Aquaman #4

by Ian B on August 03, 2016

Written by: Dan Abnett

Art by: Philippe Briones

Coloured by: Gabe Eltaeb

Lettered by: Pat Brosseau



In the previous issue, Aquaman and his fellow Atlanteans were denied re-entry to the Atlantean embassy, the American government having revoked their ambassador status. Not wanting his dream to die, Aquaman travelled to Washington meet with the President and sort out what had happened. After waiting there with his wife Mera, however, Aquaman is detained by security under suspicion of ordering an attack on an American submarine, killing all of its submariners, an attack actually carried out by the Atlantean terror cell, the Deluge. Subsequently, Black Manta is taken in by a group known as N.E.M.O., whose goals and motivations remain unknown.



This issue begins with Aquaman being led by the military into a homeland security holding facility while they sort out what is happening. Aquaman claims that he doesn't know who is responsible, but it was not him, and despite the fact that they could do little to stop him if he wanted to leave, he is cooperating with them to further promote peace between their nations. At the same time, the Atlanteans send an investigative party to the sunken submarine to determine what exactly attacked it, finding an ancient Atlantean blade wedged into the side in an attempt to implicate Aquaman. Just then, the American Special Forces arrive and a battle breaks out. Mera, still at the White House, is confronted by the Chief of Staff, who informs her of said fight, accusing her of ordering the Atlantean Military to engage. Tired of having insults thrown at her, Mera finally snaps, breaking into the holding facility and springing Aquaman, against his wishes. While the story remains interesting, there are some inconsistencies that throw it off a bit. So much is focused on the Atlanteans and the Special Forces engaging at the wreck of the submarine, but considering the Atlantean forces were ordered to retreat, and no apparent orders were given to the Special Forces agents, I am unsure why this is thought of as being an act of war. Hopefully more is made clear in the next issue.



The art remains good, no real complaints or stand out moments. Briones does a good job of small details, such as making the Atlantean armour look very scaly and segmented, as well as little details here and there such as schools of fish swimming around and bubbles to denote movement, as well as some script on Atlantean architecture. Some of the facial expressions still look a little off, but overall nothing that detracts from the issue.



Ultimately this issue was okay, but not great. Seeing the tension playing out between Atlantis and the United States due to the actions of a rogue terrorist cell would be a more compelling story if people didn't make claims that were blatantly untrue. Maybe it will turn out that certain key people in the story are members of N.E.M.O. and were orchestrating things from behind the scenes, but for now it just seems like a poorly thought out plot point in an otherwise interesting plot. While I did enjoy it, I would hold off on suggesting it to new readers until we know more about how this arc plays out.

Our Score:


A Look Inside