This week, for my Blacks in Comics articles, I am going to discuss the Milestone Media characters. Milestone was a comic company in the 90s that focused on minority characters. They were distributed by DC Comics. They are best known for Static Shock. Today, I am going to talk about Icon.
Icon was created by Dwayne McDuffie and M.D. Bright. He made his debut in Icon #1(May 1993). Icon is the Milestone version of Superman. He is an alien, who has been stranded on earth since 1839. He took on the appearance of the first sentient life-form that he came across, who was a slave named Miriam. His name is Arnus. Due to the fact that he does not outwardly age, he has taken on the identity of of his own son so he can fit in. At first, he rarely uses his powers, other than to protect himself and those around him. He is a very by the rules individual, and try’s not to rock the boat. This changes when his house is broken into, and he reveals his powers to the intruders. One of the intruders, Raquel Ervin, convinces Arnus to use his powers to become a super hero. Raquel becomes his sidekick, taking the name Rocket.
Icon uses his powers to fight street criminals and those who gained powers from the Dakota “Big Bang”. This event gave many people in the Dakotaverse powers, and many decided to use these powers for evil. When the Milestone characters where folded into the regular DC universe, only Icon and Superman knew that Dakota used to be a part of a parallel universe.
Icon never reached the levels of popularity of some of the other Milestone heroes. I think a lot of that had to do with the fact he never had a big bad to be his foil. None of the villains he dealt with could come even close to approaching how powerful he is. I really loved the fact he was as strong and powerful as Superman. Icon appeared in the Young Justice cartoon, and he was mentioned by his cover name, but never seen on the Static Shock cartoon. I really hope DC brings him back into the New 52, and let’s him have his own book. That would be awesome. You can see more about this “iconic” character(see what I did there) here.