You know what though? Aquaman actually can be kind of a badass. But holy shit does he have a never-ending uphill battle in the court of public opinion.
I don’t read a lot of Aquaman, he’s not my favorite DC super hero (that title belongs to The Green Lantern), but you know what, I do typically enjoy his stuff. Back in the early 2000’s, Aquaman was a great book to turn to for some more magical and mystical stories, when a lot of the more popular Superheroes were getting bogged down in some tedious, boring shit.
For a little while there he got pretty gnarly as he lost his hand to a pirannha frenzy, replaced it with a trident/hook, then a trident that he could shoot and retract, and then finally a magic water-hand that could kill someone instantly by sucking all the water out of their body. It was kinda cool.
I’ve particularly enjoyed the take on Aquaman since DC’s “New 52” relaunch a couple of years ago. His image was permanantly damaged by his portrayal on Super Friends, and he was in serious need of a “reboot” so to speak. They clarified a lot of his powers, and un-cheesified most of them. Also gone now is his weakness to dry land (or more specifically, the absence of water). But most of all, I liked that they didn’t skirt around the issue that Aquaman is the butt of the superhero universe’s jokes. Nobody takes him seriously, and that’s part of what he has to contend with as he decides to give up his throne and go back to guarding the coast as a hero.
And he most certainly looks like a badass in Injustice. I’m on board with whatever NetherRealm does. With the Mortal Kombat reboot they gave us a couple years back, they showed us they not only know how to make a great fighting game, but also infuse it with some pretty enjoyable story. I think Injustic will deliver.
Back when Midway did the Mortal Kombat vs DC Universe crossover, they couldn’t do fatalities due to the licensed DC characters. And that’s okay (albeit weird to see MK characters you can’t dismember), but they didn’t replace them with any other “wow” factor. So while I didn’t hate MK vs DCU, I also didn’t feel like it delivered an experience that really mattered.
I think NetherRealm has solved the issue with some of the jaw-dropping special movies in Injustice. Who needs to tear someone’s spine out when you can have Superman uppercut your opponent into orbit, and them knock his ass back to Earth. Or, you know… this:
(It makes NO sense that he just summons the ocean for a few seconds, but fuck it. It’s awesome anyway.)