Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Static Shock Joins the DC Universe

We're all Static Shock fans in this house. My son, wife, and I all watched the Static Shock cartoons when Cartoon Network was running them a few years back, and I was previously read many of the Milestone comics. She's never had enough time for comics, but she really enjoys the various DC animated programs, Static included. Now Static is returning, along with the rest of the Milestone characters to DC Comics, this time as part of the DCU proper. Milestone was yet another sub-imprint of the DC line in the mid-90's, which started up at about the same time !MPACT Comics was coughing up blood. Like !MPACT, the Milestone Universe was its own thing, set in a separate universe, and like the Archie heroes, the Milestone characters will return within the modern DCU. Presumably, the never-before-mentioned city of Dakota in the DCU will soon experience its own big bang, and we're off to the races. I've also gotten the impression that Dwayne McDuffie wasn't interested in giving up creative control over the Milestone characters, so his involvement is probably a given. I do wish Virgil Hawkins weren't getting dragged into the Teen Titans, a book I normally avoid, but overall, I applaud the move and look forward to seeing STATIC, ICON, HARDWARE, and (to a lesser degree) the SHADOW CABINET back in action.


joe bloke said...

you see, you had me there, you really had me, i was all excited and stuff, and then you go and mention the teen titans. . .

oh, well.

Spectrum Rider said...

Look, I'd love to see stories featuring the Archie Heroes (for a moment I thought you meant Pureheart the Powerful and Cptain Hero). Flygirl looks great, and for some reason I have an intense, homoerotic memory of the Jaguar.

And I enjoyed Milestone quite a lot, and would love to see all the characters return.

But in the DCU? On New Earth? That place is already suffering from such massive superhero overcrowding that it begins to look like issues of Normalman. Superheroes date superheroes, marry superheroes, are the children and grandchildren of superheroes, mistake superheroes for other superheroes, and can't swing a cat without hitting a superhero. Nobody has room to breathes, and they particularly don't have room to develop. Every issue is massive overload guest-star city. And there's no coherence to the shared universe at all.

I'm particularly disappointed, from a storyline point of view, to imagine the whole Milestone universe shoved into a corner of the DCU. One of the points of Milestone was to create an entire fictional setting that had its own tone, its own history, its own iconic (you'll excuse the expression) characters. The character Icon is, basically, Superman seen through the unique Milestone lens. He and Superman do not belong in the same universe. (Any more than Superman and Captain Marvel ever had.)

Put them in a parallel universe? Sure. Have them, very rarely, cross the dimensional barriers and interact? Oh, if you MUST. But shmush them all into the same universe, along with the Fawcett characters, the Charleton characters, Earth-1 and Earth-2? That's just more of a mess than we already have.

I grew up on The Lord of the Rings and Star Trek. I loved them both. But I never wanted to read a story by JRRT in which Kirk, Spock, and McCoy beam down to help Sam's daughter fight the son of Sauron. That's not Middle-Earth; that's fanfic.

Nothing the matter with fanfic, of course, but there should be something more essential on which it is based. All comics today are becoming nostalgia-driven, post-modern fanfic. Really, it's all too easy - just keep throwing characters at the wall and see what sticks. Result: big messy wall. And nobody's minding the store.

Mixed metaphor, I know. But mixin's all the rage these days.

MetFanMac said...

Well said, Spectrum Rider. That was my reaction exactly.

Static on the Titans? Meh.

Brian Hughes said...

I guess I figure DCU Milestone is better than no Milestone.

Stephen said...

love the static shock cartoon i'm really happy to see him on the titans roster. although i'd rather see him rock his own book. i think between bluee beetle, red devil, and static shock these titns are going to be cool as hell

Anonymous said...

ya think. i am a fan of static and i like the teen titans, so some would think this would be expected, while i say i saw this coming a mile a way. though i wouldn't mind the static first vol. like the blue beetle (4 vol out) but i heard a rumor that there will be a vol. coming out soon this year.