DC's Stargirl: Who Is Ted Knight?

The latest episode of DC's Stargirl is one that not only saw young Courtney Whitmore begin to fully embrace her destiny as the titular hero, but it's one that dug a bit deeper into the generation of heroes that came before her and that includes Starman himself. As the series premiere established, before the Cosmic Staff chose Courtney it was wielded by Sylvester Pemberton/Starman. But even before Sylvester was Starman, he was someone else, the Star-Spangled Kid and in this week's episode "S.T.R.I.P.E." we find out a little bit more about how Sylvester became Starman as well as where he got the Cosmic Staff: from a man named Ted Knight.

Minor spoilers for the second episode of DC's Stargirl "S.T.R.I.P.E." below.

After defeating Brainwave, Courtney and Pat try to process the evening's events back at his garage and, during the conversation, Pat reveals that he doesn't know why the Staff chose Courtney nor does he really know where the Staff came from other than that a man named Ted Knight gave it to Starman.

For fans of DC Comics, the name Ted Knight may ring some major bells. In comics Ted was the original Starman. Created by Gardner Fox and Jack Burnley and first appearing in Adventure Comics #61 in 1941, Ted's Starman was a caped, costumed hero who used a gravity rod that allowed him to fly and manipulate energy. A scientist and astronomer, in comics Ted developed the gravity rod (later cosmic rod) himself. Eventually, Ted's younger son, Jack, takes up the cosmic rod and serves as Starman.

The mention of Ted Knight in Stargirl is big one for comics fans, especially since the series deviates from comics a bit in its approach to the Starman character. While on in the series it's Sylvester who goes from Star-Spangled Kid to Starman, that's not how it worked out in comics. In comics, Sylvester never becomes Starman or wields the Staff. Instead, he has his Cosmic Converter Belt as the source of some of his powers. It's his suit and belt that Courtney takes in comics to become the second Star-Spangled Kid, though Jack eventually passes the staff onto Courtney and she thus becomes Stargirl.

While the origins may be different from page to screen, the mention of Ted Knight in Stargirl is one welcome by fans and it will be interesting to see how much more we find out about the origin of the show's Cosmic Staff as Stargirl's first season continues.

0comments

Were you excited by the mention of Ted Knight in "S.T.R.I.P.E."? Let us know in the comments below.

Stargirl airs Tuesdays at 8/7 on The CW. New episodes debut Mondays on DC Universe.

Disclosure: ComicBook is owned by CBS Interactive, a division of ViacomCBS.