Created in 1993 as one of the first four Milestone Comics comics, his title was the one I was least interested in of the original four. The character description and the forced in Malcolm X hat made him a complete pass for fourteen year old Nick. Instead I picked up Hardware, which I liked but wasn’t blown away by, and Icon, a book that instantly drew me in to the fascinating relationship between Augustus Freeman and Raquel Ervin. Blood Syndicate proved to be a great book in the hands of Ivan Velez and Chriscross. But it was Static that proved to be my favorite in the end.
I only tried the book because of how much I liked the previous three number ones. Virgil Hawkins proved to be a great character though as Dwayne McDuffie, Robert L. Washington III and John Paul Leon set out to basically update the original Spider-Man format. Virgil was a nerd, but even a nerd tried for acceptance. During a poorly thought out gang initiation, Virgil gets exposed to the Big Bang and empowered.
|This cover was too controversial for DC to release|
without an extra wrap around, all because of those
two small packets on the floor.
Dwayne McDuffie moved into animation. He ushered Static into animation with him, creating the television series Static Shock! It was never quite the Static I grew to love, but the show had just enough Milestone in it to keep my interest. Season two started to integrate Static into the DC Animated Universe, a move that would continue into episodes of Justice League Unlimited. It was very cool to see Static getting treated as every bit as important as Green Lantern, Superman or Flash.
|Those goggles will never not look silly.|
But I still have those forty-five issues. Static—much like his lost creators—will always remain an inspiration to me. The simple flow of adventure to adventure, always tied together by the trials and tribulations of Virgil's everyday life is something I tried to emulate in the first year of Lightweight's adventures. While I am not sure I always succeeded, I cannot overlook the importance of character in super powered storytelling, something Milestone first really made me realize all those years ago.
Thanks, Dwayne. Thanks, Robert. Let's hope Milestone 2.0 can be a lasting legacy to both of you.