In a DC Comics breakfast at Roy’s Restaurant centering around ‘Solving the Puzzle: A Book for Every Reader,’ publishers Dan DiDio and Jim Lee regaled the San Diego Comic Con press with tales of how they made 2018 a successful year for the company thus far, with creative (and sales) highs such as Dark Nights: Metal, Doomsday Clock and Mister Miracle. In the midst of all the celebration, Didio dropped the truly mind-boggling news that Aquaman would be helmed by none other than Kelly Sue DeConnick, in conjunction with artist Robson Rocha, starting in December.
He tried to slip it in without notice while rattling off several other announcements, but the collective gasp from the audience made it clear that more would need to be said on the matter. Lee joked that they were embargoed until the end of the year, but confirmed that DeConnick would be working on both the king of the sea and a comic under the new Black Label imprint. He also praised her storytelling abilities, especially her “most amazing pitch for Aquaman” given that she was new to DC Comics.
As for the synopsis of the storyline, he called it “a re-examination of who the character is.” Not quite a reworking of Arthur Curry’s origin story, but rather an exploration similar to Born Again or Batman: Year One. DeConnick was fascinated with the dichotomy of the power he holds over the seven seas versus the powerlessness he faces in the wake of his mother’s presumed abandonment. “Every day he goes to the pier and looks for his mother,” Lee described. After all, how terrible must it be to have command over all the animals underwater and yet “the only person he can’t command is his mother.” Arthur’s psyche will have to be pieced together in more ways than one, because the upcoming storyline will involve amnesia. Not just that, but he comes into contact with mythological sea gods who have been cast out from the ocean and forgotten by their people. “That’s happened to Aquaman as well, and you don’t know why,” Lee concluded.
Robson Rocha, meanwhile, has previously handled artwork for Birds of Prey, Supergirl and Green Lanterns – as well as many more DC titles. The two are sure to make an excellent team, and fans can rest comfortable knowing that Arthur Curry is in good hands.
Of course, Kelly Sue DeConnick’s not the only amazing lady to be handling one of DC’s fan favorite heroes. G. Willow Wilson (of Ms. Marvel fame) is set to take over Wonder Woman in November, so there’s plenty of new creative teams to get excited about. As for Kelly Sue DeConnick, she becomes Queen of Atlantis beginning on December 19th, 2018 with Aquaman #43.