- "Have you come to save me from that madman? Thirty years he's kept me here, tortured me, had his way with me!"
- ―Starro to Task Force X[src]
Starro the Conqueror, or simply Starro, was a gigantic, starfish-like extraterrestrial being imprisoned in Jotunheim in Corto Maltese and the primary subject of Project Starfish. During its imprisoned years, Starro was tortured by the hyper-intelligent scientist Gaius Grieves.
After it was targeted for termination by Task Force X, it went on a rampage across the city of Valle Del Mar, using its girth and mind-controlling spores to cause havoc. In response, Task Force X confronted Starro ending with its death at the hands of an army of rats.
- 1 Biography
- 2 Personality
- 3 Powers and abilities
- 4 Relationships
- 5 Behind the scenes
- 6 References
- 7 External links
- "American goddamn astronauts found Starro. Yankee-fucking-doodle dandies."
- ―Thinker to Rick Flag[src]
Starro lived a happy life floating in outer space, staring at the stars, planets and constellations. It eventually floated near the Earth, being discovered by American astronauts from the NASA in 1991, near the end of the Cold War. Surprised by their discovery, the astronauts brought it inside the space shuttle, scared, it released several spores of itself, attaching themselves to the astronauts and controlling their minds who looked towards the camera where Starro was filmed. However, the space team was able to get it to Earth.
Imprisoned in Jotunheim
Tortured by Thinker
It was ultimately contained and brought to Earth, where the United States government, hoping to weaponize it, made a deal with the government of Corto Maltese to imprison and conduct experiments on it entitled "Project Starfish" in Jotunheim, where it was experimented on by geneticist Gaius Grieves, who dubbed him "Starro the Conqueror". For a full 30 years, Thinker took it upon himself to physically, sexually and mentally torture and abuse Starro, which he claimed were necessary for scientific advancement.
Grieves conducted multiple experiments that involved acts such as forcing it to generate multiple spores that controlled journalists, political rivals of the Herrera family, and their loved ones, who were similarly tortured and killed by the spores. Starro would begin to generate a hatred against Grieves considering him mentally ill. Eventually, the population of Corto Maltese began to create rumors of a beast that was guarding at the Jotunheim base.
Regime of Silvio Luna
- "But as I noticed, I've working with the beast for 30 years. And there's no one but me to control it."
"Well, welcome to the team."
- ―Gaius Grieves and Silvio Luna[src]
In 2021, after 30 years of torture, the Corto Maltese Armed Forces led by Silvio Luna would carry out a coup, assassinating the Herrera family in a public execution and taking control of the country, as a completely anti-American party. One week after taking power, Luna contacted Gaius Grieves to discuss about the Project Starfish. At the meeting, Thinker explained the Project and its history with videos of the meeting of Starro with the NASA, ending with Thinker who told them that the creature was remained hidden in the base of Jotunheim. The Armed Forces then would go to see the creature to take possesion on it, Luna saw a potential to take over the world using the beast as a weapon, but Grieves explained that he was the only person who could control the creature, so Luna greeted him with a handshake to forge an alliance.
In retaliation for the coup of Luna in Corto Maltese, Amanda Waller would send Task Force X to destroy all records linking the US government to the Starfish Project experiments. With a mission to accomplish, Task Force X infiltrated on the country, kidnapping Thinker and forcing him to let them into the base of Jotunheim, shortly after the squad would be able to enter the base and began planting bombs, while multiple soldiers tried to stop them.
Colonel Rick Flag, accompanied by Cleo Cazo, forced Thinker to introduce him to Project Starfish, so Grieves took them from an elevator to the floor where Starro was guarding. As soon as they entered, Flag and Cazo were surprised to see the number of people affected with spores while they talked to them about how they were tortured for years, in that Flag started to get angry when he saw the experiments, while Cazo got scared approaching a window, where one of Starro's limbs hit a blow to ask for help. Rick Flag was about to publish the records of the Project when he felt used by his government for dirty jobs, however Peacemaker arrived to stop him, ending with his death. The bombs exploded prematurely, causing Starro to begin breaking free from the laboratory.
As soon as the glasses in the laboratory it was in were destroyed, Starro used its tendrils to wrap around Grieves, who dragged him to its cell looking at him coldly with its eye and stretching his limbs, Grieves desperately tried to blur the situation by promising to change. However, Starro in revenge tore one of his arms and legs, and then threw it against a window strong enough to splash the glass on impact.
With Grieves dead, Starro began to destroy the rubble of the base to escape, for that reason, Cleo Cazo would warn her companions to escape from the base when they reunited. While the squad ran to survive, Starro would finish escaping destroying the tower completely and screaming. As soon it escaped, several soldiers of the Armed Forces began to shoot Starro on the orders of Mateo Suarez not knowing how to stop it.
However the creature began to release hundreds of spores of itself that began to fly and hide in the faces of the soldiers despite having tried to defend by shooting them, the spores killed them and used their bodies to mentally control them. Task Force X would survive to Starro by covering their faces preventing spores from affecting them. Having been released, the WXPT newscast reported how Starro was released and began to attack, killing President Mateo Suarez.
- "This city is mine!"
"This city isn't yours. This city isn't ours. This city is theirs."
- ―Starro and Ratcatcher 2[src]
The release made easier to the Maltese Resistance to kill the generals of the Armed Forces, taking the power of Corto Maltese. Starro then took the controlled soldiers to attack the city of Valle Del Mar, continuing its rampage across the civilian population and causing panic by destroying multiple structures and killing civilians by controlling them with spores, however the Task Force X decided to fight it off after they rebelled against Amanda Waller.
After being guided by John Economos and Emilia Harcourt, the squad came face-to-face with Starro while he was attacking a building, so Bloodsport readied his advanced weaponry and began shooting Starro many times as he walked. Starro became aware of Bloosport's presence and attempt to kick him with his leg, but failing, seeing spore-controlled people approaching, Bloosport would devise a plan to guide the squad.
Bloodsport led Task Force X to confront Starro, notifying King Shark that Starro was a Nom Nom, then he would start running to jump on top of Starro's limb and start biting him, however Starro would hit him against a structure. Bloodsport then told Abner Krill that Starro was his mother, seeing her as a traumatic hallucination from Krill, he would activate his gauntlets and start shooting explosive moles at Starro, causing him pain.
Krill would feel like a great superhero for a small moment before being crushed by Starro, killing Krill instantly. Starro gave a victorious scream, until King Shark would continue to bite him, so Starro pulled out tendrils and throw him hard against a building that would fall near where Harley Quinn was, then Quinn would start to run for survival but the ceiling in the that stood collapsed, falling to the ground.
Bloodsport was surrounded by citizens infected with the spores, so he started killing them. Blodsport watched how Cleo Cazo was about to get kicked by Starro, immediately ran and pushed her to save her, but ending with Cazo and DuBois getting surrounded by infected citizens, and Starro used a citizen to process a message, telling them that that city belongs to it.
Cazo then grabbed her rat communicator to summon a legion of rats to defeat Starro. The rats would climb onto Starro's body, and Starro, scared by not knowing what to do, would start trying to kick them as more rats arrived. Then Harley Quinn climbed on a roof again to go towards Starro, Quinn jumped sticking her javelin into Starro's eye, in that, several rats also swam into the eye to bite his veins that began to spread blood.
Inside the eye, Quinn saw happily at the nature of the rats killing Starro. The rats finished cutting its veins and would withdraw from the eye and then escape, while Starro died, it used the body of General Mateo Suarez to send a message to the squad, saying that it had been happy living in space before his capture. Starro would finish dying and all the bodies it controlled falled to the ground.
Starro is shown to be harmless prior to its discovery and was a fan of stargazing while in space, only attacking when it was unwillingly taken by the American astronauts. After its capture and during its time within 'Project Starfish', Starro suffered from immense, constant physical and mental torture for 30 years, pleading with Task Force X to save it from "that madman" and brutally dismembered Grieves despite his desperate pleas to spare him.
After being freed, it took its anger out on Corto Maltese, wreaking havoc on Valle Del Mar and enslaving the populace as hosts for its army. As it died, Starro professed that it was perfectly content floating within deep space and staring at the stars in the cosmos.
Powers and abilities
- Superhuman strength: As expected from its large size, Starro has the ability to destroy objects in its path with no effort whatsoever, being able to easily tear the Thinker apart with its tentacles.
- Superhuman durability: Due to its impressive size, Starro has a very dense skin, allowing it to survive deadly attacks that would've killed an ordinary human. It survived Polka-Dot Man's polka dot blast, nearly losing an arm. However, the army of rats was able to eat through its flesh and ultimately kill it.
- "Not progeny, extensions of itself. They take hosts, and those hosts in turn become part of the central being. It feeds on their consciousnesses. Grows larger, more powerful."
- Spore Creation: Starro can asexually spawn thousands of miniature copies or itself from its body. Not true life forms, the spores latch onto the face of human sized prey, eating through the surface tissue until reaching the brain. If not able to find a suitable host within a few seconds, they die.
- Mind Control: Any host infected by the spores become extensions of Starro's own will, their minds devoured and their bodies reduced to little more than zombies under its thrall. Should Starro itself be killed, his absorbed hosts also die.
- Psionic Consumption: In addition to allowing Starro to spread his power, the spores drain the mental energy of their hosts and transmit it back to Starro, providing him with nourishment and allowing him to further increase in size,
- Prehensile Tentacles: Starro has short tentacles within the tips of its arms that allow it to interact with relatively smaller objects, such as grabbing King Shark to throw him aside.
- Adaptation: Starro has shown to quickly adapt to its surroundings, having previously existed in space and adjusting to the oxygen rich atmosphere of Earth with little difficulty.
- Void Survivability: Starro naturally possesses the ability to live and even thrive in the vaccum of space without any discernable atmosphere or nourishment.
This article section is incomplete and requires expansion.
- Gaius Grieves/Thinker † - jailer, former manipulator and victim
- Corto Maltese Armed Forces - former captors
- Amanda Waller
- John Economos
- Task Force X - attempted killers and attempted victims
- Army of rats - killers
Behind the scenes
- In DC Comics, Starro the Conqueror is an starfish-like alien who intends to take over the universe. Its physical appearance is that of a gigantic starfish, containing millions of similar drones that latch onto a host and control its mind. This ability to dominate an entire populace with ease makes it an incredibly dangerous threat, and one of the earliest and greatest enemies of the Justice League of America. Starro was created by Gardner Fox and Mike Sekowsky, and first appeared in The Brave and the Bold #28.
- Starro in the DC Extended Universe is the third live-action incarnation of the character, after the Starro devices in Smallville and Starro in Powerless.