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Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Teen Titans 18 - Starfire debuts (not the one you'e thinking of)

The Russian super hero Starfire, later to be known as Red Star, makes his debut in Teen Titans 18, written by Len Wein and Marv Wolfman, with art by Bill Draut.

Both the Teen Titans and Starfire have been invited to Sweden to stop a notorious jewel thief, Andre Le Blanc, from stealing the crown jewels. Starfire relates how he got his powers from a spacecraft which caused the great Siberian explosion in the early 20th century, but though we hear about him having enhanced abilities, we don't ever see them used in the story. 

Starfire and Kid Flash wind up at each other's throats really quickly, after LeBlanc defeats both in their first meeting. Well, not the first meeting for Starfire, he and LeBlanc already have a past. Robin steps in to play peacemaker, but Kid Flash has been rude enough to keep Starfire from wanting to work further with the Teen Titans.

As a result, Starfire hangs back and watches as Robin, Kid Flash, Aqualad and Wonder Girl all fall for traps sete by Le Blanc. The story is told in such a way to make the reader think that Starfire might just be on LeBlanc's side.

But then we see him attack LeBlanc and almost get killed by a subway car. Kid Flash rushes to save him, and Starfire in turn helps Kid Flash. We also learn that he had helped rescue the other heroes along the way.

Together they defeat LeBlanc and, at least for the moment, Starfire and Kid Flash becomes allies rather than enemies. Not a bad story, but a little disappointing, largely because we never really get a sense of Starfire's powers.

Starfire, under the name Red Star, would return in the 18th issue of New Teen Titans in the 80s.

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