The Teen Titans simply aren’t complete without fan-favorite alien princess, Starfire. Since her creation over three decades ago, she has only grown in popularity and is one of the most recognized female DC characters. While a lot of people know her from the animated Teen Titans, she’s appeared in comic books, various animated movies, video games, and is now in a live action television show. Many people are familiar with what she looks like, but there’s a of interesting background information to learn about her. Starfire, also known as Kory Anders, is a lot more than just a pretty face with flaming hair. While there have been various versions of the heroine, she’s always been a fierce, compassionate warrior with a sense for justice. She is known for wearing somewhat revealing costumes, to some fans pleasure and to others disdain. Starfire is a team player and has joined up with quite a few different groups. She is also known for being quite the romantic and has a few rather famous love interests.
After the premiere of DC’s Titans, a lot of people want to know more about the Tamaranean princess. While the show may have a different interpretation than fans are used to, she has a long history and there have been many different versions of the character. Here are Teen Titans: 20 Things Even DC Fans Didn’t Know About Starfire.
20 She Was Created In 1980
While many Starfire fans were first introduced to her in Teen Titans in 2003, she has actually been around for much longer. The character was created in 1980 by Marv Wolfman and George Perez. Her first appearance was in DC Comics Presents #26. They needed new characters to join the Teen Titans and the two men decided to create an exotic alien princess who was both beautiful and a tough fighter. Perez said he imagined her as “Red Sonja in outer space”.
After being given that description, she was drawn with glowing orange skin, long red hair, revealing “armor”, and piercing green eyes. Her appearance hasn’t changed much since then, though her outfit is slightly less revealing than it once was.
19 She Absorbs Ultraviolet Radiation
While a lot of people have seen Starfire use energy as a weapon, many aren’t aware her body actually absorbs energy in order to use it. Her alien physiology constantly takes in ultraviolet radiation and converts it into energy. That’s how she is able to use her powers and create energy blasts, called “starbolts”. She can even take it from other lifeforms, which is how she once weakened a group of Kryptonians who needed to use that radiation in order to use their abilities.
It’s hard to stop someone who can absorb energy from a person and power up from the sun, and then turn around and use that same energy against that very person.
18 She's An Alien Princess
On Earth, Starfire is a hero, but she isn’t considered royalty. On her home planet Tamaran, however, she’s a princess who was in line for the crown. Unfortunately, she never got the chance to rule. She does have an older sister, but because her sister suffered from a disease which robbed her of her powers, Starfire is the one who would actually sit on the throne. Her sister was jealous and angry, and ended up selling Starfire into slavery.
Eventually, Starfire managed to escape years of pain to Earth, where she ran into the Teen Titans. While she is technically royalty, her story isn’t exactly the fairytale most people associate with princesses.
17 She Can Learn Languages Through Touch
When Starfire first arrived to Earth, she didn’t speak any English. While that poses a problem for most people, it wasn’t difficult for her. She can assimilate languages through physical contact with other people. While she can supposedly just do it through any physical contact, she’s been known to learn languages by kissing people. In Teen Titans, she learns English by kissing Dick Grayson as soon as she meets him, before she threatens him and flies away right after. That’s a confusing way to introduce yourself to most humans.
While she learned English that way, a lot of expressions and slang terms are still hard for her to grasp, so she sometimes expresses herself in strange ways.
16 She Doesn't Need Oxygen
A lot of fans have wondered how Starfire is able to survive in the vacuum of space. She’s been shown flying through outer space and using her powers there for a long time, so it’s easy to come to the conclusion she doesn’t need oxygen. If she really doesn’t need oxygen, it seems like she would be able to survive underwater if she needed to as well. There are some theories that maybe she can only go without breathing for so long before water would flood her lungs, but it’s never been proven.
If the Teen Titans ever get into a conflict that involves going into space or diving underwater, they the perfect team member for the job.
15 She Has Nine Stomachs
While Starfire may look nearly human on the outside, it’s a much different story on the inside. The princess once revealed that she has nine different stomachs. This fact was first mentioned in the Teen Titans episode “Mother Mae-Eye”. She used her nine stomachs to avoid being brainwashed by villain Mother Mae-Eye’s food by controlling which specific stomach it went to.
It’s hard to imagine nine stomach’s packed into her waist, but apparently they are there. That could explain why she loves talking about how much she loves Earthly food so much. She’s constantly eating something in Teen Titans, from having cotton candy for the first time to encouraging others to try her Tamaranean pudding.
14 Her Sister Hates Her
Starfire isn’t the only princess in her family. She has an older sister, Blackfire, but Starfire was set to take the throne instead. This caused Blackfire to hate Starfire and sell her into slavery, then was a part of her difficult upbringing. They have battled on and off their entire lives. No matter how many times Kori tries to help her sister or show her mercy, Blackfire doesn’t do the same. The two could be considered polar opposites. While Starfire is fierce but sweet and forgiving, Blackfire is cunning, sadistic, and full of rage and jealousy.
Blackfire has been called Starfire’s arch-nemesis, despite the two being related. As much as Starfire wishes they could reconcile their relationship, most of the time Blackfire isn’t interested.
13 She's Been Romantically Linked To Two Robins
A lot of Teen Titans fans are familiar with Starfire because of her longtime relationship with Dick Grayson, the first Robin. While the two have a very long romantic history, he isn’t the only Robin that Kory has gotten close to. She has also been romantically linked with Jason Todd, who is both Robin and the Red Hood. While their relationship isn’t nearly as serious as her relationship with Dick, it happened nonetheless.
In the New 52 comics, she partners with Jason Todd and Roy Harper in a group called The Outlaws. She has romantic interactions with both, though it’s clear she still cares for Dick at the time. That had to make for an awkward family reunion between the two Robins.
12 She's Allergic To Metallic Chromium
While Starfire is a strong fighter who doesn’t possesses many weaknesses, but she isn’t invincible. She is allergic to metallic chromium and it causes bad allergy attacks. She isn’t alone with this allergy. Apparently, many other Tamaraneans possess the same aversion to the substance, meaning her sister could have the same weakness. Allergies in superpowered aliens are much more dangerous than when humans have them. When Starfire sneezes, she actually shoots dangerous starbolts out of her nose.
This allergy almost caused her to seriously hurt her Teen Titans teammates. The upside, however, was they could use her allergy to track Slade because the weapon he was carrying possessed metallic chromium. It doesn’t always have to be a weakness.
11 Her Hair Is Made Of Flames
One of Starfire’s most easily recognized features his her long, bright red hair. Whether worn curly or straight, it’s definitely vibrant and iconic, but a lot of people don’t realize her hair is actually made of fire. The prominence of these flames depends on the particular source material someone is looking at. Sometimes her hair just leaves a red energy contrail and other times there are bright orange flames coming off of her head at all times. Either way, the flames have always been an important part of her look.
The physics of her hair have never been explained, so it’s assumed it’s just a Tamaranean thing. It had to be scary when the Titans saw her hair catch fire for the first time.
10 She Is Highly Invulnerable To Damage
Starfire is able to endure a whole lot, from flying through the vast vacuum of space to being sold and losing her freedom. There isn’t a whole lot that can stop her. That’s because she has superhuman durability and immunity to most damages. When she’s angry, this invulnerability is even higher. She can go into a almost deranged state and gain strength and become nearly invincible. This helps her survive unharmed into some of the harshest environments and against some of the toughest enemies.
She’s immune to most physical harm and has been known to survive big explosions without a lot of damage. On top of that, she’s immune to high levels of radiation. It’s hard to keep her down in a fight.
9 She's Had Amnesia
When it was first announced that Titans would have Starfire, fans were curious as to the direction they would go with her story. When the trailer was released, people were afraid she wouldn’t be the Starfire they known and love, but know it’s clear she has amnesia and doesn’t know who she is. That makes her outfit and general look make a lot more sense. She doesn’t dress or act like Starfire yet because she doesn’t know she is Starfire. They’re just taking their time with her origin story.
It’s an interesting take on a beloved character and people are interested to see where her story will go once she realizes who she is. Eventually she will be more like the character fans have always known.
8 Fans Think She Deserves More
Since Starfire’s creation in the 1980s, she’s worn tiny outfits and has been drawn as an alluring woman. This was contrasted, however, by her naivety and lack of awareness of her own look. She never understood the human taboo about the kind of outfits she wore. Fans were outraged, however, when she was eventually treated like nothing more than a love interest in Red Hood And The Outlaws. The Starfire in the New 52 comics was suddenly much more flirty and revealing than she used to be.
There has always been criticism about Starfire and it just grew worse with the addition of these comics. She’s a fierce, warrior, alien princess. Her body and romances shouldn’t be the main focus of her character.
7 She Has A Daughter
While a lot of people are aware of the romance between Kory and Dick Grayson, they don’t know that the two actually have a daughter named Mar’i, also known as Nightstar. Of course, it was in an alternate universe so it may not be considered completely legitimate, but the character does exist. In this alternate universe, she and Grayson get married and have a daughter. Starfire passes away from a circulatory disease when Mar’i is young.. Mar’i decides to pick up the superhero name Nightstar, a combination of her parents, Nightwing and Starfire and works alongside Batman, her grandfather, on his Outsiders team. She’s capable of flight, has super strength, and can fire starbolts, like her mother. Between Starfire’s powers and Nightwing’s vigilante skills, she was bound to be powerful.
6 She Shoots Starbolts
Starfire is an immensely powerful, dangerous fighter. She can fly, has super strength, and able to shoot energy blasts of out her body called starbolts. These laser beams have been both pink and green, but no matter the coloring, they’re powerful to her enemies. Though her origin shifts depending on the source, it is said that her starbolts are a result of the experiments performed on her by the alien Psions.
Not only can she shoot starbolts, she can also unleash all the energy she has stored in her body into one big blast, though she only uses it in the most desperate situations. Whatever way she uses this power, it’s best not to get on her bad side
5 Her Emotions Fuel Her Powers
Starfire is definitely powerful, but that power can shift depending on her mood. Her emotions actually determine how forceful her powers are when she uses them. If she’s upset, she is unable to shoot starbolts or fly. In contrast, when she is extremely angry or frustrated, her starbolts become much more powerful. Her feelings determine the extent of her abilities. While it seems she’s mastered controlling her emotions and therefore her powers, in moments of extreme emotion it can definitely affect her ability to fight. She reveals this to Robin in Teen Titans when she is unable to use her powers because she fears he won’t admit how he truly feels about her. After he opens up to her a little and calms her fears, she regains her powers and is able to fly.
4 Titans Is Her First Live Action Adaptation
While Starfire has been around in the comics for decades and became more popular in her animated shows and films, she has never been in a live action adaptation until now. Her appearance in Titans is her first “real life” version. Comic fans are very passionate about their favorite characters, so people were nervous to see what Starfire would look like. When the first images of Anna Diop as Kory Anders appeared, there was a lot of backlash over her look.
Since the first episode aired, people have realized the character has amnesia and will eventually look more like the Starfire they know and love. It will be interesting to see where this live action version of the alien princess goes.
3 She Almost Married Dick Grayson
Dick Grayson is Starfire’s most famous and longest relationship. Their passionate romance started when they were on the Teen Titans together and grew with them as they went into adulthood, to the point they almost got married in New Titans #100. Their wedding day was ruined by Raven, who was evil at the time. Raven took the life of the priest before he could pronounce them husband and wife. This made them rethink their relationship and wonder if they had rushed into marriage.
The two distanced themselves from each other after that and Kory left to go back to Tamaran for a time, despite still loving him. They’ve also reconnected as friends in comics that came later.
2 She's Led The Teen Titans
While Starfire has always been an important team member on the Teen Titans, she isn’t always just a follower. She’s actually been the leader in certain comics and animated films. In the Teen Titans Rebirth comics, Damian Wayne was the one leading the team, but he was struggling. After events like the firing of Kid Flash, he had trouble keeping the Titans organized and felt insecure about his position as team leader. This resulted in Starfire taking charge.
She’s the oldest, warmest, and most experienced member of the team, so it makes sense that she would become the leader. It’s the most logical choice. Damian may have brought the team together, but she’s the one who can keep them together.
1 Her Race Is Descended From Cats
While most people know that Starfire is from Tamaran, most aren’t aware of where exactly her alien race came from. People on her home-planet are actually descended from cats. Much like people believe humans evolved from apes, Tamaraneans supposedly evolved from cats. There is a Teen Titans storyline in which they all begin to act in primitive states. While most team members look and act like apes, Kory gets pointy ears and acts like a cat. There aren’t a lot of details on this feline history, but it’s been joked about and referenced a few times. It’s one of the more ridiculous aspects of her original origin story, so it’s been downplayed a lot since it was first mentioned.
Which of these surprised you most? Let us know in the comments!