MILESTONE COMICS

Milestone Forever

Reading the Milestone Returns Infinite Edition #0 has got me totally hyped up for the return of Milestone Comics. As I wait, I’ve started looking back at some of the earlier comics, and I thought I’d review this 2-part series which was released in 2010. This was ahead of DC’s ill-fated New 52 line-wide reboot which debuted the following year and integrated the Milestone characters into the mainstream DC Universe. So this series was a final chapter to the original Milestone continuity, including wrapping up some loose ends and open plot-lines. So, make no mistake, this series is for longtime Milestone fans, if you didn’t buy the original titles or are only familiar with Static via the Static Shock cartoon, this really isn’t for you. There are some flashbacks and exposition giving background details, but this story is built on history.

Written by The Maestro Dwayne McDuffie (Peace Be Upon Him) with different pages drawn by a group of artists including John Paul Leon, Denys Cowan, and piece of shit homophobe Chris Cross, the first issue mostly focuses on Icon and Rocket preparing to confront Holocaust. When their series left off, Icon had sent Rocket “undercover” to infiltrate Holocaust’s organization, has Holocaust gathered various bang babies to form his own new version of the Blood Syndicate. Now it’s time to take out Holocaust once and for all. This leads to a big confrontation between Holocaust’s forces and the combined force of Icon, Rocket, Hardware, Static and Harm. The battle goes back and forth a few pages but then Wise Son shows up with the rest of the original members of the Blood Syndicate. Wise Son declares himself the rightful leader and challenges Holocaust to a one-on-one fight, which Holocaust accepts. 

I won’t spoil the exact ending but, suffice to say, the good guys save the day. Blood Syndicate was my favorite Milestone title back in the day, and it was good to see these characters again. 

The second issue starts off focused on Hardware. Curtis has decided to retire, both from the technology business and the superhero business. After finally settling his former boss and arch-enemy Edwin Alva’s estate, he’s now fully in control of Alva Industries, which he then promptly signs over to three of his longtime friends and allies. He then assigns Tiffany Evans aka Technique to take his place as Hardware. Curtis then proposes to Barraki and they get married and settle down in a large mansion.

This was a more than satisfying ending for the hero who launched the Milestone universe, his arc from vengeful killer to righteous man is complete.

The next story focuses on Static. Virgil is an adult, he’s graduated med school and now attending his High School’s 10-year reunion. There’s some allusion to him and Frieda having a falling out, and so she’s not there, but Virgil catches up with his old pals from school and has a final showdown with his original arch-enemy Hotstreak, who’s now calling himself Firewheel for some reason. And then the story jumps ahead another 10 years, Virgil has long retired from being Static, and we see that at some point he and Frienda reconciled and got married, and now have two younger children, a boy and a girl who have inherited their father’s super-powers, and are preparing to attend their 20th High School reunion together. This was a touching finale to this most famous of Milestone’s heroes.

Strangely, this series doesn’t really give us an ending to Icon and Rocket though. At one point in Static’s story he mentioned Icon and refers to Icon as “her,” so does that mean adult Raquel eventually takes the mantle from Augustus? I don’t know. But there’s also a framing story in both issues involving Dharma from Shadow Cabinet and some cosmic shenanigans that end in him merging the Milestone Universe with the mainstream DC Universe, rewriting history so that they’ve always existed together and no one will remember the past. And this was to be the status quo going forward.

These two books are a must-have for every reader of the original Milestone line. Nobody knew these characters better than Mr. McDuffie and even if we’d never see these characters in print again, he gave us a good final chapter to the saga here.

Chacebook rating: FIVE STARS

Unfortunately, neither book is available digitally yet, but DC has been slowly but surely releasing the old Milestone comics on Comixology, so hopefully, these will be added someday. Print comics can be found at MYCOMICSHOP.COM

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