Written by Jeff Parker
Art by Paul Pelletier, Netho Diaz
Published by DC Comics
Release Date: December 31, 2013
The seas have a new king….long live Jeff Parker, and may his reign with Paul Pelletier be as strong as this opening issue.
When a new writer takes the helm, there is an immediate worry for fans that the tone will shift dramatically. As a fan of the work of Geoff Johns on Aquaman I can happily report that all the aspects that worked well in Johns’ run are still here in Aquaman #26. Parker continues to put the politics and surface world/Atlantis tensions at the forefront of Arthur’s conflicts, and it continues to work wonders. Parker deftly weaves political aspects into a story with a fair amount of action, leading to a very satisfying story. Parker’s trademark humour makes appearances throughout Aquaman #26, making it a fully rounded comic that has a little bit of everything. We’ve got drama, action, humour, suspense and more in this one, and Parker really has a story that is just a blast to read. More so than during Johns’ run, there is a spark of fun in these pages that gives Aquaman a lot of life, and me a lot of hope for Parker’s run. Long time readers will feel at home, but this is also a solid jumping on point for anyone looking for a relatively contained DC book with an influx of energy and life. What Parker brings to Aquaman is very similar to what readers have seen Greg Pak bring to Action Comics, and the result is a lot more energy in the DCU.
Paul Pelletier’s art is solid throughout the issue, and is a strong part of the consistent feel of this book during the transition between writers. His Aquaman is strong, but with a palpable energy and a spark in his eyes that matches the story Parker is writing very well. His style suits the feel of the book very well, and Aquaman continues to be easy on the eyes for the most part. Pelletier is joined by Netho Diaz in this issue, who does his best to match Pelletier’s style, but the differences do affect flow in places. The net effect is still a well penciled issue, though I do hope to see just Parker & Pelletier working together in the future.
Aquaman #26 is a strong jumping on point and Parker’s initial Aqua-offering gives a good, energetic shot in the arm to this title. It was one of the best in the DCU under the reign of Geoff Johns, and there is no indication in this issue that the quality of Aquaman is going to slip at all under Parker & Pelletier’s watch. Justice League fans, or anyone who has been enjoying Action Comics by Greg Pak will be right at home with this comic, and I highly recommend giving the book a shot. My guess is you’ll be pleasantly surprised, and that Aquaman will be a mainstay in your pull going forward.
The Verdict: 8.5/10