‘The Suicide Squad’: Who’s Starro the Conqueror, the Movie’s Villain?

The countdown is on for The Suicide Squad reboot to arrive on Aug. 6, and fans are looking forward to seeing James Gunn’s spin on the DC Comics crew. King Shark will emote through his eyes, John Cena proudly wears Peacemaker’s toilet-shaped helmet, and all of these tough, underworld miscreants jump into a life-or-death mission. One of their adversaries in this installment is the freakish and evil Starro, and the name only tells part of the story.

The Suicide Squad: Starro grabs King Shark
Starro and King Shark in ‘The Suicide Squad’ | Warner Bros. Pictures and DC Comics

Starro the Conqueror will battle The Suicide Squad

As far as aliens with agendas go, Starro is perched at the top with Darkseid and Marvel’s Thanos and M.O.D.O.K. In this film, Gunn handpicked the villain to go up against the Squad, as he’s always been a fan of the character.

In the August issue of Empire, Gunn discussed how his idea came together. “I thought Starro the Conqueror would be a perfect antagonist for the Suicide Squad, because I loved him as a kid,” he said. “He’s generally a Justice League antagonist, so I like the idea that we’re letting the Suicide Squad fight an antagonist that was normally meant for the big guys. I was very scared of him, yet he’s also completely ridiculous.”

Idris Elba — who plays Bloodsport — added that on set, there was a running joke about Starro, and Gunn “always had this cheeky glint in his eye.” Fans, expect some wild scenes with the creature and R-rated humor.

Starro is a telepathic alien starfish

For those unfamiliar with the plethora of DC villains, know that Starro is a giant evil starfish who’s nothing like SpongeBob’s BFF, Patrick Star. Though his official origin story varies in DC canon, Starro first appeared in DC Comics in 1960. He’s pink and blue with a large eye in the center of his body and can clone spores as weapons.

Starro should not be underestimated, because he’s decimated planets and carried out his destructive exploits across worlds with his army. Like Gunn said, the kaiju starfish usually causes trouble for the Justice League, and in the comics, he’s caught each of the heroes in his mind-controlling snares. Not even Aquaman can tell Starro what to do. In addition to telepathy, the being’s abilities include super strength, flight, mind control, invulnerability, and energy blasts. Starro can also absorb energy and thoughts.

In other comic incarnations, a young boy named Cobi became a vessel for Starro, a queen mother star. He grew up to wipe out nations. Many of Starro’s battles have been bloody, so expect some gore. And back in the day, the Justice League used lime to neutralize him.

Since The Suicide Squad is set on an island, the beachy surroundings could work in Starro’s favor — or against him.

‘The Suicide Squad’ will arrive in theaters and on streaming

Many DC fans can’t wait to see the obscure villain make his big screen debut. Combined with Polka Dot Man, Harley Quinn, Sol Soria, Weasel, King Shark, Ratcatcher and the others, this flick will get zany. Who will make it out alive? The Suicide Squad premieres in theaters and on HBO Max on Aug. 6.