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Virgil Hawkins is Static, a teenage superhero in Dakota City with electromagnetic powers who gained his powers in the Big Bang. He has been a member of the Heroes and the Teen Titans.

Early Life

Virgil Ovid Hawkins was born in Paris Island, Dakota City as the second child of Robert and Jean Hawkins and the younger brother of Sharon Hawkins. As a young child, he was relatively close to his uncle Teshome and intially wanted to be like him, but Teshome insisted that he stay focused on his studies and make something of himself. When Teshome was unjustly arrested for the Van Hauser murders, young Virgil knew him to be innocent and would write endless letters to different law firms inferring this, with little success. Fearing the rise in gang activity may have a negative affect on them, his family moved to the supposedly safer working class neighborhood of Sadler. Sometime later, Virgil would meet and befriend Larry Wade in the 5th grade. At some point after, he would also become friends with Chuck Kane, Rick Stone, and Felix. In high school, he also became friends with Frieda Goren.

Becoming Static

Fifteen-year-old Virgil was bullied for being a social outcast (a status he shared with Chuck, Rick, and Felix) due to not only his gifted intellect, but also because of his interests in comic books, role playing games, and science fiction. He maintained his friendship with the now-popular Larry and harbored a crush on Frieda, unaware that she was dating Larry. When trying to stand up for Frieda, Virgil took a serious beating from Martin "Biz Money B" Scaponi until Larry stepped in. Hurt and humiliated one time too many, he was given a gun by Larry and encouraged to seek revenge on Martin at the docks during a gang war on Paris Island that night. Though he ventured to the docks and was tempted to murder his bully, he ultimately could not bring himself to shoot someone in cold blood.

Not long after throwing the gun away, the police arrived and used a special tear gas, believing it to be a radiation marker as a means of tracking the gang members in case they tried to escape. Unfortunately, the gas served only to either kill those present or mutate them in an event known as the Big Bang. Exposed to the gas while trying to escape, Virgil immediately gained a variety of electromagnetic powers and managed to flee the chaos unscathed by using his powers to levitate on a trashcan lid. Practicing with his newfound abilities and inspired by his interest in comics, he decided to become a superhero, calling himself "Static".

Early Career

Static, Dakota City's newest hero.

Initially finding it thrilling to be a superhero, Static would often taunt his enemies before subduing them and handing them over to the authorities. He would just as often fraternize with civilians --- especially Frieda, who was fascinated by his persona. Things took a turn when he realized that his bully Martin had become the powerful pyrokinetic Hotstreak during the Big Bang, leading to his first defeat as a superhero when he tried to protect Frieda from becoming the teen villain's prize. Concerned, Frieda unmasked Static and was shocked to find that it was Virgil, whom she took back to her place to nurse him back to health. Though hesitant to face Hotstreak again, Static's resolve won out and he again battled him, ultimately defeating him and restoring his confidence. Following this, Frieda became his one and only confidante.

Virgil quickly realized that being a superhero was more strenuous than he thought: he couldn't use his powers to deal with bullies since it would reveal his identity, he couldn't hold down even the most menial job due to the demands of his duty, and his grades began to suffer somewhat. Virgil finally learned that Frieda was dating Larry and, despite initially being angry with them both, forgave them and decided to find love elsewhere. However, even his love life was a victim of his responsibilities; when dating Daisy Watkins, the demands of his work put a strain on them despite his and even Frieda's best efforts. When his friend Rick came out as gay, Virgil was forced to deal with his own homophobia and protect Rick when a gay rights rally was attacked by his archenemy Hotstreak, a known homophobe himself.

Over time, he was no longer facing just common thugs and criminals, but also many other "Bang Babies" such as Laserjet, The Swarm, Commando X, and Holocaust, who became one of his most dangerous enemies. During this time, he met other Dakota heroes such as Icon and his sidekick Rocket, Hardware, and the The Heroes, with whom Static became a reserve member. Static also has a civil relationship with the Blood Syndicate and a tense one with the Shadow Cabinet. He would also find an ally in GDPD's Captain Gil Summers, who recognized Static's necessity for bang-baby related crimes.

Faced with the god-like entity Rift that saw two worlds becoming one, Static meets and teams up with Superman, Superboy, and Steel to defeat the villain, playing a pivotal role in doing so. Once the crisis is averted and the worlds are again split, Static expresses disappointment that the heroes apparently weren't real, having been a fan of their comics since childhood.

Dawn and Dusk

Amid his crusade and issues, Static eventually found some comfort in Dusk, an enigmatic fellow adolescent vigilante with a strong code of justice. Dusk displayed admiration for his work and considerable romantic infatuation with him. Despite dating Daisy, Static began a relationship with Dusk, often allowing her to show him a good time while also teaming up to fight crime on occasion. Their relationship took a turn when the two of them assisted the police on a drug bust, only for Static to discover one of the dealers was Larry. Shocked, Static initially let Larry go, putting a slight rift between him and Dusk. The two heroes caught up with Larry a day later, just as some other dealers decided it was time to silence him. Dusk was injured trying to protect Larry, who was ultimately killed in the firefight. Thrown into an unparalleled fit of rage, Static brutally beats down every thug that had anything to do with his best friend's fate before departing. Though Virgil intended on giving up being Static, Dusk, having deduced his secret identity some time ago, convinced him not to, stating that Dakota needs him. She also informed him that she was leaving town due to being wanted for murder, but told him that she will always care for him, as he is "the dawn to her dusk."

While dealing with Larry's death, Virgil quickly realized that Frieda was in an even deeper state of grief, noticing that she had become leaner and more stern with her friends. Realizing she had become anorexic, he joined his friends and her family in helping her get through it. Eventually, after his work as Static and closeness to Frieda irreparably destroyed his relationship with Daisy, Virgil gave up on love for a time until Frieda introduced him to a beautiful girl named Madison. At some point around this time, he had met up with his old flame Dusk, and during a mission involving a burning building, she was killed while rescuing civilians. A devastated Virgil subsequently abandoned his superhero career, opting instead to be a normal kid again... for a time.

Out of Retirement

In the following months since his retirement, Virgil's bond with Frieda strengthened, which did not go unnoticed by his jealous girlfriend. Frieda tried unsuccessfully to remind him that he did a lot of good as Static, and that being a hero wasn't all bad. When a mysterious villain had kidnaped multiple bang-babies and metahumans, Virgil was reluctant to get involved even when asked by numerous heroes, who saw him as their only hope since Icon and Rocket were off-world. Virgil ultimately relented and joined his former allies to solve the crisis, eventually discovering that the villain was none other than the legendary John Tower, a hero he looked up to. Tower had been stealing power from other superhumans to better himself and intended to do the same to Static due to his latent potential. Physically outmatched, Static ultimately managed to outsmart Tower by freeing the other superhumans and stalling long enough for them all to reach and overpower him. Empowered by the good he had done, Virgil informs Frieda that he intended to return to his role as Static, but only "part-time."

After a decade of waiting, Virgil finally saw his uncle's release, his efforts as a child playing a role in it. While jogging with him in the park, Virgil witnessed his uncle's abduction by a bang-baby named Blinder, an enemy Teshome made while incarcerated. Via his Static persona, he retrieved his uncle in time for his Welcome Home party, only to be devastated when Teshome suddenly died of a heart attack. Wracked with grief over losing another person he loved and despite comfort from Madison and Frieda, Virgil decided to deal with his pain by taking down his uncle's nemesis. Studying Blinder's powers and limitations, Virgil, as Static, launched a preemptive strike on the meta criminal and easily defeated him and his gang.

DC Universe

While watching 9-11 coverage at an arcade, Frieda expressed her belief that America needed to retaliate hard and bomb the people responsible. Virgil was worried that this would likely cause harm to more innocent people, pointing out that there are lines that must be drawn and cannot be crossed. The window was broken by a mob of neighborhood kids who believed the Middle Eastern owner of the arcade might be a terrorist sleeper agent. Despite Akkad's insistence that he was a regular American like any of them, one of the boys pulled a gun. Virgil put on his Static costume and disabled the weapon. He wanted to attack the racist mob but instead deescalated the violence and had them arrested. Static is upset that he was so close to giving in to violence and anger, but Frieda commends him for his restraint, and they work instead to help rebuild the arcade.

Static vs. Ravager.

When Black Lightning traveled to Dakota City to give a speech to graduating students, despite Pierce's reputation as a superhero, Virgil showed resentment for his hand in Lex Luthor's actions during his presidency. However, he is forced to set this aside and don his Static disguise to assist Pierce when Holocaust confronted him in a murder attempt. With Black Lightning's assistance, Static managed to defeat Holocaust by burying him underground. Having had a change of heart about the veteran hero, Virgil later visited Pierce in the hospital with Frieda.

At some point, Static was abducted by the Dark Side Club, drugged by the Anti-Life Equation and forced to compete against other heroes in an arena for entertainment. Though becoming the reigning champion, he proved too strong to control and the proprietors mostly kept him locked up in the basement;[1] only being allowed release to compete with the other reigning champion, Ravager and being sedated the moment he breaks free of his control.[2] After being freed from the Club by Ravager and taking much deserved revenge,[3] he was invited to seek refuge with the Teen Titans at their tower.[4]

Teen Titans

At Titans Tower, fearing that his loved ones think him dead and being unable to face them, Static decided to join the team and stay in the tower. Though getting along with each of his new teammates, he immediately develops a connection and closeness (and possible attraction) to Aquagirl, a fellow victim of the Club, and nearly just as soon befriends Blue Beetle and Eddie Bloomberg despite earlier teasing them.

Static with his new allies.

Not long after staying, Virgil suffers from nightmares concerning his time with the Dark Side Club and is gradually studied by a Jericho-possessed Cyborg during his assault on the other Titans. Deducing something is terribly wrong, he dons his Static persona and attempts to fight, but is captured. However, despite being contained, Static pointed out to Jericho that he overlooked the true nature of his abilities and the technology he controls, using his own power to overload the system and set himself free. Static informs his teammates of what he had witnessed afterwards. During a mission to find Jericho, Static meets the Flash and asks which version he is. As she saved him from the Dark Side Club, he also helps Aquagirl defend Ravager when the other Titans show disdain towards her.

While out with his friends for some leisure time, Virgil tries to teach Miss Martian what it means to be an Earth kid with a dancing game and later bears witness as a defeated Wonder Girl is broadcast throughout the city. Together with his teammates, Static takes on the new Fearsome Five and teams with Bombshell to defeat Rumble, tricking him into stepping in water before he uses it to electrocute him, increasing the charge. He is later seen comforting Wonder Girl after Eddie sacrifices himself to save the city and his friends.

Static later plays a pivotal role in resuscitating Raven and helps his teammates fight off the forces of The Wyld. During this time, he locates Dakota on the computer just to check up on some things.

Return To Dakota

Learning that a deadly virus has been infecting citizens of Dakota, including Sharon, Virgil decides to return to his hometown, understanding when his friends' decline to accompany him. Virgil reunites with his family as well as Frieda, who tearfully hits him despite being glad to see him again. He also learns that his girlfriend Madison has left him during his absence. He discovers that whoever created the virus is also selling limited supplies of the vaccine, and attacks the lab where it is being made. Upon breaking into the facility, Static is surprised and knocked out by Holocaust.

After refusing to help Holocaust in his pursuits, Static is imprisoned in a specialized containment unit alongside Aquagirl, Wonder Girl, and Bombshell, who arrived in town with the Titans to support their friend and bring him home. Holocaust informs the heroes that he plans to kill them and weaponize their abilities in order to sell them, but is ambushed by the rest of the Titans before this can happen. Holocaust easily defeats them, only to be confronted by Cyborg, who has recruited former Titans Kid Flash and Superboy. Together with his new teammates that proudly refer to him as one of their own, Static finally defeats one of his worst enemies, but is well-aware of the fact that he will one day return.

Before leaving with the Titans, Virgil attempts to no avail to make amends with Madison. He also deceives his parents into thinking he is going away for a science program and sees Frieda once more, his best friend telling him that the Titans are good friends and great people and that he should continue being a hero.

Final Mission with the Titans

Static works with the other Titans to rescue Raven when she is taken by the Wyld and assists married Cadmus scientists Dr. Vincent and Rochelle Barnes by deducing that they needed more power for their machine, which he subsequently provides. Accompanying Superboy, Wonder Girl, Kid Flash, and Beast Boy to the Wyld's dimension, Static quickly discovers that his powers are not only different, but much stronger. This proves to be quite instrumental, as during the final battle with the extradimensional evil, Static manages to help heal Superboy of kryptonite poisoning and ultimately defeat and destroy Wyld despite him being powered by a Lunar Eclipse. Once the Titans return to their own dimension, Static vomits blood.

Learning from Dr. Rochelle Barnes that his experience in Wyld's dimension has completely deprived him of his powers and believing himself useless to help Aquagirl, Bombshell, and Miss Martian, Virgil decides to return to Dakota and attempt to be a normal kid again. However, Cyborg convinces him to accompany Rochelle back to Cadmus, not only to restore his powers, but also because he would be of no use to anyone in Dakota and that being normal is not meant for him. Superboy feels he should go with Virgil to Cadmus, but he insists that the Titans need him much more. Wonder Girl tells Virgil that he is welcome to return whenever he wishes.

Powers

  • Bang Baby: Static's physiology was altered by a mutant-genetic explosion which caused him to adapt unusual powers. Static's body itself can generate raw electromagnetic energy, which he has learned to manipulate, control and enhance.
    • Super-Conductive Electromagnetism: Static can sense sources of electromagnetic energy or objects that can be affected by it such as underground water pipes. He can magnetize and demagnetize metals.
      • Electromagnetic Fields: Static generates an electromagnetic field just like the earth and the sun generate their own Electromagnetic fields. Static can also create barriers and shields that he can use to block, repel, hold back attacks and defend himself in battle.
      • Mechanokinesis: Static can capable of fixing or operating electronic devices through his electromagnetic manipulation. He can operate most devices just by touching, even if they are not plugged.
      • Electromagnetic Levitation: Static can cause objects to fly (metal is the easiest material to manipulate and wood is the most difficult).
      • Wavelength Tuning: Static can hear radio waves meaning he can listen in on the police broadband and music stations, as well as tapping into the phone lines so he can make calls.
      • Mental Resistance: As the human brain is an electromagnetic organ, and due to his status as a metahuman amplifying his brain's capacities, Static has demonstrated considerable opposition to virtually all forms of hypnosis or mind control. He has overcome the telepathic assaults of The Swarm, avoided mental detection from Miss Martian, and, most notably, eventually even broke free of the Anti-Life Equation, a feat originally considered to be impossible.
    • Electrokinesis: Static can generate electricity from his body and administer it in a range of different attacks and uses. He can charge devices, drain devices and project his electricity in a variety of controlled ways.
      • Electrical Displays: Static is able to project his electromagnetic energies in the form of energy-based constructs, such as disks, orbs, bursts, shields, platforms, force fields, and other projectiles or constructions.
      • Electromagnetic Force Bolts: Static can project powerful blasts and/or bursts of electromagnetic energy from his hands for uses allowing him to hit, push/pull or blow away his targets, and potentially exerting enough force to destroy them.
      • Ball Lightning: Named after Ball Lightning, the weather phenomenon. Electromagnetic Energy compressed into a large ball and thrown at targets; an offensive maneuver in a combat situation.
      • Static Cling: Static can adhere most objects or people to surfaces and other objects, plus Static can magnetize surfaces.
      • Electrical Transformation: Due to Static's power to generate electromagnetic energy, He is able to transform his entire body into pure electrical energy.
    • Healing Factor: Virgil can recover from injuries faster than normal humans, having healed from a multitude of full-body stings from The Swarm in less than a day when they very well would've killed a regular person. Even so, he has been hurt severely enough to where either a nurse had to see him or Frieda had to care for him.

Abilities

  • High Intelligence: Static is a highly gifted student with particular skill in mathematics, science, and computers. His prowess in science is what allowed him to design and construct the hoverdisc that he flies on. Static also possesses an almost fanboyish knowledge of comic books, role playing games, and science fiction.
  • Tactical Analysis: Static is able to apply his scientific knowledge in combat and real life situations and does so almost intuitively. This allows him a certain advantage over more powerful, but less intelligent, opponents.
  • Multilingualism: Virgil has learned to speak German for unknown reasons and is fluent enough to carry on a simple conversation in the language.[5]

Weaknesses

  • Insulators: Static's power has no affect on things that have natural resistance to his abilities, such as wood or rubber.
  • Power Absorption: Static is vulnerable to having his power stolen from an outside force, such as the fellow electrokinetic Prometheus.
  • Vulnerability to Bang Babies: For unknown reasons, Static can be affected by electricity-wielding metahumans whose powers are derived from Quantum Juice. Hence, the electrostatic bolts generated by the mad doctor Byron Kilgore caused pain to Static, who is normally immune to the effects of high voltage electricity. Why this vulnerability exists is a mystery.


Transportation

Weapons

  • Static Traps: Normally, Static does not use any real weapons and mainly relies on his electromagnetic powers in battle. However, to defeat particularly formidable opponents, he will employ his "static traps," a well-planned use of his powers and everyday materials. These static traps were limited only by Static's creativity and the preparation time available.


  • Some details of Static's history may have since been altered following Final Crisis.
  • Static has had a few nicknames and street names, they include "Kilowatt Kid", "Sparky", "V-man", "Virg", and "Hero".
  • In addition to his most common friend circle, Virgil is friends with Chuck Kane and Felix.
  • Static has has displayed a mutual attraction to Rocket and a silent interest in Aquagirl. Virgil showed early romantic interest in his best friend Frieda for a while; though this was diluted overtime, it is shown that when he grows up, he ultimately marries and starts a family with her.
  • Virgil Hawkins is named for an African-American man denied entry into the University of Flordia School of Law. Additionally, his first and middle name ("Virgil" and "Ovid") are the names of Roman poets. His grandfather Homer Hawkins, may similarly be named for the legendary author of the poems the Iliad and the Odyssey.
    • Virgil is shown to dislike his middle name, playfully asking Frieda to never speak it out loud.

Related

Footnotes


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Teen Titans member
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This character is or was primarily a member of the younger superhero team known as the Teen Titans, in any of its various incarnations. This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Teen Titans members" category.

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Shadow Cabinet member
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This character is or was a member of the Shadow Cabinet, a centuries-old secret order of superheroes dedicated to protecting humanity at all costs.
This template will categorize articles that include it into the "Shadow Cabinet members" category.

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Milestone Media
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This article is related to Milestone Media, a sub-division of DC Comics, that published the self-contained "Dakotaverse", and later Earth M, under its own logo. This template will automatically categorize articles that include it into the "Milestone Media" category.


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