Glow-In-The-Dark, Holofoil, Chromium, and Die-Cut – Comics In The Nineties Weren’t All Bad – Milestone Media

GameStop, Inc.

Many people still to this day speak of the many things that happened in the nineties that made it a very dark decade for the comic industry, the things we would like to forget happened at all, and the things we just can’t seem to let go of. And pouches, so very many pouches. I’m here to discuss the many things that made that decade truly a great time to be a fan. This week, I bring you another reason the nineties weren’t all bad.

Milestone Media.

Milestone Media was founded in 1993 by well-known and critically acclaimed creators Dwayne McDuffie, Denys Cowan, Michael Davis, and Derek T. Dingle, and is wrongly remembered by many as the “black” comic company, but there was oh so much more to them than that. Milestone Media was the umbrella corporation behind Milestone Comics, which secured an at the time unheard of distribution deal with DC Comics, in which DC had right of refusal, but Milestone had complete editorial control of their stories, as well as total copyright retention of their properties. Essentially, DC Comics were licensing the properties for a yearly fee and a share of the profits.

Milestone was heavily criticized at the time by several black independent companies and creators for working for “the white man” instead of going it alone, many not realizing that was not what Milestone were doing. Many, to this day, misunderstood what Milestone was about, either unintentionally out of a lack of comprehension, or intentionally by willfully ignoring the facts.

What Milestone were about is quite simple. Looking at the complete lack of diversity in comics at the time, these four men sought to represent the real world more fully, with characters representing many diverse political, racial, and socio-economic backgrounds, in film, television, and comics. And what a success this experiment turned out to be! Publishing somewhere between 250 and 300 comics over the next few years, and launching the highly successful and popular cartoon series Static Shock, Milestone Media was riding a wave of success unseen by the many other start-up comic publishers of the decade.

Milestone brought many talented creators to audiences, many of them passed over by other companies, and many of them skyrocketed to fame in the following years. Artists such as John Paul Leon, Chris Sotomayor, ChrisCross, Tommy Lee Edwards, J.H. Williams III, Humberto Ramos, John Rozum, Jamal Igle, and Chris Batista went on to work on some of the most popular properties in the world in later years, becoming noted fan favorites, and some even winning awards for their efforts.

That first year saw the release of the first issues of Hardware, Icon, Blood Syndicate, and Static, which was later the basis for the aforementioned cartoon series. These characters were unlike anything else being published at the time, and challenged mainstream conventions in so many ways.

Icon himself drew criticism for being a black conservative, because as we all know, those don’t exist in real life. >cough< Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, Herman Cain >cough< The truth is, these characters were real, at least as real as spandex clad flying men could be. This was a modern day continuation in many ways of what Lee/Kirby/Ditko were doing in the early days of Marvel Comics, bringing us real world characters with real world problems. A year later saw the first line-wide crossover, Shadow War, and the launch of new titles such as Shadow Cabinet and Xombi.

It was a rough time to be launching a new line of comics, as so many other companies were popping up on a daily basis. That coupled with the fact that many mainstream (read: white) readers assumed these were just comics for black people, there was a lack of coverage in the comic book press, and that there was a severe market crash just one year after they launched, ensured that Milestone wouldn’t last that long.

However, Milestone’s presence is still felt, as Static was one of the heroes chosen to relaunch the DC Comic universe in the beginning of the New 52 initiative. He also still pops up in cartoon form occasionally, as in the second season of Young Justice. Icon and Rocket even appeared in Young Justice, with Icon being a member of the Justice League!

We sadly lost Dwayne McDuffie in 2011, but his legacy lives on in these characters and the world they inhabited, a world more like our own than comic fans were used to.

Milestone Media may not have lasted as many years as they would have hoped, but they accomplished something great in their brief time, bringing a diverse new line of characters to the comic shelves, many of which are still fondly remembered to this day. And they are one of the reasons it was awesome being a comic fan in the nineties. Next week I’ll bring you another.

 

Anytime Costumes

Leave a Reply

FanboyNation
Animation/Anime Interviews Animation/Anime News Animation/Anime Reviews Film/TV Interviews Film/TV News Film/TV Review
Eric Bana Talks ‘Force of Nature: The Dry 2’ – Interview

Eric Bana Returns for the sequel to ‘The Dry‘ in ‘Force...

Letitia Wright’s Talks about her Latest Film ‘Aisha’ – Interview

Letitia Wright’s latest film, ‘Aisha‘, a story about immigration, resilience, friendship...

Blake Crouch and Matt Tolmach Talk ‘Dark Matter’ Coming to AppleTV+ – Interview

‘Dark Matter‘ a science fiction thriller series based on the novel...

Event News Event Reviews
Disney’s ‘Aladdin’ Takes You to A Whole New World at Segerstrom – Review

Disney’s Aladdin takes the audience on a thrilling chase and a wonderous place...

Dark Harbor Returns to Long Beach on The Queen Mary this Halloween

The Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor Returns to Long Beach for the...

It’s Showtime! ‘Beetlejuice’ is a Hit at Segerstrom Center of the Arts – Review

It’s Showtime! ‘Beetlejuice‘ is a Hit at Segerstrom Center of the...

Automotives Football MMA, Kick Boxing & Boxing Professional Wrestling
Oscar De La Hoya Partners with El Rey for ‘Friday Night Fights’ – Interview

The Golden Boy himself chatted with us about Golden Boy Promotions...

Olympic Runner Colleen Quigley ‘On The Road to Paris’

Team USA Olympic Runner, Colleen Quigley is On The Road to...

Paralympian Swimmer Ahalya Lettenberger On The Road to Paris

Team USA Paralympian Swimmer, Ahalya Lettenberger is On The Road to...

Adult Continuity Comics on the Can Cultural Junk Drawer Future Comic Rock Stars Is That Racist? Revisiting the Reviled THAT'S NOT ROTTEN! The B-Reel The Cantina Scene This Week in Crowdfunding What the HELL Did I just...?
Fantoy Comics Presents: Harry Potter and the Pahrump Apocalypse part something: Hermione and the Mini-gun pt 2

Have a lead salad instead!

Fantoy Comics Presents – Harry Potter and the Pahrump Apocalypse part ?: Hermione and the mini-gun pt 1

It can't fire more than 6,000 per minute!

Fantoy Comics Presents: Harry Potter and the Pahrump Apocalypse: Kurt v Sid – HASTA!

Hasta La Vista Baby!

Music Interviews Music News Music Reviews
Joe Kwaczala Talks About His new Comedy Album ‘Funny Songs & Sketches’ – Interview

Joe Kwaczala Talks About His new Comedy Album ‘Funny Songs &...

Songwriter and Poet, Tamara Mechael Talks About Her Career in the Arts

First Generation Assyrian-Chaldean, Songwriter and Poet, Tamara Mechael Talks About Her...

Louden Swain Headlining Los Angeles Show at The Echo

Press Release – Louden Swain are headlining Los Angeles show at...

Enabled Gaming Gaming News Gaming Reviews
Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League
Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League Gameplay Trailer

The first Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League gameplay trailer was revealed during...

Wonder Woman Game
Wonder Woman Game Announced By DC and WB Games

Wonder Woman game will feature the iconic hero in a 3rd...

MultiVersus
MultiVersus brings Batman, Arya Stark, Bugs Bunny, and More

MultiVersus is bringing Shaggy, Harley Quinn, Jake, Batman, Arya Stark, Bugs Bunny,...

Comic Creator Interviews Comic/Graphic Novel News Comic/Graphic Novel Reviews Manga News Manga Reviews Novel/Novella Author Interviews Novel/Novella News Novel/Novella Reviews
Gary Morgenstein Talks ‘A Dugout to Peace’ the Final Installment of his Trilogy

Gary Morgenstein Talks About ‘A Dugout to Peace‘ the final installment...

Chris Clews Is ‘Raised on the 80s’ and Shares Those Life Lessons

Chris Clews was ‘Raised on the 80s‘ and Shares Those Life...

Roye Okupe Brings Authentic African Representation to HBO Max and Cartoon Network

Nigerian-American, Roye Okupe brings authentic African representation to HBO Max and...

Apparel/Personal Maintenance News Apparel/Personal Maintenance Reviews Entertainment Product News Entertainment Product Reviews Food/Beverage Reviews Hardware News Hardware Reviews Mystery Box News Mystery Box Reviews
Harry Potter: Magic Caster Wand Demo

The new ‘Harry Potter: Magic Caster Wand‘ is ready to ship...

Chef Jen Peters and Matthew Clayton Bring us the ‘Good Flour’

Canadian Super Chef Jen Peters and Matthew Clayton Bring us the...

Pop Insider 2021 Holiday Gift Guide
Pop Insider 2021 Holiday Gift Guide

The Pop Insider 2021 Holiday Gift Guide is now available to help...

Gaming Uncensored Toon-In-Talk
Episode 38: Hamid Rahmanian

Join Whitney Grace as she speaks with artist Hamid Rahmanian, who...

No Preview
Toon-In Talk Episode 37: Niki Smith

Whitney Grace interviews graphic novel writer and artist Niki Smith about...

Toon-In Talk Episode 36: Rob Paulsen

Rob Paulsen takes some time from his busy voice acting schedule...