Once and for all -on the landmark 375th post here, on aqua musings- we shall elucidate why we are aqua-maniacs! For, given the poor treatment the character has received, the inept use of his potential by the DC PTB SOBs, the consequent poor track record and extremely long list of missed opportunities of making a cultural impact upon pop culture and mass media of true significance (one that would have affected our eco-awareness or even given birth to it) - we could have lost interest a long time ago. Most other aficionados have, it would appear. And yet, we remain... Why? We can explain why...
Any thoughts of this patronage having anything at all to do with the fact that ol' AQ appears to have benefited -especially in recent years- of some kind of sponsorship from the damnable batty one must NEVER BE INVOKED IN ANY WAY WHATSOEVER. For, in truth, we like AQ truly IN SPITE of his association with the batty one, with a whole bunch of other sorry excuses for characters, creators and assorted didiots (!) AND, above all, in spite of his ongoing association with the DC PTB SOBs, inept didiots that they are that actually genuinely believe that a man dressed up in a bat suit could be more efficient than a classic hero - whether he roams the seas as Ulysses/Odysseus or overacts it like Hercules used to be typecast into doing - or simply hails from a far more exotic place than grimy urban landscape/wasteland polluted areas...
that they ditched this completely (as usual)
and started on some DC version of an Ultimate alternate
culminating with killing her in the sad process!
We must admit, though, that we were deeply irked at the thought that it might be because of some mythological appeal that the character might have had -for this is merely a favorite fictional character of ours here, not a case of modern idolatry, at all...! It is true that, through his links to the fabled myth of Atlantis and certainly through his dalliance with the exquisite queen of the seas, Mera, AQ has attained an aura of near-epic proportions that rivals now -especially after recent events, in the Brightest Day/Blackest Night fiasco, for example- the true classical greats such as Gilgamesh, Orpheus and Ulysses/Odysseus... Still - he remains stuck in the damnable sub-genre of "superheroics" that has sunk so many great "concept-heroes" before him and continues to be a source of ridicule for the alleged giants of the genre; the batty one and soupesy, to name but two of the clowns... Being a king with ties to Atlantis seems, alas, NOT TO BE ENOUGH - and it always appears to be ultimately undone by AQ's association with that beleaguered bunch of pals of his as well as his association with the DC PTB SOBs who are, let,s face it, just like the millions and millions of surface-dwelling DC fanboys that have NO CLUE as to the true value of a SEA HERO!
they are just didiots, so, do not be impressed.
Speaking of SEA HEROES... The factor that he matches up quite favorably with all of his counterparts in similar fictional settings that rival his own "DCU" is certainly cool, yes - but, ultimately, who really cares if AQUAMAN rates much higher than MERMAN, SEADRAGON, GILLMAN THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON, NAMOR THE SUB-MARINER, SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS' MERMAID-MAN and even his futuristic self AQUAMAN ONE MILLION as well as countless others...?!? It is not a true factor at all, no...
The recent turns of events - be it in cartoons, where AQ turned into an Hercules of mirth amidst the League; on television where a sub-par actor like Alan Ritchson took over portraying him alongside a butchy Lois Lane, a softy Soupesy and a tarty thespian representing a sad depiction of what the sea queen should be; and the mind-numbing events in the comic-bookies, which saw AQ returning as a Black Lantern/zombie before he got better while Mera was momentarily turned into a blood-spewing Red Lantern rather than a blood-spattered bride - an improvement, some sick minds would say, but still not quite... Well, quite frankly, even if all these events have put AQ & M back in the spotlight in a big way, spawning a flurry of new figures of both characters, various chances of more appearances and continued careers in the wretched DCU - all it really does for the thinking man type of fan and luminous observer is LONG FOR THE GOOD OL' DAYS ALL THE MORE... For a temporary twist towards innocence, fun and mere action is always amusing; but to have it be semi-permanent and to the detriment of any genuine merit is simply too childish! Likewise, the twists and turns on the four-color plane of existence appear to be without purpose - for, after all the gruesome and shocking stuff, it's back to the status quo?!? That is called fooling around with your audience.
but this is ridiculous:
The return of the king, hence, although a fine thing in and by itself, is therefore NOT the reason why we are aquaficionados here - not in these parts of the Seven Seas baby, nope! In passing, we would be remiss if we did not decry the double-faced, totally profiteering attitude displayed by the DC PTB SOBs and assorted didiots from DC who, now, are all for AQ's return to prominence and a strong push is therefore given to the character they all wanted to do away with - a character Loeb treated like a wetrat (to quote someone) as he had him dressed up like Donald Duck to do battle, in the midst of a merchandising frenzy that was seeing Aquaman figures and sculptures multiply like tadpoles. A character that was deemed to be both expendable as replaceable, as any other costumed dude that could be promptly disposed of just as they found somebody else to simply fill up that costume again. The problem here is that AQ is NOT a masked hero at all! If sidekicks can come and go to fill up the shoes, boots, tights, roles and whatever elses of their mentors, donning the masks of the battys, the flashes, the wannabee robin hoods and such - AQ's title, rank, vital role and belt cannot just go to any pretender or heir apparent here! It took way too damn long for the DC PTB SOBs to realize this basic fact - and that is purely pathetic. But we are digressing now - again...
Great re-casting, WB!
Or reassigning, really...
We would rather look at the promise of seeing the lost pilot episode of the old Mercy Reef project being picked up again than celebrate a return to ongoing comic-bookie activities - once Smallville finally bites the dust and the actor recast as Green Arrow of all people gets back into the waves! But it is a long shot, for sure... And even if such a thing was to occur, we would never encourage anyone and their entourage to support such an endeavour. We would not even dream of it, not at this stage, no. For it would be coming way too late and would be too little as well: one has but to look back to be reminded of all the appropriate times to have done this before, and it wasn't done, even when an entire and impressive pilot episode was in the can! And they just let the tuna go to waste... Truly, all of it conjures up nothing but a torrent of mixed emotions here; and nothing much more than a call to boycott the goods from its direct current source, as it is...! For the direct currents were never doing it right anyway - or at the right time anyhow. And when they had something great finally initiated - such as Mercy Reef - it was shot in the fins with a harpoon gun (gah!)
No, truly, we are AQ supporters here because, just like every batty fan out there sincerely believes *he* could be THE battyman, we KNOW we are AQUA ourselves! Yup - we can have no doubt on our minds; our bodies are a far higher percentage of water than they are made of anything else! Plus - we wear the aqua hoody with pride! Batty ones cannot have pride anymore; not after so many films featuring their favored one failing at what they aimed to achieve most of all: be significant. And Lord Knows they tried so hard to achieve that and only that... Nolan dreamt of it - he went with Inception to finally achieve it! Batty is a spectacle - but it is meaningless in the end. While being like AQ is more and more significant in today's world: ecology, environmental concerns, the preservation of endangered species (especially sea mammals - and man) is of the utmost priority - and so it should be even for the useless urbanite or the remotest redneck there is.
Death has lost any meaning...
And speaking of ecology, pollution and the survival of the seas, the return from the dead of our dear sea king serves as a certain allegory for the hoped-for return to form of the oceans that are always on the brink of annihilation! It is as good as any make-believe source of hope that we basically NEED just in order to keep going on... The day is not so far off that we will no longer have -or have substantially less than we are accustomed to have of- canned tuna, salmon, sardines and our personal favorite here at aqua musings - mackerel. The seas and, especially, its many denizens, can only take so much. Hope is, therefore, essential for the near-future; HOPE, IN WHATEVER FORM IT CAN TAKE. AQ symbolizes that hope, in a way; that he came back from the brink the way that he did sure is inspiring. Never mind the fact that a dozen other super-types came back in the same exact fashion. The fact is, virtually everyone in the DCU came back from the brink! Everyone except the batty one himself who, being such a weakling, could only survive a temporary crippling - never a successful murder attempt. But we are digressing now - once again...
as Servants of The Lord!
Think about it...!
Ultimately, we like AQ so much for the simple fact that he is, at times, Christ-like figure material.
As sacrilegious as that may sound, it is the case indeed. Rest assured though that we here do not condone the similar discussions on the subject seen on other sites! But truly now - it should not be sacrilegious at all since we are all encouraged to see Christ in our brethren - if we are True Christians, that is!
Over the years, the character of AQ has endured so much more than any other character in his genre; and he is still standing. That feat has garnered him comparisons with the character of Luke Skywalker, while Superman got the supreme nod of being compared to Christ, since soupesy got to come back from the great beyond first, before Hal Jordan, before Adam Warlock, before Wonder Woman, before Aquaman and the divine dozen depicted above as well... Soon, every dead character will be back to life, making the grim reaper a totally ineffective force in the realm of fiction, which is a great allegorical reference to the triumph over death that Christ Is. Any resurrected character could qualify as "Christ-like" therefore. But in truth of matter, it is AQ that is more Christ-like due to the fact that he has Atlanteans that follow him; a fact that some writers picked up on, all-too briefly, at some point during AQ's saga... And we won't even go into the specific aqua-traits that the King of the Seven Seas shares with The King of Kings! Both have undeniable bonds to water and fish - duh. Everybody knows that! But none of that is all that important, in truth. For if everyone knows that, not everyone knows this...
The most important and decisive factor which makes old AQ so unique is that there is an angel referred to in ancient Solomonic rites as... AQUA. AQUA being a holy name from the nomina barbara, Aquachai -or simply aqua- which was used in Solomonic rites in order to command demons and cast them out. Mathers' The Greater Key Of Solomon makes this reference; as well as Davidson's Dictionary of Angels. Is there anything more divine in nature and, therefore, more comparable to Christ than an angel? And so, if super-heroes are allegories for protective guardian angels less and less people believe in, in this increasingly secular world of ours (a world polluted in so many ways, indeed) - we can safely say that AQ is the most likable of these! No temper, à la wolverine. No potential to become a menace rather than a force for good, à la hulk. No psychopathic tendencies, à la Batty. Au contraire - true devotion to his cause and self-sacrificial tendencies even; all Christ-like traits. If you could want a super-hero to be real, you would be a fool to choose someone else over AQ; especially if you are caught in a Perfect Storm, a sinking ship or a submarine threatening to go kablooey. Not to mention the odd time where you could become dinner to any number of sea creatures... Protection from all this, on top of safekeeping from the occasional mugger, world conqueror type or typhoon, hurricane or strong thunder storm, you could expect from this guy - or from a guardian angel.
The angel AQUA, perhaps...! (Or Aquachai. Or Aquariel.)
Doubtful that Mort Weisinger and Paul Norris knew about this Solomonic angel when they created the character-concept they baptized "AQUAMAN".
They still made good.
And that is why we are aquaficionados, deep down, really.
Having elaborated upon all this here, I must precise at this conjuncture that do not condone nor encourage anyone building a shrine to this character - but someone already did.
Isn't that aqua-musing now, hmm...?