As comic books continue to morph pop culture and give way to popular content across all forms of media, the industry is still a field dominated by white creators. Representations of BIPOC should accurately reflect the experiences of real people of color, but only 5.8% of current comic book writers and 3.9% of artists are Black and even fewer Black characters exist in comics.
In response, DC and WarnerMedia teamed up with Ally Financial to launch a program that addresses the lack of diversity in media. The Milestone Initiative Development Program was first announced during last year’s DC Fandome event and features a 10-week program that began on March 15. Throughout the 10 weeks, a group of diverse participants is taking immersive workshops with industry experts to sharpen their writing skills to become the next generation of storytellers. WarnerMedia will also provide opportunities to learn equity and inclusion training to further help bridge the gap. Moreover, Ally Financial will provide financial education to participants to aid in economic mobility, another serious issue facing many BIPOC creatives.
Now, all comic book fans can get involved with the next stage of The Milestone Initiative Development Program. Ally and its partners are launching an augmented reality (AR) experience on Snapchat called Milestone Archives. The experience, which is set to launch nationwide tomorrow, March 24, will feature a multi-level digital space where users can travel between floors to meet with Milestone Universe superheroes Static, Hardware, and Iron & Rocket. During this experience, participants will learn more about the superheroes’ backstories within the Milestone Universe. There will also be interactive games focused on the heroes and exclusive Snapchat lenses that will allow users to experience the Milestone Universe firsthand and share it with their friends and family.
Milestone Universe comics feature historically important storylines and characters, which were first introduced back in the ‘90s. Fans can learn more about the history of Milestone Media and The Milestone Initiative here.