Red Sonja was first introduced in 1973 within Marvel Comics popular adaptation of author Robert E. Howard's fantasy hero Conan the Barbarian. After headlining a story arc in the comic Marvel Feature the fire haired heroine was given her own comic in 1977.
Marvel's Red Sonja, the "she-devil with a sword," is loosely inspired by "Red Sonya of Rogatino," a character introduced by Howard in his story The Shadow of the Vulture. Unlike Howard's creation, Marvel's Sonja resides in the same "sword and sorcery" milieu as Conan, living as a mercenary and adventurer. Over the years, she has been the subject of numerous interpretations, including a 1985 film starring Bridgette Nielson.