'Aquaman' Director James Wan Says Jason Momoa Will Make Aquaman Cool Again

Friday, 11 August 2017 - 10:57AM
DC Comics
Justice League
Aquaman
Yes
Friday, 11 August 2017 - 10:57AM
'Aquaman' Director James Wan Says Jason Momoa Will Make Aquaman Cool Again
Image credit: Warner Bros.
By all rights, Aquaman doesn't really deserve the reputation that he's gained in popular culture. A hugely popular character with a dedicated fan following that spans back decades, Arthur Currie has nevertheless become a laughing stock as "the guy who can talk to fish", with many comic book fans often labeling him as the useless Hawkeye of the Justice League (despite the existence of Batman, who has exactly the same powers as Hawkeye, but who gets to be cool because he's Batman).

James Wan, the director of the upcoming Aquaman movie, isn't worried about all the existing jokes at the character's expense. Comic book fans might have laughed in the past, but they won't be laughing once they see Jason Momoa do his thing:

Opening quote
"Momoa is not a guy that you would go up to and make fun of. I really think you immediately remove any of the stigma of the character from the cartoons that we are familiar with...
"Having said that, I'm not completely unaware of the stigma. If anything, I embrace it and being able to laugh at yourself and have fun at yourself is important and that's something I am aware of as I make Aquaman right now."
Closing quote


It's strange to be reminded that thus far we still haven't seen Momoa play Aquaman for more than a few seconds. It's been three years since the announcement that Game of Thrones' Drogo would be playing the wettest Justice League member, and in that time, the majority of comic book fans have come around to accepting this new incarnation of the character. The Justice League trailers certainly haven't hurt this process.



This trailer also shows off the "embracing" of the Aquaman stigma that James Wan seems to be talking about—Bruce Wayne is eager to tease this mysterious, fish-bringing "stranger" with the same joke that's hounded the character for years—that he's good for little other than talking to fish.

By this point, you'd be hard-pressed to find a superhero movie fan who doesn't think that Jason Momoa makes Aquaman a hell of a lot cooler. James Wan has previously called Momoa's Aquaman the "Wolverine" of the DCEU, and it's hard to argue with that comparison.nAt the same time, it's clear that this movie won't take itself as seriously as any of the DCEU movies that Snyder has directed thus far, and that's important too. Nobody wants to see a grim, gritty reimagining of Aquaman, in which he mopes in the dark and struggles with existential thoughts about his place in society. We got enough of that in Man of Steel and Batman v Superman, and it certainly wouldn't add nuance to the fish superhero. Wan has spoken repeatedly about wanting to make Aquaman a fun, bright movie, and the tweaks that have been applied to Amber Heard's costume for the movie, when compared with Justice League, show just how far the director is willing to take things.

All of the groundwork here looks pretty solid, and assuming that Momoa delivers the performance we're all expecting of him, and that Wan manages to balance his movie's tone just right, we might end up in the bizarre situation in a few years' time wherein Aquaman is one of the best regarded heroes in the DC pantheon. Not bad for a guy who can talk to fish.

Justice League hits US theaters November 17th, 2017.
Science Fiction
Comic Book Movies
DC Comics
Justice League
Aquaman
No
Yes