Aquaman #3 – Chuck Brown/Brandon Thomas, writers; Max Raynor, artist; Hi-Fi, Colorist
Radius – 9/10
Ray: One of the best parts about this series is how it pulls from several different series, not just recent minis from Thomas and Brown, but series from Kelly Sue DeConnick, Dan Abnett and even earlier Aquaman mythos . The tight teamwork between Arthur and Black Manta is for me the biggest selling point of the series, especially as they invade the ninth race and foil the career ambitions of some hapless soldiers. But while they’re the biggest personalities on the show, the heart of the book really belongs to Jackson Hyde. Still recovering from the traumatic events of his solo series and the impending death of his mother, he’s angrier and more reckless than he’s ever been before – and that may be the only thing that unites Arthur and Manta. While Jackson is arguably the show’s most heroic character, this issue shows how he braces himself for danger.
This issue also expands the role of several minor players. Tempest seems to take a bigger role in the investigation, as he tries to get information from Orm. Mera, meanwhile, begins to piece together the missing pieces of what Arthur told her – and she’s not happy. After several runs, she mostly stayed off the panel for much of the story or minimized her role. It’s great to see her take center stage and show that she’s as capable as any of the main Aquamen. I was also pleasantly surprised to see Batwoman’s second guest this week as Jackson made his way to Gotham. This issue drops some major clues to the villain’s identity, eventually unmasking him in the end, but the main battle is still to come. Of course, we know that with the events of this very week, the title will soon be reduced to an Aquaman, and so it could be heading for another major retool after the July issue. If the point of this series is to set up Jackson and his supporting cast for a solo run after this, it does a damn good job.
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GeekDad received this comic for review.