Aquaman (1994) #71
Title: To Enter the Lost World...
Cover Title: Aquaman Against The Warlord?!
Cover Date: September 2000
Writer: Dan Jurgens
Pencils: Steve Epting
Inks: Norm Rapmund
Colors: Digital Chameleon
Lettering: John Workman
Editor: Tony Bedard
Cover: Mike Kaluta
Cover Price: $2.50
Release Date: 19 July 2000
Order Code: MAY00 0128
While Garth is being domestic with Dolphin and Ian, he notices a mystical disturbance. He interrupts a meeting between Arthur and the rather rude American Ambassador to report it. Aquaman decides to leave Garth in charge of the city while he investigates the problem himself. With Mera along, for kicks.
When Mera and Aquaman approach the anomaly, they are sucked into a giant whirlpool, and apparently transported into the past. They run into Travis Morgan, better known as The Warlord, and join him as he goes up against the Ch'rin.
Aquaman versus Warlord. What more do you want? Seriously, this is a nice cover focusing on the faces of the characters, and it shows the intensity of both while contrasting their methods.
This story would no doubt be even more interesting to me if I knew anything at all about Warlord. As it is, the first few pages kept me guessing. I didn't know the characters, and in some ways didn't really care. The gist came through well enough, though. A wizard set up a summons, and it wasn't hard to guess who would answer.
Dolphin is so out of character she's a sad parody of some other character or something. I mean, "Lunchy-Wunchy"?!?? Blah. It's enough to make you sick.
Man, Aquaman's kingly costume is great. Black pants with a muted orange tunic over golden scalemail and a green cape to set it all off nicely. Hmmm, kind of reminds me of the Kingdom Come Aquaman. I still say the shell headband has got to go.
The American Ambassador called Aquaman the "Stalin of the Sea". I wonder if that was during the Cerdian incident, or during the tourist days, or some other time. Vulko plays his role to the hilt here, manipulating for Aquaman instead of against him, and I like it. Oh, come on, you know Vulko is my favorite character, right?
Aquaman and Tempest joke like old times, with Aquaman calling Tempest "Tadpole" even. Then Aquaman comes perhaps the closest he ever will to apologizing for the years of abuse he heaped on Garth by telling him not to make the same mistakes he did. While that could be taken as Aquaman talking about Artie Jr, Aqualad was also a son that he neglected at times. Also, the bit right after that, where Aquaman gives Garth control of the city, implies something to me also. Maybe I'm reading too much into is, but I like what I see on that page.
Mera actually uses her powers! And Aquaman confuses Travis Morgan for Oliver Queen. All very interesting. And it's so nice to have solid art on this book. Back to the regular art team this issue, and they don't disappoint.
A nice start to a story.