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"Scarlet" as a name has always invoked an air of passion and sensuality. Usually a female-oriented trope, the name "Scarlet" (sometimes with two T's) often denotes a woman with a fiery, indomitable personality and complicated morality. If she's a hero, she'll be on the aggressive side. If she's a villain, she's almost never straightforwardly evil. As one can expect, she is often a Lady in Red and/or a Fiery Redhead, especially if "Scarlet" is actually a nickname or codename.
While male examples exist (Captain Scarlet and The Scarlet Pimpernel come to mind), they usually have a much different feel, playing up the boldness of the color red rather than any direct sexualization.
- Scarlett O'Hara from Gone with the Wind, possibly the Trope Codifier.
- The Scarlet Witch from Marvel Comics.
- Scarlett, the most well-known female hero from G.I. Joe. Her backstory is an homage to Gone with the Wind, as her birth name is Shanna O'Hara and she's from Atlanta.
- The sultry Miss Scarlet from Clue.
- Miss Scarlet from Perry Moore's Hero, a superheroine with fire powers to match her temper.
- On The Critic, Jay's boss Duke meets Alice's Southern Belle sister Miranda at a costume ball and is instantly smitten with her, nicknaming her Scarlet.
- The vampires Remilia and Flandre Scarlet from the sixth Touhou game, Embodiment of Scarlet Devil
- Erza Scarlet from Fairy Tail. Her last name was chosen for her by Jellal because of her red hair.
- The Scarlet Empress, one of the primary villains in Exalted.
- Real Life example: Famed sex worker advocate Carol Leigh, aka "Scarlot Harlot"
- While not the name of a person, The Scarlet Letter invoked this trope in its title as far back as 1850.
- Final Fantasy VII's Scarlet, who is a mid-level villainess, a Corrupt Corporate Executive and a Lady in Red.
- Scarlet's Walk is an album by Tori Amos where the character, Scarlet, travels the U.S. post 9/11.
- Freezing's Dr. Scarlet Ohara, who's willing to do anything to save the world including knowingly (if extremely reluctantly) setting up her teenage human test subjects to die to ensure funding for her real project.