I think it is kind of hard to make Aquaman a cool character. I’ve always considered him a bit forgettable, and when he disappeared after “Our Worlds at War” oh so many years ago I barely noticed. That being said… Emperor Aquaman is one hell of a story.

In this Flashpoint tie-in, Aquaman is tortured, conflicted and most of all hell-bent on protecting Atlantis from the surface world and the Amazons. In some of the other  Flashpoint books we’ve caught glimpses of why he is Emperor Aquaman, now we are getting a glimpse into not only why, but how he managed to sink half of Western Europe.

I like Tony Bernard’s writing in general and this book is no exception. Aside from the above mentioned attributes, he writes a brutal and vicious ruler of the sea. Ardian Syaf’s character design and artwork are second to none, and seeing the dead Europeans floating at the bottom of the sea is terrifying and heartbreaking all at the same time.

Speaking of terrifying, Syaf’s Ocean Master (Aquaman’s brother Prince Orm), is about as cool as the character has ever looked. I’m hoping for some treachery from him in the next 2 issues or a least before the end of Flashpoint.

Mera is dead. Beheaded by Wonder Woman as Aquaman was set to make a potential treaty with a surface country. Because of Mera’s assassination, Aquaman’s thirst for vengeance against the Amazons is at a fever pitch. Emperor Aquaman ended issue #1 with a bit of a cliffhanger with the promise of more carnage to come against the surface and New Themiscara.

I started this book not thinking much of Aquaman, and ended with a renewed interest in where this Flashpoint villain will go. All out war between the world’s most fiercest warriors above and below the sea? What more can a fanboy ask for! This is a Flashpoint tie-in that needs to be added to your pull-list until the end of DC Comics big summer event.

One more thing… I know there are a lot of Flashpoint tie-ins, but if you are a collector with each #1 you will receive a pin with the purchase of the book. You can see what the different pins will look like for each tie-in below.