Tag Archives: Aquaman

The Best of DC Rebirth #5: Aquaman

file_007-1Disclaimer: I am by no means an expert on Aquaman. Before starting this Rebirth project, most of my knowledge of the character came from the Hanna-Barbera cartoons, the DC animated “Timm-verse,” and our own HolyBeeofEphesus’s reminiscences over his Aquaman Underoos. I used to see the character as someone who embodies the frivolous excesses of superhero comics: goofy costumes, ludicrous powers, and a two-dimensional view of good and evil. Sure, Aquaman is helpful if your boogie board is carried off by the current and he’s no doubt great at giving informative lectures about recycling plastic six-pack rings, but in the middle of an invasion of Earth by Apokalips or a serial-killing spree, give me Batman or Superman, please. To me, Aquaman was a lot like a Speedo–there’s a time and a place that it’s useful, but in everyday life, I’m probably not going to need it.

Yet from the very first Rebirth issue, I found myself drawn to Dan Abnett’s interpretation of Arthur Curry, aka Aquaman: the King of Atlantis. The preconceptions I had of the character as a simple, orange-clad, fish-speaker, who at best is a B-lister on the Justice League, were replaced by an exciting and surprisingly complex character. Abnett draws extra attention to Aquaman’s Otherness. He is both human and not, the son of Atlantean royalty and a simple lighthouse keeper. In this context, Aquaman makes a fascinating outsider, someone who wants to belong and has dedicated his life to helping others, yet is rejected by those he’s chosen to protect. In an age when issues related to social identity make headlines weekly, it makes sense to see comic books, which have historically reflected social concerns, exploring these themes. Marvel has definitely been leading the charge on this front, and though DC is trying to highlight periphery heroes like Cyborg and Blue Beetle, it’s actually Aquaman with his blonde hair, blue eyes, and perfectly square jaw that tackles issues like xenophobia, classism, and the massive polarization that’s corroding the global community.aquaman_rebirth00 Continue reading The Best of DC Rebirth #5: Aquaman

New Comics: She-Wolf

The first issue of She-Wolf, Rich Tommaso’s new Image series, hits stands this week. Gabrielle Catella, teenage wannabe witch, may or may not have successfully cast a shapeshifting spell on herself and now, in addition to dealing with all of the problems that come along with being a rebellious misunderstood eighteen-year-old, she prowls the suburban night as a werewolf, endangering boyfriends and catching hell from parish priests.

Like his previous Image book, the neo-noir Dark CorridorShe-Wolf puts Tommaso’s gorgeous linework and color palette on display. Upping the ante on the Paul Grist-inspired artwork that helped populate that prior book, we’re treated to a spooky dash of Richard Sala, with some of the pop art vibrancy of Gary Panter. Tommaso hit my radar after working with master storyteller James Sturm on Satchel Paige, and I’m excited for anything he’s working on. And what he’s got going on in this first issue is a lot of surrealist witchcraft and creepy Little Red Riding Hood symbolism. Werewolves are so much cooler than vampires or zombies, obviously, so let’s all move this book to the top of the pull list.

File_006 (2)And speaking of Dark Corridor, you can double your Tommaso pleasure this week, as the TPB collection of the entire series has just been released. Red Circle is Tarantino’s L.A., with just a few more hot rods and just the right amount of flayings. Tommaso seems to really love drawing interior body parts. Enjoy!
Continue reading New Comics: She-Wolf