Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The original Crimson Avenger premiered in Detective Comics #20 (predating the appearance of that title's most famous character, Batman, who debuted in #27). He was a wealthy newsman named Lee Travis who took up the identity of the Crimson Avenger to battle crime. He had many similarities to the Green Hornet, including a sidekick named Wing who was an Asian valet and a gas gun that he used to subdue opponents. He initially dressed in a red trenchcoat, a fedora, and a red mask covering his face; except for the red, he was visually similar to The Shadow. Later, when superheroes became more popular than costumed vigilantes, his costume was changed to a more standard superhero outfit.
The second Crimson Avenger made a single appearance, in World's Finest Comics #131 (February 1963), in a story entitled "The Mystery of the Crimson Avenger". Eccentric inventor Albert Elwood adopted the guise and attempted to help Superman, Batman and Robin thwart the robberies of the Octopus Gang. After the requisite identity confusion when one of the gang members assumed the Crimson's identity, Elwood did help the heroes capture the gang, and retired right afterward. He did mention that he had "taken the name of a former lawman," meaning the by-then long defunct original Crimson.
More recently, a third Crimson Avenger appeared. This character is an African American woman who obtains a pair of Colt pistols originally owned by the first Crimson Avenger. For reasons that have yet to be revealed, she is cursed to track and kill those who have taken innocent life using her power of teleportation. She gains the memories and skills of those whose deaths she is avenging. Her guns never miss, never run out of ammunition, and have no triggers.
Fairly recently, the Crimson Avenger (possibly the Lee Travis version of him) is a member of the Justice League Unlimited.
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