Is Arrow about the become the most comics-faithful* show on TV? Because when you start casting the likes of Ted Grant, a/k/a Wildcat, it’s clear your show wants to play around with some of the deep cuts of the DCU.
Deadline reports that Emily Owens and Power star J.R. Ramirez has been cast as the boxer-turned-superhero for the third season of CW’s Arrow. Ramirez’s version of the character will act as a boxing instructor to at-risk youth in Starling City, and somehow his mysterious past will prove important to Laurel Lance’s arc for the upcoming season.
If I had to make a guess, I’d say that Grant would serve as a fighting instructor and possible mentor to Lance (Katie Cassidy). It’s not an unusual role for the founding member of the Justice Society of America, where, under writer Geoff Johns, he helped develop the combat skills of the next generation of superheroes.
Ramirez might be a little young for the grizzled, tough-as-leather take from the comics – a retired heavyweight champ who would sometimes team up with Batman to punch evil in the face. Depending on the continuity, he was either a really tough fighter who dressed up in a big cat costume (pictured above) or a really tough old fighter who dressed up in a cat costume with nine magic lives.
This isn’t the first time we’ve gotten Wildcat on TV: the character made several appearances in the animated Justice League Unlimited voiced by the late, great Dennis Farina.
* For the record, I’m calling Justice League Unlimited the gold standard of comics-to-the-screen adaptations.