It’s not that Future State: Aquaman #1 is a bad comic book, the problem is that it doesn’t really do anything of value. For a book that gives us our first glimpses of Arthur and Mera’s child, Andrina “Andy” Curry, grown into adolescence and having her own adventures, the story does nothing to make the character interesting – or memorable – or even present for most of the story. Instead, we’re stuck with Jackson Hyde – though there’s no telling if the Infinite Frontier is allowed to bring back the version readers enjoyed from Brightest Day or if we’re still stuck with the retconned version readers rejected from DC Rebirth.
In the end, it doesn’t matter since this issue doesn’t really give him much to do anyway. If a boring story were all we had, that would be fine as a mediocre entry to the Aquaman mythos, but our story takes place in the ocean… in outer space. Apparently these two stumbled upon “The Confluence,” a place where all of time and space… in the oceans… interconnect and travelers can move from one place and time to another… in the oceans… from planet to planet and era to era through a floating mass of water in space that connects them all. (The idea of a giant oceanic portal connecting all of space and time makes no sense considering that no one has found it before, and nothing has come through it before, but whatever.) The two were separated, and thinking that Aqualass had perished, Aqualad had given up when captured by some alien things (I guess because they aren’t really explained very well) at some point in the past.
Aqualad is not interesting. Nothing about his character is remotely entertaining or interesting. Aqualass is not interesting. Nothing about her character us remotely entertaining or interesting. The story is given no context. We have no reason to care about these characters or their actions. The only thing I can figure is that writer Brandon Thomas literally took the idea of plucking issues from a future storyline out of sequence and dropped them into this special event, but in doing so, robbed it of all meaning and value. Aquaman is mainstay of the DC Universe but as we’ve seen with the recently finished Kelly Sue DeConnick run on the eponymous series, the wrong writer can drain all enthusiasm from a series and leave nothing left for fans to appreciate.
But at least the art from Daniel Sampere and Adriano Lucas looks good. Too bad it’s just not enough to make me come back for the second issue.