One of the major features of the Marvel shows on Netflix is our superheroes are surrounded by a very normal reality. (Or at least normal for them.) Matt Murdock's friends are all lawyers and reporters, Luke Cage hangs out in barber shops, Frank Castle befriends people from the construction site, and Jessica Jones has her family and the people in her building. Jessica's family may be adopted, but so far they are as non-superhero as Foggy or Karen. This season, this may change. Does Trish have powers in the Jessica Jones comics? Would the show bring them to the small screen to make her Jessica's useful sidekick?
In the world of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, there are two kinds of superheroes. Jessica Jones is the kind who falls into the "Captain America" category, a powered person who was made into a superhero via some sort of experimentation. The other kind is the "Tony Stark" category, those who use innate talents and a supreme effort of will to make themselves on the level of a powered person. With Tony, he uses his technology. Others in this category, like Matt Murdock, use his heightened senses and a whole lot of skill honing to turn themselves into deadly weapons.
In the comics, Trish falls into the "Tony Stark" category. She uses the natural gymnastics skills she was born with and hones them down until she becomes able to leap buildings and kick bad guys in the head. Unlike Jessica, she likes the idea of a costume and a persona, and nicknames her superhero alter ego "Hellcat."
Patsy Had Her Own Comic
In the original comics, Trish was actually a standalone character. The original "Patsy Walker" was actually a redheaded teen, not a superhero at all, in a 1940s comic, as part of a "teen comedy" soap opera-style series. She wasn't connected to the Marvel superhero universe at all until after she'd graduated high school and moved on to romantic soap type stories, when she had a cameo with her comics BFF Hedy in a Fantastic Four story in the 1960s.
Patsy As Hellcat
By the time the 1970s rolled around these sorts of soap opera comics had become defunct, but one of the writers had been a fan of her series and decided to revive the character as part of The Avengers in 1975, as an assistant to X-Men's Beast. She took over from an earlier character known as "The Cat" and became "Hellcat."
Hellcat Was A Defender In Her Own Right
A couple of years on, they moved her over to The Defenders, where she meets supernatural adventurer Daimon Hellstrom, and falls in love. They marry and go on to have quite a few adventures both in The Defenders universe and in The Avengers comics. (Fun fact: during Civil War, Walker is Team Iron Man and willingly registers herself.) But eventually, Hellstrom's supernatural powers eventually drive her mad, and finally to death.
Trish Can Be A Badass
Since then she's been resurrected a few times, but mostly fell by the wayside until the MCU decided to pick her up as part of Jessica's story. Since she's actually a standalone character, with the possibility to pull out a superhero persona from the comics, should the show decide she needs one, is why she's the secondary lead in the show.
Will Trish Take Up The Hellcat Mantle?
Fans have been wondering and waiting to see if Trish, now a blonde with a Patsy red wig and child star origins which semi-line-up to her 1940s comic persona, would indeed find a reason to go to the Hellcat side. So far, her job as Jessica's adopted sister has been the damsel in distress. But this season's promotional pictures all show her taking control of her situation. Could donning Hellcat's signature black and yellow suit be far behind?