4 reasons why Anna Diop deserves all the praise for her role as Kory/Starfire


Anna Diop’s portrayal of Starfire on Titans is finally getting proper recognition — the kind we knew she deserved all along.

From the first episode of Titans, it’s clear that Anna Diop’s portrayal of Kory Anders is one of the many highlights of the first season. Diop’s time as Kory has given the tenacious and protective heart of the Titans team new angles to her canon personality and subsequently, she’s given us new reasons to love Starfire. It’s easy to notice how Diop’s portrayal of her character has created an equally unyielding and supportive fan base for herself, the character, as well as other stans within the fandom.

After Diop was initially cast as Starfire, alleged “fans” harassed her on Instagram, which led her to temporarily remove commenting privileges from her posts. We’re glad to see that Diop is finally getting the recognition for her acting prowess and the love she has for her character. We believe she deserved all this acclaim from the moment she was added to the cast list.

We’ve tasked ourselves with trying to summarize what makes Anna Diop and her role as Kory Anders (i.e. Koriand’r or Starfire) so incredible. We say that we attempted to sum up the reasons Diop deserves all this praise from her fans and critics because it’s nearly impossible to abbreviate all our admiration and support for Diop’s Kory in one appreciation article.

1. She boldly does the right thing

One of the most iconic moments in the first season was when Kory defended the waitress and the better half of the diner from abusers. Kory didn’t just hold the men accountable for their actions or prevent them from escalating their attack, she stopped them unaided and without using her fiery powers.

We can see why Rachel looks up to her as a role model and friend. Once Rachel took charge of the situation (after Gar was inconsolable) in “Asylum,” she likely exemplified Kory’s empowering example for earlier episodes.

Titans Season 1, Episode 8. Photo Credit: DC Universe.

2. She gives her teammates candid advice

Kory isn’t afraid of defending herself, which we saw in the premiere episode, or defending others. She is definitely an advocate for self-defense. In the middle of episode 8, Kory helps Garfield grieve a part of himself that he thinks he lost because he killed someone—something that he is canonically morally against.

During their train ride, Kory tells Garfield, “Don’t ever be ashamed of defending yourself,” which should be everyone’s self-empowering, Kory-approved personal motto. As Kory tries to assure Gar that he should unabashedly defend himself, we can only hope that Kory never needed to assure herself of the same mantra after she unintentionally killed the men who were trying to kill her in the first episode. (After all, we try not to think about Kory’s time alone after the first episode and how she might have initially been afraid or even ashamed of herself for essentially keeping herself safe and alive.)

Nevertheless, we’re glad that Kory repeatedly and shamelessly defends herself and her friends.

Titans Season 1, Episode 8. Photo Credit: DC Universe.

3. She’s deeply empathetic and sympathetic

At the start of episode 8, “Donna Troy,” Kory immediately recognized that Dick Grayson can’t get help with his internal conundrum from the team and that he needs to go elsewhere to figure out who he wants to be. She takes a reflected pause while she recognizes that Dick has to leave the team, and her, indefinitely. As someone who’s struggled with not knowing who she is for the majority of the season, the pause also proves Kory understands all to well the need to be alone to learn more about yourself.

She was obviously hurt that Dick had to leave the team temporarily (and we were too), but Kory also understands why he needs to. Although Kory has amnesia, she sympathizes with everyone, especially her friends and, in this case, her lover.

4. She isn’t afraid to figure out who she is

Rachel helped Kory revive some of her memories at the end of episode 8, but Kory has already given herself a powerful identity despite not knowing who she is. She’s both fiercely compassionate and physically strong. Now those characteristics may have been within her all along, but for her to tap into them while still learning who she is is pretty inspiring.

She might only see feigning glimpses of her memories, but she’s figured out what makes her Kory through this season on Titans. Call it a hunch, but we think even after Kory regains her memories, she’s going to commit to the Kory Anders we know and love on Titans. Regardless of her past, Kory has redefined herself, and we hope she continues to find herself and who she wants to be, despite what mysteries she might uncover in the coming episodes.

5. Honorary mention: Anna Diop embodies Kory often

The way Kory supports her friends and unofficial teammates, Anna Diop hypes up her castmates. If you listen to any Titans-related interview, Diop celebrates her character and the rest of the Titans cast because she’s a Starfire fan just like us. There are only a couple episodes left in the first season, but we can’t wait to see how Kory’s narrative continues to unfold during this season and the next.

Also. Titans midseason highlights: 6 scenes we’re already obsessed with. light

Thank you, Anna Diop, for giving us a new role model to look up to, both in yourself and your onscreen character, Kory!