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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Previously On...Brightest Day

With the final issue of Brightest Day scheduled for release tomorrow, the Shrine is part of a multi-blog crossover featuring recaps of all that has transpired to Aquaman, Mera, and the rest in the series, as well as its precursor, Blackest Night!

Blackest Night #0 opens with Aquaman dead and buried (following the events of Aquaman: Sword of Atlantis), but yet there are...rumors of his resurrection:

But thanks to a plot involving Nekron and Black Hand, the Sea King and numerous others thought lost have returned from the grave. As if that wasn't startling enough, Aquaman and the others came back as murderous zombies!


Mera, who generally kept her distance from her husband's life as a superhero and his fellow superhero friends, finds herself overwhelmed by events and teams-up with the others to try and simultaneously fight Black Hand as well as her former husband.


After a trip with The Atom into one of the Black Lantern's rings, Mera finds herself face-to-face with a zombified Wonder Woman.

After a full-on assault on Nekron by Green Lantern and a team of other Lanterns, Nekron's connection to Black Hand is severed. Connecting to the energy to the White Lantern, a White Lantern Power Ring flies through the air, reviving some of our heroes, including Aquaman!
This took in place in Blackest Night #8, the final issue of the series. It led directly into Brightest Day, which finds our resurrected heroes trying to adjust to their startling condition--having returned from the dead!

After spending some quality time with Mera--the first they've had in a very long time--Aquaman finds himself troubled by...something, something he can't quite put his finger on. He just knows something's wrong.

In the meantime, Arthur and Mera go back to protecting the seven seas. During a raid on some pirates, a vivid example of what's changed is revealed. Aquaman commands some finny friends to help out, but the only ones he can communicate with are dead!

Not too long after this, we see the first appearance of a supervillain named Siren, who emerges from the sea with a small army and bears a striking resemblance to Mera!
After a tussle with Siren, Mera is forced to confess to her husband a deep dark secret: that she was sent from her home dimension to assassinate the King of Atlantis--Aquaman--but once she met him she found that her life's training was merely brainwashing, and that nothing of what she had been told was true.

Giving up her mission, she decided to spend her life with Aquaman, and raise a family...only to face unspeakable tragedy at the hands of Black Manta, an event that tore Aquaman and Mera's relationship apart. Now, just as they have reconciled, Siren has appeared, threatening their happiness all over again.

Meanwhile, we find that a new hero is being born:
Turns out this young man, named Jackson, is from Mera's home dimension, the son of a Xebel (Xebelian?) woman and Black Manta. He is the key to stopping a battle between the earth and sea, which means that not only are Aquaman and Mera looking for him, but so are the bad guys!

Aquaman finds Jackson just a few moments before Manta does, which of course leads to another fight. Aquaman gets away with Jackson (and his adoptive father), and eventually reveals to the young man what his birthright is: to be the new Aqualad!

Later, Manta and Siren launch an attack on a nearby coast, and Aquaman, Mera, Aqualad, and newly-drafted Aquagirl show up to stop them. Manta, now more motivated than ever to kill his nemesis, shows no mercy:
After having Aqualad cauterize the wound (one of Aquaman's most bad-ass moments, IMO), Mera uses her amazing powers to do nothing less than drop a chunk of the Pacific Ocean on Siren's army, while Aquaman instructs Aqualad to use his powers to open up a portal to Mera's home dimension. He does, and it sucks Siren and Manta back into it. Manta, of course, vows to return.

All the crises dealt with--for the moment--Aquaman and Mera bury the hatchet on the past:
Of course, nothing is ever easy: at that exact moment, Aquaman is zapped with a blast of white energy and disappears!

The same thing happens to Hawkman and Hawkgirl, Firestorm, and the Martian Manhunter. They are all gone for several weeks, until they return just as mysteriously as they disappeared, but in slightly altered form:

They engage in battle with the "ultimate dark avatar", which seems to be nothing less than the Earth itself, now infected with darkness:

...and that's where we are now. The same energy that brought Aquaman and co. back also brings back Alec Holland, claiming he is Earth's ultimate savior. What connection he has to all this, and the hows and whys of our heroes' transformations will, presumably, be explained in Brightest Day #24, out tomorrow! The Shrine will be covering that issue this Saturday, April 30th.

Participating in this Blackest Night/Brightest Day recap crossover are:

Firestorm Fan
The Idol-Head of Diabolu
Being Carter Hall

This was all Shag Matthews' idea, so an extra special shout-out to him!


Wings1295 said...

Great idea and a great recap on where Aquaman stands now! Exciting for the future!

Orin's dad said...

And how cool is it that the bloggers unite for this! I love it!

JD said...

I'm so excited too, if only that Flashpoint stuff wasn't pushing back the ongoing until fall.

These endless series of "events" seem to be gumming up the works for both DC & Marvel. I'd like a year or 5 break from "big events" so the individual solo and team books can breathe and be more self contained. Although to DC's credit the Flashpoint stories appear to be separated from the various ongoing series.

Manta Negra said...

Wait a minute: where did you get Aqualad´s mother was Siren?

rob! said...


Oops, I forget they revealed that he wasn't Siren's son in BD #16. It seemed like they were hinting at that but I forgot. Duly corrected.

Diabolu Frank said...

As usual, I'm the odd man out in terms of format. I've only done issue-by-issue write-ups at ...nurgh..., and I couldn't post those at the Idol-Head without hours of cleaned up language. I was, shall we say, unkind toward this series. I'm just glad we've got the new series coming with primo talent...

The Irredeemable Shag said...

Rob - Outstanding coverage! I really enjoyed the Aquaman segments of Brightest Day, and your coverage throughout the year! I'm looking forward to Geoff Johns' ongoing take on the character.

Thanks for the shout-out and the Elementals ad! You rock!

The Irredeemable Shag

Doug said...

Nicely done comrades!

I recently (as in before the Swamp Thing reveal) did a recap of the series.

Here's some linkage, if I may. . .