Aquaman’s writer, Geoff Johns, has been reinventing his title character since issue one, and it’s the array of storytelling techniques that he uses that’s made it work. In issue #13, we’re treated to another engrossing issue of Aquaman, with Arthur and his team facing off against not only Black Manta, but his shady puppeteer.
From a gripping segue to open the book to the emotional tug-of-war making up the meat of the story, Johns has you by the lapels on every page. Mera’s conversation with Arthur hearkens back to the very first issue, providing a satisfying conclusion to Johns’ redefinition of the Atlantean superhero. With his character arc complete, the motivations for Arthur’s actions later in the issue are much more believable and affecting. Perhaps more important, the series is nicely primed to leverage Arthur’s relationship to Mera and to explore the remainder of his platonic relationships. If it weren’t for the feeling that Prisoner-of-War’s sequence was left dangling a bit, it would be hard to find any fault with this script at all.