New 52 Review – “Static Shock #1”

This title is a strong contender for a true all ages comic. Perfectly acceptable for kids, but doesn’t pander to them to remain entertaining to the adults.

General Information

Title: Static Shock #1

Author: Scott McDaniel and John Rozum

Illustrator(s): Scott McDaniel (pencils), Le Beau Underwood (inks) and Guy Major (colours)

Cover Date: November 2011

Cover Price: $2.99

Buy the digital edition.


Virgil Hawkins is a brilliant student with a job at S.T.A.R. Labs. Someone steals technology from the company, and Static takes it upon himself to bring him in. Like most book smart teenage superheroes, forsight isn’t exactly his thing.

High Point

True all ages entertainment is hard to come by. This hits that mark. Believable, well defined characters and relationships, superhero action, and events that would interest an entertain an eight year old without boring his or her parents makes for a rare combination, but this delivers.

Low Point

There’s no origin story at all here. That’s a choice that works very well for Superman, Batman, and some of the other well known icons, but Static isn’t in their league. I have no idea who he is or why he has powers, which makes that final page as confusing as it is interesting.

The Scores

This is an original title in the lineup. I know Static was originally a Milestone character with a comic and TV series, but I’m unfamiliar with any appearance of his outside of the Justice League cartoons. It’s a tone not found in a lot of comics these days, but I can’t speak to how well the interpretation lines up with previous incarnations. I give it 4 out of 6.

The artwork is the not-quite-on-model style common in books aimed at the ten year old set. The script doesn’t feel dumbed down, but that’s the vibe I get off the art. I give it 4 out of 6.

The story is well told. We quickly get a feel for Static’s goals and style, as he’s less of a crime fighter and more a person who just wants to help in general. We also get a good feel for his home life and learn something of the current threat he faces. I give it 5 out of 6.

The characterization of Static and his family comes through nicely. We simply lack a feel for his villains. I give it 4 out of 6.

The emotional response was good. If my comic guy hadn’t gotten me a deal on the full set of 52 titles, I would have passed on this, but instead I found it surprisingly enjoyable. I give it 5 out of 6.

The flow is only jarring at one point. When turning the page, there’s a jump in time that isn’t labelled. This often works, but it jumps from scenes similar enough that it jars. I give it 4 out of 6.

Overall, this is a strong entry in the new lineup. Entertaining in its own right, and fills the rare “all ages but in mainstream continuity” niche. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total, Static Shock #1 receives 31 out of 42.

The New 52

Here are handy links for the reviews of all 52 new #1 issues:

  1. Action Comics
  2. All-Star Western
  3. Animal Man
  4. Aquaman
  5. Batgirl
  6. Batman
  7. Batman and Robin
  8. Batman: The Dark Knight
  9. Batwing
  10. Batwoman
  11. Birds of Prey
  12. Blackhawks
  13. Blue Beetle
  14. Captain Atom
  15. Catwoman
  16. DC Universe Presents
  17. Deathstroke
  18. Demon Knights
  19. Detective Comics
  20. The Flash
  21. Frankenstein, Agent of S.H.A.D.E.
  22. The Fury of Firestorm
  23. Green Arrow
  24. Green Lantern
  25. Green Lantern Corps
  26. Green Lantern: New Guardians
  27. Grifter
  28. Hawk and Dove
  29. I, Vampire
  30. Justice League
  31. Justice League Dark
  32. Justice League International
  33. Legion Lost
  34. Legion of Super-Heroes
  35. Men of War
  36. Mister Terrific
  37. Nightwing
  38. O.M.A.C.
  39. Red Hood and the Outlaws
  40. Red Lanterns
  41. Resurrection Man
  42. The Savage Hawkman
  43. Static Shock
  44. Stormwatch
  45. Suicide Squad
  46. Superboy
  47. Supergirl
  48. Superman
  49. Swamp Thing
  50. Teen Titans
  51. Voodoo
  52. Wonder Woman