If you consider yourself familiar with comic’s most popular super heroes than you are capable of identifying those that are considered the best: Superman, Spider-Man, Batman, Iron Man, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Green Lantern, and Captain America are just to name a few. And, if you are capable of identifying those that are considered to be the best, then you are also capable of identifying those who are not the best. While the task of categorizing some characters as campy and unappealing is subjective, those who know superheroes well know that at the very top of this list is none other than the great master of the ocean himself, the under-appreciated and consistently mocked Aquaman.
Paul Norris and Mort Weisinger first conceived the character during the Golden Age of comics as a swimming super hero who could breathe under water and communicate with fish and other aquatic life. However, as the character progressed he eventually attained a comical, absence-of-seriousness persona that became the punch line for many parodies and satires in the years that followed. If one were to disregard all previous assumptions and merely examine the hero from a neutral perspective, one would inevitably see that the great king is capable of far more than most people realize, and if utilized properly, can display abilities that could rival even the most notorious of heroes. This should grant him a seat in the upper echelon of the DC Universe, a place where characters are respected and feared.
There is little doubt that when DC comics relaunched the character in two thousand and eleven as apart of their New 52 line-up, an immediate change to the perception of Aquaman was their top priority. The debut issue combatted all the preconceived notions and set quality time aside to comment on The Aquatice Ace’s lousy reputation, including a scene in a diner where he was mocked for his so-called aptitude for communicating with fish and how amidst the pantheon of super-beings he is given the least amount of dignity and appreciation. Yet, the real question every reader should be asking is not about Aquaman’s reputation, but rather where his true power lies and what that power can do if properly wielded.
In essence, why should people start believing in the Aquaman?
To better understand Aquaman’s abilities it is vital to first study him from an analytical basis, whereby one can observe his abilities without any prior knowledge of how he is understood by the general public. Thus, if one were to do this then one would be able to better understand the fundamentals of his character, such as the fact that Aquaman dominates the ocean, a region that consists of seventy five percent of the earth, and is the son of a very powerful Aquatic Lord along with being endowed with magic and a number of strength-increasing gifts that make him difficult to combat whilst in his natural habitat. One could also take note that Aquaman was raised on the surface world and possesses knowledge of the earth as well as its waters while also happening to be in possession of an extremely powerful weapon: the Trident of Neptune, a relic of Atlantis that can propel projectile beams of energy and penetrate almost anything it comes in contact with. And while Aquaman’s gift of communicating with aquatic life has been the butt of many jokes, it is hard to laugh when you consider the fact that there over a billion fish in the sea and all can be controlled by a simple thought commanded from their great king’s consciousness. That’s quite the loyal brigade to have at your command.
People tend ignore the fact that Aquaman is a king, and like all kings he has an army, a kingdom, and loyalty from those who serve him, a quality that not even the greats like Superman and Batman acquire, and unlike those in his company, Aquaman is stern and rarely, if ever, indecisive. He is a child of two worlds while the majority of heroes have either originated from planets that are light-years away or worlds that have been destroyed by some great cataclysm, and this is not the case for Arthur Curry. Both of his worlds still exist, and although his loyalties to Atlantis are what grants him his power, his love for the surface world is what gives him his humanity, and despite the fact that Superman and others superheroes like him do possess similar mythologies they do not bear the same intimacy as Aquaman’s. He is the only person who can protect the realm of Atlantis and the only one who can ensure the safety of earth’s oceans, an ecosystem that, in today’s society, is continuously depleting. This gives Aquaman a relevant motive and much story potential for what he stands for amidst other heroes, for he, like them, is fueled not just by his duties as a king but from his willingness to preserve the planet’s most precious resources.
Despite the ridicule and lack of respect the character has endured through decades, the identity of the King of the Seven Seas is still taking shape, for every issue that is released brings him one step closer and closer to who he really is and what he can really do, and in the case of Zack Snyder’s upcoming Batman V Superman film, one can only hope for a decent portrayal in comparison to how he is perceived by a vast audience. In the end, however, Aquaman is bestowed with an incredible destiny, a destiny that is brimming with prosperity and hopefully a destiny that will allow the King of the Seven Seas to rise to new depths and attain the throne he has always wanted, the throne he truly deserves.