Milestone Media is looking to what will come after the completion of Icon And Rocket: Season One with its sixth issue this week.
After a successful 2021 relaunch of the DC imprint that saw “Season One” titles for Icon and Rocket, Static, and Hardware, co-writers Reginald Hudlin and Leon Chills are focusing forward.
Milestone Media – Icon and Rocket, Static, and Beyond
The resurrection of the Milestone brand is great, but it requires making things feel fresh while establishing the shared universe in a natural way. Case in point, the fifth and sixth issues of Icon and Rocket saw them teaming up with Virgil Hawkins aka Static. As to the conceptual process, Hudlin explains:
I knew I wanted to establish that Virgil and [Raquel/Rocket] go to the same school. From there, I started asking questions and thinking, ‘Do they know each other?’ Rocket was cool before she met Icon and Virgil is not. This introduced a very fun dynamic where Static is like, ‘This is a cool beautiful girl and we both have this other life. It seems like we should be at least be friends.’ Meanwhile, Rocket is like, ‘Talk to the hand.’ I thought, ‘Let’s start there and play it through.
Issue 5, we knew it would be a pause into their personal lives which would take us to [Racquel Irvin’s] high school and we definitely wanted Virgil to be there as well. From there, it was like ‘What would he say in class? How would he approach her?’ It was nice to see he had more control over his powers in the hallway scene where he can zap the bullies and not hurt them as much as he did in early parts of [Static: Season One].
Hudlin and Hills also had the chance to develop the relationship with its main protagonists through the course of the series.
[Icon and Rocket] represent the unity of opposites: male and female, young and old, human and alien, progressive and conservative. That’s the fun of them because Rocket is young, curious, and doesn’t mind asking hard questions and Icon loves that.
As to the mentor-protege relationship extending beyond superheroics and into life skills, Hills confirms that was a deliberate choice on Icon’s part.
Icon obviously takes a liking to [Racquel] beyond what they do and he sees that she’s in a circumstance where guidance can be helpful. He does what he can to enlighten her in the ways of the world since he’s been at it for over 200 years. He tries to help her succeed in the future because he ultimately hopes he can leave and she can keep the world safe in his absence.
Looking ahead past Icon and Rocket, the writers confirm that there are numerous projects Milestone Media is developing. Most notably, after a successful animated series in the early 2000s, a live-action Static Shock film is finally being produced. There is also another animated series in development for a character that neither Chills nor Hudlin wants to confirm yet.
However, Reginald did stress what drives them both is the objective of the Milestone Comics of the 1990s: “In the ’90s, it was a bunch of super successful talented creators coming together: Denys [Cowan], Dwayne [McDuffie], and so on. However, they also gave opportunities to people who were going to be successful talents. We’ve been doing that for the launch of the new Milestone by giving opportunities to people like Leon to write, Nikolas Draper-Ivy to draw, and so on. Finding the next generation of writers and artists to do The Milestone Initiative and giving them training with some of the best professionals in the business.”
Catch the sixth and final issue of Icon and Rocket when it hits the shelves on March 22.