It’s no secret I was a big fan of the Marv Wolfman/George Perez run of NEW TEEN TITANS. We had some great characters on the team along with some exciting adventures. Eventually the creators moved on, the characters evolved, and then the New 52 shook up the entire DC Universe. Starfire is a character that has a bit of controversy surrounding her. Sometimes portrayed in different lights, she didn’t always feel like the sweet and innocent but incredibly fierce warrior we knew before. Because of the layout of the New 52 universe and the change in characters’ past history, her time with the Teen Titans never “happened” quite as it did before.
After appearing in RED HOOD AND THE OUTLAWS, we occasionally caught glimpses of the Kori we used to know. Being in a team book with various story arcs didn’t allow her to shine on her own. All that is changing now with STARFIRE #1 by Amanda Conner, Jimmy Palmiotti, Emanuela Lupacchino, Ray McCarthy, and Hi-Fi.
The set up for the series is Kori has decided to go off on her own after a pretty big ordeal in the Outlaws book. She’s made her way to an island off the coast of Florida. Trying to figure out how to make it on her own, she befriends the police sheriff in town, Sheriff Gomez. After explaining her story to the sheriff, the two try to figure out a way for Kori to have money to support herself. They take some ‘stones’ Kori had in the ship she arrived on Earth in to a jeweler/fence for some cash. In this scene, we get a glimpse into some of Kori’s innocence. She’s been on Earth for a few years but being isolated and living the confined life of a her or “Outlaw,” there’s still a bit she might not be caught up on.
Later when Kori discovers her new friend, the sheriff, was named after her grandmother and that the grandmother had passed away, we see the emotional side of Kori. Kori’s known Stella for a very brief time here. Because she is attuned to the emotions of others, the idea of Stella’s elderly grandmother dying of cancer made her sad. This is just another reason you can’t help but appreciate Starfire’s innocent and caring nature.
Then there’s sarcasm. Sarcasm is a concept that some actually have difficulty comprehending (especially on the internet). Kori is by no means ignorant but she just isn’t completely aware that people don’t always literally mean everything they say. Think about it, neither Jason Todd nor Roy Harper seem the type to unleash huge amounts of sarcasm.
Along with trying to fit in and find a way to support herself, we also see Kori experience drinking beer in a bar. Jason Todd doesn't seem like much of a beer drinker but it's likely Roy Harper would be the type to pick up the occasional six pack. Her comes across a new experience in the bar. Kori also has to go shopping. Her purple outfit might not stick out too much given the location she's at but having some normal clothes could be helpful.
There's also the matter of finding a place to live.
This isn't just a series about Kori making her way through life and going out shopping. In just this first issue, we're introduced to some potential supporting characters. There is a big dilemma approaching the town that will have to be dealt with in a big way. The most important thing is this series appears to be letting Kori simply be who she's supposed to be. When I read her dialogue, I also have Hynden Walch's voice, from the Teen Titans and Teen Titans Go! series, in my head. I've done that on occasion before and it didn't feel right. Here, it matches up with her character.
Moving Starfire away from the main DCU into her own little corner was a great move. Let's get to know who Starfire is all over again. Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti are getting the chance to flesh out the character as well as establish a new setting in the DCU. Books focusing on the non-typical characters is slowly becoming more common. We need to embrace that. With the charm Starfire exudes, you'll find yourself tempted to embrace your actual copy of the comic as well.