Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Aquaman Annual #2 Review and **SPOILERS**

We Go Together Like Rama Lama Lama ka Dinga da Dinga Dong

Writers: Kelly Sue DeConnick and Vita Ayala
Artist: Victor Ibañez
Colorist: Jay David Ramos
Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Cover: Victor Ibañez
Assistant Editor: Andrea Shea
Editor: Alex Antone
Group Editor: Brian Cunningham
Cover Price: $4.99
On Sale Date: October 23, 2019


One would think an “annual” would be an issue that came out annually, but no. The last Aquaman Annual was in 2017. Let’s read this second one from 2019, what do you say?

Explain It!

Sometimes an Annual issue takes a hard left turn from what is going on in the regular, monthly version of that book. It’s an opportunity for other creators to work on a property, or add ancillary stories, and otherwise explore things that you couldn’t in the regular pace of periodical publishing. This issue sort of combines both things, and highlights the Old Gods that have been farting around in Amnesty Bay, but haven’t done anything particularly interesting in several issues. Our story begins, hilariously, with Arthur and Jackson just lounging on a dock with Salty the Sea Dog (who is not an actual sea dog except in his proximity to the sea), when some pretender to the Atlantean throne shows up and tries to take Aquaman to school. He fails, but his projectile sets the Amnesty Bay Founder’s Day fairgrounds ablaze, and the extinguishing wave that followed all but ruined the festivities and fireworks.
Tempers flare up, Salty runs off, And Aquaman mistakes one of the Elder Gods for a dog-eater, which is the most racist thing I’ve read in a modern comic book in some time. In the end, we learn, with Aquaman, that only by sharing and caring will everything be made right. The whole town gets together to set up a huge bonfire, and Aquaman gets some luminescent fish to spell the words AMNESTY BAY in the water of said bay. And…it was a pretty cool moment. A hero doing something heroic. A community of people with actual emotions. I dare say this is my favorite issue of Aquaman in some time. I understand that space as at a premium, but it would be nice to see more of these humanizing moments in the regular series from time to time. If you’re an Aquaman fan, this is definitely worth checking out (though maybe mystifying if you haven’t been reading to this point.)

Bits and Pieces:

A Year of the Villain tie-in that doesn’t feel like a Year of the  Villain tie-in. And it’s a pretty enjoyable read. How about that?


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