Aquaman #47 // Review
“Andy,” the mysterious water-powered guy who has been the starring in Aquaman recently, comes a few steps closer to reclaiming his memories and title in this week’s Aquaman #47, written by Kelly Sue DeConnick, with pencils by Robson Rocha, inks by Daniel Enriques, and colors by Sunny Gho. Previously, Aquaman washed up on the shore of an unknown island, with no memories of who he was, or where he came from. The island’s odd residents began calling him Andy and eventually convinced him to help a young girl named Caille reconnect with her goddess mother. But the journey to do so proved to be even more dangerous than was advertised. Now, facing off against an angry goddess named Namma for the fate of the world, the island’s residents, revealed to be her children, come to help Andy stop her before it’s too late.
The problem with this entire arc, which continues throughout the concluding issue, is that Aquaman takes a backseat in his own book. That kind of story is okay every once in a while, but with the start of a new creative team, they should be showing the readers what their take on Arthur is. Instead, DeConnick focused on Arthur being a blank slate trying to remember who he was before he washed up on the island. Even that could have been interesting, if not for the fact that DeConnick decided to put the spotlight more on Caille, Namma, and the residents of the island, instead of Aquaman. Arthur has been a supporting character in his own book this arc, and it mainly comes off that way in this issue, where important moments for Aquaman are rushed at the end, presumably because so much time was spent on the other characters earlier.
The upside to this concluding chapter of DeConnick’s inaugural arc is that it seems like she is heading in a genuinely exciting direction with Arthur, by tearing him down to rebuild him. If she manages to pick up the pace and use the next arc to truly focus on Aquaman, the book could be a lot of fun. Only time will tell what DeConnick is going to do, but she has given the readers at least a couple of big reasons at the end of this chapter to stick around.
Rocha’s pencils are solid this issue, if not particularly exciting. No one is going to come back next chapter for the stellar pencils, but Rocha does honestly put in dependable work with crisp, clear storytelling, and it’s only enhanced by the work of Henriques and Gho on inks and colors. There are some odd choices made, such as when a new visual element is introduced to Arthur, and the readers aren’t even given a good look at it, but overall, you can’t make many legitimate complaints about this team’s work.
In the end, this issue, and the arc it concludes could have done more to make the readers care about DeConnick’s take on Arthur. There are new directions teased at the end of the story that should provide enough incentive for those who might be on the fence to pick up the next issue, but if the pace doesn’t pick up soon, there is no doubt that this book will be shedding readers within the coming months.