The Story: Having moved from Dakota and now patrolling the streets of New York City as well as working part-time at S.T.A.R. Labs, Virgil Hawkins is having a blast using his powers as Static. Although more times than not, he ends up making the citizens he’s trying to protect angry with him rather than cheer him on thanks to his overzealousness. He better get his stuff together though; an underground criminal syndicate with meta-humans on their side thought NYC was ripe for the pickings, and they aren’t happy about Static moving in on their turf.
The Verdict: Can’t say I’m a big Static fan (I personally thought most of the other Milestone characters were a lot more interesting, although DC apparently doesn’t agree), but even if I was, I don’t think I’d be flipping out over his new solo series. Even though writer John Rozum knows his way around Milestone characters, there’s not much to differentiate this book from other books that feature teenagers coming to grips with their powers. A lot of the standard struggling with their powers stuff goes on and heaps of out-loud exposition make up most of the book. Do all teenage superheroes have to talk to themselves while they’re out doing their thing? Scott McDaniel’s artwork is okay, but I thought it looked a little sloppy and rushed in spots. This just didn’t look as pleasant as his work on Robin did.
There is one cool thing going on here that I didn’t expect though: he’s guided by Hardware. Yes, the Hardware of the Milestone universe. Fans, rejoice! He serves as a mentor to Static, telling him what he’s doing right and where he’s going wrong, and hooking him up with all sorts of technologically advanced gadgets. This was an unexpected surprise, and while he does sort of feel like Microchip from The Punisher (or Oracle to a lesser extent), I’m glad to see him here.
The Outlook: Another one that’s not bad, but does little to distinguish itself in the story department. I think DC’s going to have to bank on more than the character’s popularity (and all 3 of us Hardware fans) if they want this book to last.
Continue to week three reviews!