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DC’s reimagined Static has an electric new look

The comics company reveals the first wave of Milestone reboot books

The new 2021 Static from Static Shock DC Universe Image: DC Comics
Matt Patches is an executive editor at Polygon. He has over 15 years of experience reporting on movies and TV, and reviewing pop culture.

Last August, DC Comics announced the return of Milestone universe, the comics home to beloved characters like Static and Hardware. An extension of Milestone Media, the company founded by Denys Cowan, Michael Davis, Derek T. Dingle, and the late Dwayne McDuffie to address the underrepresentation of racial minorities in superhero comics, the Milestone characters eventually entered the core DC universe in 2008. But now Cowan and writer-filmmaker Reggie Hudlin have come together to relaunch the brand — and DC has finally revealed the first wave of comics.

The new Milestone era kicks off Feb. 26 with a digital-first “extended cut” of the Milestone Returns #0 one-shot, previously exclusive to the DC FanDome event. Milestone Returns: Infinite Edition #0 adds 24 pages to the book, written by Hudlin and drawn by artists Cowan, Nikolas Draper-Ivey, Bill Sienkiewicz, and other artists. The book rewrites the history of “The Big Bang,” an anti-police brutality protest that unleashed a sudden wave of superpowers in the fictional city of Dakota.

Static redesign for 2021 DC Comics Milestone relaunch Image: DC Comics

In April, DC will launch Static, following a newly designed version of Virgil Hawkins (concept art above). Here’s the official synopsis:

In this monthly miniseries (20 pages per issue), bullied nerd Virgil is gifted with incredible electromagnetic powers in the wake of the Big Bang. Now he finds himself caught between an over-militarized police response to Black kids getting special abilities and some of those kids who are using those powers in dangerous and destructive ways. But when the bullies who terrorized him before the Big Bang show up with powers of their own, can Static be the hero that Dakota needs?

This summer, DC will launch two more digital-first series: Icon & Rocket on June 21, and Hardware, from Cowan and Sienkiewicz, on Aug. 23. All the books will be free to read on DC Universe upon release.

Hotstreak redesign from DC COmics 2021 relaunch of Milestone comics Image: DC Comics

“Introducing these ‘seasons’ of Static, Icon, Rocket, and Hardware is just the beginning,” Hudlin said in a statement. “There will be more stories with these favorite characters to come, and fans will see appearances from the legendary Blood Syndicate, setting the stage for an explosive Milestone event later in the year.”

Milestone Returns comic cover Image: DC Comics