It’s time to put a shock back to your system. That’s right, after its short-lived run as a part of DC’s New 52, the electrifying teen superhero is gracing the pages of DC comics once again. 

The series is titled, Static: Season One, written by Vita Ayala and art by Chriscross and Nikolas Draper-Ivey. The first issue of this six-part series was released on June 15th, 2021. 

Static isn’t the only hero from Milestone Comics making their return. Both Icon & Rocket and Hardware are receiving six-part series as well, officially re-establishing the “Dakotaverse”.

For those of you who don’t know what the “Dakotaverse” is, let me give you a quick rundown. The “Dakotaverse" refers to all characters licensed by DC Comics from Milestone Comics. All characters involved are based in/operate out of the fictional city of Dakota, whose population is majority Black with a heavy gang presence. Milestone Comics’ creator, the truly incomparable Dwayne McDuffie (may he rest in peace) and Denys Cowan, wanted to write stories featuring Black heroes so readers could see that heroes come in all colors. They also wrote stories from their own experiences which is why Dakota is a stand-in for any inner city in America.

The following will be a review for both Milestone Returns and Static: Season One #1. Spoiler Warning.


Milestone Returns is essentially issue 0 for the three new series being revived, Static, Icon & Rocket, and Hardware. For both Static and Hardware, it revamps their origin stories. Originally, Virgil Hawkins, Static, gains his powers because he was dragged into a gang war and was exposed to an explosion of strange gas. This event is known as the “Big Bang”. In Milestone Returns, the “Big Bang” happens at a Black Lives Matter protest in Dakota when the police decide to use an experimental “tear gas” on the protesters. 

Of course, updating Static’s origins allows readers to connect with the story on a personal level, given the events of 2020. This also aligns with McDuffie’s goal of using common experiences to tell amazing stories.

Hardware is introduced as the scientist, Dr. Curtis Metcalf, who developed the gas for Alva Industries (evil corporation). He is immediately blamed for the “Big Bang”. Seeing the writing on the wall, Dr. Metcalf runs to his secret lab to transform his body and equip armor with a lot of firepower.

Icon and Rocket’s origins aren’t fully explored here, but it does establish that Icon is an alien who has been on Earth for a looooong time. He is a Superman-like hero with several abilities even known to him. Rocket, on the other hand, is a girl from Dakota that met Icon and convinced him to clean up the drug problem in Dakota.

Milestone Returns defines the social issues created by the “Big Bang”, basically the same problems seen in the X-Men comics. We are shown Virgil’s first conflict with school bully turned pyromaniac villain, Hotstreak, and the rise of the big bad, Holocaust. There are a few smaller stories included in this comic but I’ll let you read those for yourself.

Milestone Returns is a showcase of what we can expect in the future from the new writers and artists for these series. I highly recommend reading this comic if for nothing else seeing Virgil let out some major voltage. I rate it a 7/10.


Static: Season One #1 continues to dive into Virgil’s thoughts about all the changes he is going through. After his fight with Hotstreak, he’s worried he can’t control this new power. To his relief, no one except Hotstreak and Virgil’s friends, Frieda and Richie, knows he has powers. 

Virgil is constantly feeling the buzz of electricity under his skin. While it isn’t hurting him, the pressure of controlling it is causing anxiety and irritability with those he’s close to. Add in the trauma of being hospitalized by the “Big Bang” and knowing that the person that hates him the most could barbeque him, it’s a lot for a 16-year-old to handle. It’s a lot for anyone to handle.

The artwork and paneling in this comic are stunning. I am loving Virgil’s new design. The characterization of Virgil, his family, and Hotstreak is perfect. Artist Nikolas Draper-Ivey has stated multiple times on Twitter that he wanted to give this series a cinematic quality. He has not disappointed the reader, so far. There are two scenes between Virgil and his family, one before the “Big Bang” and one in the present. The page layouts are identical but the conversations are very different in tone, and I am just amazed by these scenes.

I was already a Static fan before reading this comic, and now I’ve fallen in love with the character all over again. I rate this issue 9.5/10.

The next issue of Static doesn’t have a release date yet, but in the meantime, Icon & Rocket will be released in July and Hardware in August.

TL/DR: Static is back and it’s really good.

Milestone Returns, available now. Rating: 7/10

Static: Season One #1, available now. Rating: 9.5/10

By Tré


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