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The Suicide Squad: The Powers and Origin of Starro Explained

Al hail James Gunn. The Suicide Squad is here and the critics are loving it as of now. It’s not easy to criticize a James Gunn film, especially when it includes a Guardians of the Galaxy type team. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not comparing. But Gunn’s Suicide Squad is a ragtag team of misfits which we all love to see. Many anti-heroes had to go against a rather odd villain – Starro. It’s a giant Starfish that is up to no good. That’s Gunn for you. He has previously revealed that ever since he was a kid, he was a fan of Starro and couldn’t help but include him. So let’s talk about the Powers and Origin of Starro. Let’s go!

Powers and Origin of Starro

Starro is no ordinary villain. He’s titled Starro the Conqueror and he’s a unique hybridization of two alien species – one parasitic and one psychic. The villain can control people through the use of starfish-like spores, which we’ve seen in the trailer. Originally, Starro was a Justice League villain. Starro’s starfish spores can expand in size, which is why we’ve seen a giant size Starfish in the trailers too. Also, this will be Starro’s first encounter with the Suicide Squad.

Starro is the result of an experiment called Project Starfish. As mentioned above, the giant Starfish has psychic abilities. As The Thinker joins in the latter part of the film, it’s shown that he is specifically recruited to help others in stopping Starro. An important reminder – this is a team of pure misfits and conflicts arise naturally. So when you’re going up against a villain that can turn your members against you, then you need someone with the same force. Apart from this, Starro represents Gunn’s love for retro-themed colors and odd villains.

Why is Starro Fighting The Suicide Squad?

Powers and Origin of Starro

One might ask, why is the giant starfish going up against a team of misfits? Well, the answer to this question actually lies in the comics and it’s obscure. During one of his more progressed invasions, DCEU’s strongest heroes – the Justice League – refused to fight him. They had a solid reason for this. The reason why they hesitated is that they were afraid that Starro would use his psychic powers and take advantage of the strongest heroes. He could easily use them for his own benefit.

There is where the D-list of villains comes in. When you don’t want to risk your heroes, you don’t hesitate in sacrificing your villains. Moreover, Starro wouldn’t have much to gain from the anti-heroes. So the team is deployed to take care of the giant starfish because even if they die, you didn’t lose a hero but a bad guy which is something you can handle. Starro, with its pseudo-Lovecraftian inhumanity is void of sympathetic qualities. He can cause personal dilemmas and destruction on both small and large scales. So he’s truly an antagonist even the antagonists would want to fight.

Why James Gunn Chose Starfish

Powers and Origin of Starro

Did you ever wonder why Gunn chose Starro to be the villain? A giant starfish obviously seems less frightening when it comes to a villain like the Enchantress in 2016’s Suicide Squad. Well, this is where James Gunn stands out. He chose Starro for a particular reason. One of the main reasons why Starro came to the big screen is because it’s big, scary, and colorful.

Gunn, during his interview with EW said:

“I know he’s a big pink-and-cerulean-blue starfish, but I thought he was terrifying. There’s something about the way Starro attached to people’s faces that was just so scary to me. And this was before Alien, you know. He was so scary to me, and creepy, and also just so big and colorful and completely Jeff Koons-comic-booky that I thought it was a fun villain to deal with.”

Gunn’s interest in interferential beings is unparalleled. Even before Guardians of the Galaxy, his debut Slither also dealt with alien parasites. His choice of villains actually compliments his choice of protagonists too. For general trivia, Starro is a supervillain who made his debut in an issue of the Brave and the Bold comic, in 1960. Of course, he’s fought Justice League of America, Suicide Squad, and scared our very own James Gunn. What do you think of Starro as the villain? Did James Gunn pull off a good job? Let us know in the comments.

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