With the new Aquaman movie coming out this week, we thought it would be a good idea to put what we think are the essential arcs to read before you see the movie. Or if you just want to know more about the great King of Atlantis, here are the 6 stories that are essential:
The story of how Aquaman got his powers was a mystery until May of 1959 when this comic came out. This is an excellent story and a starting place to read about the King of Atlantis. While the writer is unknown, the illustrations were done by Ramona Fradon, who did all of the Silver Age Aquaman work. It is exceptional as well because not a lot of women were working in comics.
No one in the DC universe knew how Aquaman got his powers until this issue. Thankfully, though, he told a lucky Captain how he got them to make him stop bombing this exact place in the ocean. Why does he not want them to bomb this area? Read this issue to find out.
5. Doom from Dimension Aqua #11 (1963)
This three-part story was written by Jack Miller and illustrated by Nick Cardy. In this exciting issue, Aquaman will meet his future Queen! This story is a great read for a fun adventure. This is not only the first appearance of Mera but also Leron and Xebal.
In another world called Dimension Aqua, where Mera has fled from to come to Earth where Aquaman and Aqualad are. Mera’s kingdom was taken from her by Leron. Leron does not only want her kingdom but Mera dead. Can our superhero and Aqualad help her escape to safety?
4. Aquaman (1994)
If you are looking for a longer read Aquaman #0-46 written by Peter David is a good place to start. He wrote a lot of the character’s arcs throughout the ’90s. Fun fact in the Justice League Unlimited cartoon, this is where he got his design!
In this series, the character is a lot edgier. He was not the same superhero that we knew; he was even sporting a hook for a hand. In this series, you not only get to see the superhero differently but Aqualad and Dolphin, too. These issues will take you on a wild ride.
This issue is all about Ocen Master, written by Geoff Johns and Tony Bedard and illustrations by Geraldo Borges. You should read all of the New 52 series because it is excellent. This issue is about the Ocean Master after the war against Atlantis and the surface world that ended up flooding Gotham City, Metropolis and Boston in previous issues.
This takes part in Belle Reve Penitentiary as Orm is talking to his lawyer about how to not get the death penalty. While lawyers are talking, Orm will not speak to earth dwellers. As the issue goes on, all of the prisoners break out. As Orm heads to the ocean, what will happen before he can make it there?
The newest arc in the Justice League is Drowned Earth. The Justice League issues by Scott Snyder and illustrations by Francis Manapul. While this series takes part in multiple comics here is the reading order: Justice League #10, Aquaman #41, Titans #28, Justice League/Aquaman: Drowned Earth #1, Justice League #11 and Aquaman # 42.
Aquaman, Wonder Woman, and Firestorm are on a mission to find the graveyard of the Gods. It is a place where all killed or forgotten God’s go. The location of the graveyard is in the belly of an ancient ship sealed away by Poseidon himself. However, as they try to figure out where exactly the location is, our superhero is sent into a place called the Blood Reef, where he encounters Ocean Deities from other worlds. What do these Deities want and are they here to help or destroy Earth?
This 6 part series was written by Geoff Johns and illustrated by Ivan Reis. This story really changed the character’s arc for the better. He is known as a joke hero, however, Geoff really takes the character in a sweeping direction in this. Still, this is a must-read.