Friday, June 10, 2011

Flashpoint: Emperor Aquaman #1 (of 3)

I think DC made a mistake revealing its upcoming company-wide reboot (or restart, or whatever).

Not that I think they're making a mistake - I don't - but since we know that happens after Flashpoint, it gives all the comics tied to that series the feeling of "Imaginary Stories" - like it doesn't matter what happens, because it'll all be fixed at the end.

As a result, I don't feel compelled to buy the attached mini-series (though I'll sample a few depending on the creative teams or the characters involved).

If they had waited another month to make the announcement, readers would have read the first issue and perhaps been more inclined to stick around to the end.

At any rate, this issue focuses on Emperor Aquaman, a very different character from the Sea King we know.

As written by Tony Bedard, this Aquaman is involved in a deadly battle between Atlantis and the Amazons led by Wonder Woman. This issue gives us a little bit of the backstory, although we still have gaps to fill.

Apparently Aquaman was betrayed and someone he loves was killed - and as a result, he destroys Themyscira, which forces the Amazons to win a new home in combat with England, and then Aquaman destroys most of Europe.

The artwork is by Adrian Syaf and Vincente Cifuentes, and it's a solid effort, with good, clean storytelling.

I realize this is (for all intents and purposes) an Elseworlds story, and events and Aquaman are being manipulated - but it's disquieting to see a hero behave in ways that would shame the most cold-hearted villain.

It's the Civil War thing all over again - personally, I prefer heroes who are actually... well, heroic!

Grade: B-



Dwayne said...

The darkening of DC continues. I can't take anymore. I want super HEROES.

Anonymous said...

You prefer heroes who are actually
Dude, you are so old timey!

Sam Kujava

Chuck said...

Dwayne, I couldn't agree more!

Sam, it's true - I'm as old timey as all get-out! ;-)

Dwayne said...

Seriously... how could anyone think that readers want stories about Aquaman fighting Wonder Woman and murdering all of Europe? I know they're not the "in-continuity" characters, but still....

I've been reading DC since 1970 or so. But finally... lately... I'm reading just the 100 page reprints.

Chuck said...

I think that's what was so surprising about the "Brightest Day" series. I expected a return to a more optimistic view for DC's line, and instead it seems to be veering into Vertigo territory, with graphics murders, horror, heroes-gone-bad, that sort of thing. There's a place for such stories, but is it right for mainstream DC? Seems like a bad call to me.