One Ginger’s Top Ten List of Red Headed Superheroes (and Villains)

Batgirl Special (1988) DC Comics - Writer: Barbara Randall (Kesel), Penciller: Barry Kitson, Inker: Bruce D. Patterson, Colorist: Carl Gafford, Letterer: John Costanza, Editor: Denny O’Neil, Cover Artist: Mike Mignola

Ever since I was a young girl, galavanting around with flaming red locks, I have sought out role models with a similar genetic mutation as my own. Smitten by red-haired superheroes (and villains), I have a bit of favoritism when it comes to my own comics collection and artwork and action figures … and cosplay.

Not too long ago, I was washing my hands in a public restroom and an old woman stepped out from a stall and stopped to stare at me. “You’re a dying breed y’know!”

I tilted my head and furrowed my brows. I was completely lost. So I just stared back at her, waiting for an explanation.

“Your hair! My grandkids have red hair! I heard on the news that you all are a dying breed. Going extinct.”

Red hair is the rarest hair color among humans and occurs in about three percent of the entire human population. A study from 2007 spread like wildfire on the internet claiming that red hair would no longer exist by 2060. Luckily, this study has since been debunked.

So, in honor of the survival of all Gingers everywhere, here is–

My Top Ten List of Kick-Ass Superheroes and Villains with glorious red (and orange) locks!

Black Cat, Pocket Comics #1 (Aug. 1941) Published by Harvey Comics. Illustrated by artist Al Gabrielle.10. Black Cat (1946)

“Hollywood’s glamorous detective star,” Linda Turner, becomes the Black Cat after she suspects a movie director is a Nazi spy. Using charm and fisticuffs, Black Cat fights for freedom in a super-rad outfit and becomes the “darling of comics.” Classic ginger.

The Woman in Red. Thrilling Comics #25 (Feb.1942). Published by Better/Standard/Nedor; written by Richard Hughes and illustrated by George Mandel & Kin Platt.

 9. Woman in Red (1941)

Frustrated by working within the system, police officer Peggy Allen is one of the first female superheroes. A masked vigilante, she exacts justice in red heels and a red trench coat. Classy and badass.

Lady Mechanika #1. Jan 1, 2011. Artist Joe Benitez and colorist Peter Steigerwald. Publisher Aspen MLT. 8. Commander Winter

She is adversary to Lady Mechanika in the steampunk series by Joe Benitez and Peter Steigerwald. Commander Winter, or Katherine de Winter, works for Lord Blackpool and commands his soldiers. Also on my top ten list of villains to Cosplay!

Poison Ivy #23.1, Nov 2013, Cover ArtistsJason Fabok, Nathan Fairbairn, WritersDerek Fridolfs, DC

 7. Poison Ivy

A classic red-haired villain of DC, Poison Ivy is sensually divine. Surrounded by and exacting great power over plants and the natural world, she is a force to be reckoned with. And, redheads always look good in green.


6. Batgirl

I appreciate early Batgirl’s choice to enter into crime-fighting as totally her own. She was (and still is) fierce and independent. I’m loving how Gail Simone is writing her character; she is a character who resonates with in many ways.

Marvel Chillers featuring Tigra, #6, August 1976, Marvel Comics, Cover Artists Rich Buckler Mike Esposito Danny Crespi Writers Tony Isabella Pencilers John Byrne Inkers Frank Springer Colourists Don Warfield Information-silkLetterers Gaspar Saladino Irv Watanabe Editors Marv Wolfman

5. Tigra

Anytime anyone asks me “if you could be any animal, what you would be?” I reply with “large cat species. I imagine, or would like to imagine, if this were to happen, I would look a bit like Tigra. Me-ow.

Mystique #8, Cover by Mike Mayhew, Written by, Brian K. Vaughan Art by Michael Ryan, Published by Marvel.

4. Mystique

Delightfully manipulative and fearless, Mystique’s slicked back red locks and bare footed acrobatics are captivating. Her presence on the page and in the films is glorious.

batwoman 26 cover

 3. Batwoman

Ex-military and tough as hell, New 52 Batwoman has changed a lot since the beginning of her vigilante shenanigans when she used lipstick and foundation compacts as her weapons of choice.

red sonja #6, Dynamite Comics, Dec 2013, Gail Simone, Walter Geovani, Jenny Frison Cover

 2. Red Sonja

Warrior Ginger! Known as one of the sexiest women in comics, Red Sonja hacks and slashes her way through the panels in her iconic scale mail bikini. How she manages to do all this while keeping everything in place is miraculous.

Uncanny Xmen #135 July (1990), written by Chris Claremont with art by Dave Cockrum and John Byrne.

 1. Dark Phoenix

The ultimate red haired force in comics. I am very attached to Jean’s identity as Dark Phoenix, as she was one of my first comic idols as a young girl. As a bit of an angsty teen/young adult, I reveled in her pain and power. My love for Dark Phoenix never left.

Sorry, Doctor. You didn’t quite make the list.

Also check out: Top Ten Redheads, Anime Edition.

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Ashley Schmuecker

Ashley Schmuecker

Ashley has a graduate degree in conflict resolution from Portland State, where she taught a course using comic books to explore peace education. In her spare time enjoys the Elder Scrolls series, the Doctor, writing short stories, and playing with her puppies Harli Quinn and Loki.

3 thoughts on “One Ginger’s Top Ten List of Red Headed Superheroes (and Villains)

  1. I”m with ya chica. Except for the order your list is very good. You forgot about the Medusa, Queen of the Inhumans, wielder of prehensile hair and Mother Russia’s Soviet Super Spy the Black Widow.

    1. There are a surprising number of super bad ass superheroes and villains with red hair. Almost forgot about Black Widow. Super fun.

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