Real Name: Jeff Rand
Identity/Class: Normal human
Affiliations: Roger (his friend on set), Janie Johnson (girlfriend)
Enemies: Krolok, Black Hattie, Roger (his werewolf brother)
Known Relatives: Rick (brother, deceased), Roger (cousin, deceased), unnamed parents (deceased)
Base of Operations: Los Angeles
First Appearance: The Cougar #1 (Atlas Comics, April 1975)
Powers/Abilities: Agile and fast. Not superhuman, but certainly at the limit of human ability.
History: Stuntman Jeff Rand is nicknamed the Cougar by his peers, because of his cat-like speed and agility. Perhaps due to events in his youth, he seemed to have a knack for stumbling across the supernatural.
Jeff grew up in the Louisiana Bayous. While he was still a child, his brother Rick was abusive to an old woman, Black Hattie, who was reputed to be a witch. In return for his rudeness the old woman cursed Rick, and then vanished, never to be seen again. Two years later Jeff witnessed his parents' murder at the claws of a werewolf; Rick vanished the same night, leaving Jeff an orphan.
Years passed, and Jeff was now at the top of his chosen profession, working on a movie titled "The Gore of Dracula". While filming in an ancient castle Jeff's friend Roger unwittingly revived Krolok, a vampire, and swiftly succumbed to its bite. The nosferatu then made its way into town, where it spotted the film's leading lady Kathy in a local tavern with the rest of the film crew, and in true vampire fashion, decided that she was the reincarnation of his dead love Katya. Krolok attacked, seeking to kidnap her, but Jeff managed to hold him off until the police arrived. Faced with increasing odds against him, the vampire fled.
The next evening Krolok made another attempt to abduct Kathy, this time succeeding in overcoming both the Cougar (whom he knocks out) and the police. When the Cougar awoke, he headed immediately to the castle, arriving just in time to prevent Krolok draining her blood. After a pitched battle, the Cougar drives a stake through Krolok's heart, ending his threat.
The Cougar went on to film another movie set around a castle (you'd think he'd learn). This time round he discovered a body floating in the moat with its throat torn out. The Cougar recognised the marks from his childhood, and realised there was a werewolf on the loose. He called his cousin Roger, to find out more information regarding his parents' deaths, hoping to find something that might be useful while investigating this current killing. Having arranged to meet Roger, he arrives to find that the werewolf got there first (being called Roger is clearly unlucky if you know the Cougar). A few days later the werewolf attempted to strike again, this time targetting Jeff's girlfriend, Janie Johnson, who is performing a concert at the L.A. Forum. Spotting the creature but being too far away to reach Janie before the monster did, Jeff swung down on a stage rope and rammed a silver blade into its heart; the dying beast reverted to human form, and proved, unsurprisingly, to be Rick, his brother. But tragedy struck, as the Cougar was unable to cushion his own descent and smashed himself against a crate, shattering his spine. Immediate surgery saved his life, but he would be permanently paralysed.
Comments: And so the story ended, two issues in, with the lead character crippled.
CLARIFICATIONS: Not to be confused with
Cougar, member of Youngblood
Any Additions/Corrections? Please let me know.
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