Stakar first appeared in " Defenders" vol. 1 #27, where he was a mysterious alien who joined the Defenders and Guardians against the Badoon. He stayed with the Guardians when the teams parted ways. He has since been retconned to the son of the Earth-691 versions of Quasar and Kismet. He is half-human and half of the same artificially created race as Adam Warlock. He was born on planet Vesper but was abducted shortly after birth. He was raised on planet Arcturus IV by adoptive parents and learned much later they were not his biological parents.
Major Story Arcs
His adoptive parents were mutants who had left Earth and traveled to the stars. They were eliminated by the Reavers of Arcturus, a military force devoted to the cause of eradicating all mutants. To their surprise Stakar had no obvious mutant traits, appearing baseline human. He was adopted by a Reaver, named Ogord. Stakar was an intellectual and pursued studies in science and archaeology.
He and his adoptive sister Aleta accidentally revived the dormant Hawk God and were transformed by his powers. For a time, they were both trapped in the same body, alternating place with each other as the situation required. The two adoptive siblings have had a complex relationship, ranging from intense rivalry and hatred for each other to at times pursuing romantic relationship with each other. When the Hawk-God allowed them to split briefly, they had three children together - Tara, John and Sita. When they joined back together, Starhawk could not ignore his destiny to the stars and created a Earth-like home for his children on an asteroid. At all times, no matter who was in possession of the body, they could contact their children from anywhere.
The children were eventually captured by Ogord and used against Starhawk in retaliation for him not choosing to use his powers for the evil purposes of the Reavers. His mind controlled children siphoned nearly all of his life force, so when it came time to save them he did not have the energy to do so. Starhawk was unable to prevent the children's deaths, something Aleta would blame him for.
Starhawk and Aleta both became members of the Guardians of the Galaxy. In a battle with the Stark, they were attacked with a barrage of lasers while trying to change places with one another. Somehow this energy caused them to finally split, making them able to live their separate lives. But they were not meant to split so soon.
Slowly, Stakar began to grow opaque and transparent. In a misunderstanding, the Spirit of Vengeance further injured Stakar and he began to slip from existence. He attempted to fuse back together with Aleta, but she refused to let him. She would provide some of her light powers to keep him alive out of sympathy. He was confined on the Guardians' ship in a special encasement to prevent him from completely disappearing. Since Stakar began to slip away, the power of the One-Who-Knows began to belong to Aleta. Eventually, he would combine with her anyway, against her will, right as she was to defeat Malevolence and take the place as Matriarch of the Universal Church of Truth. For this, Starhawk was kicked out of the Guardians (just as Starhawk had told Martinex would happen).
With Aleta back in the Nether-Realm, Stakar attempted to convince her that it was the Hawk-God all along who tormented and controlled them both. This really was the Hawk-God himself, who was also trapped with them. He defeated and consumed Aleta and the Starhawk went through a metamorphosis. Transformed, both Stakar and Aleta were in command of a single body, existing simultaneously. This combined the powers of Aleta and Starhawk, making darkness constructs instead of light. The Hawk-God also took more control of Stakar, making him more devious and evil.
While Starhawk had been unanimously kicked out of the Guardians of the Galaxy, he was allowed to remain near the team because of Aleta's influence. Although they could no longer change bodies, Aleta could speak with her voice through their new body. They continually fought for control and Aleta still resisted her capture, being able to harm Starhawk from the inside.
The Dark Starhawk would convince the Guardians to rebel against Major Victory and go back in time to wipe out the Badoon before they could conquer the solar system and commit genocide. Going back in time, they arrived during the Infinity War and Stakar was forced to face multiple evil doppelgangers of himself. He pleaded for Aleta's assistance, but she refused. In order to survive, he granted her control of the body, although briefly.
The battle weakened Stakar greatly and when Aleta continued her internal assault he was forced to reveal the truth - it was him that tormented her all along, not the Hawk-God. In anger, she defeated him in his weakened state and reverted him back to an infant. Aleta took the place of Starhawk and Stakar was sent back to his infant body to start his life over once again.
But naturally, he would not be gone long, as Starhawk exists in multiple realities he would soon return. The existence of two Starhawks gained the attention of Eternity, who sent the Hawk-God to prove his worthiness and handle the situation. The Hawk-God chose to fuse their hands together and force them to work together.
They traveled back in time to undo damage to the time line caused by the Guardians leaving an Alpha Centaurian artifact in the past. On their way back, Aleta sensed danger to the Guardians and forced Stakar to follow. They arrived at a meeting of cosmic beings. Their presence infuriated the Hawk-God, but he did not kill them and instead showed some restraint and encased them in energy. He released them (although without the Starhawk power) when he and the other abstracts were forced to battle Protege.
Both were judged by the Hawk-God and Aleta chose to relinquish her Starhawk power. Stakar was given back his role as Starhawk and he was grateful, but he was left with the knowledge that his origin was not as he had thought it was and the mutants he was found with were not his parents. This lack of knowledge shook Starhawk to his core, giving no meaning to the vast amounts of information he possessed from his many lives. Without this basic knowledge of his own existence, he could have no inner peace.
In an effort to find this information, he sought out Hollywood, believing his long life to hold some insight. Hollywood directed him to the Silver Surfer, the current Protector of the Universe, who Starhawk found nearly dead from an attack by Galactus. Starhawk was able to revive the Surfer and wished to use his Quantum Bands to find the knowledge. Eon appeared and forbid it, attempting to revert Starhawk to a child again, much as Aleta did. But Starhawk's resolve was strong and he resisted. This action impressed Eon, who gave Starhawk the Quantum Bands and informed him of his true father - Quasar!
Being the One-Who-Knows, Starhawk has perceived knowledge of the past and future due to his many lives he has lived. Countless times has Starhawk been reborn into his infant body, yet every time he attempts to change his life he only creates another alternate reality. Eventually, he would again return to his infant body and do it all over again.
The Starhawk of a bleak future in which the universe is consumed by the Fault, and expanding rip in space-time, uses one of Doctor Doom's time travel devices to go back in time to find answers and prevent this tragic future. Upon arrival to Knowhere, Starhawk finds himself face to face with his comrade, Major Victory. Starhawk believes his presence is the cause of the rupture and battles him, only to be driven away by this time lines Guardians of the Galaxy and the security aboard Knowhere.
Starhawk attempts this again, only to be female this time. The Guardians capture her and lock her away. Major Victory visits her regularly to attempt to remember his past, but refuses to speak with her. Eventually, Starhawk learns that it is not Major Victory or the existence of the Guardians that will cause the Fault, it is Black Bolt, king of the Inhumans.
She is able to escape her capture by manipulating Moondragon, who's mind is weak from her recent resurrection. Having made so many mistakes with her accusations, the only way to prove what she has been trying to tell them is to show them. She brings them to her time, 3009. She explains that she has tried many times, resulting in her changing forms. She learned the real truth when the Inhumans and Imperial Guard were aboard Knowhere.
Convinced, the two Guardians teams join forces in an attempt to stop the attack of the Badoon, who have gained control over the remaining universe, and to send a message back in time to warn of the cause of the Fault. In order to allow them all time to execute the plan, Starhawk meets the Badoon head-on and destructs herself, buying them the time they need but killing herself in the process.
Powers & Abilities
Either due to his genetic inheritance of his Divine Powers, Starhawk has a particularly long lifespan. In the Earth-691 reality, he was born in the 21st century and survived to the 31st with little signs of aging. Starhawk also possesses limited healing abilities.
Starhawk is composed of pure light. He fires blasts of photonic energy, light beams, and project light and luminescence. He can merge with Aleta into a single entity and then create solid constructs of light. Since he is composed of light, Starhawk can make himself intangible.
His senses are superhuman, primarily his eyesight. He remains sensitive to energy in his environment and can track energy trails across the galaxy.
He has limited superhuman strength and durability, able to lift c. 2 tons. By reinforcing his own body with light energy, Starhawk can increase his strength to much higher levels. He has engaged Thor in hand-in-hand combat, indicating strength c. 100 tons. Starhawk is only able to increase his mass and strength because of Aleta's solid light powers, so he does not possess them when separated from her.
Starhawk is capable of faster than light speeds. It was once said he could travel from zero to light speed in 6.5 seconds with Aleta and instantly when in total control of the Starhawk entity.
Starhawk appears to have precognition but actually relies on the memories of versions of himself from "other life cycles", experiencing life as a constant deja vu. However his own actions and those of allies and enemies can change the course of events to new paths, rendering these "memories" partly unreliable.
For a period Starhawk accidentally transformed the nature of his powers, creating constructs out of solid darkness and firing blasts of shadowy force. He seems unable to wield both his light and darkness energy at the same time.
At one point he briefly wore the Quantum Bands, which lead him to discover that his father was Quasar.