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Real Name: Abigail Verpoorten

Identity/Class: Human, citizen of the United States

Occupation: Pensioner

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Agatha Harkness, Doctor Larson, Tigra (Greer Nelson)

Enemies: Creeper and its owner

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: Portuguese Bend, Palos Verdes, California

First Appearance: Avengers Spotlight I#38 (November, 1990)

Powers/Abilities: Abigail Verpoorten possesses no known superhuman abilities. Suffering from a progressive degeneration of her eyesight, she could not drive and had trouble telling small objects apart.

Height: Unrevealed (approximately 5'5")
Weight: Unrevealed (approximately 135 lbs.)
Eyes: Blue
Hair: Gray


(Avengers Spotlight I#38 (fb) - BTS) - The elderly Abigail Verpoorten lived alone in a house near Portuguese Bend, the largest area of natural vegetation on the Palos Verdes peninsula. She never married, but was a great lover of cats, spending her days caring for the numerous ownerless animals that roamed the nature preserve. Dutifully doting over the creatures, she made sure they were all fed and loved. If cats were sick or injured, she would even take them to the local vet.

(Avengers Spotlight I#38 - BTS) - Abigail's eyesight was deteriorating with age, she hadn't driven a car for 23 years.

(Avengers Spotlight I#38 - BTS) - After managing to break free from Hank Pym's miniaturized cell, the fully feral Avenger Tigra went on the prowl, eventually making her way into Portuguese Bend. Agatha Harkness' familiar Ebony was on the look out for her.

(Avengers Spotlight I#38) - Abigail was tending to her cats near Portuguese Bend, throwing them morsels of food they eagerly gobbled up. Noticing the feeding frenzy, the cat sized Tigra joined in and grabbed the food from Abigail's hands. Fascinated by the new arrival, Abigail did not notice an approaching pit bull called Creeper. Egged on by its owner, the dog mercilessly killed a cat with a single bite before moving on to Tigra. Abigail begged the dog's owner to stop, but the man just laughed at her distress, asking "What's the use of having a pit bull if you don't get to watch it kill a cat once in a while?". Seconds later, the gravely wounded Tigra clawed her way out of her assailant's mouth, killing the dog in the process. Abigail furiously threw her bag at the owner who ran away in terror, telling the "stupid redneck" he had turned his dog into a killer.

(Avengers Spotlight I#38 - BTS) - Ebony witnessed the tragedy and hurried off to inform Agatha Harkness.

(Avengers Spotlight I#38) - Abigail took the mortally injured Tigra to her home where she called the local vet and a cab to drive her there. Due to her poor eyesight, she didn't notice Tigra looked nothing like a regular cat. Because she kept her wrapped up in a blanket, the cab driver didn't spot anything out of the ordinary either. When Verpoorten arrived at the San Pedro Dog and Cat clinic, she was quickly brought before doctor Larson, who immediately opted for euthanasia without so much as a cursory glance at the wounds. According to Larson, cats mauled by pit bulls had no chance of surviving and he didn't want to prolong the animal's agony. Already late for a golf game, Larson wasn't paying much attention to his patient either while he convinced Abigail it was for the best to put her down. Right before he could jab the lethal needle in her, Agatha Harkness and Ebony suddenly appeared to claim ownership of Tigra. Stunned, Abigail handed Tigra to Agatha who quickly made off with her to make sure she would survive this ordeal.

Comments: Created by Roy & Dann Thomas, June Brigman, Doug Hazlewood

Roy & Dann Thomas used this story to help clear up a dangler from John Byrne's aborted run on Avengers West Coast that saw Tigra literally diminished into a feral little cat thing that chased mice before running off into the wilderness. Abigail's poor eyesight is mostly for plot convenience, but something about that little old cat lady witnessing all that casual animal cruelty makes this story an emotional one.

Profile by Norvo.

Abigail Verpoorten should not be confused with:

Creeper and his owner

Creeper was a pit bull who was raised by his owner to be as vicious and bloodthirsty as possible, often chasing and killing the many stray cats that lived near Portuguese Bend. Creeper was set loose on the pack of cats tended to by Abigail Verpoorten, the kindly old woman watched in horror as the dog bit and instantly killed one of the cats she'd been caring for. Creeper then grabbed the tiny, feral Avenger Tigra who despite her injuries was able to claw free and kill Creeper in the process. Watching his dog die shocked the owner so much, he ran off in horror with a furious Abigail cursing him out and throwing her bag at him.

- Avengers Spotlight I#38

images: (without ads)
Avengers Spotlight I#38, p2, pan4 (main image)
Avengers Spotlight I#38, p3, pan3 (closeup)
Avengers Spotlight I#38, p9, pan5 (puts Tigra to sleep)
Avengers Spotlight I#38, p3, pans1&6 (Creeper and owner)

Avengers Spotlight I#38 (November, 1990) - Roy & Dann Thomas (writers), June Brigman (pencils), Doug Hazlewood (inks), Mark Gruenwald (editor)

First Posted: 10/17/2021
Last updated: 10/17/2021

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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