For most of Stargirl S1 and 2, we’ve only seen Starman through flashbacks or mysterious scenes that couldn’t fully explain his presence — after all, it was common knowledge that he died after battling the ISA. In fact, that’s the premise of Stargirl’s pilot episode!
However, Stargirl S3 is filled with clips of Starman/Sylvester Pemberton, who is set to have an important role this season. So is Starman really alive in Stargirl season 3? How?
The real Starman/Sylvester Pemberton is still dead in Stargirl S3. However, his body was reanimated by Icicle and Dragon King who then insert Ultra-Humanite’s brain into the body, allowing him to take control.
So yes, not only is it a little convoluted, but it’s also quite sad. Fans were excited to see Starman’s return and this time in the present instead of flashbacks. In S3 Ep 1 itself, Sylvester theorizes that he could’ve been brought back to life by Courtney’s Cosmic Staff.
With details about his apparent re-birth glossed over, it was interesting to see how he fostered his relationship with both Pat and Courtney — especially building on the role of a close friend for the former and mentor for the latter.
However, things started going sideways really quickly when Courtney realized that Sylvester did not agree with her Frenemy philosophy at all. But what really pushed the envelope was how he couldn’t maintain control and attacked former ISA members without any rhyme or reason.
Even till there, Sylvester’s behavior was understandable as he felt vengeful towards the ISA who nearly killed him. But as his actions get even more erratic, Courtney and the rest of the JSA start getting suspicious of him.
The audience finally feels a pang of betrayal when in Ep 12, Sylvester buries Pat alive, revealing his true identity and motives.
As explained above, this is not Sylvester at all. It’s Ultra-Humanite in Sylvester’s body. This was a scheme by Icicle and Dragon King, who wanted to carry out the Better American plan. They found out that Sylvester’s body was being preserved by the Cosmic Staff, so they dug it up and forcibility inserted Ultra-Humanite’s brain in it.
Throughout season 3, Ultra-Humanite has been masquerading as Sylvester in order to take down the JSA and bring Icicle’s plan to fruition. A truly sad moment as fans realize that Starman was defeated for a second time, without even being able to fight for his own body.
Thankfully by the end of the season, the truth comes to life. During their epic battle in the series finale Courtney takes back control of the Cosmic Staff from Ultra-Humanite, weakening his, while Pat delivers a fatal blow. While it’s a long, exhausting journey, the JSA are successful in vanquishing Ultra-Humanite, Icicle and the others.
DC’s Stargirl is an American superhero television series created by Geoff Johns. It stars an ensemble of Brec Bassinger, Yvette Monreal, Anjelike Washington, Cameron Gellman, Trae Romano, Jake Austin Walker and Luke Wilson, among others.
Courtney Whitmore is smart, athletic high school teenager who stumbles upon The Cosmic Staff, passed down by Starman, and becomes Stargirl. Courtney aka Stargirl becomes the leader of new young superheroes and thus starts the teenagers’ adventures as new-age Justice Society of America.