Silver Age Aquaman
|Adventure Comics #229
|Tom Curry and Atlanna
|Topo, Aqualad, Quisp, Cal Durham, Aquagirl
|Black Manta, Ocean Master
|Super Strength, Ability to breathe underwater, Telepathy, Dominion over sea life
|Cannot remain out of water more than about one hour
The Silver Age Aquaman reveals his history first to a Navy Commander testing atomic depth bombs near the site of Atlantis. In Adventure Comics #260 he tells the commander:
- My father, Tom Curry, an ex-sailor, lived a solitary existence as a lighthouse-keeper! One evening, while a hurricane raged over sea and land...
Tom spots a girl clinging to a raft in the middle of the storm.
- My father couldn't believe his eyes! The storm struck repeatedly at the frail raft and its passenger, but failed to separate them...
Tom is stunned that the girl is unharmed despite the pounding waves.
- When the raft was driven onto the island, my father left his lighthouse and braved the waves that broke over the island to rescue the girl!
She tells him her name is Atlanna, and that she's glad to be with him.
- It was love at first sight! Two weeks later, they were married! A year later, I was born, and they named me Arthur! But for all the love between my parents, there was something strangely different about my mother...
The story continues, describing young Arthur discovering his powers, much to the disbelief of his father. On her deathbed, Atlanna reveals her past.
- I come from Atlantis, a continent that sank into the sea ages ago! Our people had to adapt to a watery existence! We gradually became like fish... capable of all underwater feats!
After her death, Tom pushes Arthur to develop his skills and become King of the Sea, and Arthur grows into a strong and intelligent young man. Then his father dies and is buried at sea.
While the Commander is flattered to hear Aquaman's origin, he still doesn't understand why Aquaman is telling him all this, until Aquaman whispers one last secret. Then the tests are moved to be conducted elsewhere. And Aquaman goes down to look at Atlantis, the home of his mother, that would have been destroyed by the tests. A last thought crosses Aquaman's mind looking at the city:
- Perhaps, some day... I will return here! Who knows?
Of course, he does later in the Silver Age.
The Silver Age Aquaman is exceedingly strong and fast, controls sea life, and battles evil across the sea. He is a founding member of the Justice League, and has many allies. His most common friends are Topo, Aqualad, Quisp, and his wife Mera. Eventually he is elected king of Atlantis after the previous king dies.
The Silver Age Aquaman has a one-hour limit for how long he can remain out of water. This weakness is well-known by his enemies.
Aquaman's Silver Age unofficially starts with the introduction of Topo in Adventure Comics #229, as Topo is the first recurring Silver Age character in Aquaman's universe. It ends in 1989, with the introduction of a new origin for Aquaman in The Legend of Aquaman.