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Monday, September 10, 2012 

Nashua Telegraph puts down older Aquaman stories all for the sake of it

The Nashua Telegraph's trying to tell people what to think of past Aquaman history, and acting as though Geoff Johns' take on the material is better in every way:
Let’s start with Aquaman, a character almost everyone’s heard of – and made fun of at one time or another.

Conceptually, it’s deserved.

Aquaman debuted in 1941, a cheap knockoff of another sea king, the popular Sub-Mariner over at Timely (now Marvel) Comics.

But whereas Prince Namor had a volatile and interesting personality, Aquaman was as bland as mayonnaise.

And where Namor was incredibly strong, bounced bullets off his chest and could fly, Aquaman could only … well, all together now: Aquaman swims fast and talks to fish.

All of which has dogged the Sea King ever since. He became a household name thanks to cartoons in the 1960s, but nothing could ever overcome his essential boringness.
Oh for heaven's sake. By that logic, even Superman would be "boring". Just because Sub-Mariner was an anti-hero almost ever since he began, does that mean that Mort Weisinger's making Arthur Curry a goody-two-shoes by contrast was wrong? I think not, and given that Aquaman's first official series ran during 1962-71, there was clearly some audience that enjoyed it, and also liked co-stars Mera and Aqualad.
Now, as you’d expect, DC Comics has made numerous attempts to make a potentially valuable trademark such as Aquaman more popular. But as long as all he did was swim fast and talk to fish, that wasn’t really going to happen.
How ridiculously superficial can they get? If Aquaman fought villains like sea smugglers, modern day pirates, the Ocean Master, Black Manta and so on, he obviously did more than just talk to fish!
And so it is, at long last, DC has reached the conclusion I did back in the 1960s: For the Marine Marvel to hold his own in a world with Superman, Green Lantern and Mera in it, he had to be more powerful.

And, lo, so it has come to be. DC’s chief creative officer, Geoff Johns, took a crack at the character when DC relaunched all of its superhero titles last September, and one of the first things he did was make Aquaman strong enough to throw an armored car across several city blocks … and bounce bullets off his chest.
In other words, he's not much different now from Superman; I get it. If memory serves, Sub-Mariner may have had high endurance against bullets, but he's never seemed as invincible as Superman, considering that plenty of Marvel's superheroes fought him during the Silver Age, even if they didn't win, and that includes Daredevil at the time, and later ever Hercules during the mid-80s.

In any case, after all the horrific violence that Johns has flung like mud upon even Aquaman lately, that's why I've already long written him off as someone to avoid like the plague.
Even more interesting, Johns tackled the Aquaman-as-joke idea head on, with the Sea King facing snark from surface-dwellers about talking to fish and being “nobody’s favorite superhero.” Aquaman crushes that idea pretty early on in this new series, and convincingly so.
Not given Johns' track record, I'm afraid. Besides, I've appreciated the creation of Aquaman and Sub-Mariner alike long before Johns got his mitts on Arthur Curry, and I'm certainly not wasting my time to see just what kind of shock tactics take place in the Sea King's book that this sugary slop of an article is unwilling to mention or describe.

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I've been an Aquaman fan for over 35+ years and never had a problem with his powers & abilities.

Having said that I think Aquaman #1 was the best #1 of the new 52u. There are some new back elements that are working even after 12 issues. I'm not crazy about 95% of the "new" DC books, but this is a keeper.

I always liked Aquaman better than Namor, that's for sure, and I never understood the vitriol the character received, although it has something to do with people basing their perception of the character on how he was depicted on Super Friends in the 1970s.

TV Tropes.org has a lot of love for Aquaman. Although, I'd agree with Carl, as part of it is from the Super Friends or first impression he had with the public at large.


I'd much rather have him than Namor, as Namor's anger issues have turned me away.

Aquaman's also been depicted well on shows like Justice League Unlimited and Batman: the Brave and the Bold; he wasn't someone who "just talked to fish" like the writer of the Telegraph article said on either show, nor is he in the comics, either.

Plus Namor's not only unlikeable, but a hobag *cough*SueRichards*cough*

Avi, a bit off-topic, but wondering if you'd seen this:


New 52 Writers Told To “Write As If They Were Writing Fan Fiction”

Explains a lot.

Why doesn't that surprise me?

Hell, I always felt that way with Marvel and Bendis, but interesting that DC apparently is aware of fanfic. And I'm not sure what to think of that.

Never understood people's problem with Aquaman. The earth is like 2/3 ocean, so he has more room to adventure than most of em.

Guess it's just a stupid meme people repeat because they think they have to.

Thanks, I'll write up a topic about DC's fanfic situation in a moment.

I agree, Hyperion. And it's a tired meme, too, once I remember hearing as far back as elementary school.

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