman... or both.
* HeelFaceRevolvingDoor: An established part of her personality that seems to work for her.
* HelloNurse
* HookerWithAHeartOfGold: An element of her past that has been in and out of continuity since Frank Miller added it.
* IHaveManyNames: Has gone through quite the aliases. Before her secret identity was finally revealed in Batman #62, she had gone by the names of Marguerite Tone, Elva Barr, Belinda, and Madame Moderne. In the One Year Later story arc, she uses the assumed name of Irena Dubrovna to hide her identity, which in turn provides a ShoutOut to the character in the 1942 film ''Cat People''.
* IndyPloy: The New 52 version of Selina uses these a lot. In fact she straight out admits she doesn't plan but handles most things by the seat of her pants.
* KarmaHoudini: In her very first appearance (when she was still '''The Cat''') Batman straight out allowed her to escape his custody, even foiling Robin's attempt to stop her... solely because he had the hots for her.
** Once Catwoman became an antihero, Batman started looking the other way when she does her thing, since she protects Gotham in her own way.
* KindheartedCatLover: The "kindhearted" part may not be obvious, but she has at least a dozen cats, all of which she loves. She frequently donates money she obtains from her heist to animal shelters.
* LegacyCharacter: [[MoralityPet Holly Robinson]] briefly took over as Catwoman.
** As a lesbian, Holly also counts as an AffirmativeActionLegacy.
** A new Catwoman appears in the ''ComicBook/BatmanBeyond'' ongoing series. She's the daughter of Multiplex, an unrelated enemy of ComicBook/{{Firestorm}}.
* LuckyBitch: The New 52 version seems to get out of dangerous situations with skill, quick-thinking, but most importantly jaw-dropping '''''luck'''''!.
* MafiaPrincess: May or may not be the illegitimate daughter of mob boss Carmine Falcone - even she doesn't know for certain. She definitely didn't get any of the perks that normally come from this trope, though.
* [[JanitorImpersonationInfiltration Maid Impersonation Infiltration]]: Selina poses as one in ''The Dark Knight Rises'' to steal Bruce's fingerprints and his mother's necklace.
* MasterOfDisguise: Each of her solo series have shown Selina to be extremely good with disguises and infiltration jobs.
* MayDecemberRomance: with several men including Wildcat, and Slam Bradley Sr.
* MeaningfulName: "Selina" sounds like a portmanteau of "Selene" (Greek goddess of the moon) and "Felina" (catlike).
* MoralityPet: Holly Robinson.
* MostCommonSuperpower: DependingOnTheArtist. She was one of the ''most'' exaggerated examples at one point, but has since gone back to something more realistic.
** Jim Balent's tenure as the artist on her 90s solo title stands out as the most ridiculous example.
* MsFanservice: And how!
* MuggedForDisguise: Often done by Selina when she needs to go undercover as part of a heist.
* OnlySaneWoman: Her obsession with cats aside, Selina is regarded as the only Batman Rogue who doesn't have serious psychotic issues. Lampshaded frequently even in the Bronze Age.
* PrivateDetective: Slam Bradley, a legacy character from the earliest issues of Detective Comics. He's pretty much straight out of the 1930s.
* RightThroughTheWall: An issue of the {{New 52}} Catwoman series has Selina fighting a cop in his apartment. In order to avoid arousing suspicion, she covers the cop's mouth and begins making [[TheImmodestOrgasm loud, sexual noises]] so that the neighbors think there is simply some rough sex going on, rather than a brutal fist fight.
* TheRival: She's had more than her fair share of encounters with Comicbook/WonderWoman's enemy, the Cheetah.
* RivalTurnedEvil: She-Cat
* SaveTheVillain: Parodied at the end of the "Relentless" arc. Black Mask has [[spoiler:blown up the community centre Selina funded, tortured her brother-in-law to death and driven her sister permanently insane, had one of her best friends run over with a car, and announced his desire to torture her to death]]. After a brutal fight, Selina kicks him off the balcony of his penthouse, but he manages to grab hold of the parapet with one hand.
-->'''Black Mask:''' Help... Help me. C'mon, you won, OK. Help me up.
-->'''Catwoman:''' God, you're even crazier than I thought. ''(stands and watches as he loses his grip and falls)''
* {{Stripperiffic}}: Especially since she began wearing black leather catsuits. Treated literally in the DC Showcase animated short in which Catwoman impersonates a stripper - and all she has to do is go on stage in her regular costume and take it off.
* StuffedInAFridge: Catwoman writers seem to enjoy using her to subvert the trope.
** Hush tried to use her to get at Batman by [[spoiler: ''cutting out her heart''. In retaliation, she steals every last cent he has]].
** Likewise, her response to Black Mask torturing her sister was [[spoiler: to kill him]].
* ThouShaltNotKill: For most of her career, Catwoman has tried to avoid killing anyone (one of the reasons the creators were able to make her into more of a sympathetic villain and it was easy for her to cross into hero territory, even being accepted by the moralistic likes of {{Superman}}). But when it comes to really reprehensible people like [[spoiler: Black Mask]], she will do so (although not without regret, as the spoiler-protected example continues to haunt her for many issues afterwards).
* TrueLoveIsBoring: Why Selina and Bruce have not been happy together in most of adaptations (barring possibly ''The Dark Knight'', and just possibly). And why Selina possibly can't find someone else.
* VaporWear: Certain artists draw her costume in such a way that there's no way she's wearing anything under it. [[ComicBook/GothamCitySirens Guillem March]] is a big offender. Paul Gulacy did several panels in his period as artist that outright showed her naked before putting the catsuit on.
* WhipItGood: She's specifically mentioned on more than one occasion that she picked it because she didn't want a weapon that would be easy to turn against her if she was disarmed.
* WomanInBlack
!!Works that she has appeared in:
* ''ComicBook/BatmanTheDarkKnightReturns''
* ''ComicBook/BatmanYearOne''
* ''ComicBook/GothamCitySirens''
* ''ComicBook/BlackestNight''
* ''ComicBook/{{New 52}}''
** ''ComicBook/DeathOfTheFamily''