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|“||Like an acronym. Subatomic tactile robot internet Pat enhancer! Nailed it, yes! That's cool.||”|
— Courtney names S.T.R.I.P.E.
The S.T.R.I.P.E. Armor is a fifteen-foot armored robot that was built by Pat Dugan after he retired from the JSA. It allows Pat to operate as the sidekick, S.T.R.I.P.E. The armor was dismantled during a fight against Solomon Grundy, rendering the armor useless, however after six weeks, Pat managed to fully repair the armor.
S.T.R.I.P.E. is a grey and silver robot made completely by Pat Dugan out of refurbished car parts. It has two headlights on its chest that guide him at night. The chest cavity is outlined in red and opens so Pat can enter and exit at will. Handlebars are attached to his back that allows for Stargirl to hold onto him while they are moving quickly, or flying via the boosters inside his boots. The eyes on the robot glow red when the robot is active. Its knuckles are black while red stripes accent the robot's joints. In the center of its chest is a green circular device that has unknown purposes. Pat controls the armor from inside the chest cavity by using joysticks. The joysticks control S.T.R.I.P.E.'s arms, legs, and movements. Pat communicates with Stargirl through a speaker that disguises his natural speaking voice. Inside the chest cavity is also a button with a fist on it. When pressed, S.T.R.I.P.E. launches his fist at the enemy.
Courtney yells at S.T.R.I.P.E. to get away from her, but Pat says he needs to get her somewhere safe. He outstretches the robot's hand. Courtney climbs up the robot to hold on to the bars on its back. The robot continues to short-circuit at its joints, prompting Pat to curse and Courtney to ask if it's safe. They fly up into the air and escape before Brainwave exits the tire warehouse and looks up at the sky, noticing the fly machine. Later, Courtney asks why Pat even built the robot, to which Pat said he wanted to help Hourman but Rex insisted on doing it alone. The night he saved Courtney from Brainwave was the first time he ever used the robot. With a promise to help Courtney with Brainwave and Icicle, Pat works to get the suit up and running. He has many trials and tribulations in his attempts to master control of S.T.R.I.P.E. but finally managed to figure it out after many repairs and self-administered first aid.
At Blue Valley High's parking lot, Brainwave is met with S.T.R.I.P.E. and asks him who he is. Pat, who hasn't thought of a new name yet, tells him someone looks for justice. Brainwave sends a mental attack that briefly incapacitates Pat, who responds by throwing a dumpster at him. Brainwave stops it mid-air and hurls it at the sky. Seeing a car, he proceeds to do the same as Brainwave does as well. After his last shot, he fires his fist at him, but Brainwave catches it at the last second and twirls it back at him, knocking him down. The robot falls, and Brainwave begins to crush him with the car and school bus next to him. Stargirl arrives and fights Brainwave but is pinned down. S.T.R.I.P.E. activates one of his headlights which momentarily blinds Brainwave and gives Stragirl enough time to render him incapacitated.
After the fight, Stargirl and S.T.R.I.P.E. return home when Courtney concludes that Pat needs a new name. She recommends STRIPE, but as an acronym. She settles on, "Subatomic Tactical Robot Internet Pat Enhancer". She remarks that the name is cool. STRIPE later fought Icicle which is when the villain froze Pat's controls and stopped STRIPE from helping Stargirl. However, when the ice thawed, STRIPE was able to catch a falling school bus and return it to safety. That night, in an attempt to convey the seriousness of the superhero life, Pat flew Courtney to the JSA's headquarters in California using S.T.R.I.P.E.
S.T.R.I.P.E. later arrived late to a fight between the new Justice Society of America, Tigress, and Sportsmaster. Upon seeing the robot, the JSA was stunned but Stargirl assured them that the robot is with them. Tigress and Sportsmaster went into retreat upon seeing the giant and fled the scene. Upon returning to The Pit Stop, where Pat stores the robot, Yolanda, Ricky, and Beth were stunned and remarked on how Pat managed to build the robot completely out of old car parts. Yolanda remarked that he must have used over a hundred cars to build it.
Months later, Pat uses STRIPE when he and Stargirl venture into the underground tunnels during their mission to stop Project New America. During this time, Pat falls under the mental manipulation of Brainwave which allowed Brainwave to take control of STRIPE and use the robot to attack Stargirl. Pat regained control over the robot when he fought against Brainwave's reprogramming, only for the hold to break completely and Pat to regain control over the robot once the machine projecting Brainwave's power was destroyed.
STRIPE isn't too present in the showdown against the ISA but does assume a front position when Jordan is defeated. Pat jerks the hand of STRIPE back to deliver a defeating blow to Icicle when he is suddenly punched across the room by a released Solomon Grundy. Pat advises Courtney and Wildcat to find the machine, as he'll take on Grundy and protect Hourman who was knocked aside by Grundy. STRIPE stands up and runs into Grundy, picking him up like a rag doll and pins him to the wall. They give several blows as they start their battle.
The fight between Grundy and S.T.R.I.P.E. grows vicious until the robot lands a strong throw that momentarily disorients the zombie. STRIPE is damaged from the battle and sends a punch, but Grundy grabs the robotic arm and rips it out. The robot staggers backward, which is when Grundy strikes Pat with STRIPE's arm. The robot falls backward into a wall, with Grundy delivering blow after blow as he figures out his opponent's weakness. He removes the robot's legs and then strikes the robot's chest with both his hands. He successfully rips the cockpit doors open after several pounds and roars at Pat who is fully exposed now that the robot is destroyed. Pat is saved by Hourman who advises Pat to forget about the damn robot and go save his wife. Pat obliges and abandons the dismantled robot.
Once the ISA is destroyed, Pat and his family return home. Six-weeks later, they celebrate the Christmas holiday just in time for heavy snowfall. With the battle behind them, Pat takes STRIPE out for a joyous fly through the snow-covered forest of Blue Valley where he greets Stargirl at a water tower. He sits next to her, which causes the tower to wobble, and STRIPE exchanges a happy look with Stargirl. He follows her lead as she soars into the air with the Cosmic Staff, STRIPE flying next to her and into the sky.
Season 1 (10/13: 6 active)
Notes and Trivia
- Pat built S.T.R.I.P.E. after Starman died to help Hourman seek revenge on the ISA but never used it before he helped Stargirl.
- Pat can activate the robot with a touch of a button on his flip-phone. There is also a fab that controls the robot so it can fly on its own.
Behind the Scenes
- The prop and costume department, among others, were able to build a real fifteen-foot armored robot for Pat Dugan's alter-ego, S.T.R.I.P.E. The armor is so realistic and sturdy, that visitors can climb on the robot and sit inside the pilot controls with the doors either open or shut. The robot is used for still shots, while the scenes of the robot moving are added in with CGI.
- Concept artist Luca Nemolato worked on sketches for S.T.R.I.P.E. He said this about working on the character. "I wanted to stay true to comic book version but also make him practical and believable. He is made of old car parts, so I thought of really giving that car vibe, especially in his chest, logo, and headlights, while keeping his classic head shapes from the comic books was a must. You can also see a bit of the handles that the driver or Stargirl can use to climb him. It was a real blast working on him, I know how important these characters are to Geoff Johns so the pressure was on."
- He continued to talk about the S.T.R.I.P.E. logo on the front of the robot. "I played with the idea of making it a fancy car logo since he is made of old car parts.
- In the comics, S.T.R.I.P.E. is an abbreviation for Special Tactics Robotic Integrated Power Enhancer.