Comic Book Questions Answered – where I answer whatever questions you folks might have about comic books (feel free to e-mail questions to me at firstname.lastname@example.org).
Reader James T. wrote in to ask why the Scarlet Witch was called "Scarlet Witch" if she was not drawn wearing scarlet at first?
Here is the first time that we ever saw Scarlet Witch on a comic book, she was on the cover of X-Men #4....
Yes, that is, indeed, a green costume.
She was also shown with a green costume on the next cover...
However, in the story within X-Men #4, here is what her costume looked like...
I dunno, that counts as "scarlet," right? So the question is less whether she never wore scarlet back in the 1960s, but more why she wore the green costume on those covers. I covered this in an old Comic Book Legends Revealed, but I figure it could be addressed here.
The main thing to remember is how comic book production worked back then. In the Golden Age of Comics, there was a real "getting things done by the seat of our pants" attitude to comic book production. Entire comic books were done over weekends back in the day! By the Silver Age, things were obviously much different (paper to create comic books were not as rare as they were in the Golden Age - back in those days, if paper became available, you got something on to it as it was hard to get paper and it was like printing money back in the Golden Age) but a lot of the production of comic books were still done in a way that would shock readers today.
In the early days of the Marvel Universe, Stan Goldberg, who drew the teen humor comics like Patsy Walker and Millie the Model, was also Marvel's unofficial official colorist. Goldberg had a true free hand when it came to coloring costumes. He basically could do whatever he thought would make for a good cover.
So how does that explain the green?