DC Animated Universe
DC Animated Universe

The initial explosion of Quantum Vapor.

"There was this huge purple cloud, kinda glittery. It came from out of nowhere."
Dwayne McCall[1]

The Big Bang was a chemical explosion event near the docks of Dakota. It sparked a growth of the metahuman population in the city, with its victims known as "Bang Babies," primarily because many of them were gang bangers, teenagers and other young people.



Several years after the city's previous gang war, dubbed the Dakota riots,[2] tensions were rising in Dakota again; all major crews were involved, but especially those of Wade and Francis "F-Stop" Stone. They converged at the docks, near Gate 10. Wade had brought along Virgil Hawkins, thinking it was an ideal opportunity for the boy to get rid of his bully (F-Stop) without going down for murder.[3]

The Bang

Wade and F-Stop breathe in the chemical gas.

Virgil, however, was hesitant, and when he was given a gun to defend himself, the first thing he did was throw it into the water. This left him with no weapons in the fight, and an easy prey for F-Stop. The bully was about to beat him down when the police showed up with helicopters and squad cars. One of the rioters shot at one of the choppers, shooting out its searchlight. In retaliation, police fired a tear gas grenade to quelch the riot. The round subsequently struck a vat of bio hazardous material that was stored on the lot in abundance. The vat exploded, causing the chain reaction with the other vats, and filling the entire dock with purple smoke.[3]

All those at the scene were affected by the smoke, which spread well beyond the lot's borders. Virgil,[3] Dulé Jones and Troy[4] were exposed when they tried to escape, Nina Crocker was overcome by the gas when she was cycling nearby,[2] Dwayne McCall was exposed when he left his home to find his runaway dog,[1] and Madelyn Spaulding and a hobo were hit in a nearby alley.[5]


Bang Babies fill up the hospital.

Following the explosion, the hospitals were flooded with victims. Without a known cure or effective painkillers, many of the victims lay in agony as their bodies underwent a dramatic transformation.[3] Others escaped with no physical damage only to mutate later.[6] On some occasions, affected people managed to hold off the mutation under heavy pressure, but transformed once weakened, enraged or distracted, like Derek Barnett,[7] Thomas Kim[8] or Tamara Lawrence.[9] Years later, individuals who were never at the Big Bang also manifested powers, due to being exposed to minute vapor residue by contact with other Bang Babies. Richie Foley was one of the "second-hand smoke" Bang Babies.[10]

Politically, the mayor stalled an investigation. The biohazardous material at the docks was owned by Edwin Alva, a good friend of hers. Its permits were not in order, and the mutagenic substance was illegal. Only after repeated requests by concerned citizens, like Robert Hawkins, was an investigation called,[6] but the Grand Jury couldn't find enough evidence to incriminate anyone.[11]

The mayor and Alva.

Because there was no cure, finding one had become a major concern for Dakota's state governor. Funding was provided by the state,[12] as well as businessmen such as Alva[13] and Bruce Wayne.[14] Several Bang Babies gave themselves up for research—D-Struct,[7] Nails[14] and Aquamaria.[15] Only after several tests on Aquamaria, GenomaTech scientist Donald Todd was able to find a cure. As it was harmless to those who weren't affected by the gas, the governor ordered it to be sprayed in the air for maximum exposure. Within months, several powerful Bang Babies were restored to normal. While some welcomed their normal life back, others—such as Ebon and Hotstreak—did not want to lose their powers. They staged a robbery on GenomaTech to steal some of the Quantum Vapor, hoping to recreate the Big Bang. The attempt failed, possibly killing the ringleaders as a result, but Gear was able to secure a small dosage so that he and Static could retain their superpowers to clean up the city.[12]

Background information

Because Static Shock was a kid's show, the nature of the Big Bang was heavily toned down. In Milestone Media comics, the mayor and Alva created Q-Juice to counter the gang problem, and deliberately spiked the tear gas grenades with a minor radioactive solution. All those exposed would be marked with the radioactive residue, and could be easily tracked down and arrested. But it went horribly wrong; most of the gang members and police officers caught by the gas died—it ate right through gas masks. Only a small portion of the people present actually mutated. This seems to have been toned down as well, though some of the gang members faced an ambiguous death—melting or going up in smoke. Several people present, such as Wade and Duke, are never seen again.

Like in the comics, the Big Bang only occurs in flashbacks.

Appearances and references

Static Shock


  1. 1.0 1.1 Berkowitz, Stan (writer) & Tucker, James (director) (December 2, 2000). "Child's Play". Static Shock. Season 1. Episode 7 (airdate). Episode 7 (production). Kids WB!.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Semper Jr., John, (writer) & Cowan, Denys (teleplay) & Uncredited director (June 7, 2003). "Flashback". Static Shock. Season 3. Episode 14 (airdate). Episode 32 (production). Kids WB!.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Simmons, Christopher (writer) & Tucker, James (director) (September 20, 2000). "Shock to the System". Static Shock. Season 1. Episode 1 (airdate). Episode 1 (production). Kids WB!.
  4. Goodman, Robert (writer) & Goodman, Robert, Semper Jr., John, (teleplay) & Chele, Victor Dal (director) (May 1, 2004). "Linked". Static Shock. Season 4. Episode 10 (airdate). Episode 48 (production). Kids WB!.
  5. Uhley, Len (writer) & Chlystek, Dave (director) (April 6, 2002). "Attack of the Living Brain Puppets". Static Shock. Season 2. Episode 9 (airdate). Episode 21 (production). Kids WB!.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Berkowitz, Stan, Burnett, Alan (writer) & Berkowitz, Stan (teleplay) & Riba, Dan (director) (September 30, 2000). "Aftershock". Static Shock. Season 1. Episode 2 (airdate). Episode 2 (production). Kids WB!.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Simmons, Christopher (writer) & Cowan, Denys (director) (October 7, 2000). "The Breed". Static Shock. Season 1. Episode 3 (airdate). Episode 3 (production). Kids WB!.
  8. Simmons, Christopher (writer) & Tucker, James (director) (May 12, 2001). "Tantrum". Static Shock. Season 1. Episode 13 (airdate). Episode 13 (production). Kids WB!."
  9. Uhley, Len (writer) & Uncredited director (February 22, 2003). "The Usual Suspect". Static Shock. Season 3. Episode 5 (airdate). Episode 30 (production). Kids WB!.
  10. Burnett, Alan (writer) & McDuffie, Dwayne (teleplay) & Uncredited director (February 1, 2003). "Gear". Static Shock. Season 3. Episode 2 (airdate). Episode 29 (production). Kids WB!.
  11. McDuffie, Dwayne (writer) & Tucker, James (director) (February 10, 2001). "Junior". Static Shock. Season 1. Episode 11 (airdate). Episode 9 (production). Kids WB!.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Semper Jr., John, (writer), Burnett, Alan (writer) & Drost, Chuck (director) (May 22, 2004). "Power Outage". Static Shock. Season 4. Episode 13 (airdate). Episode 52 (production). Kids WB!.
  13. Soll, Ralph (writer) & Howard, Mark J. (director) (February 21, 2004). "No Man's an Island". Static Shock. Season 4. Episode 6 (airdate). Episode 47 (production). Kids WB!.
  14. 14.0 14.1 Dini, Paul (writer) & Uncredited director (January 25, 2003). "Hard as Nails". Static Shock. Season 3. Episode 1 (airdate). Episode 27 (production). Kids WB!.
  15. Uhley, Len (writer) & Howard, Mark J. (director) (May 8, 2004). "Wet and Wild". Static Shock. Season 4. Episode 11 (airdate). Episode 50 (production). Kids WB!.