Who Is Starro The Conqueror (And Why You Should Fear Him)
James Gunn’s ‘Suicide Squad’ has received its first trailer. The upcoming remake/reboot/sequel promises tons of R-Rated action lead by Gunn’s trademark black humor. And with this trailer came a kaiju sized reveal. It would appear that the big bad of ‘Suicide Squad’ will be Starro The Conqueror!
Fans of DC comics would have recognized the five pointed supervillain immediately. However less initiated members of the community may have some serious questions.
Who or what is Starro the Conqueror?
Simply put, Starro is a hyper intelligent alien starfish. The character made his debut in ‘The Brave and the Bold’, an ongoing DC comics run, in the 1960s. With his enormous size, incredible psychic abilities and the ability to spawn millions of spores, Starro represents a significant threat to the world. However, fortunately for the world, Starro is generally no match for the combined forces of the Justice League.
But Why a Starfish?
Coming off the huge success of movies in the 1950s, monsters were in vogue. From ‘Godzilla’ to the original ‘The Thing (From Outerspace)’, monsters, especially huge ones were incredibly popular. Consequently, it is no surprise, when picking a design for the latest bad guy, that DC writers made this decision.
Biologically speaking, having a supervillain starfish makes sense from a narrative point of view as well. Nothing takes readers out of a story quite like an improbable return from the grave. Thankfully Starro has the ability to reproduce asexually. This gives him the uncanny ability to cheat death time and time again after nursing himself back to full strength.
How big of a threat could a gift shop souvenir actually be?
Considering that he has all the strength and durability you would expect from a monster his size, Starro is already a force to be reckoned with. Additionally, when you consider that he can regenerate himself as long as one piece survives, you almost have an unstoppable killing machine.
However, Starro’s greatest weapon lies in his mind rather than his body. Even the Green Lantern is no match for Starro’s psychic talents. On a whim, he can spawn thousands of smaller duplicates of himself which, once bonded, allow him to control and prey upon their victims. Imagine Godzilla is attacking your city and unleashes a swarm of Xenomorph face huggers.
That all seems bad, how would you even beat something like Starro?
The answer is simple; you beat Starro though narrative devices. For example, in his first appearance, Starro was defeated by a largely forgettable Justice League sidekick named Snapper Carr. Carr’s body was covered in quicklime which, thankfully, rendered him immune to Starro’s powers. In other words, if you find yourself going up against Starro, chances are there is a heretofore unknown plot device that will give you the upper hand.
At the end of the day, comic book fans can rejoice as DC begins to embrace the weirder parts of the DCU. Starro is just the tip of the iceberg for strange and powerful villains to pit their heroes against.