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Aura is introduced as Emperor Ming's evil daughter, who at first fell in love with Flash Gordon, but still aided her father to defeat his enemies so she can have Flash all for herself. She tries to kill Dale Arden but the latter is saved by Gordon, and Aura is reprimanded by Prince Barin, having allied himself with Flash, and making her regret all the hurt she caused and rebel against Ming. After her father apparent death, she became the new ruler of Mongo with Barin as her new consort for a short period of relative peace, before her father's emergence, who exiled her alongside Barin to his old kingdom of Arboria. She later becomes friends with both Flash and Dale.
Alex Raymond created the character of Princess Aura for use in King Features Syndicate comic strips, as well as the future movies and television shows.
The character of Princess Aura appears in both the first and the third of the Flash Gordon cliffhanger serials, in 1936. She does not appear in the second serial, whose location is set on Mars, not the planet Mongo, Aura's home world. Priscilla Lawson does an excellent job as a mostly evil Princess Aura in the first serial, constantly trying to take Flash away from his beloved Dale Arden. (She is convinced by Prince Barin to help Flash and Dale toward the end of the first serial.)
Shirley Deane takes over the part of Princess Aura in the final serial, Flash Gordon Conquers the Universe and by the third serial her character and Prince Barin are married. Aura is cast as a good character for the entire third serial, though she plays much less of an important role than she did in the first serial.
Meanwhile, the 1980 Flash Gordon film cast Ornella Muti as Princess Aura. Her character is roughly the same, still fawning over Flash Gordon and defying her fathers wishes.
In the 2007 Sci Fi Channel Flash Gordon series Princess Aura is played by Anna van Hooft.