Aqua man #16
Review by Paul Bowler
As the Justice League battled valiantly to defend Boston from Ocean Master and his forces, not even the intervention of Aquaman could prevent Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman being captured and imprisoned inside pods at the bottom of the ocean. Aquaman breaks free from his pod next to Batman’s and quickly realizes they have been left near the Mid-Atlantic trench to fed to the amphibious creatures that dwell there. Batman sets up a subsonic emitter inside his pod to help Aquaman find the temple in the trench so they can rescue Superman and Wonder Woman.
Back on dry land Professor Shin and Vulko are trying to find a way to stop Ocean Master, while Cyborg sacrifices another piece of his humanity with an upgrade that will allow him to function underwater and rescue the Justice League. While Cyborg’s father begins the operation the heroes that were recruited to help the Justice League are managing to hold the line against Atlantis and Ocean Master.
Soon the identity of who really instigated the war between Ocean Master and the surface world is finally revealed, someone who not only managed to steal the Scepter of Atlantis, but also used Black Manta as part of his grand designs.
Aquaman #16 sees writer Geoff Johns deftly handling the multiple plots strands that come together in this fourth instalment of Throne of Atlantis. The scenes were Cyborg has to give up his remaining lung are particularly heart wrenching, showing just what he is prepared to go through to save his team mates. The action in the dark waters of the Mid-Atlantic trench are fraught with tense moments as Batman and Aquaman explore the temple, finding some strange Atlantean hieroglyphics on the walls that provide some vital clues, before being overrun by the trench creatures as they try and free Superman and Wonder Woman from their pods – fortunately Cyborg and Mera arrive in time to help.
The art by Paul Pelletier is outstanding; the underwater sections are really spectacular, as are the scenes depicting the reserve members of the Justice League fighting to save Boston. We get to see some of this new team in action: with Firestorm, Hawkman, and Black Canary being just a few of the heroes battling for their lives against Atlantis.
Aquaman #16 is one of the best issues yet; it’s packed with jaw dropping action and has a sensational reveal at the end. Throne of Atlantis has been a terrific crossover event and I’m really looking forward to seeing how this storyline concludes.