Writer: Dan Abnett
Artist: Philippe Briones and Wayne Fruckner
Colorist: Gabe Eltab
Letterer: Pat Brosseau
Cover: Brad Walker, Andrew Hennessy, & Gabe Eltab
Aquman’s been dealing with a nasty plot against himself and Atlantis for the last several issues. Black Manta has taken over NEMO (still hate the name) and launched a clever, well thought out, ugly scheme that is pitting Atlantis against the United States, and even making some of Aquaman’s fellow Justice Leaguers question his motivations. This issue wraps the attack up.
Aquaman takes the fight to Black Manta directly, but that’s not the great part of the issue. This part of the story really highlights that Aquaman isn’t just a superhero, he’s also a king. The narration boxes are a report, and you find out near the end of the issue who Arthur is reporting too, and how he got there (it’s good to have powerful and influential friends). I’m really hoping this also ends the weird seclusion that’s been forced on Mera. She’s a powerful character and Aquaman is better with her at his side.
Plot: I’ll give the plot a 4 out of 5. This was really nicely done, and I like how Abentt handled Aquaman and his choices.
Art: The art was good, especially the depiction of the battle between Aquaman and Black Manta. I’ll go 3.5 out of 5 for the art.
Positives: Aquaman does a great job this issue. He not only wins the fight, he wins the war, and manages to come up with an agreement for peace that the President pretty much has to accept. It’s really well done. I tip my hat to Abentt for some great writing here.
Negatives: My only big negative has been the separation between Arthur and Mera during this story. It almost feels like Abnett was told he had to use Mera, and this was his way of getting out of it. I don’t like the Tower of Widowhood and their creepy hold on Mera.
I’ve been really enjoying the Aquaman book for years now. It’s one of the only two I stuck with all the way through the DCNU, and I’m still really having fun with it. Long Live the King!