It’s summer and it’s hot out. One good way to beat the heat is with a nice dive into the deep end of a relaxing swimming pool. But then you remember that people pee in pools and that’s gross, so you struggle to find another way to cool yourself down. How about a dive into a good book? Nice try, grandpa. I’m looking for excitement, and while I know that getting lost in the pages of a thrilling adventure novel can be extremely captivating, it also involves a lot of work on my end what with the visualizing and the reading and the imagining. Sometimes I prefer someone else to do all of that work and tie it up nicely for me in a two-hour, condensed, visually inspired, easy to digest movie. Ahhh, doesn’t that feel better already? Sit down, grab an ICEE, relax. Dive on into a deeper look inside the upcoming film, Aquaman.
Wait, So He’s Like A Fish Boy?
Okay, so in case you’re actually asking that, no. Aquaman was never actually a fish. In fact, at least in The Golden Age appearances of Aquaman (more specifically from his November 1941 debut in More Fun Comics #73), he was a normal human boy. According to a flashback from that same debut issue, his father was a famous undersea explorer and his mother died when he was a young boy. His father eventually discovered a vast deep sea city that he believed to be Atlantis. He set up a way to live there and study their long lost secrets. He then taught those secrets to his son, who would eventually grow to become Aquaman. Early on, he was depicted as only being able to talk to sea creatures in their own language and only when they were close enough to hear him. His enemies in that era (1940s & 1950s) were Nazi U-Boat commanders and Plucky Pirates. He was also a founding member of The Justice League of America.
In The Silver Age, Aquaman gets a makeover. Like, a whole life makeover. Starting at birth. It is then that we first learn the truth about Aquaman’s parents. Turns out he’s not such a normal guy after all. In fact, his mother was actually an Atlantean Queen named Atlanna and his father was a lonely lighthouse keeper named Tom Curry. Aquaman’s birth name was Arthur Curry. Sadly, Aquaman’s mother, Atlanna died of an undisclosed illness when Arthur was very young. Or, if you’re talking Golden Age, she died giving birth to him. Either way, it’s bumming me out. Let’s move on.
Just in case any of you are reading this for hot juicy gossip and are thus far disappointed, buckle up. I got you, Boo Boo. Did you know that after Aquaman’s mom died, his dad remarried? Yeah, he did, and to another full human. Also, they had a son! That’s right, Aquaman has a half-brother! His name was Orm Curry, and he had a bit of a troubled youth. In and out of tough situations both at home and with the law (which his brother always helped him out with), he was always jealous of Aquaman’s powers and the favoritism he felt his father showed to Arthur. Needless to say, Orm’s life wasn’t exactly working out well. (If you ask me, it’s because his parents named him Orm) Eventually, he got amnesia and disappeared only to resurface years later as Aquaman’s arch nemesis, Ocean Master. Quite a step up in the name department, right?
But Like, What Even Are His Powers?
I’m so glad you asked, bold words signifying a change in subject matter. I would be happy to list them out for you in a way that totally discredits any person, movie, or show that has lead you to believe that Aquaman is weak or that his powers “aren’t that cool”. This simply is not true. First of all, he can breathe underwater. That’s just cool. I don’t care who you are, at some point or another you have wished that you could do that. Second, he can swim faster than any other person or creature on the planet. That has to be useful for something, right? Just because I can’t think of something right now doesn’t mean it’s not cool. Third, he can telepathically communicate with sea life. Yeah, that’s right. What’s that? You don’t think it’s a big deal to toss out that single-use plastic bag? Well, you will when you have a swarm of flying piranha eating your face. And yes, I know that piranhas are freshwater fish so they technically wouldn’t be within his jurisdiction but I’m pretty sure you all know what I’m getting at. Barracuda then, you sticklers.
I haven’t even gotten into the other side of his powers yet. Because he spends the vast majority of his time deep underwater, his body has become immune to extreme pressure and darkness. This means that when above the water’s surface, he actually has superhuman strength, as well as enhanced senses. So he can find you more quickly, and he’s stronger than he is when he’s in the water. And he’s so strong in the water that his name is Aquaman. I mean, you do the math. Also because of the almost constant crushing pressure, above the surface, Aquaman’s skin is almost impenetrable. So, let’s review, shall we? Can breathe Underwater, extreme speed, telepathy, superhuman strength, vision, hearing, etc. AND his skin is essentially a chain mail suit with a rocking six pack? I’m sorry, what about Aquaman was supposed to be uncool? Yeah. That’s what I thought.
Okay, He Seems Pretty Cool. So There’s A New Movie?
There IS a new movie coming out in just a few months! Lucky for you, you just took a crash course in Aquaman’s backstory so you’re totally ready to watch it. But wait, what is this new movie about? You are just FULL of great questions today. Have I told you that? I’d be happy to fill you in. So, as you know, Aquaman’s real name is Arthur. Arthur’s mom (Atlanna) was the Queen of Atlantis and his dad (Tom Curry) was a lonely lighthouse keeper. His dad remarried after Atlanna’s death and had another son (Orm Curry) that eventually disappeared and became Aquaman’s nemesis. Okay, now that we’re all caught up, here’s what the new flick is about. Orm (poor guy, what a name) became Ocean Master and subsequently took over as ruler of Atlantis whilst Arthur was living on the surface. Then, Ocean Master wages war on the surface so Arthur must return to his role as Aquaman to save humanity (and his love interest, let’s be real) from his own half brother’s evil ways and claim his rightful spot on the throne as King of Atlantis.
Will he have what it takes to save the world from Ocean Master’s evil clutches? Will he become the King? Will he ever get over the loss of his mother and the fact that he never feels like he belongs anywhere because he’s not fully from the land or the sea? Will somebody buy me a ticket? All of these questions and MORE will be answered on December 21, 2018, when Aquaman comes to a theater near you!