Aquaman #12 goes to war.

And just when the previous issue managed to settle everything. Such is the life of a superhero huh? Just as everything is going well, someone comes along and messes it up. Well, Black Manta certainly ruined Arthur’s day. It’s interesting to see the underwater kingdom in a state of emergency as everything falls around them. Atlantis and their armies feel very alien, but perhaps that’s the point. They outmatch the rest of the world by a long shot. And that’s what makes this issue so daunting, the rest of the world truly is at the mercy of Black Manta and N.E.M.O.  Black Manta is clearly the true villain of the series, and his scheming makes him such an interesting puppet master.

The issue sets up an interesting plot point that’s definitely going to cause trouble in the future. And that’s not such a bad thing, especially when the Aquamarines themselves tease further developments than we’re first shown. Whilst their purpose in the plot is likely to give a physical being for the Aquaman to fight, we can’t deny that they certainly look intimidating. The only problem is, they seem like villains from some kind of B-Movie. Hopefully, they don’t play out that way when we see them in action.

It’s a very action heavy issue, but it also looks at the politics of two states engaging each other in a war. What’s impressive about Aquaman #12, is the accountability that comes with Arthur’s mantle of King. The other members of the Justice League are all vigilantes and superheroes, but none are royalty. That’s probably why the America government were so quick to point the finger when it came to the attacks. Even from a political view, this story still finds ways to be impressive. Is it possible that this series is a political message of some kind? We’re not sure, but it’s great to see that the writing doesn’t shy away from coming to the series with a real-world approach. We’re loving Aquaman’s Rebirth series, and this issue is no exception.

8.8 Great
  • Plot 9
  • Action-heavy 7.5
  • Black Manta's scheming 9.8
  • Political approach 9
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About Author

Eammon bounces between the North and South of England – investing his time in films & telly (when he's not writing for Heroes Direct)