JD reviews AQUAMAN 1!

Title: Aquaman #1
Writer: Geoff Johns
Penciler: Ivan Reis
Inker: Joe Prado
Publisher: DC Comics
Reviewed by Johnny Destructo

Interior, Night. 16 Year Old Johnny Destructo is laying on his bed, reading some comics and blaring either Public Enemy or Circus Lupus. A mysterious, geeky figure vrrrps into the room. “JD! I’m YOU! You from the future! The year 2011! I’ve come back in time to see your face when I tell you that I write for AICN, and this week, I hated a Frank Miller book and loved an Aquaman book!”

Young Johnny, unphased, replies: “Balderdash! I don’t believe you for a second. Frank Miller is amazing and Aquaman is lame. I’ll never like Aquaman! I’ll never be like you, old man! And waitaminnut. All the cool stuff you could have time-traveled to see, and you came back in time just to tell me that? Man. What a loser.”

Old Johnny, filled with shame, chokes out “I …but…SHUT UP! At least future you has had sex! With a woman!”, and with that, sobbing, vrrrps back to the future.

Geez o man, teenagers are jerks. But despite 16 year old me’s inability to comprehend it, I did, indeed love Aquaman #1. But JD, you might say. I’ve known you since you were knee-high to a grasshopper, and you’ve always hated Aquaman. And you would be right, nameless old friend that I’ve never met, I HAVE always hated Aquaman. Never once have I found him interesting or engaging as a character. I was almost interested with the whole Sub-Diego thing awhile back, when they sank all of San Diego, but within 2 issues, I was gone again. Strangely, though, Johns’ does something here that works: He brings him into OUR world for just a little bit. Not only is the character considered by many to be a laughing stock in our real world, Geoff has even the DC populace tease and taunt WaterFella right to his face! It’s pretty blatant and just damn RUDE, and even the COPS join in, but there’s something endearing about seeing Arthur deal with this sort of thing. It certainly makes him more human and relatable.

Arthur thwarts a bank robber get-away, he stops into a joint for a bite to eat, he talks, he makes a decision and a new threat is introduced. In retrospect, not much actually “happens” in this issue, but it certainly didn’t feel that way when I was reading it. It’s (ahem) packed to the gills. Not only did I enjoy every word bubble, but …

I poured over every glorious panel of artwork. Ivan Reis may be one of my top ten comic artists working right now. Alan Davis meets Neal Adams meets Mark Bright, with a little something special tossed in. He doesn’t over-do it with extraneous line work (see David Finch), and it isn’t what I would call “flashy”, unless you consider solid story-telling, dynamic compositions and a mastery over anatomy and backgrounds “flashy.” Even if I didn’t care for the story or words, I would probably still buy this issue as a “how-to” art book.

But dammit, I don’t care what anyone says, not even Young JD, I just might love Aquaman! Seriously though, don’t tell anyone.

JD can be found hosting the PopTards Podcast, drawing a weekly webcomic, discussing movies, comics and other flimflam over at www.poptardsgo.com, graphically designing/illustrating/inking for a living, and Booking his Face off at http://www.facebook.com/jaydotdeedot. Follow his twitter @poptardsgo. His talkback name is PopTard_JD

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8 Comments to “JD reviews AQUAMAN 1!”

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  1. Joe Wilson says:

    Young Jd may also ask you … “what the fuck is the Internet?”

  2. jaydee says:

    hhahah yeah there were a TON of different things I wanted to write there, but had to pick one

  3. Bobby Kulb says:

    You should’ve brought back a pair of Marty McFly Limited Edition 2015 Nikes- but explained that they were really made in 2011- and blown your own mind.

  4. Mark Mackner says:

    16 year old you also would’ve been confused by future you calling him “JD”. That didn’t come along until quite a bit later. You can’t even keep up with your OWN continuity, man! Do I get a No-Prize?

  5. jaydee says:

    Truth be told…I think 16 year old would high-five the shit out of me.

    Writing for AICN. Podcasting. Meeting creators. My Vespa. My girlfriend. My artistic ability. My Wacom monitor. My iPhone. Having fun acting in your movies.

    Not so much the Cancer or certain ex-girlfriends, but still.

    And you bet buddy, your no-prize is in the mail!

  6. Mark Mackner says:

    You replied to my snarkitude with dignity and aplomb. Kudos! I’m glad you’re having fun acting in the films. It really shows. You’re a natural. seriously. You bring so much energy to every scene, and it just makes everyone around you better because they try to keep up with your dizzyingly hilarious pace. Yup. I’m high. But I agree, 16-year old you would totally idolize you.

  7. jaydee says:

    How DARE you post on my site while under the influence! You’re a terrible role-model…for me. Next thing you know I’ll be smoking the drugs and having the sex and …stealing ..old…ladies.
    I’m sleepy.

    And thanks! You’re correct, I AM pretty great.

    PS. Email me the script for your school project! DO IT NOW.

  8. FlanelGuy says:

    So yes, I’m behind since I just got my issues in the mail…no thanks to stupid UPS, but I did enjoy this issue.

    Even with very little happening, it was exactly what needed to be done to get this character started. Establish what Aquaman can do. Establish he’s not a fan favorite, a joke, laughing stock, etc. Though, over the years, after the days of orange spandex, I don’t see why he wasn’t a bad ass. The dude did have a hook for hand. Even in the JLA cartoon, he was a bad ass, but for whatever reason, people can’t get images of the guy with a short yellow hair cut and Orange get up riding a dolphin. But hey, Aquaman isn’t one of those super heroes kids say they would love to be. Who wants to swim fast or communicate with fish?

    Anyway, I could not be more excited to see where this goes. Granted, different from most number ones whether it’s the DCnU or comics in general, it was still a fun read.

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