Review – Aquaman #50: Many (Happy?) Returns

Aquaman #50 variant cover, via DC Comics.

Aquaman #50 – Kelly Sue DeConnick, Writer; Robson Rocha, Eduardo Pansica, Pencilers; Daniel Henriques, Julio Ferreira, Inkers; Sunny Gho, Colorist

Ratings:

Ray – 9/10

Ray: The first arc of Kelly Sue DeConnick’s Aquaman has been very good, but it’s also been mired in a dense, mystery-driven story that kept her actual plans vague as most major Aquaman supporting cast members were kept off-panel. No more, as last issue’s monumental reveals – including Mera’s pregnancy and her apparent role in Arthur’s new death – were revealed and Aquaman headed back to his old life. Aquaman #50, a double-sized issue, tackles a lot of plot, as Arthur sails into Amnesty Bay on an ancient boat accompanied by a dozen old Gods reincarnated as humans and one winged blue teenager. Amnesty Bay – led by Arthur’s old friend Erica – greets them with a mix of hospitality and suspicion, and it takes a surprise visit from Wonder Woman to remind them of their duty to welcome these strange visitors. It’s a timeless speech, reminiscent of the ones we saw from Batman and Superman in the 1940s, and it makes me want a KSD Wonder Woman run when G. Willow Wilson mic-drops on that title.

A grand return. Via DC Comics.

The little character moments in Amnesty Bay are fantastic, but there’s a LOT of plot in this issue, starting with the expansion of the mythology of Amnesty Bay. Apparently there’s an old abandoned lighthouse on the island that is rumored to be cursed, formerly occupied by a grief-stricken sea captain who believed something was hunting him from the sea. Was he telling the truth or was he insane? We don’t know, but Robson Rocha delivers one great splash page right out of Lovecraft’s nightmares.

I’m not as sure about the Mera plot, as her attempts to outfox her advisors pushing her into a marriage are interesting but the weird dancing around each other she and Arthur are doing could get old fast. There’s also a segment with Black Manta and Luthor, but in this book it almost feels like a distraction from the fantastic mythology DeConnick is building here. This is easily the best Aquaman run since the days of Geoff Johns in the New 52, and it feels like we’re just getting started.

To find reviews of all the DC issues, visit DC This Week.

Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.

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