Three teams of heroes come closer to meeting in the middle, and it’s all setting the stage for the next landmark issue. Keep reading for a review of Aquaman #29.
Warning: some spoilers below, though I’m trying not to give away anything too important. Still, if you’d like to go read this issue first and then come back here to tell me about it, I won’t mind.
Stjepan Šejić’s art is beautiful as always, though there’s a lot of dark purple shading and lighting in this issue. (I like it better with bright golds and whites and blues, but that’s just personal preference, the art is still lovely.) The good guys and girls all look sexy, the fight scenes are dynamic, and any kind of light effects (laser blasts, or glowing ghosts) are really nicely done.
But as long as I’m speaking from personal preference, I would’ve liked Mera, Ondine, and Dolphin to have had a more active role this issue: Mera fights alongside Garth but he’s making all the decisions, and Ondine doesn’t get to do any cool stabby-stabby stuff like in previous issues, she’s mostly tagging along with Vulko and his dead friend (the expression on her face while Vulko and the half-rotting corpse talk about cheating at board games is pretty awesome.)
Dolphin did have a cool moment with Aquaman, in a conversation without words, where she points out that when it comes to being king and saving Atlantis, he’s gone a little all-or-nothing in his thinking. But she was acting as his cheerleader, trying to convince Arthur that he needed to act. Not that that’s a bad thing, someone needed to shake him out of this sulk fit he’d gotten into. But I wish we’d seen her kick a little more ass this issue, if I’m being honest.
HOWEVER. This title has a really good track record in the last few issues for tough-as-nails women, and I’m not going to insist that all the women do all the things every issue, especially when, if you get right down to it, the guys weren’t doing a whole lot this issue either.
Story wise, it felt a little like this issue’s main goal was to build up tension for issue 30. Ondine and Vulko are closer to finding the weapon that will bring down the Crown of Thorns, Dolphin and Aquaman are getting geared up to save Atlantis, and Mera and Garth are closer to reaching the city, but (spoilers) none of those things have happened yet. All three storylines should converge next issue, which should be dramatic as all get out, but in the mean time this is a quieter, bridge-the-distance kind of story.