Saving the world doesn't necessarily mean you go home happy. How's the mental health of your favorite superhero? A comic aficionado and a board-certified psychiatrist look at the various neuroses of your favorite heroes and villains and provide options for treatment.
Issue 135 - Starfire
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Starfire (Princess Koriand'r) created by Marv Wolfman and George Perez in DC Comics Presents #26 (Oct 1980)
Second in succession to the throne of Tamaran, she and her sister were kidnapped, and her father sold her off to ensure peace
After enduring several years of slavery and sexual torture, she was experimented on by being subjected to ever-increasing energy levels, which gave her the ability to release energy blasts from her hands, as well as fly - her sister (who had also undergone the experimentation, and was more powerful) attacked her, however, and had her sentenced to execution
She escaped and made her way to Earth, where she took the name Starfire (the Earth translation of Koriand’r) and joined the Teen Titans
Twice married to Tamaranian men, once for politics and once for love - both died
Almost married Dick, until a possessed Raven interrupted the ceremony #BecauseComics
Went missing after Infinite Crisis, although she was one of the heroes who helped defeat Alexander Luthor
Alongside Adam Strange & Animal Man, gets stranded on an unknown planet - the three of them fight alongside each other several times
During Blackest Night, a psychic attack reveals her greatest desire is to marry Dick Grayson
New 52 - Backstory is essentially the same, but now she’s one of the Outlaws alongside Jason Todd & Roy Harper - close friends with Dick Grayson, who avoids romantic feelings for her
Rebirth - Rejoins the Titans, and becomes leader after Damian Wayne is removed from the role
Killed by her sister Komand’r (Blackfire), who believes she will eventually come back to life
In-universe - Use her energy projection powers to help show her emotional state at any given time
Out of universe - (32:33)
Hello Starfire, I’m Dr. Issues. -Greetings, doctor. Just to be clear, “Starfire” is a media creation. Please, call me Koriand’r.
My apologies, Koriand’r. So, what can I do for you? -Others have told me that I am a bit of an...energetic spirit. I get too rough. I would disagree, but it has been said so many times that I wonder if there is some truth to it.
In what context? -All of them.
*sigh* Um, can you give an example? -Suppose there is a powerful enemy at your door right now, and I am with a team. At least one of them stands slack-jawed, another one tries to start a conversation or say something to defuse the situation. By the time they realized what has happened, I have already thrown the first punch. It is a bit of a blur after that, and we have won, but at least one other person is yelling at me for being too hasty.
I’ve heard that so many times. “Ready, Fire, Aim.” -More like “Aim and Fire before they are ready.” I am not careless, just efficient.
And you want the others to match your efficiency? -I know they cannot. I do not want them to resent me for doing what works. This may sound perverse, but it is actually fun to fight and win!
I do my homework, Koriand’r. I don’t think it’s your fighting that really upsets anyone, at least not as much as you think. -Then what is it?
I’m not certain, but maybe your...uh...style? -*sound effect, charging up?* I LOVE MY STYLE!
*clearly shaken* And you SHOULD! I’m not criticizing it! I’m saying...on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the most flamboyant, you’re an 11. -Thank you so much! It is a compliment to be seen as a bright shining beacon on Tamaran.
*ahem* You’re...welcome? Hoo boy...look, you do you, alright? I’m trying to tow the line between discretion and blatancy. -I am not some… what is the word, a head of air! Just because I only know what one of those words meant does not mean you can try and make me feel stupid.
*deep breath* Let’s try again. I want to be kind, but I also want to be honest. I’m thankful that you are proud of who you are. Nobody can take that from you. But understand that being so intense in every sphere of your life is going to burn others out if you’re not careful once in a while. However, I may be wrong if you’ve cultivated the best circle of friends and family already. That would make my point moot. -*pause, less intense than before* It is partly correct.
Which part? -Definitely family. My sister. I love her.
That’s a good thing. -No...I should not. Not after what she did to me. Several times. But I have forgiven her. Too many people have told me that was a dumb thing to do...that she will betray me again.
There’s no point in regaining pain. There are enough burdens in our lives that we shouldn’t add extra. Love is an amazing thing. -But at what cost? I have traded many different types of love...some not truly of my choice. Raven says I should be bitter after what I have endured...but I am not. Sometimes I do not understand why I feel this way, but, what it is it is. I think that is the Earthen expression.
You are clear with that. Your smile literally lights up a room! I’m glad that you have someone like that to confide in -She was one of the “traded loves” I talked about. At first I would consider her an enemy. But I do not have the type of bond that I truly long for.
That would be… - *awestruck* Dick.
*flustered* erm...I’m not that kind of therap - *oblivious, still awestruck* Grayson.
OH THANK GOD. I mean, thank goodness we can talk about someone so important to you. -He is better than before, you know. He has said some things about you. That is why I came here. Can you find a way for us to be together? It is so very complicated! Some of the times, I wish to have better understanding of Earthen relationships. Other times, I feel it is better to be in the darkness.
Sorry, my role is not to be a matchmaker, or directly “fix” relationships. Only you two can do that. What I CAN do, is work with you to process your emotions and behaviors so that whatever happens, your experiences get better over time. -Wonderful! This calls for a Tamaranian hug!
*panic* NO! *calms down* No, I’m not a hugger as a professional. -But that is the best way to share joy with everyone!
See, that’s what I’m talking about. It’s best for YOU...not everyone. Sure, there are plenty of people who agree with you, but I’ll admit, I’m a bit weird. Respecting my wishes would bring me joy. Save that joy for Raven...or Dick...or whomever is used to it. -Raven has said the same thing. But in the end, hugs will win the day! Come on, Doctor of the Issues, you will see for yourself.
*sound of bones crunching* Ugh…*whispering agony* my spine…I see what you mean by “too rough” -Oops. Your training seems to be weak. I will be more careful next time.
Recommended reading: OG Teen Titans by Wolfman & Perez
Next episodes: Children of super villains, Squirrel Girl, Wiccan