Out of all the villain books I read this week, Black Manta was by far my favorite. Not because it was the best written or best drawn (the book does just fine on both those fronts regardless) nor is it because it made me see an old character in a different way or did something radically different. It’s my favorite because it’s a new story.
For the past two weeks I’ve been bombarded with back stories, origins, and any combination in-between. I’ve been accosted by exposition and captions and hamfisted dialogue that are trying to explain something but end up confusing me. What I really wanted from Villains Month was new stories. I wanted to see Brainiac culling new worlds. I wanted to see Darkseid planning his next attack or dealing with the as yet introduced New Gods. I wanted to see a character truly take over a book and not spend 20 something pages talking about why there in there in the first place. Thankfully Black Manta delivers, though not as well as I’d hoped.
I was really curious about this book because of his brief cameos in Forever Evil. I had no idea where his character would do in this new world as Amanda Waller puts it, “What happens when you do kill Aquaman?” Apparently the answer is get just to redirect that anger onto the Justice Society for (just like Aquaman) accidentally messing with his father. So new happens other than swapping focus for his misguided anger. There was a lot more than could have done with this character and I was disappointed that they decided to keep him as a one trick pony.
Seriously, this guy has issues. Made for a fun read but he really needs to get over himself.
Final Verdict: Whatever happened to forgive and forget?