Two characters have gone by the name the Red Tornado. Both were published by DC Comics.

The first appeared in All-American Comics as a supporting character. The main character, Scribbly Jibbet, had a friend named Huey. Huey's mother was one Mathilda "Ma" Hunkle. When a criminal protection racket threatened the neighborhood where Ma Hunkle had her grocery store, she took inspiration from Scribbly and Huey's hero the Green Lantern and created her own costumed identity to fight crime. Donning a pair of red underwear, a cape, and using a sauce pan for a helmet, Ma Hunkle became the Red Tornado.

The Red Tornado had a distinguished career as a hero. She was joined by her daughter Sisty and her daughter's friend Dinky in the identities as the Cyclone Kids in her battle against crime. She was even given membership in the Justice Society of America.

The second character to use the name Red Tornado was an intelligent tornado from the planet Rann. Known then as the Tornado Tyrant, this creature learned heroism from the Earth man, Adam Strange. The Tornado Tyrant was eventually put into an android body by the scientist T.O. Morrow and the process took its memory from it. Sent to attack the Justice League of America, the android relented, becoming the hero the Red Tornado.

The second Red Tornado adopted a human identity as John Smith and eventually married and adopted a child. Over the past years, the Red Tornado has been destroyed on a number of occasions, to be return later. It has been revealed that the Red Tornado is the Earth's air elemental and currently it acts as the mentor for Young Justice.