Stargirl, who is she?

It turns out that question is a bit more complicated than it initially appears because you could be talking about two different characters. See, this spring we’re getting not one but two projects called Stargirl, one from DC Universe and the other from Disney+. Both Stargirls are adaptations, centered on inspirational high school girls relocating to a new town, and come from streaming services whose names start with the letter D, which might make things confusing. So, here’s what each story is about.

Stargirl; Stargirl
Credit: Dale Robinette/Disney +; Warner Bros/The CW

First, we have DC Universe’s Stargirl. Executive produced by Greg Berlanti and showrunner Geoff Johns, who created the comic book character in 1999, this brand-new superhero show follows high schooler Courtney Whitmore (Brec Bassinger) as she moves to Blue Valley, Neb., after her mother remarries to Pat Dugan (Luke Wilson). The thing is, Pat used to be Stripesy, the sidekick of Justice Society of America member Starman, and Courtney ends up discovering Starman’s old Cosmic Staff among his things. She “borrows” the staff to become Stargirl, inspiring an entirely new generation of superheroes to join her in fighting villains of the past in the process. Moreover, she also draws Pat out of retirement and he jumps in a 15-foot robotic suit as her sidekick S.T.R.I.P.E.

Over here we have Disney+’s Stargirl, which is actually a movie and not a TV show (although there’s nothing stopping you from Irishman-ing your way through it). Based on Jerry Spinelli’s 2000 YA book of the same name, the saccharine-looking film stars America’s Got Talent season 11 winner Grace VanderWaal as the titular free-spirited teen (she plays the ukulele; her metaphorical Cosmic Staff), who starts attending a school in Mica, Ariz. Her offbeat joie-de-vivre brings a lonely boy named Leo (Graham Verchere) out of his shell and also sparks an outburst of school spirit. While this film doesn’t feature a giant robot, it does have a super-villain: Conformity. When her classmates turn on her, she tones down her personality to fit before ultimately learning to embrace what makes them all different.

Speaking of not conforming: While the Disney+ film is only streaming, its comic book counterpart will simultaneously air on both the DC Universe platform and The CW.

Anyway, we’ll let you decide which one is right for you.

DC Universe’s Stargirl premieres this spring, and Disney+’s Stargirl begins streaming March 13.

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