As is the case for many of the beings of the cosmic part of the Marvel Universe, the history of Starhawk or Stakar is quite complicated. Stakar is the son of the galactic superheroes Quasar and Ayesha but very quickly he is kidnapped by Era and abandoned on the planet Arcturus IV. There he is taken in by some mutants, which he believes to be his parents but in reality they are fattening him up to eat him. Fortunately, he is found by the Reavers, a very military race that also inhabits this planet, and is adopted by one of them, Ogord, who brings him up together with his daughter Aleta. But Stakar doesn’t find his place in a society scarred by military doctrine and decides to focus his efforts on archaeology, and as a result he finds the ruins of the Forbidden City and the Hawk God.
The encounter with this primordial deity on a level with Galactus or Watcher has a crucial effect on his life. He and Aleta, for whom he now feels something more than brotherly love, are united in a single Starhawk entity and only one of them can exist at a time, while the consciousness of the other remains in limbo. This event opens the door to Stakar’s memories of his past lives, given that he is constantly living his life over and over again in a never-ending cycle. This life will lead him to constantly roam the galaxy – and time – fulfilling the plans of the Hawk God, and frequently protecting humanity without humans even knowing.
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The personality of Stakar is cold and distant, partly because of his powers and partly because he always seems to know more than everyone else. He comes and goes without giving anyone explanations, and this makes it difficult to trust him at times. However, if we bear in mind that he has lived his own life several times, it is probable that this attitude is due to the fact that he knows what is going to happen at every moment. Another defining aspect of his character is his relationship with Aleta, given that when he is not with her, he becomes impulsive and violent and he allows himself to be controlled more by his survival instinct than by his mind.
Friends and Enemies
Stakar is one of the original members – first on the side-lines and then a full member – of the first group of the Guardians of the Galaxy, the team responsible for saving humanity from the Badoon invasion in the XXX century. Despite this, his strongest relationship is with Aleta, with whom he shares body and soul, and with whom in the little time for which they coexist he has three children. However, it is his adoptive father Ogord who most harasses him for having refused to support the expansion of the Reavers with his power. In fact, in his thirst to obtain Starhark’s power, Ogord controls his three children and sets them against their father, which leads to the death of the three descendants. He also seeks revenge against Era for having snatched him out of his parents’ arms and he does this together with his mother Kismet – or Ayesha or Paragon.
Marval Cinematic Universe
None other than Sylvester Stallone himself will play the role of Stakar –or Starhawk– in the film Guardians of the Galaxy 2. Although his role is little more than a cameo, he follows the tone set by James Gunn, little by little introducing into his vision of the Guardians of the Galaxy all the different iterations of the Guardians over the course of the history of the Marvel Universe. He does this concretely in this film through the greater prominence of Yondu – and his Aleta – and the inclusion of Stakar, signalling a clear hint towards Guardians 3000.
Curiously, the film will reunite him with his mother, Ayesha or Kismet or Ella, however she’s called this time round, played by Elisabeth Debicki. For us to believe that Sylvester Stallone is someone’s son will need either a good amount of special effects, a fantastical explanation, or for the film to be faithful to the Stakar’s death and rebirth cycle. Adapting his story a little, as is normal when making the move onto the big screen, Stakar is a legend among the looters and will have to set himself against the rebellion of the crew of Yondu.
However, it seems sure that this will not be all that we will see of Stakar in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, given that there are rumours of people as important as Kevin Feige and James Gunn talking about a small but crucial role for the veteran actor in future films.
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Stakar has the power of generating light. Put like this it may seem ridiculous – it doesn’t seem very necessary for a lantern man. However, given that we’re talking about almost infinite quantities of light, of healing light, of rays of light that act with collision force or light with the power of a supernova, we can understand why Stakar is one of the most powerful mortals of the universe. To this we must add his superhuman strength and resistance and his ability to fly faster than the speed of light, and thus to time travel by his own means.
When you have more than a thousand characters as Marvel does, and several hundred of them are important enough to have a whole biography and mystical background behind them, it is not rare to come across characters as strange and mystical as they are tragic.
Stakar is one of them, and his inclusion in Guardians of the Galaxy 2 shows that Marvel is daring to show versions (although a bit simplified) of its most complex characters and give them the place they deserve. We hope that this will open the door for other necessary cosmic characters in the MCU like Adam Warlock or Nova who we hope will appear in the next decade at least.