The Woman in Red (WIR) was really police officer Peggy Allen. Disgusted after seeing how criminals were getting away from normal law enforcement she decided to do something about it. Thus becoming The Woman in Red.
Peggy’s usual method was to investigate first where the crime was taking place. She did this by taking a roll that would let her blend in, such as a student, nurse, or actress. After gathering the clues she needed she would strike as the Woman in Red.
WIR had no special powers or training, but was a very good actress, investigator, an excellent shot with her .45 automatic, and she was good in a fight. Basically she did the same thing as Batman only without the gadgets and while wearing heels.
The WIR first appearance in the comic book Thrilling Comics #2. This comic came out one month after Fantomah appeared in Jungle Comics #2. This would not make the WIR the first female crime fighter but most defiantly one of the first female crime fighters. It is because Fantomah transformed herself to a blue woman with a scull face that the WIR is considered to be the first female "Masked" superhero. It is probably due to the attractiveness of this superhero that makes many believe she if the first female superhero and make the distinction of her being the first female "masked" Superhero. After all a blue skinned woman with a skull face is not as attractive. Besides it is always stated correctly that she came before Wonder Woman but Wonder Woman didn't wear a mask either.
Originally produced by Nedor Comics the WIR is a golden age hero and has become public domain due to copyright and trademark laws. It is for this reason that the WIR has been written about by other comic companies like America's Best Comics and Dynamite Entertainment. These new stories stick with most of her Golden Aged origins but some make small changes. Most Golden aged origins are kept when a comic company tries to revive a character but then branch out in different ways from that point like a fork. So, the charters all have a very similar or exact origin stories but a completely different career from their counterparts who are written about in the other comic companies.
Due to the WIR going into public domain she has evolved into several different versions of the character.
In America's Best Comics
the WIR finds an unusual ruby crystal that gives her the powers of flight and the ability to shoot energy blasts. She unfortunately finds out that it also changes her skin to a ruby color as well. In a sense become the Red Woman instead of the Woman in Red. Embarrassed by the change in her skin pigmentation she hides her skin as much as possible with clothes. She eventually become comfortable with her new look and decides to be comfortable in her own skin. She even ends up wearing a bathing suit style costume revealing even more skin.
The WIR along with many other heroes become a part of a program were they are placed in suspended animation for thirty years in 1969. They are released by Tom Strong and have to deal with the new environment around them.
The Woman in Red appeared in several comics published by AC Comics as a member of the Sentinels of Liberty. She made on appearance in the short-lived Fighting Yank comic, where she was knocked out by the villainess Titanica, who stole her costume to use as a disguise. The real Woman In Red was later discovered bound and gagged in a broom closet.
WIR also appeared in several issues of FemForce.
Dynamite Entertainment Comics
In Dynamite Entertainment Comics the WIR is relatively unchanged form her original conception. She is however trapped in the Urn of Pandora by a misguided Fighting Yank and released about sixty years later. She also has to struggle with a world that has changed just as her counterpart in America's Best Comics.
In this new time she is teamed up with similar heroes known as the Scarlet Sisters. Among them are the Woman In Red, Lady Satan and Masquerade A.K.A. Miss Masque.