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Overview/Review (#39)

Dave's Timed Release Capsules and Awards

22 October 1997

Aquaman #39: A lame character is made interesting, and the art's pretty good. Recommended. $1.95/$2.75Cn

"Assault And Paternity" Award to Aquaman #39

Dave's DC Rant: Aquaman #39

"Parallel Process"

Cover of Aquaman #39

Aquaman "Bad Relations": The weird thing about this issue is that the main story feels like it's referring back to events in actual comics, but as far as I know, both Rhombus and Deep Blue are original to this series. On the bad side, it means feeling like you're missing something. On the good side, it means the necessary exposition is told in a more concise recap form, leaving it to the readers to fill in the gaps and leaving more time to tell the story at hand. Implied backstory like this has been used effectively in other comics (notably Astro City), and I think it works pretty well this time too, because I do want to know more about Rhombus, despite his somewhat lame name and dubious connection to the whole sea-based thing. From what we do get, it seems he was a hero originally, then went insane either as a result of his powers, or of being thrown over by Tsunami (or a combination of both). And while he may be demented, he may very well be Deep Blue's father as he claims...Tsunami herself doesn't seem totally sure. And, of course, Atlan's all mixed up in this.

This, by the way, is how Wolverine got so popular. Not so much because he was that inspired of a character, but because his backstory gave just enough interesting hints that people kept reading to find out more. Of course, Wolverine's totally backfired by this point and Rhombus is never going to attain that level of popularity (if only because as a recurring villain he's not gonna be in every issue), but it's the same type of thing.

by Dave Van Domelen