For over a year, the streaming service DC Universe has brought Courtney Whitmore to the forefront with DC’s Stargirl. This live-action drama has received a great deal of praise for its clever storytelling and in-depth character dynamics.
Creator Geoff Johns has said that science fiction films from the 1980s such as Back to the Future and E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial inspired Stargirl’s tone. Unlike past incarnations that portrayed Stargirl as being more mature and adult-like, actress Brec Bassinger offers a teenage, naive depiction of the superheroine. According to Bassinger, this youthful version of Stargirl is inspired by the comic Stars and S.T.R.I.P.E. Hundreds of actresses auditioned for the role, but Courtney stood out due to her cheeriness and sense of humor, which fits Stargirl’s personality.
From Courtney to Stargirl
The first incarnation of the Justice Society of America dies off at the beginning of DC’s Stargirl. From there, a new generation of superheroes must carry the torch. Courtney Whitmore goes from a basic high schooler to a powerful leader when she discovers the Cosmic Staff and learns about her stepfather’s partnership with Starman. Courtney rebrands herself as Stargirl and forms a new version of the Justice Society. With their youth and naivete, the team has no idea what they’re up against, where they’ll end up and how they can persist against nefarious forces.
The Injustice Society
The Injustice Society is a team of supervillains that the Justice Society has to face off with in the first season. After killing most of the original Justice Society, the Injustice Society hides out in Blue Valley until the new superhero team is formed by Stargirl. The Injustice Society do everything in their power to deter Stargirl and control the Central United States with Project: New America. The villainous team’s plans ultimately fail, as most of the members either die, run away or get arrested by the end of the season.
Injustice Unlimited and Eclipso
Injustice Unlimited becomes the new supervillain faction in season two. This group is run by Cindy Burman, who carries Eclipso in the Black Diamond. Over time, Artemis Crock, Isaac Bowin and Sportsmaster are recruited to fight against the Justice Society. However, Injustice Unlimited is dismantled after Stargirl inadvertently frees Eclipso from the diamond. Isaac is killed, Artemis escapes and Cindy gets trapped in the diamond through a shard. From here, Eclipso uses deceptive tactics to wreak havoc on the Justice Society and the public at large. Stargirl and Shade must work together to trap Eclipso before any more damage is done.
Fraught with strong visuals, intricate plot twists and in-depth character dynamics, DC’s Stargirl has become a formidable force in the DC Universe. Stargirl’s upbeat nature provides an excellent contrast with the backstory’s grim undertones, especially as the second season continues to develop. Whenever the main villains are conquered and all seems to be going well, another evil force emerges to keep the heroes on their toes. The consistent theme is hope in the face of unpredictability.