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Personal information

Real Name:  Paul Kirk

Residence: Empire City, New York
Occupation:  Hunter, animal expert, adventurer
First Appearance (Golden Age): Adventure Comics #73 (April 1942)
First Appearance (Post-Golden Age): All_Star Squadron #13 (September 1982)

Character History

Little is known of the early life of Paul Kirk in the Earth-Two timeline.  Another Paul Kirk, called a Manhunter, also operated in this time frame but whether the two are connected is unclear (Adventure Comics #58-72).  By 1942, Paul Kirk (sometimes operating under the psuedonym or stage name Rick Nelson) had become a world traveler and game hunter, notably in Africa.  His exploits had been covered in the popular media and had garnered him a following back in the United States.  He returned him early that year to Empire City, a borough of New York on Earth-Two.

One evening while entertaining in his home, a radio broadcast interrupted the festivities with new of The Buzzard, a costumed criminal who recently been terrorizing New York.  One of the guests at the party of was Detective Donovan with local police and a good friend of Kirk's.  Donovan became enraged at the Buzzard's audacity and left him immediately to confront him at the station.  While tempted to go with him, Kirk ultimately decided to remain with his guests.

Later, Kirk learned from the evening news that the Buzzard had ambushed Donovan and his men, killing all of them.  Enraged at the loss of his friend, Kirk resolves to use his huntsman skills to avenge his friend and bring the Buzzard in.  He develops a uniform that is sleek and maneuverable and adopts the code-name Manhunter.

The Manhunter tracked the Buzzard, cornering him at the estate of an elderly matron who had once shown pity to the tramp that Buzzard had once been. Before he can murder the widow, the Manunter manages to subdues his gang and leave him trussed him outside the city jail.  He chooses from that point forward to maintain his identity as the Manhunter and afterwards used his true name, Paul Kirk (Adventure Comics #73). His reputation early on is sufficient to attract the attention of the All-Star Squadron and he joined their ranks shortly thereafter (All_Star Squadron #31).

For the next two years, the Manhunter was a fixture around Empire City. While many of his cases involved conventional criminals, some employed sophisticated scientific weapons such as Mr. Meek (Adventure Comics #75) or were gangsters with exaggerated personas such as the Tiger (Adventure Comics #78).  Like most patriotic heroes of the era, he encounters Nazi agents whom he promptly repels (Adventure Comics #79, 85 and 92).   Because of his experience with animals and the circles he runs in, one of the most common characteristic of his cases is the involvement of animals.  This includes targeting trafficking in stolen animals (Adventure Comics #81), criminals using animals to commit crimes (Adventure Comics #83)  and even criminals using animals to attempt the murder of the Manhunter (Adventure Comics #85).  A well-traveled individual, Manhunter's cases took him abroad to places like the Bahamas (Adventure Comics #89) and Alaska (Adventure Comics #88). In one of his more remarkable cases, a trip to the Amazon brought him to contact with a man prone to fits of primitivism that turns him into a raging caveman (Adventure Comics #87).

The last recorded activities of the Manhunter on Earth-Two occurred in 1944.  While it has been rumored that he moved or was displaced to Earth-One, this has never been confirmed.  The final fate of the Earth-Two Manhunter remains unresolved.

Powers and Abilities

Paul Kirk was an Olympic level athlete with superb hand to hand combat skills.  He possessed peak human strength speed and agility and was one of the finest marksmen in the world.  He was a supremely talented hunter, with outstanding tracking skills and a deep knowledge of animal behavior.  He possessed considerable wealth due to the publicity afforded his safaris (enough to maintain his own zoo) that was used to finance his activities as the Manhunter.

Weaknesses and Limitations

Separated from his equipment, The Manhunter was a mortal man who could be killed or injured as such.

Multiversity Villains



The origins of Paul Kirk in the Earth-One timeline remain unclear.  It has been speculated that this Paul Kirk is in fact the Earth-Two version but this has not been proven conclusively.  The Manhunter in this timeline did have a career as a costumed adventurer with a largely similar uniform and MO as the Earth-Two version but there may have been  a similar individual on Earth-One.

What is known is that in the late 1940's, Paul Kirk abandoned his costumed identity and returned to his past time of hunting in Africa.  There he startled a bull elephant who killed Kirk but his body was recovered by an elusive group known as the Council. Using it's materials, the cloned a collection of Manhunter agents, expanding on Kirk's excellent genetics to further enhance his speed and reflexes.  The Council also subjected the clones to psychological conditioning, turning them into perfect agents of the Council's will to  manipulate the global order to their benefit.

Manhunter E1

In the 1970's, one of the clone's broke free of his conditioning and began to operate independently to thwart the Council.  He eventually recruited several Allies and along with Batman, stormed the Council's enclave.  The Council was destroyed in an explosion instigated by the Manhunter, who died in the blast (Detective Comics #437-443).   Several of the clones remained active, including one who infiltrated the Secret Society of Super-Villains and was killed stopped Darkseid (Secret Society of Super-Villains #1-5).  While Kirk's allies were committed to eliminating the clones, whether they full succeeded is unknown.  In the later 1970's, a sect of Manhunter's emerged influenced by a race of androids originally created by the Guardians of the Universe (First Issue Special #5, Justice League of America #140-141). .  Their appearance mimics  Paul Kirk's original uniform but precise connections between Kirk and the Manhunters in the Earth-One timeline are undefined. 

In the post-Crisis Timeline, the history of the Manhunter is amalgam of Earth-Two and Earth-One.  In this time line, the android Manhunters have manipulating Earth events throughout history, masquerading as a cult of warrior-philosophers.  Paul Kirk learns of their sect during the 1940's and imitates them to create his heroic identity. He is also killed in Africa in 1946, leading the rise of the Council's army of clones and his own eventual death (Secret Origins Vol. 2 #22).


The early history of Paul Kirk in the Earth-22 timeline are thought to be largely the same as the Earth-Two version.  Whether a Manhunter cult exists in the Earth-22 continuity has not been revealed.  In the later days of World War II, Kirk was operating with the Office of Strategic Services behind Axis lines.  When the Ultra-Humanite allied himself with the Axis in his Delores Winters form, the Manhunter was set in pursuit.  He learned that the Humanite had captured two other agents, Tex Thompson, the Americommando and Dan the Dynamite and used his brain transference surgery on them.  He took the body of Tex Thomspon and Adolph Hitler's brain was transferred to Dan the Dynamite.  Witnessing the post-surgical events, the Manhunter was nearly killed by the Ultra-Humanite and left with amnesia and vivid nightmares. 

He was eventually found by Thompson's friend Bob Daley and his memories restored with the assistance of hypnosis.  When the two villains were ultimately revealed, a battle royale took place in Washington D.C. as the All-Star Squadron and the Justice Society battled the super-powered Dynaman containing Hitler's brain.  When the Ultra-Humanite in Thompson's body attempted to escape, he was intercepted by the Manhunter who drove him through a high story window, killing him.  Paul Kirk this disappeared into the jungle of Africa where his final fate is unknown (The Golden Age LS).

Golden Age Appearances of  the Manhunter