Comic Review: Aquaman/Justice League: Drowned Earth Special #1 (DC Comics)

Everything has lead up to this! As the last of the Justice League fend off the strange tides of the Ocean Lord’s, Black Manta now imbued with Aquaman’s powers makes […]

Everything has lead up to this! As the last of the Justice League fend off the strange tides of the Ocean Lord’s, Black Manta now imbued with Aquaman’s powers makes his final move and releases the Death Kraken to take down the last of the League!

Aquaman and Wonder Woman race against time as they make their way to save their uninfected friends from the unearthly waters that plague earth!

Can Aquaman and Wonder Woman make in time to stop the Death Kraken? Can the Justice League survive before turning into ocean monsters? Will Aquaman survive his final battle with the Ocean Lord’s? Or will he and the league fail to save all life on Earth?

This issue is jam-packed with over 39 pages of story that provides enough story, pace, and action. So far this event has been nothing but action-packed fun! Throughout most of the Drowned Earth event, Tynion and Snyder added a new layer to Aquaman’s mythos which will chart new territory for the character for years to come. Despite minor concerns of whether the story was gonna be executed with a satisfying conclusion, Snyder manages to wrap things up with a solid conclusion that will provide readers a glimpse of what is to come. I have to say that I really enjoyed how this issue began and ended, with the characters scattered, battered and desperate yet trudging through adversity to achieve victory no matter how bad things looked.

What I’ve enjoyed so much is seeing Aquaman, Mera and Manta take center stage from the start of this event all the way to this issues conclusion. It sounds redundant that I mention that, but I feel that it’s worth mentioning, because this could have easily been a Superman and Batman show. I love Supes and Bats, but it would have been terrible if Snyder fell into that sort of trap that most writers tends to fall into any time they are writing a book such as this. I enjoyed that Aquaman’s approach to stop the Ocean Lord’s was through a form of pacifism, of acknowledging the wrongs that Poseidon caused and trying to fix that by giving the Ocean Lord’s what they deserved. That was a decision that was pretty surprising because I didn’t imagine for Aquaman to approach things that way and thankfully, it felt earned rather than forced after the revelations that occurred in Justice League issue 12. I loved the way Snyder handled Black Manta who continued to be a petty individual that can never look past his vendetta, failing to see the bigger picture. And the ramifications of his actions and realizing the cost of it made it satisfying to see within this issue.

There are a ton of other factors that makes this issue great, but it would be spoilers, so I’ll avoid that for your benefit. One thing I will complain about is how confusing the order of titles can be at times. I feel that this could have been within the title of Justice League in general rather than splitting down to just Justice League/Aquaman#1, Justice League 10, 11, 12, Aquaman/ Justice League #1. It gets a little confusing and can confuse fans who want to buy an issue without getting a little confused with the titles names being switched around at times. That is my only gripe with the issue yet regardless of the mix up of title names etc, this was an enjoyable issue.

Speaking of enjoyable, what a way to wrap up this event by having Francis Manapul, Howard Porter, and Scott Godlewski collectively handle the art duties of this issue and executing it with greatness. It’s hard to say who’s art I enjoyed the most in this issue, and I’d lean a bit more to Porter’s just because he drew a whole ton of action in this issue. Accompanied with the art is Manapul and Hi-Fi’s colors which do exactly what it needed to, which is to make the pages exude energy and excitement. Everyone in this issue along with Tom Napolitano’s lettering all meshed so well together and succeed in making this a satisfyingly jam-packed conclusion. I definitely recommend adding this issue to your pull list folks! Snyder and company provide readers with solid fun and action that make this 39-page issue worth the $4.99 price tag. Definitely pick this issue up for new comic Wednesday!

Anthony Andujar Jr.

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