There are two types of people in the world: Those that are big Aquaman fans… and those that will be.
If you agree with us, you’re almost certainly in the former camp. If you disagree, then you’re probably not. But trust us, that’s going to change one of these days. One day, you’re going to realize the truth about Aquaman. While common opinion about him for years was, well, less than favorable, that’s changing. Much of that has to do with Geoff Johns, who introduced Arthur Curry as part of The New 52 with an amazing run on his title (which we’ve written about extensively). However, with Arthur’s appearance in other media, most notably in games like Injustice: Gods Among Us and in animation like Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox, more people have become wise to something that Aquaman fans have known for years—Aquaman is an absolute badass.
Need further convincing? Well then, we’d like to submit into evidence the most recent DC Universe Original Movie, Justice League: Throne of Atlantis. This full-length, animated feature is now available on Blu-Ray Combo Pack, DVD and Digital HD, and it’s well worth a look. Inspired by the Johns-penned storyline of the same name, it introduces Aquaman and his Atlantean people to the animated DC Universe first established in last year’s Justice League: War. It’s an action driven tale that combines political intrigue and betrayal with themes about belonging and family, and it may just make an Aquaman fan out of you with its moments of aquatic awesomeness.
Here are five of those moments that stand out and will ensure that you never laugh at an Aquaman joke again. And, um… one that kind of will. But first, the awesomeness!
Aquaman Single Handedly Beats Down a Gang of Thugs
When Justice League: Throne of Atlantis begins, Arthur Curry is in a bad place. His father has just passed away and he mistakenly believes that his Atlantean mother abandoned him as a child. He’s down and is not above drowning his sorrows in a rough beachside bar. However, Arthur’s solitude is interrupted by a gang of thugs, who promise to teach him a painful lesson. Imagine their surprise when the tables are turned and Arthur single-handedly brings them all down.
Okay, look, this sort of scene isn’t exactly unheard of in action movies. However, it demonstrates quickly that Arthur’s capable of far more than talking to fish. Especially when one of the thugs tries stabbing him, only to watch in shock as his knife shatters instead of piercing Arthur’s skin. Atlantean genes have their benefit, one of which is being nearly indestructible.
Arthur Earns Mera’s Respect… And More
One could argue that as far as bosses go, Arthur’s actually the second biggest in Atlantis. The number one spot could very well go to Mera, Arthur’s eventual paramour. That’s certainly true in Throne of Atlantis, which demonstrates early and often that Mera’s a skilled, extremely powerful fighter capable of taking down entire battalions on her own. (The sequence where she squares off against a legion of “Trenchers” is just one of many examples.) She’s loyal as well, guarding Arthur’s mother, the Queen, through all manner of strife and fighting for her beliefs and ideals.
We’ll be honest, after seeing her in the movie, we’re pretty sure Mera wouldn’t give us directions to the beach, let alone anything resembling affection. But Arthur manages to win that and far more. Mera sees the strength, heroism and nobility within the future king, clear as day, and she vows to stand beside him.
In short, Mera thinks Aquaman’s awesome. Are you REALLY going to disagree?
Aquaman Defeats Black Manta
You’re just going to have to trust us on this one. Aquaman takes down Black Manta near the end of the movie, and he does it in a way you’ll never expect. We’re not going to ruin it, but you’re going to love it and we doubt you’ll look at his ability to communicate with sea life the same way ever again.
Arthur Faces His Brother
Of course, the big villain of Justice League: Throne of Atlantis is Arthur’s half-brother Orm, who leads an army of Atlanteans against the surface world and the Justice League. All members of the League have a moment to shine in the climactic battle, but in the end it comes down to brother against brother for the throne of Atlantis. (It’s right there in the title, after all.) Again, we don’t want to ruin it for you, but where the Black Manta fight demonstrates Aquaman’s quick thinking and resourcefulness, this one demonstrates his skill in combat. It’s exactly the sort of fight you’d hope would end a super hero movie, where after an epic battle, truth quite literally prevails.
It also reveals something else about Aquaman that many people don’t realize. He’s a brawler. Aquaman doesn’t have the Flash’s speed, or Superman’s strength or flight. He doesn’t even have Batman’s tools or martial arts mastery. When Aquaman is on land and without his Atlantean weaponry (as he is in most of the movie), he depends on his fists and his wits. That’s it. Of course, that nearly impenetrable skin of his is a pretty cool advantage.
Atlantis Welcomes its King
At the end of the movie, Arthur assumes the Atlantean throne and his people accept him as their king. It’s an inspiring moment when you consider just how low Arthur was at the start. But what makes it great is Atlantis itself and what it means for Aquaman as a hero.
As they discuss in Throne of Atlantis, he has one foot in the surface world, one foot in the sea. He’s a member of the Justice League, but he’s also the leader of Atlantis. What it means is that this movie has only just scratched the very surface of Aquaman’s dramatic potential. Imagine Game of Thrones style intrigue and Lord of the Rings type battles… but underwater.
Yeah, Aquaman’s awesome. Buuuuut since it’s never good to take yourself TOO seriously, Justice League: Throne of Atlantis does include one moment where his powers are used for comedy. So, if you’re still determined to giggle at Aquaman. Here you go…
Aquaman Drunkenly Confides in a Lobster
Yeah, he does. It’s pretty awesome, and you can see it by clicking here.
There you go. Five—okay, make that SIX amazing moments that will make you an Aquaman fan. So have you seen Justice League: Throne of Atlantis? What did you think? And what was your favorite moment? Share your thoughts in the comments below!