Today’s Super Comic: Aquaman #46 (1998)

Aquaman46How talented a writer is Peter David? He made Aquaman into a formidable, compelling character. Under David’s watch, Aquaman never felt like a joke, even though his series retained plenty of humor. (You can always count on Peter David to bring a strong sense of humor to his books.) Aquaman is king of the seas—ruler of the majority of the planet—and these storylines never forgot that.

This issue, #46, marked the end of David’s run on Aquaman, and it’s a solid finale to the best string of issues Talks-To-Fish-Man ever had. For the final story, Aquaman partakes in a classic trope—going to Hades. He does so to rescue his enemy Poseidon, whose son Triton is causing troubles in Aquaman’s home Poseidonis.

But getting to Hades…yes, Aquaman allows Triton to kill him in the off-chance he will wind up in Hades, and will be able to return, because that’s the only way to save his kingdom. Pretty bold move for a character typically ridiculed as a useless Fish Whisperer.

David’s Aquaman was a king first and a superhero a distant second. And the character benefited tremendously from that approach. You wouldn’t want to mess with this Aquaman.

Writer: Peter David

Penciler: J. Calafiore

Inkers: Peter Palmiotti, Mark McKenna

Publisher: DC Comics

How to Read It: back issues

Appropriate For: ages 11 and up