Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Aquaman #23.1 Black Manta Review

Back in Black

I love Black Manta.  I have loved him since I was a little boy and had never even read a comic. When I heard he would get a Villains Month issue I penciled that one in as a must read.  Now that I've read it, I'm not really sure if I am better off for it.

Black Manta's origin has been told in the regular Aquaman run so it makes sense that this issue is a Forever Evil tie-in and not an origin story, right?  Yes and no.  The issue plays catch up with story lines from Aquaman, Suicide Squad and last weeks Forever Evil.  A little too much catch up if you ask me.  Yes, it is important for those not reading the regular series to know why Black Manta hates Aquaman, but Amanda Waller asking Black Manta to join the Suicide Squad doesn't make sense.  He had already turned her down a while ago.  Why would she ask him again?  She asks him to force feed the main point of the issue, what will Black Manta do once his arch rival is dead?

After this, we get a retelling of last weeks Forever Evil #1, only slightly in Black Manta's point of view.  He finds out Aquaman is dead and gets his Trident.  His purpose in life is finished and he heads to his Father's grave to tell him it's over.  That's when Ultraman moves the Moon, causing tidal waves and flooding to disturb the grave.  Black Manta looks at the remains of his Dad and is ready to begin his fight against the Crime Syndicate.  Redundant and ridiculous all rolled up into one.

I will say it again, I love Black Manta.  I will also say, I did not love this issue.  What little character building we get was negated by a story that has been told before.  In fact a major part of this issue is directly from last weeks Forever Evil #1. I hope that Black Manta's Forever Evil issue is better than this.  He deserves much more.


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