Review- Milestone Returns: Infinite Edition #0
Review – Milestone Returns: Infinite Edition #0
Publisher: DC Comics
Writers: Reginald Hudlin, Greg Pak
Artists: Denys Cowan, Bill Sienkiewicz, ChrissCross, Jim Lee, Juan Castro, Chris Sotomayor, and Nikolas Draper-Ivey, Ryan Benjamin, Don Ho, Khoi Pham, Scott Hanna
Colourists: Alex Sinclair, Hi-Fi, Chris Sotomayor, Wil Quintana
Letterer: Andworld Design
Release Date: Feb 2021
Milestone has returned, with ‘Milestone Returns: Infinite Edition #0’. With a varied creative team and veteran Reginald Hudlin at the at the helm, Milestone is back with a bang. The Dakotaverse, the name of The Milestone Universe, takes place on Earth-M. This means that it’s not tethered to the main continuity of the DC Universe. However, after the events set up in ‘Infinite Frontier #0’, we could see these characters in the future.
Since there are several different heroes featured in this book, I will break down each individual story. Similar to my ‘Infinite Frontier #0’ review, talking about how each creative team tackled each story respectively, so Spoilers Ahead.
Static: Return of The Mac
The issue starts with a peaceful protest for the Black Lives Matter movement. However after clashing with police the events of the Milestone Universe are set into motion. The updates to many of the iconic Milestone heroes alllows them to be modern and timley. Namely for Virgil Hawkins as Static. Instead of being exposed to chemicals during a gangland attack, Virgil (and others) now get their powers from an experimental tear gas made by Alva Industries. Virgil’s origin as a superhero is one of the key stories that highlight the status quo in the new Dakotaverse.
The idea of using a Black Lives Matter protest to reintroduce the characters of Milestone is masterful by Hudlin. tying a relevant social/ political issue into the book while not making it feel forced. The art for this section retains a style closer to a manga/ anime, rather than the cartoonists of usual comics. The colour Pallet for this opening section is also very muted. Enforcing an idea of realism and seriousness that should relate to the issues presented. The use of greys and blacks with splashes of colour throughout convey the realism that is needed when handling a topic such as BLM.
Statics origins are explored in detail later in the issue with the manga art style being traded out for a traditional one. I don’t want to spoil too much in this issue, so I’ll leave it there, you can continue Virgil’s story in ‘Static’ written by Vita Ayala and Art by Chriscross and Nikolas Draper-Ivey. Available in April 2021
The original flagship hero for Milestone, Hardware is back. Again, the origin of this tech-based hero has been updated for new readers. Although only appearing in 4 pages, Calvin Metcalf makes an impression immediately. Knowing he is going to be wrongfully accused for the distribution of the chemical used in the riot, Metcalf goes rouge. He goes to his off the grid lab where he uses experimental equipment to become ‘Hardware’ and figure out how to prove his innocence.
The plot set up here for the new ‘Hardware’ Series out in August. It will be interesting to see how Calvin will clear his name from crimes he didn’t commit. Again, this section includes commentary on race and colour which will assumable be apart of the main series, which will be great to highlight the issues faced by POC’s in society. The illustrations in this section are great with the Hardware cutting a striking silhouette, against a muted backdrop colour pallet.
Icon and Rocket: Dynamic Duo
It’s been a while, but Icon is now back. After not making an appearance in the DC Universe since ‘the New 52’, Milestones most powerful alien hero, has returned. With his teenage high school sidekick rocket in tow, (Raquel Ervin), also knowing as Rocket. Icon was always seen as Milestones answer to Superman. But he is much more than that and in ‘Milestone Returns #0’.
The story of Icon and Rocket is another of the central ones in the issue. Starting with Icon and Rocket taking down drug operations in Columbia. The reader is filled in as to what the heroes have been doing and how they plan to try and make the world a better place. There is some poignant imagery in this section. With strong anti-war sentiment as well as a message of peace and hope, the themes in this series will be interesting.
The dialogue between Rocket and Icon is very free-flowing, with a witty nature that a mentor and student would have. Icon also conveys this idea of stoic power and wisdom. Something that is present in his dialogue that is present in a pivotal scene towards the end of the book. Rocket acts as pseudo narrator for the sections that feature her and Icon. The use of the caption boxes to convey the narration is a super effective way to catch up the reader on Icon and Rockets situation, meaning less time is focused on the characters origins but more on their personalities.
To find out what happens next to Icon and Rocket check out ‘Icon and Rocket #1’ available in June.
More Powers, More Problems
The main plot that underlines the book is the emergence of powered individuals in Dakota. After various people are mutated to have superhuman abilities, those that are changed physically by the process are left on outskirts of society. However, these people band together and leadership of ‘Holocaust’, plan to take dangerous action against society. The return of Holocaust is a big one for fans as his appearance indicates the return of the Blood Syndicate. Some of the biggest bads in the Dakota verse. This will most likely be the first main villain arc in various Milestone comics. With the tagline at the end of the issue teasing that the story is ‘to be continued across the entire Milestone Universe’.
The book also features a few characters who appear for only one or two pages, some of them being fan favourites and others being brand new characters, that I won’t spoil here but will make some Milestone fans happy.
Overall, the fact that Milestone is now back as part of the greater DC Omniverse is great. This issue is a must read for those Milestone fans out there or those just interested in Milestones iconic characters. The reboot of the origins of several Milestone characters, brings them into a more modern setting than their origins in the 1990’s and they are all the better for it. Whatever they plan to do with these characters it’s going to be interesting to watch how heroes interact in a modern world.
You can find ‘Milestone Returns: Infinite Edition #0’ on all good digital comicbook retailers.
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