Fisherman was created by Nick Cardy and Bob Haney in Aquaman v1 #21 (May 1965).
Major Story Arcs
The Fisherman is an international criminal who began his career by stealing rare objects and scientific inventions and selling them to the highest bidder. When he stole a growth formula capable of enlarging any living matter it came into contact with, he encountered Aquaman who captured him and his gang. He later joined the Terrible Trio along with Karla and Un-Thing but was defeated once again by Aquaman and Mera.
On several further occasions, the Fisherman has clashed with Aquaman; once when the Fisherman was running weapons to Atlantean rebels on behalf of the Shark, then again while the Fisherman was working for Kobra as part of the Serpent-Lord's plans for world conquest - each time Aquaman defeated the Fisherman. The Fisherman has also clashed with Blue Devil and once with the Green Lantern G'nort. He has taken up residence in the villain friendly country of Zandia. He was also one of the many super villain patrons seen in Roulette's illegal meta-human fight clubs.
During InfiniteCrisis Fisherman, Scavenger, Body Doubles, Red Panzer, Riddler, and Murmur attacked the Gotham Police. The Fisherman went on a rampage and killed multiple members of the GCPD and began to strangle Crispus Allen with his titanium alloy rod, but was shot dead by detectives Marcus Driver and Josie McDonald.
The autopsy revealed that he was to young to be the original Fisherman (he was also in jail during the period Fisherman committed his crimes).
Fisherman's identity revealed
Fisherman's mysterious origin was finally revealed in Aquaman: Sword of Atlantis #48 and Aquaman: Sword of Atlantis #49. It's revealed that Fisherman's very distinct yellow with black dots "helmet" is actually a hunter from another dimension. The hunter sent in our dimension by the Masters,dark beings and rulers of the Outside realms (bearing a striking resemblance with the ancient gods H.P Lovecraft made famous) and his mission is to find what can feed the masters in our world, in order to prepare our realm for their invasion.
When he entered our dimension however he was affected by the change and forgot his true purpose, going in a slumber like state, only finding suitable candidates to latch on and grant them the Fisherman's powers. All the individuals chosen by the Fisherman, were already capable themselves in some sort of hunting. His most notable host was a professional munitions trafficker and enemy of Aquaman.
After he was shot during Infinite Crisis, Fisherman found a knew host and remembered his mission and full powers (such as the ability to actually breath and survive underwater, posses low level enhanced physical attributes and the ability to create and control tendrils from his body).
He tried to gather enough denizens of an underwater community in order to satisfy his Masters and open a gate for them in our world but was defeated by Arthur Joseph Curry (the second Aquaman) and thought to be dead. However the Fisherman creature escaped capture and was last seen trying to communicate with his Masters.
In the DC Universe sweeping event Flashpoint, the Fisherman is seen as a crew member of Captain Deathstroke on the ship named the Ravager. The Fisherman, along with Captain Deathstroke and the rest of his crew sail the war ravaged seas searching for the Captain's missing daughter and plundering destroyed civilizations.
It is revealed in Aquaman #24 that the statue of the ruler of one of the seven cities of Atlantis bears a striking resemblance to Fisherman. The statue is of a male wielding a distinct fishing spear and wearing the Fisherman's unique "helmet". Science Elder Koah of Atlantis, a close adviser to king Aquaman also bears Fisherman's distinct "yellow with black dots" pattern on his outfit, but no connection between him and the Fisherman has been revealed so far.
Powers and abilities
Fisherman was originally thought to possess no powers but that was proven to be incorrect. What remained constant however throughout the character's history is that Fisherman is a very skilled, cunning and resourceful adversary.
Enhanced Physical Attributes (Strength, Agility, Durability)
The Fisherman is strong enough to casually hurl Blue Devil (in his armored form, weighing 385 lbs) a long distance after lifting him from the ocean with his titanium rod. He is also strong enough to lift a mini satellite, carry a hoard of treasure 2 of his henchmen struggle with and knock out Arthur Joseph Curry (the second Aquaman) via physical force.
He is also swift enough to snare Crispus Allen (a trained police detective) with his hooks, before he can draw his weapon, which should be much easier (and Allen admits Fisherman is indeed faster).
Fisherman is also durable enough to take direct hits from Blue Devil and Arthur Joseph Curry, without getting knocked out. He notes that "no one on the surface is strong" for that, since he can survive on the ocean floor. In the case however that the host body is fatally wounded, Fisherman will just detach and look for another suitable host.
Fisherman provides its host with the ability to breathe water, function normally underwater and see at the bottom of the sea.
Expert Fisherman / Hunter
Fisherman is extremely skilled at fishing (duh...) and hunting his prey. He is an expert at using his rod, snares and lures and his aim with the rod is virtually unmatched (performing unparalleled feats of accuracy such as snaring Aquaman or Aqualad while they swim at super speed or taking someone's jewelry from their neck with his hook). He claims to have never failed to catch his prey, until he met Aquaman. He was also able to kill multiple GCPD officers and had Crispus Allen at his mercy before he was shot at the back during Infinite Crisis.
Intellect (Experienced Criminal / Mercenary)
Fisherman has been shown as a very cunning and tactical opponent, often preferring not to engage in combat until he is really needed or his opponent is weakened by his traps. He is a very capable planner and criminal (successfully smuggling drugs past the French coastguard or even smuggling weapons in Atlantis to help overthrow Aquaman). He is also very gifted at setting up elaborate deathtraps for his enemies (has successfully captured Aquaman in the past) and a capable leader that has many times employed henchmen to implement his plans.
Fisherman, after remembering who he is, showed the ability to create tendrils out of his body, strong enough to restrain Aquaman and King Shark. Though they can be cut, Fisherman can regrow them effortlessly and has total control over them.
Weaponry & Equipment
Fisherman's helmet grant's its host with a number of superhuman abilities (such as underwater breathing) as described above, and although it has a mind of it'own, it can be controlled by it's host in order to further their plans.
Fisherman's suit is specially designed and provides it's wearer with the ability to move, breathe and function normally underwater (though the Helmet is sufficient on it's own). It also enhances Fisherman's durability and carries his special lures and equipment.
Titanium Alloy Rod
Fisherman's signature weapon is his titanium alloy rod with an unbreakable polymer line. The hooks of the rod are strong enough to injure Aquaman or kill a human in one strike. Fisherman is an expert with this weapon.
Fisherman carries multiple special lures on the belt of his suit, mostly thrown weapons that can be used to hunt or kill even metahuman prey. The types of the lures are:
- Gas Lure (similar to a gas grenade, often helps Fisherman disorient or knock out his enemies)
- Grenade Lure (smaller version of a grenade, same effect)
- Net Lure (lure that deploys a net big enough to restrain a person)
- Torpedo Lure (smaller version of a torpedo, same effect)