Milestone's (DC) Icon and Rocket

Discussion in 'Joker’s Funhouse (Off Topic)' started by Controller, Jun 19, 2022.

  1. Controller Loyal Player

    Issue 1 - From May of 1993. Dwayne McDuffie (RIP) - writer. M.D. Bright - penciler. Mike Gustovich - inker. Steve Dutro - letterer. Rachelle Menashe, James Sherman and Noelle Giddings - Colorists.

    An interstellar alien starliner is vacationing in our solar system in 1839. Onboard is a Terminian named Arnus whose life is about to take a drastic turn as his ship is sabotaged and he has to take an escape pod to Earth.

    His pod then crash lands in the Deep South, United States, and as a defense mechanism this pod allows him take on the form of the first human being to touch this craft - which at this time is a slave woman named Myriam.

    The Terminian formerly named Arnus then takes on the human form - down to the DNA - of this woman and becomes a Black human male baby - but in the process of this transformation gains amazing powers that he won't realize until later on in his teens.

    [IMG]

    This issue then fast-forwards to current day (1993) Augustus Freeman IV - successful and wealthy lawyer with his own law firm. His life has been low-key - much to his own design - until in this fateful issue he encounters a young, smart and idealistic teenager Raquel Ervin while she and her friends decided to rob his home.

    His home is notably loaded with nice items and they attempt to rob him. Her boyfriend, Noble, focuses on a large television as his loot of choice while Raquel sets her eyes on a computer. Little do they know that the owner is about to surprise them.

    Her boyfriend Noble mistakes Augustus for the butler and shoots him in his chest at point blank range. This has no effect. Mr. Freeman proceeds to rid his house of the robbers he uses his power of flight for the first time in many years and gives the youth a lecture and an experience they will not soon forget.

    Raquel Ervin's encounter with this mysterious man has left quite the impression on her - so much so that she decides to visit his home the next day and persuades him take up the mantle of Icon as she asks him to do more to help his community and be an example.

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    After giving her lecture to him much thought he decides to meet up with Raquel later on and she's designed them suits. After she quotes W.E.B. DuBois they both begin their journey as Icon and Rocket.

    They then proceed to downtown Dakota - where they surprise the local police on scene of a disturbance. Raquel jumps to conclusions, Freeman makes assumptions and the story takes an interesting turn.
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  2. Controller Loyal Player

    Icon and Rocket # 2, June 1993. By Dwayne Mcduffie (RIP) - Writer, M.D. Bright - Penciler, Mike Gustovich - Inker, John Cebollero - Colorist, Steve Dutro - Letterer.

    [IMG]

    In this issue the different ideologies of Augustus Freeman IV (Icon) and Rocket start to become apparent - and will become even more evident as their comics progress on.

    Raquel Ervin (Rocket) and Icon, with her new powers given to her by the belt he presented her with, squares off with members of S.H.R.E.D. (Special Heavy-equipment Rapid Emergency Deloyment). S.H.R.E.D. is Dakotaverse' Elite Police unit. This is against Icon's desire to HELP them.

    Icon offers assistance to the SHRED unit initially - as SHRED is dealing with ANOTHER issue of an armed militia attempting to take over Mayor Jefferson's office. He does this with no reservations. The Police Captain of SHRED, though, as well as his entire unit - are shocked and on edge from a large costumed man and young teenager flying towards them from the sky......

    The Captain promptly orders Icon and Rocket to put their hands up and remain in place.

    The Rocket, on the other hand - assumes the worst based off of her modern-day stance on Policing in her community - with an aggressive tone towards the Police Captain of SHRED. In Icon #1 on page 23 she even uses a racial slur towards Icon in reference to how she believes the police unit will respond to them based off of how they look.

    Icon, being a bit older (not only in age BUT in time on Earth), gives Rocket a more nuanced response that basically tries to reassure her that the police will appreciate their help and presence.

    He asks her to not assume everything as racial. She disagrees, going on to compare THEIR initial meeting with police to how police would respond to a being she has only seen in Dakatoverse' comics - SUPERMAN.

    Incidentally - Rocket (and Icon) "WILL" go on to actually MEET the Comic Book Superman - in the Comic Book flesh - in the "Worlds Collide" series that begins with Icon and Rocket #15. She meets Comic Book Superboy in this issue.

    SHRED "does", eventually, appreciate and welcome their assistance but not without some conflict beforehand.

    Personally I can understand Rocket's angst in issue #2, here. She is quite gifted and intelligent, as will be illustrated in future issues as we progress - but she is also young and idealistic. She comes from a single parent home where they struggle to make ends meet. While there are considerable strengths to Rocket her lack of experience shows through in her actions here in this issue BUT also illustrates to Icon "HER" own experiences which are valid from her point of view.

    One must ALSO take in account the RECENCY of this issue - the year in Real Life is 1993. We're only TWO years removed from the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles that was a troubling time for America.

    Icon - through his vast wealth and his choice to hide his powers - has become a bit disengaged with life and his standing as a Black man until he meets Rocket and she persuades him to become a Superhero. She will show him that he has a LOT to catch up on.

    She - in turn - will learn a lot from HIM as well.

    [IMG]

    Also in issue #2 we meet a person of interest known only as "Kevin", thus far. Kevin was present at the Big Bang - the same event that gave Static HIS powers as well as countless other bang babies. This event ALSO killed HUNDREDS of youth gathering for a fight with the authorities use of a spiked tear gas concoction. This concoction killed MUCH of the youth gathering BUT gave Static Shock and a few other youth who survived superpowers.

    "Kevin" and his militia proceeds to take Mayor Jefferson hostage, claiming that she knows more about the "Big Bang" event than she pretends to. This, in turn, leads to Icon and Rocket responding to her calls for help as well as SHRED responding to the same calls as well.

    Kevin will later be revealed as the dangerous Bang Baby "Payback" and an initial foe of Icon and Rocket.
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  3. Controller Loyal Player

    https://www.cbr.com/mcu-captain-america-sam-wilson-problem-explained/

    I think, indirectly - this article explains the lack of Rocket (and Icon, especially) in the "Bigger" DC Universe, especially cinematically.

    I do appreciate the work that "Young Justice" has done with the two of them but from what I gather Rocket has gotten a bit more exposure than him.

    It was discussed in the Sam Wilson article that he was handled a bit clumsily as the "New" Captain America" - and for good reason.

    In many ways, Sam Wilson following in Steve Roger's shoes makes sense....he, too - is a dedicated Soldier. But it can be argued that such moves makes for some uncomfortable conversation.

    Personally? I applaud Marvel's work with Black Superheroes and other superheroes of color, especially the recent Ms. Marvel. They are trying, at least....even though Marvel will DEFINITELY get my attention with a Big Screen introduction of my man Blue Marvel

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    Adam Brashear, the Blue Marvel, has Power Levels right up there with Sentry, Hyperion, Stormbreaker Thor, Captain Marvel AND Gladiator. In the above panel Sentry is conscious, barely, after just returning to Earth.

    You see - Blue had just knocked him into orbit, lol.

    [IMG]

    I can see some definite parallels with Augustus Freeman IV, Icon - the "True" Black Superman......where DC's handlers - whether they be Milestone or whomever - may not quite know (or be ready to) present such a being on the Big Screen.....

    I personally think one of the Final Frontiers, if you will, in true equality is getting equally powerful beings like Blue Marvel and Icon on the Big Screen. Old Men like myself will THEN marvel in appreciation - not so much for ME but for the Coming Generations to see such a thing.

    "They who control the IMAGES controls the people". Someone a LOT smarter than I uttered that saying.
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  4. Controller Loyal Player

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  5. Controller Loyal Player

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  6. theAverageGuy Well-Known Player

    Just came here to say, was surprised the "Icon and Rocket" thread got locked because of "request from WB". It was actually an interesting read about a DC comic character and some what if questions.

    Nothing against random internet cat videos, but was something substantive to read in the Funhouse.

    Also, am surprised, WB is even aware of the existence of this sub-forum of the internet. o_O Traffic is a whole quieter than it was 10 years ago.
    • Like x 1
  7. Controller Loyal Player

    Hey AverageGuy thanks for post and concern.

    As for the previous thread Mepps went over with me what the issue was with it and I was posting too many panels of each comic. He told me I could start this thread but with not as many panels from each comic.

    I'm good with it and appreciate Mepps' explanation.

    I will be back within the next few days to continue this thread. I've had a SERIOUS bout with Covid. Thank God I'm vaccinated with 1 booster so far...

    Even with THAT this thing knocked me off my feet for like 4 days - with Mon-Wed of last week being TOUGH...high fever, aches ALL OVER, cough...

    Just had my longest time logged into the game TODAY - with about 3 hours worth of play. Still building my strength back.

    Whatever side of the spectrum folks are on with Covid - just PLEASE be careful. This thing is still real.
    • Like x 1
  8. Controller Loyal Player

    Icon and Rocket #3 - July 1993. Dwayne McDuffie, writer. MD Bright, Penciler. Mike Gustovich, Inker. John Cebollero, Colorist. Steve Dutro, Letterer.

    [IMG]

    In this issue Icon encounters his most deadly foe yet in Kevin Franklin, AKA the Bang Baby "Payback". Mr. Franklin was once an assistant to Dakota Cities' Mayor Jefferson. He tried unsuccessfully to persuade Ms. Jefferson to not use specially-
    laced tear gas on several hundred youth gathering for a fight just recently.

    Kevin Franklin was present at this "Big Bang", at the Mayor's orders.

    In this issue Payback almost mortally wounds Icon with his claws but Icon recovers within minutes. Rocket saves Icon and fends Payback off long enough for Icon and Mayor Jefferson to recover while Payback, in turn, escapes.

    The MAIN reason for Payback and his hired militia encountering Mayor Jefferson was to get her to ADMIT to her part in the Big Bang - get her to admit to the REAL truth behind this event that would go on to produce Virgil Hawkins (AKA Static Shock) as well as Payback and many other Bang Babies.

    This event also, sadly, killed HUNDREDS of youth. The specially-laced tear gas that gave some powers also killed many others inexplicably. Mayor Jefferson gave the final word on this tear gas' use. More truths behind the Big Bang will be explained in future issues as Icon and Rocket dig for the truth.

    [IMG]

    After saving the city from Payback and his militia, Mayor Jefferson formally introduces Icon to the city of Dakota. He is presented a key to the city and pledges to protect it along with his partner Rocket.

    At the end of this issue Icon also notifies Rocket of her pending pregnancy, which she has no idea of until he discloses it to her. He begins to start persuading her to lay low out of concern for her safety but we'll find out in future issues that such a thing is not in Raquel Ervin's DNA.
  9. Controller Loyal Player



    Decent description of Icon's power levels in comparison to Superman's. I personally think Superman IS a bit STRONGER but not by much. Overall their POWER LEVELS are roughly the same, though, as detailed in the video and in the classic Icon #16.
  10. Controller Loyal Player

    Icon and Rocket # 4, August 1993. Dwayne McDuffie, writer. M.D. Bright, Penciler. Mike Gustovich, Inker. J Brown, Colorist. Steve Dutro, letterer.

    [IMG]

    This issue Raquel Ervin (Rocket) gets tested to verify Icon's claim that she's pregnant. She is. She starts to deal with this reality as she confides in her best friend Darnice and actually gets tested by purchasing a pregnancy test at a convenience store.

    Prior to the confirmation test Rocket stops a robbery in progress in a neighborhood supermarket as she continues to learn how to use the futuristic belt that Icon gave her. A bullet fired at her from a thief is stopped in mid-air by the force field emanating from the belt and she then subsequently proceeds to re-direct that kinetic energy for various uses.

    In the meantime, Icon is about to stop an attempted carjacking and robbery.

    After this incident, Icon remembers that he intended to check on his new partner Rocket and proceeds to do so. He's concerned about her well-being as well as the child she's carrying. He's also concerned about her continued efforts to remain his partner as this now places her in greater peril.

    As he flies back to his law firm he checks in with his secretary. He marvels at how large his law firm has grown and states that he needs to get out more among his co-workers and new employees that now work for him.

    He meets up with Saul, a fellow lawyer in his office, and they both watch a recorded statement from Kevin Franklin AKA the Bang Baby known as Payback. Icon and Rocket encountered Payback in the previous issue #3 and Icon personally promised him that he'd get to the bottom of the Big Bang as long as he gave himself up to the authorities and surrendered peacefully.

    Saul believes Kevin Franklin's confession in regards to his reasoning for attacking Dakota's City Hall and threatening the Mayor - even though it seems far-fetched. As a human being this should be a surprise but it's revealed in later issues that Saul is indeed aware of Augustus Freeman's alter ego but has pledged to keep it a secret.

    He's no stranger to super powered beings.

    Icon pledges once again to get to the bottom of what happened at the Big Bang and Saul agrees to help him.

    As Mr. Freeman retreats to his office he reads a page from the latest news paper and it has a picture of a Super-powered gang on the front cover. This gang would eventually be revealed to be the Blood Syndicate and they are based in Dakota. Icon pledges to start talking with them since they all are products of what happened at the Big Bang.

    On his way to start his investigation he stops by Dakotaverse' remaining newspaper building, the Chronicle. He meets with Ms. Rob Chaplik who is scared out of her wits to even talk to him about what happened at the Big Bang.

    After calming her down he realizes that he won't be able to get much information out of her and proceeds to meet with Josh Thompson of G.R.I.N.D., the Police Department's gang task force. Mr. Thompson claims that his officers were pulled off of involvement from what happened that night and then sternly warns him against looking for The Blood Syndicate.

    Icon, undeterred, continues on with his quest of knowledge about the Big Bang and eventually meets the Bang Baby Wise Son. Wise Son has nearly complete invulnerability from all harm as well as a measure of super strength to go along with his tough exterior. He is also brash, a Muslim and a natural leader as the head of the Blood Syndicate.

    They exchange blows but Icon makes short work of him by throwing him into the air to remind Wise Son of his inability to fly. Wise Son leaves a large crater once he crashes back to earth. Icon proceeds to attempt to talk with Wise Son about the events of the Big Bang but hears a gravelly voice behind him. That voice belongs to the Bang Baby Brickhouse and she and the rest of The Blood Syndicate encounter Icon.

    They've already seen enough with Icon's short fight with Wise Son and they proceed to engage Icon, treating him as an invader.

    [IMG]
  11. Controller Loyal Player

  12. Swamarian Committed Player

    There's a sort of documentary on Milestone up on HBO Max, for those who are interested.
    (I say "sort of" because it looks like it was made to drum up interest in the relaunch.)
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  13. Controller Loyal Player

    The fact that WB / DC Cinema is not doing MORE to promote Milestone (DC) and its characters is dubious, at best.

    I'd personally love to be a fly on the wall in their meetings when it comes to content created for various media.

    I do have some suspicions why a character like Augustus Freeman IV / Icon - is not being promoted and it deals more with our "own" socialization as far as politics than anything else.

    Dwayne McDuffie, Denys Cowan and Co. created Milestone Characters to have NOT ONLY unique powers and abilities but ALSO created them to have character of THOUGHT.....

    You have a Moderate Conservative who is Preachy at times in Icon. Some / many - may not be ready for a Preachy Super Powerful Black Man who rivals Superman's power.

    But yet we've accepted Superman's "Preaching" to us for what? Decades now? lol.

    You have brash but intelligent and idealistic teenagers in Static and Rocket.

    You have the "Angry Black Man" lol - in Hardware. But if you read Hardware's comics he has PLENTY reason to be angry at things.

    This is not even counting the various OTHER characters of Milestone Media, like Agent Donner and Agent Blitzen's powers AND their relationship as LGBTQ. They are pictured below on the right in the red and blue uniforms respectively.

    Agent Donner has Super Strength and invulnerability due to experiments on her by her late father and Blitzen has super speed and quickness.

    You have perhaps the FIRST Palestinian Superhero in Iron Butterfly. She controls ALL metal - even NTH metal.

    [IMG]

    Here she is with some of her Shadow Cabinet teammates, hovering above them.

    Not pictured is "Iota", a Self-made Wealthy Brazilian female who is a hopeless Kleptomaniac, lol

    [IMG]

    Iota has Antman and Atom like powers.

    This is not even mentioning Blood Syndicate, whom I'm currently commenting on in the comic panels, above.

    I'm truly concerned at how DC is not promoting these characters more.

    As much as I love "Black Panther" he is NOT the End-All to Black Superheroes on the Big Screen. He is only the BEGINNING.
  14. Swamarian Committed Player


    They went into when things went sour between DC and Milestone. IIRC, it started with the issue where Static lost his virginity, and the Milestone folks being blindsided by DC's editorial in that issue.
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  15. Controller Loyal Player

    Icon and Rocket #5 - September 1993. Dwayne McDuffie (RIP), Writer. M.D. Bright, Penciler. Mike Gustovich, Inker. J. Brown, Colorist. Steve Dutro, Letterer.

    This issue begins with Raquel Ervin (Rocket) on a swing set in her neighborhood not pondering the danger her partner and friend, Icon is in, but her OWN current and future since Icon divulged to her that she's carrying a child.

    As Raquel was discussing her situation with her best friend Darnice in the previous issue, her Grandmother stumbled across their conversation and now she's ALSO aware of Raquel's situation.

    Raquel's grandmother, so far, is unaware of her superhero'ing with Icon.

    Her mind trails off eventually, with her thoughts drifting towards what her powerful and mysterious partner could be involved in.

    [IMG]

    Fast Forward to Icon's engagement with the super-powered gang, the Blood Syndicate. In the previous issue Icon had already encountered the gang's charismatic leader, Wise Son, and defeated him in short combat by exploiting his inability to fly.

    He threw Wise Son into the air and upon his return to Earth, Wise Son leaves a large crater.

    Icon has been, since first meeting the bang baby Payback in Issue 1, on a fact-finding mission about the events that lead up to the Big Bang. His fact-finding has lead him to his eventual encounter with some of the victims of that horrific event, the Blood Syndicate.

    Listed above is most of the Blood Syndicate's team. Two additions, Aqua Maria and Kwai, will eventually join them in future issues:

    Brickhouse - She is a 6'7" teen and is "Blatina" - with a Black father and a Puerto Rican mother. She gained her nearly limitless strength and invulnerability from the laced tear gas used on the hundreds of youth during the Big Bang event. The tear gas also affected her mind and she suffers from blackouts and terrible headaches and seizures from time to time - leaving her teammates to rush to her side trying to help her.

    While a very thoughtful and bright person, she is very ashamed of her appearance now and struggles with it but her teammate, Third Rail, is fond of her and is her closest friend on the team.

    Third Rail - Third Rail's power is mainly derived from electricity. He uses it to grow to enormous size and it enhances his already immense strength and invulnerability, making him the 2nd strongest member, right behind Brickhouse. Third Rail also gains power and energy from physical combat and it takes a tremendous amount of it to actually "short-circuit" him and defeat him.

    Third is believed to be an Asian teen and is Brickhouse's closest friend on the team. He is also one of the few team members that actually challenges Wise Son's sometimes bad leadership choices, which often leads to conflict within the team.

    Masquerade - Masquerade has the ability to change into any animal, bringing versatility to an already powerful and dangerous Blood Syndicate team.

    Fade - Fade appears to be Blaxican, with a Mexican Father and a Black mother. He meets with his father several times in the Blood Syndicate issues but they have a strained relationship.

    Fade's body is in constant flux, down to his DNA. This state allows him to become immaterial during combat, making him impervious to any harm. His body is VERY unstable and at one time during the Blood Syndicate issues he actually "fades away" while in his sister Flashback's arms. He would go onto regain his physical form in that issue but his physical nature is in constant flux.

    Fade is a fearless combatant and skilled. He is also very reflective and protective of his sister and teammate, Flashback.

    Flashback - Flashback is perhaps the most important member of the Blood Syndicate. She has the power to "Flash Back" in time three seconds. This ability allows her to bring back a fallen teammate and literally save lives. She also uses this ability in combat to foresee an opponent's actions before they actually do it and warns her teammates. She is a skilled fighter and is fearless teammate.

    Fade also has a drug addiction problem due to the HUGE amount of responsibility placed on her with this power. She struggles constantly with the demands of her power and her addiction. In latter issues she befriends Rocket and they hit it off immediately. Once Rocket becomes aware of Flashback's struggle she helps her deal with it and gets her the help she needs to get clean.

    Flashback is Fade's sister and they are very close.

    Boogie Man - Boogie Man commands a vast army of rodents and communicates with them with ease. He is very quick and nimble in combat and deadly with his claws. He is revealed in latter Blood Syndicate issues to be Caucasian and actually able to shift his appearance back to human form with ease. He is also a product of the Big Bang and is welcomed into the Blood Syndicate team.

    DMZ - DMZ is the most mysterious member of the team. While a skilled combatant with super human strength and agility, he is unpredictable and comes and goes as he pleases. While revealed to be a Black man he's NEVER been unmasked, despite his teammates' collective curiosity. He has NEVER spoken - not even to his teammates, but seems to clearly understand them and enjoys their company. He is one of the few team members who can fly.

    In issue #6 of Icon and Rocket it is revealed that DMZ and Icon actually "KNOW" each other and they both communicate telepathically with one another.

    It will be revealed in future issues that DMZ is actually a member of the Terminian Police Department. "Terminus" is the planet that Icon comes from, on a far side of the galaxy. He was on patrol on Icon's starliner while it came under terrorist attack and crashed to Earth.

    DMZ is also revealed, in later Blood Syndicate issues, to be in terrible agony from missing his partner who was also on duty with him while Icon's starliner was under attack. She will eventually be reunited with him in latter issues of Icon and Rocket.

    Dogg - "Dogg" is Wise Son's best friend on the team who is - actually - a talking dog. Dogg was a regular canine whom belonged to Wise Son and was present during the Big Bang. Dogg gained his human voice from this event.

    Dogg is as fearless and brash as his master, Wise Son, and is loyal to not only Wise but the team.

    Wise Son - Wise is a few years older than his teammates, being around 20. He is also bright, a dedicated Muslim, brash and has a temper he struggles with. He is also a natural leader and takes over for the team as it's previous leader died due to complications from the laced tear gas.

    Wise was gifted with Super Strength and - as far as we know - complete invulnerability. He is perhaps the 3rd strongest member, behind Brickhouse and Third Rail.

    The Syndicate's previous leader was Tech-9. Tech Nine was a master with ANY weapon and had unlimited use of ammunition with his armaments.

    As Icon attempts to reason with the Syndicate and gain information to the events of the Big Bang, it becomes evident that they are not interested in talking and see Icon as untrustworthy and an invader on their turf. They see him being in cohorts with Mayor Thomasina Jefferson.

    Boogie Man attempts to engage Icon first but Icon fells him with his quickness, blocking him with one hand as he attempts to lunge at him with his claws.

    Icon continues trying to communicate with Blood Syndicate, with Wise Son rising from the crater he was in during his prior engagement with Icon. Wise Son rebuffs his attempts at talking, alluding to his mistrust of Icon and even slurring his name calling him "I-Tom", a disrespectful merging of his name with a slur.

    Wise attempts to punch Icon and Icon simply blocks his punch, grabbing his fist in his large hand, stunning Wise Son.

    Brickhouse, unbeknownst to Icon, is lumbering behind him and slugs him in surprise. This is a display of her immense strength as she knocks Icon out of the building and several blocks away where Icon lands on a car, crushing it with a loud CRUNCH of metal upon landing.

    DMZ, recognizing Icon, is the first on the scene to grab him and attempt to communicate with him.

    The story now breaks back to Raquel Ervin and her grandmother at the playground. She begins to push her while she's on the swing set she's on and they begin to talk about Rocket's pending pregnancy.

    Her grandmother lectures her on how Raquel's mother was ALSO a young mother and struggled with the responsibility. While she offers her love and full support of her she also says that the baby is her responsibility.

    The scene now shifts back to DMZ and Icon, with Icon still recovering from Brickhouse' epic punch. He immediately remembers DMZ from his starliner many decades ago and starts to seek answers from him on the events of the terrorist attack which brought him to Earth.

    Icon also asks DMZ "Why are you with these children" which alludes to DMZ being an older adult than his Blood Syndicate team mates.

    Icon makes short work of DMZ during combat only to find the Syndicate team upon him once again, ready for more combat.

    Icon, growing weary of trying to help Blood Syndicate despite their attacks and mistrust, tells them that his ultimate plan is to LEAVE Earth one day soon - especially as he grows tired of trying to help people who attack and mistrust him. Icon sees this new-found opportunity upon stumbling across DMZ.

    As he attempts to fly away, though - Flashback reveals HER power. Once she sees Icon attempting to fly away and follow DMZ she freezes time, going back three seconds. She then uses this knowledge to alert her teammates of Icon's intentions leading to Third Rail tackling him and holding him on the ground.

    Third Rail's immense strength is initially enough to hold Icon down. Icon then starts to punch Third Rail in an attempt to dislodge him. Third starts to grow in size with each punch from Icon and Third begins to believe that he has him under control, until Icon punches harder and "Short Cicruits" Third Rail. This knocks him out but the remainder of the Blood Syndicate continues to engage Icon.

    Boogie Man, ready for more fighting, attempts to attack Icon once again but he grabs him in mid-lunge and throws him at Flash Back, knocking both unconscious.

    The scene NOW cuts back to Raquel Ervin as she attempts to notify her baby's teen father, Noble, of her pregnancy. Noble doesn't claim responsibility and claims that the baby may not be his which throws Raquel into a rage as she punches Noble in the jaw.

    Rocket then marches off - leaving Noble to reflect on his choices and his future. It will be revealed in later issues that Icon talks with Noble and lectures him on responsibility and father hood, leading him to become more involved with his son and an engaged father.

    Issue #5 ends with the remaining members of Blood Syndicate teaming up to FINALLY take down Icon, with Masquerade changing into a powerful gorilla and he and Brickhouse striking an already weary Icon, taking him down finally. They state how he almost defeated them all - even though he was not really trying.

    Icon's intent during this meeting with Blood Syndicate was to simply gain information from them about what happened to them and their friends during the Big Bang event.

    As they debate what to do with him, Wise Son sums things up as only he can.

    [IMG]
  16. Controller Loyal Player

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  18. Controller Loyal Player

    EDIT - my post for issue #5 stated that "Dogg", the talking dog, was "Wise Son's" pet. I was incorrect.

    "Dogg" is actually Blood Syndicate's previous leader Tech 9's pet.

    [IMG]

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    Once Tech 9 passed away due to complications from the laced tear gas Dogg simply hung around with the team.

    I'd guess there's not many places in society for a talking dog.
  19. Controller Loyal Player

    Icon and Rocket #6, October 1993 - by Dwayne McDuffie, Writer. M.D. Bright, Penciler. Mike Gustovich, Inker. J. Brown, Colorist. Steve Dutro, Letterer.

    [IMG]

    Icon, after holding back from hurting the Super-powered teenage gang in the Blood Syndicate, NOW finds himself knocked out by their overwhelming power and teamwork. As the previous issue leaves off - their leader Wise Son has plans to finish him off....

    Until they meet The Rocket, Raquel Ervin.

    Raquel Ervin has just knocked out the father of her unborn child, Noble, in a fit of rage after she'd just confronted him in the previous issue. Prior to that, she'd had a deep conversation from her grandmother about the responsibility in front of her being a teenage mother. Little does her grandmother know that her granddaughter is ALSO a new superhero and the partner of the strange being known so far as Icon.....

    As Rocket goes looking for her mysterious partner she finds him JUST AS HE'S in need of help.

    Icon, in his search for the truth behind the Big Bang, goes looking at the source for information. Despite stern warnings from the likes of Robin Chaplik, he meets Wise Son, Brickhouse, Third Rail, Masquerade, Flashback, Boogie Man, and Fade in an attempt to gain truth.

    He's gotten himself into trouble - trouble that only the Rocket can get him out of, at least right now.

    Third Rail, one of the more powerful and outspoken members of the team, is the first to speak out against Wise Son's choice to KILL Icon. He is, of course, met with curse words and disgust from challenging him. Third Rail further enrages Wise Son by stating that the PREVIOUS leader, Tech Nine, would've let Icon live....

    Unbeknownst to The Blood Syndicate, though - Third Rail's standoff with Wise Son is JUST the delay that Rocket needs to make her entrance.

    Walking past every single member of the Blood Syndicate, she makes her entrance. She is confronted by Masquerade and Fade as they stare at her in bewilderment.

    Fade offers her an ultimatum - leave NOW, while she's still alive. Raquel counters - not without my partner.

    Third Rail tells her to do as she's told but Rocket, now clearly agitated, states that she'll leave ONLY WITH her partner Icon.

    She offers to fight them for Icon. She follows up this threat by stating that she won't beat ALL of them but she'll hurt a few of them. This threat is enough to give them MORE pause (and give Icon enough time to heal from his fight with Blood Syndicate).

    Wise Son, turned on by the bravado of this stranger he's never met (and not used to being confronted), offers Rocket her first fight for Icon. Brickhouse steps in, telling Wise he shouldn't hit girls.

    Brick then WALLOPS Rocket, knocking her as far out of the building as she did Icon in previous issue #5.

    Unknown to Brick, even though her punch knocks Rocket out of the building the belt that Icon gave her is ABSORBING that punch and allowing Rocket to give that SAME PUNCH right back to Brickhouse - in SPADES.

    The resulting strike knocks Brick right into Masquerade, Fade and Flashback, temporarily stunning the super powered teens. She then dodges the dangerous claws of Boogie Man as he lunges at her.

    Still having some energy left over after Brick house's punch, she blasts Boogie Man after he misses his lunge.

    Quite agitated by now, Brickhouse is lifting a CAR with the intent to drop it on Rocket. Third Rail, sneaking up behind Rocket, grabs her and holds her in place.....until Wise Son tells them all to STOP......

    Wise offers her some last words. Rocket, of course - tells them all to either let her go or she'll kick their "behinds" lol.

    This act of bravado leads to a HEARTY round of laughter from the Blood Syndicate - and a significant measure of RESPECT, most importantly. Outnumbered, outgunned but with the will and smarts that belie her age - they are at this point more INTRIGUED by Rocket than wanting to actually KILL her.

    Her FINAL measure of respect is from Wise Son. He tells the team that he LIKES her and follows this up with orders to NOT kill her but "mess" her up. By NOW, this delay is ALL that Icon needs to fully recover and make HIS grand entrance.

    Icon, now FULLY recovered and displaying - for the FIRST time - his POSITRON powers - holds up a glowing hand illuminated with this power. This light fills the room and blinds all in it. He then exclaims - "Let her go".

    This NEW display of power stuns the Blood Syndicate, which is a first for them. Wise Son tells his team "Do what Icon says".

    Now that Icon has their attention, he reminds them of why he was looking for them IN THE FIRST PLACE - to gather information from the source about the Big Bang.

    After quickly speaking with the silent one, DMZ, he offers Wise Son the opportunity to TALK, and not fight. Wise Son, still in shock by Icon's new display of his Positron Energy - asks Icon "Is that glowing hand a light or a WEAPON?"

    Icon, still agitated by the questions from the teenagers, says "Is there a difference?"

    Rocket steps in and further cools the atmosphere - offering both Icon and the Blood Syndicate the opportunity to TALK, but at a neutral site.

    Both Icon and Rocket and the Blood Syndicate then go to a dilapidated bridge in Dakota - the sight of the Big Bang. He starts to tell them that the "official" statements behind the Big Bang may be untrue.

    This leads Wise Son to say - "What will you do if you can find out what really happened?"

    Fade - still not trusting of Icon - says "He'll probably write an article for the local newspaper telling anything BUT the truth."

    It's at this point where much of the rage, disgust, sadness and fear of what happened to the Blood Syndicate comes to light....the distrusting city officials...the racism....the neglect....the cover ups.

    [IMG]

    It is HERE where Icon starts disclosing to all of them - including ROCKET - just how OLD he is - alluding to the fact of him being around during slavery. Him experiencing TWO World Wars, the blood shed, the holocaust, the horrors of slavery and his endurance of it while he was STILL learning the limits of his powers as a young child.......

    He ends by stating that he's ALSO lived long enough to know that justice eventually prevails.

    As revealed in later issues, Icon stops aging at 40 years of age but he is actually about 180 years old, being "born" upon landing on Earth in 1839 and his pod transforming him into a Human child that took on the DNA structure of the first person that touched his escape pod - a Black slave woman named Myriam.

    His alien pod ALSO gifts Icon with a VAST array of powers due to the technology onboard, maximizing his cells. He won't realize these powers until later on in his life. This all occurs while the pod is using Myriam's DNA to change Icon into a Human baby.

    Icon - now that he's sensing that he's gaining their trust - starts to exclaim to them that they are all warriors...survivors....put here for a reason. He starts to question them about what their next moves are - now that they are realizing that he's telling the truth.

    He ends by asking them - "You have defined what you are fighting against. What are you fighting FOR?"

    Rocket now chimes in - breaking it down further for Icon. She tells them ALL that Blood Syndicate is fighting for their TURF. She ALSO tells them that they already HAVE this and what are they going to do with their LIVES?

    Wise Son - FINALLY understanding - tells everyone that Blood Syndicate NOW has a TRUCE with Icon and Rocket. He shakes Icon's out stretched hand, claiming that what he has told him is a bit corny but he'll trust him anyways.

    Icon and Rocket now fly off and discuss what's just happened. As they're leaving, Icon's thoughts drift to what's happened with Blood Syndicate and he's amazed at their potential.

    Once he and Rocket are alone, he starts in on Rocket. He tells her that what she did was reckless, dangerous and she put both herself AND her unborn child in harm's way. She retorts that unless she showed up he could very well be dead.

    Silenced and in agreement, Icon hands her a MASK to hide her identity going forward.

    Rocket, now FURTHER intrigued by Icon's new display of his powers AND him disclosing how long he's been on Earth, is ready to ask Icon EVEN MORE QUESTIONS as she tries to figure him out.

    He ends this issue by promising to tell her EVERYTHING soon.
  20. Controller Loyal Player

    Icon and Rocket #7 November 1993 - By Dwayne McDuffie (RIP) and Ericka Helene, writers. M.D. Bright, Penciler. Mike Gustovich, Inker. J. Brown and Prentiss Colins, Colorers. Steve Dutro and John Workman, Letterers.

    [IMG]

    This issue starts off with Raquel Ervin (Rocket), marveling at Icon's powers and the adventures they've had thus far. She's also in amazement that she STILL knows VERY LITTLE about him, thus far.

    As they both stand on the bridge which was their meeting place with the Blood Syndicate, she reminds Icon of his promise to begin telling her about his origins and his powers. He begins with some dry humor - telling her that he's not from around here.

    Rocket deadpans that this much she can see, and she also points out that shooting energy blasts from his hands and being bulletproof isn't normal, either.

    Icon agrees with her and continues with his time on the alien starliner as he was on an intergalactic cruise. He starts to explain that his cruiser malfunctioned and Rocket, interestingly enough - then deadpans that "he's a brother from another planet."

    What is cool about her comment is that I am guessing the writers of this issue pulled it DIRECTLY from the ACTUAL sleeper hit movie from 1984

    [IMG]

    Of course Joe Morton, above, would go on to guest star in several movies, such as Speed, Terminator 2, AND of course as Victor Stone's (Cyborg) father in both Justice League movies.

    Icon, unfortunately, takes umbrage to the comment - believing that she's not taking him seriously. He continues with the story of how the starliner's escape pod ejected from the burning wreckage of his ship, which would then crash in the deep south of North America, in 1839.

    Upon landing, he claims, this pod changed his ENTIRE DNA structure, matching it to the very first human that touched his pod - a slave woman named Myriam.

    He then became a Black human male baby, and as Myriam laid eyes on him she immediately picked him up, cradling him gently and took him as her own.

    Rocket, not being one without candor, states that the pod should've picked a White guy. She THEN exclaims that his story is INCREDIBLE - as in incredibly UNBELIEVABLE. She starts to say how long slavery's been outlawed and that if his story was true he'd be over 150 years old.

    She tells him where to go, in a bad way, and then storms off - frustrated and thinking that he's lying to her. Her hormones are ALSO at play here, as she remembers that she's pregnant.

    Rocket then goes home but not before stopping at the swing set she was on when she told her grandmother about her pregnancy. She continues chronicling events in her journal, such as how her best friend Darnice will take the news and if she can trust her. She determines that Darnice will find the pregnancy hard enough to believe but the "superhero" stuff? Not so much.

    She understands that her mom will kill her if she finds out.

    She's already attempted to talk to her boyfriend about it, Noble - and he claims that the baby isn't his which threw Raquel into a rage.

    The next day, Raquel cuts school - for the first time. She proceeds to the clinic to talk to someone about her pregnancy and her options - which are limited. She has SO MANY thoughts and concerns racing through her head.

    She thinks about taking CARE of the baby - how much it will cost.

    She thinks about how stressed her mom is NOW - working two jobs - and then having to come home to a newborn.

    She thinks about her schooling - and perhaps putting off plans for college.

    She thinks about giving up the superhero business with Icon - and how he'd fare without her.

    She smiles at the child of another couple - an older couple. The child smiles back at her.

    Her mind starts to drift when a nurse calls her back to speak with Dr. Sidhani. Rocket looks around the office while Doc looks over her paperwork.

    After asking Raquel several questions she asks her, finally, if she thinks she's pregnant. Raquel exclaims that this is the reason why she's here - to find out.

    While Raquel's awaiting the results of the test her mind wanders to what Icon is doing. He's stopping an attempted robbery of an older woman by a young man, trying to grab her purse. After the lady thanks him profusely, he then begins to lecture the young man and then turns him over to the police officers.

    The test results confirms Raquel Ervin IS indeed pregnant. Raquel asks Dr. Sidhani about her options and she goes over every single one with her - including telling her of HER OWN pregnancy while she was in college.

    She tells Raquel that she wonders TO THIS DAY, still - if she made the right decision and comments that her child would've been Rocket's age about now. She also continues to educate her on the entire process and what it entails.

    Dr. Sidhani ends the meeting by telling Raquel to remember everything she told her.

    Raquel leaves the office, appreciative of the time spent with Dr. Sidhani.

    She meets up with Icon a little later. He starts by asking her if she wants him to continue his story but she asks him a favor.

    They both fly to his mansion - the same one that fate had she and her friends try to rob just recently. She marvels at being there AGAIN - this time as a friend and someone in need of a favor from Augustus Freeman IV............

    Icon reappears, but in a clean suit as Augustus Freeman IV, his alter ego. He asks her what does she need from him.

    Raquel states that she needs 500 dollars. She promises to pay him back. He asks her what does she need with such an amount. She claims that it's personal.

    Augustus then pivots to her pregnancy and asks her if she cares to discuss it with him. She asks him why - assuming that he's going to try and talk her out of an abortion.

    Mr. Freeman then directs Raquel to a picture of a stunning and well-dressed woman on on the wall of this room they're in while in his mansion. It is a picture of Estelle Freeman - his now-deceased wife.

    He proceeds to tell Raquel about Estelle's pregnancy with THEIR child and their experience with it. He tells her about the risks involved and the choice they BOTH made - and how it affected them.

    [IMG]

    Due to the risks involved with his DNA carrying over to his newborn they decided to not risk both the child's life nor his wife's. This decision affects Augustus to this day long after his wife passed due to natural causes many years ago.

    He ends by telling her that he cannot make the decision for her and that the money is hers. He follows it up by telling her that the money is a gift.

    He tells her that he will remain her friend either way.

    Raquel, in another hormone-induced fit, slaps Mr. Freeman. She says that she fully expected him, as a rich Conservative, to tell her to KEEP the baby - not make the decision on her OWN....

    Once calmed down she tells him that she IS, in fact - keeping the baby. She rubs her hand after slapping Icon.

    She goes over all of her options and what Dr. Sidhani educated her on.

    With a steely-eyed determination she exclaims that - in spite of the odds and EVERYTHING against her - she IS keeping the baby and she walks off telling Icon she'd meet up with him in a few days.

    She looks over her shoulder and tells him that once she returns she wants him to continue his incredible story about his origin and powers. He tells her goodbye.

    Back at the swing set outside her home she's back at it again, writing in her journal. She recounts EVERYTHING that's happened to her today - the Dr's visit, what Icon told her about his origins, how incredible it seemed, her meeting with Icon in his mansion, her utter shock at how he handled her situation, and how she'd learned SO MUCH about herself through this experience.

    She ends this day by reminding herself that she WILL manage - THEY will manage - her and her child.