My Memories of “Static Shock”

Posted: November 3, 2015 in Comic Book Study
Tags: , , , , , , ,

I remember in the early 2000s reading about and being an audience to what was, at the time, the “cool” superheroes: you had the usual contenders, like Spider-Man and some of the Avengers (made even more popular back then through the then-new Ultimate Marvel line); Batman and Superman were more popular than ever through their respective cartoon shows; and then you had the underdogs, like Virgil Hawkins, star of the DC cartoon Static Shock.

Image taken from wikipedia.org

For those of us who had no idea, Static was just another cool comic character DC and Warner Bros. decided to throw at us. It was the early 2000s after all, and more diverse and interesting characters were just starting to appear on screen. It wasn’t until later when I found out the Static character was actually over ten years old, having been created back in the 1990s.

Much like the original comic book, Static Shock mixed your usual superhero adventures with more shocking material, such as racism, gang activities, and a lot more drama than kids were subjected to in their cartoons. Remember too that this was the late 1990s/early 2000s, when children were presented more mature themes and situations than they are now, so being more dramatic is definitely saying something.

I remember too how exciting it was to see more mainstream DC characters interact with Virgil and his group of heroes and villains. The episode with Static helping Batman and Robin track down the Joker was one of the best of these crossover episodes, in my opinion.

Then there was the show’s merchandise. I remember hearing rumors about a video game being made (although I never found out about its fate until I started writing this post), but outside of that, I never heard of anything else being made to support the show. Even back then I thought it was odd, considering how many variations of Batman and Superman toys there were. Turns out, there actually were some toys developed. But these things just didn’t sell well enough for the executives at DC, and (to my knowledge) this was one of the reasons Static Shock was eventually canceled.

I honestly miss this show. True, the comic didn’t sell well either, but both versions of the story did something not many comic books nowadays do: it took a serious look into a rougher and more realistic side of life, without getting preachy or trying to spread too many messages. Most of the time, you have superheroes dealing with battles in space or being turned into frogs, but this time you had a minority street-level superhero battling gang members. It was a product of the time when kids weren’t handled with care, but instead were given intelligent storylines and generally treated with respect. I miss those days in general, and I miss the old Static Shock.

If someone at DC or Warner Bros. ever ends up reading this, please give the old school fans of the show a truly awesome movie at some point. The character deserves it by this point.

Then again…

What memories of Static Shock do you have? Let me know, either in the comments below or with a tweet through that widget on the left. Better yet,like the Comic Books vs The World Facebook page, and subscribe to the official Youtube channel to keep up with all the latest on Comic Books vs The World.

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