Sunday, January 1, 2012

Aquaman #4

Happy New Year! Hope the coming year is a great one for you and yours!

Now, on to business - and I'm delighted to report that the opening storyline for Aquaman actually wraps up in this issue!

It's quite a shock - I don't think any of the other "New 52" titles from DC have completed a story yet, for which I blame the 6-issues-in-a-collection (and-sometimes-8) standard for the comics industry.

But here we reach the finale of a solid opening story for Aquaman. It has succeeded on almost every level: providing a worthwhile opponent; introducing the main and supporting cast; making the hero interesting and formidable; planting seeds for future stories; and giving you a reason to like him.

I could complain that the menace Aquaman and Mera face is more a physical obstacle than an intelligent opponent, but that's a small point - they must overcome a powerful (and numerous) opponent and deal with a moral issue as well.

The artwork by Ivan Reis is impressive. It's a bit murky, thanks to the action being located deep under the surface of the sea, but it includes powerful layouts, some hideous monsters, great designs on the heroes and lots of tense, all-out action sequences.

I've always liked Aquaman, and as best as I can remember, he's one of the first super-heroes I found when I first started reading comics.

I'd love to see writer Geoff Johns and artist Reis restore him to his rightful place as one of DC's most formidable heroes.

This opening story is a great first step.

Grade: A-


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