Aquaman #1 grapples with how the real world would react to Atlantis…

The first thing that automatically springs to mind when reading the issue, is how human they’re trying to make Arthur Curry seem. And whilst obviously yes, he’s half-Human and half-Atlantean – the way he chops and changes between the two identities is almost like being two separate people. When he’s with Mera he’s at ease and his normal self. But when he’s surrounded by others, it’s as if he’s someone completely different. Which is easy to deal with considering he’s a King, but the way it reads on the page feels very odd.

It almost feels like that might be part of his character arc throughout this current series, figuring out who he is as a person rather than a King. We certainly hope so, otherwise his issues are going to feel very mismatched and strange in terms of dialogue and storylines. Maybe we’re just looking too far into it, but we hope the writers know what they’re doing with the character. He’s a tricky one, purely because of the stigma around him. If they get it wrong, he could almost end up being a parody of his former self. No one wants to see that.

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The rest of Aquaman #1 deals with the Atlantean embassy coming under a terrorist attack, and it feels like something out of a spy movie. With someone infiltrating the embassy and letting all hell break loose on innocent ambassadors from around the world. Apart from the odd style of dialogue, it’s a good issue and it has the potential to get a lot better. If it wasn’t obvious from the Aquaman: Rebirth issue, Black Manta is the primary antagonist for the King of Atlantis once again and does make for a compelling villain.

The issue does suffer from the ‘Superhero v Villain with similar powers’ trope, but considering Black Manta’s motivations, it does make for an interesting read. In terms of it’s art and design, it’s nothing out of the ordinary and it sticks to the colourful, vibrant style that we’re used to. Aquaman #1 isn’t the worst book out there, but it’s not exactly the best either. Hopefully they gather some more compelling villains and situations for the King of Atlantis to deal with across the series.

We’d love to see some other heroes cross over into Aquaman’s story, especially someone like Wonder Woman, who has her own experiences with dealing with lost civilisations. We’re intrigued as to where Aquaman #1 will lead to, but we’re not exactly captivated like we have been with other #1 issues.

Make sure you keep up to date with the DC Rebirth issues here at Heroes Direct.

7.5 Has potential.

Whilst it's not the greatest issue of the Rebirth comics, it's not the worst either. With a compelling storyline, and a villain we've seen a few times before, it's an easy read. Even if the dialogue is a little choppy occasionally.

  • Chop and change dialogue 6.5
  • Black Manta 7.8
  • Aquaman/Arthur Curry 8
  • Plot 7.5
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