Other Characters: Peridot, Spyro
Character Name: Starscream
Age: No specific given age, but he’s at least a few thousand years old.
Species: Fomer Cybertronian, current Hooded Crow
Canon: Transformers: Prime
Canon Point: Post “Hard Knocks” (Ep. 48)
Character Info: TF Wiki has me covered
The infamous Evil Forces of the Decepticons (tm) count a large variety of scumbags among their number, but Starscream is widely regarded as the most unpleasant to deal with out of them all, a real pedigree Piece of Work. As right hand man to Megatron (who is, if you ask the universe at large, is pretty much the baddest dude around), this tall lanky jet-robot has a reputation that tends to precede him. It's not much of a stretch to say that he doesn't have friends; he doesn't even have very many people in his life who do the bare minimum of tolerating his rather cloying presence. This isn't without good reason. Starscream is just generally not what anyone would describe as good company, first and foremost because he is extremely arrogant: under the public eye he always carries himself highly and generally speaks in an obnoxiously formal and wordy manner, reveling in taking every available opportunity to lord what power he has over his inferiors.
What’s obvious to just about everyone but Starscream himself is that his arrogance is all a barely maintained cover for some spectacularly deep rooted inferiority complex issues... deep rooted to the point where he is in immense denial of them all together. Vanity of character is Starscream’s worst vice, and he does not respond well to not being taken seriously, or any implication that he is, perhaps, not as good as he thinks he is.
This is evident in the fact that he is prone to flying off the handle if his authority as second in command or capability as a leader are brought into question, or if he is called out on his constant attempts at trying to reach above his position. At one point in the intro mini series for TF Prime, a prisoner he's in charge of makes a cheeky joke about being displeased with service in the Decepticon holding cells and wanting to ‘speak to a manager’, to which Starscream gracefully responds by throwing a mini tantrum, asserting that he is the one calling the shots and then retaliating with physical violence. What a champ.
A few episodes later, in the same torture dungeon, he almost executes an Autobot prisoner prisoner on the spot with his bare claws under similar circumstances, and actually might have too, if Soundwave had not literally held him back from doing so. Starscream's reasoning for this? The Autobot scoffed when he was informed that Megatron wasn't around anymore and Starscream was rightful lord of the Decepticons instead. It's a consistent response, no matter how small or large the infraction. He displays similar charming behavior whenever he is referred to by his original title of “Commander” instead of as “Lord” during the time before Megatron's return, to the point of yelling in people's faces when he is mis-addressed
Much of Starscream’s volatile behavior manifests from a deeply ingrained sense of entitlement, as he was accustomed to a reasonable amount of privilege and prestige back on Cybertron as an air commander. This was eons ago, mind you; as far back as before the Decepticon movement was even a thing, and Starscream was still with the Autobots. Though the old ways have long since fallen from relevance, he still tends to throw his former status around as a method of impressing those who don’t seem to respect him. These attempts at ingratiating himself are usually met with a blank stare or an eye roll. The truth is, very few people actually respect Starscream’s authority, and even those who obey his orders still don’t particularly like him.
What particularly sucks for Starscream and his fragile ego is that the unwavering respect of all the Decepticon troops is something that his master Megatron has in droves, seemingly without even really trying.
You probably don't have to guess for very long to figure out who most of Starscream's inferiority issues revolve around.
In addition to the traditional 'dastardly villain master/servant' dynamic that they share as leader and second-in-command, Megatron is also Starscream’s mentor, and has kept Starscream at his side for eons now, teaching him the ins and outs of being a horrible douche-lord space tyrant. Starscream also refers to himself as Megatron's "true heir", and successor to the Decepticon rule upon Megatron's passing. The relationship between the two of them is, to put things lightly, complicated. Megatron has everything that Starscream wants and pretends to have: Absolute power, behemoth strength, and most importantly, the unquestioning respect of his followers. The unwavering loyalty the other Decepticons have for Megatron is something foreign to Starscream, who fails to understand that receiving that level of respect and obedience from ones followers is earned, not automatically given by right. Again, this goes back to the inherent sense of entitlement he has towards power. Put that, his insatiable ambition, and scheming nature all together, and you have a second-in-command who is constantly trying to off his own boss because he thinks that taking his position will automatically let him inherit everything that he wants out of life.
For whatever reason, Megatron still finds it in him to keep the little backstabber around in spite of his constant, treacherous behavior. Arguably this is because Starscream is still talented and, indeed, useful in many ways; the problem is that he lacks the discipline or maturity to utilize those talents effectively. As a result (and despite what his horrid personality would otherwise suggest), he tends to have decent success in his endeavors, but only at times when he’s actually working with people, rather than working against literally everyone in order to serve his own needs first.
Many people will argue that Starscream is hopelessly incompetent, which is mostly true for a large majority of the series. However, this comes less from pure stupidity or ineptitude, and more from a combination of less than ideal circumstances, his lack of foresight, and his inability to keep his rather bombastic personality under control. Starscream is a nervous, jittery sort of bot who would be a far more effective schemer were it not for his tendency to fly into a panic when the smallest things start to go awry with a plan. He goes to pieces easily under pressure, and thanks to his over the top body language it’s always clear as day when he does.
He does overcome this personality flaw often enough to prove his worth to the cause, though. In the later half of season 2, and in much of season 3, he actually pulls off a number of surprisingly well thought out and devious plans. It is Starscream's long term scheming and quick thinking both that ultimately pave the way for Megatron's overwhelming victory on Cybertron against Team Prime. It's Starscream who succeeds in gathering all of the legendary Omega keys, the only objects that have the potential to bring the Cybertronian home planet back to life, meaning for a time he held the fate of his people in his horrible little claws (though he ultimately turns the keys over to Megatron for a place back in the Decepticon ranks). It is also his idea to use the Autobot's human friends as hostages in order to turn the tide back in Decepticon favor when the enemy force managed to swipe the keys back for a time.
In spite of any successes he may enjoy, Starscream still has a reputation for being a coward: when things get too hot, or he thinks he’s in over his head, he’s always the first to bail in a sticky situation, since his personal safety and comfort takes priority above all else. However, he does have the wits to use that image to his advantage. On one particularly notable occasion, he used being terrified as a defense mechanism to get the drop on Arcee and escape Autobot custody, tricking her into letting her guard down and then using that moment to strike. This is proof positive that Starscream lacks in brute strength, he makes up for with cunning.
In terms of combat capability, he may not quite stack up to the likes of most of his Decepticon comrades, but when it comes to physical prowess, if there is one thing that Starscream undeniably excels at, it’s flying. Much of Starscream’s arrogance stems from his perceived superiority for having the capability of flight over Cybertronians with ground based alt mods, and one could argue that it’s not an entirely unjustified claim considering how damn good he is at it. Even when under extreme duress he pulls off impressive maneuvers, from rolls and flips to mid-air transformations, even displaying great agility by navigating cave systems and the tight corridors of the Decepticon warship while in jet mode. At multiple points he is seen mocking the Autobots for their grounded state, and he openly questions Knock Out's choice in alt mode when he first arrives to rejoin the 'Cons ranks, voicing skepticism (and even a little bit of disdain) about the fact that he didn't choose something with the ability to fly.
Starscream's attachment to the skies is the clearest when he cannot reach them though. In canon, he actually temporarily loses the ability to transform, and therefore his access to his jet mode. Following that, his occasional tendency towards whining is driven to being a full time commitment, much to the chagrin of everyone who ever has to talk to him ever. He openly laments his condition, both out loud to himself and directly to other characters, often in the context of trying to garner pity by pointing out how non-threatening of a player he is without access to his wings. His desperation to regain the ability to fly is so great, it ends up playing a large part in his decision to attempt to rejoin the Decepticons, even after a lengthy and fairly justified period of desertion.
He doesn’t have any special physical abilities anymore because he’s a shitty-ass bird.
Soul Colour: Purple
Relevant Experience: Being bossed around and told to do menial shit is basically all Starscream has ever done in his life.
Starscream came to the carnival about a month or so before the DRACULA WAR. He willingly struck up a deal with the Ringmaster in the hopes of earning back his transformation ability.
He fucked that up for himself when his impatience got the better of him; he tried to backstab the ringmaster by attempting to align himself with the vampire forces, foolishly seeing them as the more powerful force between the two. This treachery got him a one-way ticket to crow town, and now he spends most of his time lurking around the carnival being a miserable fuck.
Null. Indefinite punishment.
Starscream previously had a deal with the Ringmaster to get his T-Cog and flight capabilities back. However, he pretty much threw all that out the window when he tried to align with the Vampires back during the DRACULA WAR.
He is literally a crow. Like, he went from being a 30ft tall robot to being a tiny, fleshy little crow.