A Red Sonja Cover Gallery V:

This is the fifth installment in our Red Sonja themed cover galleries, continuing from the first gallery. Below, we present ten selected covers from various comic books, which feature Red Sonja with snakes. In the Hyborian Age of R.E. Howard, snakes were associated with Set, the serpent-god of the Stygian people. Snakes were regarded as evil, in part because human sacrifice was a regular ritual to appease Set.

Editor's note: There are many Red Sonja covers which include serpents. It was difficult to winnow the list down to ten. Our admittedly subjective choices were based upon aesthetic appeal and the diversity of both titles and artists. Some excellent snake-filled covers were omitted.


  • title: Red Sonja: She-Devil with a Sword (1977)
  • publisher: Marvel
  • cover artist: Frank Thorne
  • writer: Roy Thomas and Clara Noto
  • artist: Frank Thorne
  • issue: #8 of 15
  • release date: March, 1978
  • story: Vengeance of the Golden Circle!
  • commentary: From the beginning, the fortunes of Red Sonja caused her to cross paths with gigantic serpents of malignant intent. In this cover by Frank Thorne, her foe is a cobra.

    As an addendum, there are a few other galleries of notable Red Sonja covers that feature serpents, including
    • Neves: #5
    • Renaud: #4
    • Rafael: #9
    • Russell's Red Sonja (2019): #18


  • title: Red Sonja: She-Devil with a Sword (2005)
  • publisher: Dynamite
  • cover artist: Michael Turner
  • writer: Michael Avon Oeming with Mike Carey
  • artists: Mel Rubi
  • issue: #01 of 80
  • release date: June, 2005
  • cover: A cover
  • commentary: When Dynamite acquired the license to Red Sonja, they placed Red Sonja with a serpent on the A cover of the first issue of what would become the definitive 80-issue run.


  • title: Red Sonja: She-Devil with a Sword (2005)
  • publisher: Dynamite
  • cover artist: Homs
  • writers: Michael Avon Oeming & Brian Reed
  • artist: HOMS
  • issue: #29 of 80
  • release date: January, 2008
  • cover: C variant
  • commentary: Red Sonja traveled in the company of fellow adventurers from time to time, but remained essentially a solitary hero. This confrontation on a rocky pinnacle epitomizes her individual struggle against monstrous forces.


  • title: Sword of Red Sonja: Doom of the Gods (2007)
  • publisher: Dynamite
  • cover artist: Paul Renaud
  • writer: Luke Lieberman
  • artist: Lui Antonio
  • issue: #2 of 4
  • release date: October, 2007
  • cover: A cover
  • commentary: Paul Renaud has at least one other snake-themed Red Sonja Cover (Red Sonja: She-Devil with a Sword (Dynamite, 2005) #52A). We debated between which of the two to include in this survey. Both present the Red Sonja-serpent relationship in a unique light. We offer no compelling argument that this cover from Doom of the Gods is superior to the other.


  • title: Red Sonja / Conan (2015)
  • publisher: Dynamite
  • cover artist: Roberto Castro
  • writer: Victor Gischler
  • artist: Roberto Castro
  • issue: #1 of 4
  • release date: August, 2015
  • cover: C variant
  • commentary: Conan also recurringly fought giant snakes. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that in one their cross-over arcs, Red Sonja and Conan should battle an ophidian foe together.


  • title: Savage Tales (2007)
  • publisher: Dynamite
  • cover artist: Pablo Marcos
  • writers: Joshua Ortega, Doug Murray, Mike Raicht & Luke Lieberman
  • artists: Walter Geovani, Diego Bernard, Pere Perez & Noah Salonga
  • issue: #5 of 10
  • release date: December, 2007
  • cover: B variant
  • commentary: This cover by Pablo Marcos captures Red Sonja in the coils of a great snake. It is only that last, desperate killing blow that frees her from death by constriction.


  • title: Queen Sonja (2009)
  • publisher: Dynamite
  • cover artist: Frank Martin Jr.
  • writer: Luke Lieberman
  • artist: Milton Estevam
  • issue: #28 of 35
  • release date: April, 2012
  • cover: B variant
  • commentary: This cover by Frank Martin depicts Red Sonja astride the snake as it thrashes under her relentless assault. She appears ill-prepared for its retaliatory attack, but such is the nature of combat for Red Sonja. Some combination of mortal agility and divine protection of the goddess to whom she has pledged her service will manage to deflect the fatal strike. As an aside, this is not the only issue of Queen Sonja with a snake featured prominently on the cover. The B variant of issue 16 by Carlos Rafael should not go without mention.

    We have featured covers by Frank Martin Jr. in galleries with various themes, including
    • Serpents: #7
    • 2008: #7
    • 2011 & 2012: #9


  • title: Red Sonja (2013)
  • publisher: Dynamite
  • cover artist: Nei Ruffino
  • writers: Gail Simone
  • artist: Walter Geovani
  • issue: #8 of 18
  • release date: March, 2014
  • cover: B variant
  • commentary: Because some species of snakes have adapted to marine and riparian environments, Red sonja has had several occasions to battle serpents in various bodies of water.


  • title: Red Sonja (2016)
  • publisher: Dynamite
  • cover artist: John Royle
  • writers: Amy Chu & Erik Burnham
  • artist: Carlos Gomez
  • issue: #18 of 25
  • release date: July, 2018
  • cover: E variant
  • commentary: There were a couple excellent snake-themed covers from Amy Chu's rendition of Red Sonja. In particular, Jan Duursema's cover for issues #11B also merited serious consideration for this gallery. Ultimately, this vision of Red Sonja dealing death to her serpentine foe in the midst of a great conflagration seemed like a natural cover to follow the previous water-themed image.


  • title: Red Sonja (2019)
  • publisher: Dynamite
  • cover artist: José Varese
  • writer: Mark Russell
  • artist: Mirko Colak
  • issue: #1 of 28
  • release date: February, 2019
  • cover: Retailer Exclusive: Power ComicCon 2019
  • commentary: The tradition of virgin variant exclusives seems to include presenting Red Sonja in ways that are not essentially connected to her role in either the specific book on the cover of which they appear or, sometimes, in general. This cover somewhat humorously portrays Red Sonja, replete in furred-lined boots, in an amiable relationship with two cobras. We are not aware of any narrative, which might substantiate this alliance.

    We have featured covers by José Varese in galleries with various themes, including
    • Serpents: #10
    • Red Sonja (2021): #9
    • Pseudo Sonja: #10

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