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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Aquaman (Vol.5) Annual #4 - 1998

It's Halloween--time for a spooky superhero blog crossover!

All across teh interwebs today, various superhero blogs are covering their particular characters from a Halloween-esque perspective, and the Aquaman Shrine is joining in the fun!

In our case, we're covering Aquaman Annual #4, which itself was part of a theme across several DC annuals--"Ghosts." As we all know, the Sea King has a lot of ghosts in his past...
Arthur Jr.'s ghost disappears as quickly as it appeared, which (of course) enrges Aquaman. He's sure he wasn't imagining it, and assumes this is someone's demented joke. He takes off, looking to draw this person out into the open.

Meanwhile, in another part of the city, a woman who murdered her husband is also visited by a ghost...of the very man she killed! She "kills" him again, convinced this is all a nightmare. Another ghost--in the form of Atlantean mytic Shalako--also appears at a church function. What's going on?
Vulko and Koryak also come across some ghosts, in this case taking the form of Honsu the Conqueror and Prince Kraken, who are busy beating up some royal guards. After making a speech, Honsu asks them all to help in their fight against the surface world--which is met with enthusiastic support, even from Vulko and Koryak!

Tempest is also visited by the ghost of Tula, aka Aquagirl, who asks if he would be with her again if she were alive again. "In a heartbeat", he answers.

Meanwhile, Aquaman confers with Orin the First, who reveals that the various ghosts of the original Atlanteans have come back to try and affect the living. Aquaman, naturally want to bring the fight, but Lorelei says that perhaps if the current residents of Atlantis are so easily whipped into a mob, maybe there's no point in saving them. She has...other ideas how to spend the time:
Dear Atlantis Forum: I never thought this would happen to me, but...

As Arthur, Orin, and Lorelei make Frederic Wetham spin in his grave, the ghosts who have been popping up across Atlantis start making their various pitches: Shalako's is more war-like, while Tula plays on Garth's undying love for her.

Meanwhile, back at the AquaCave:
Aquaman and Orin bring the fight to the other Atlantean ghosts, while trying to talk sense into the crazed mob. Orin takes on his brother Shalako, and using their two-pronged attack, defeat them all, just as the sun rises and the darkness of night fades.

Unfortunately, there is still one ghost left:
As the book says, The End? Who can really say, when you're talking about ghosts?

Make sure to visit the other participating sites to see other spooky content:

Thanks to Chad Bokelman for putting this all together!


Wings1295 said...

Awesome post for Halloween! Now I want to dig this old issue out!

Diabolu Frank said...

This was one of several goodbyes to Arthur Junior, but the first devil's three-way I'm aware of any mainstream hero being involved in (though Ollie, Hal and Dinah seemed awful close.) Guess what my takeaway from this comic will be? That's right-- it's that Vince Giarrano is too terrible of an artist to be correctly credited!

Chad Bokelman said...

I've gotta say, cards on the table? Lorelei is pretty damn hot. Aquaman must have nerves of steel (or a HOT redheaded wife) to resist a woman like that. But I'll stop there before I go too far into channeling my inner Shag.

All in all I thought this issue was one of the stronger of the 'Ghosts' annuals but more for the multiple storyline that came together than anything.

I interviewed Bernie Wrightson (cover artist for ALL of these annuals) over on my blog Rob. May want to check it out! But thanks so much for participating in the cross over! It was a blast to have you! Let's do it again sometime!

Arthur Canning said...

Did Aquaman have any spooky adventures in the '70s? I seem to remember an Aparo issue about something supernatural, but it may be wishful thinking..
Regardless, good post, and this crossover was a blast!
Cheers, Artie
(Blog frm the Bog)