The rehabilitation of Aquaman’s public perception has been an ongoing process practically since the Superfriends iteration of the character got seared into the collective consciousness in the ‘90s. The upcoming Aquaman movie is still doing PR for the king of Atlantis, which means now seahorses are forbidden. They must become sea dragons.
Because seahorses aren’t for big, beefy men such as Arthur Curry, who swims around shirtless and stabs things with tridents in the manliest of fashions. No; such men, they get giant, hulking, sea dragons!
I’d say he’s compensating for something, but it genuinely does feel as though a lot of the Atlantean aesthetic in this film is just to have the whole thing scream “LOOK HOW KICKARSE AQUAMAN IS PLEASE FORGET THAT FOUR-DECADE OLD CARTOON” at you. And that isn’t me projecting, at least according to Aquaman producer Peter Safran:
The idea was to turn on its head the idea of Aquaman riding a seahorse, take something for which he was mocked and turn it into something terrifying and impressive. He’s a Xebellian creature but I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw Arthur (Jason Momoa) on one at some point…
See, told you they were compensating for something, and it just so happens that that something is Superfriends. And to be fair, it is a very cool-looking sea beastie.
We’ll likely see some more sea dragons action this week, when Aquaman crashes into San Diego Comic-Con ahead of the movie’s theatrical release on December 13.