Posts tagged ‘Ocean Master’

Action 520 – Lois Lane goes out with a different guy, and Aquaman battles his mother


The romance between Superman and Lois Lane takes centre stage in the Conway, Swan and Chiaramonte tale in Action 520 (June 1981).


Superman and Lois have dinner plans, but an emergency takes him away.  Millionaire Eric Burton sweeps in to take Lois out for a night on the town in his limousine.


Superman catches up to them at dinner at a posh restaurant, and Lois gives him the cold shoulder, going off to dance with Eric.


Every time Superman makes it back, another emergency is revealed, and calls him away.  And though the emergencies are genuine, Burton has rigged the various media around them to turn on and announce them, to keep Superman at bay, while he steals her woman.


A pointless try.  Lois might get piqued, but Superman is her guy.


Aquaman’s battle against Atlanna concludes in this issue, by deMatteis, Rozakis and Heck.


It’s a real shame that it’s Don Heck doing the art on the big battle.  The line-up of robots is impressive, even of some of the Aquaman foes shown are pretty obscure.


“Poseidon” just sort of vanishes half way through the battle, as does Cal Durham, who never appears again.  In Brightest Day, a new version of Aqualad would be introduced, with a name derived from Cal’s, but I think we can say the original died in the fight.

Atlanna’s sister shows, and makes they make peace with each other.  Atlanna advises Aquaman and Ocean Master to do the same.  Which isn’t really awful, and at least does not contradict continuity as much as the rest of this tale.


Action 519 – Superman doesn’t trust the alien, and Aquaman learns his mother’s plans


Superman deals with an alien beast and its hunter in Action 519 (May 1981).


Conway, Swan and Chiaramonte helm this tale.  Superman gets alerted about signals of approaching aliens.  One has come intentionally, to stop a intergalactic beast that stopped here first.


Superman has his doubts, even when the beast shows up, in the Grand Canyon.


It’s a rare story, in which Superman is wrong.  The hunter is exactly who he claimed to be, simply here to defeat the monster.


Aquaman’s origin, and that of Atlantis, are retold in a different light in this story, by deMatteis, Len Wein and Heck.


Poseidon claims to be Aquaman’s human father, and explains his story to his son and Cal Durham.  Atlanna is given a sister, and her period on land, and the birth of Aquaman, are placed shortly after the city’s sinking, in contravention of every other version of this tale.  Atlanna has used Atlantean tech to turn her supposedly dead husband into Poseidon, as well as creating robots of Aquaman’s various enemies.  She is portrayed as murderously insane.


Ocean Master consistently refers to Atlanna as his mother through this storyline, which is very odd.  He has always, to this point, been the son of Aquaman’s father and a human woman.

The story concludes in the next issue.


Action 518 – Superman gets played, and Aquaman faces Poseidon


The Superman story in Action 518 (April 1981), like many from this period, is not one that I would normally include.  But I want to write about the back-up story, so Conway, Swan and Hunt get an entry for their cover story as well.


And there is some really nice art in the story.  Happy to include this page.


The tale itself involves two alien brothers who have come to Earth.  One brother warns Superman about the other, but also sets up a fight between them.


The fight is pretty brief, before Superman realizes that both of them have been set up by other brother, who wants to take control of their planet.


And onto the Aquaman story, by deMatteis and Heck.


Aquaman, Mera, Vulko and Cal Durham discuss recent events.  Attacks by the Scavenger and Black Manta have turned out to be fake, just attacks by robots looking like them.  Ocean Master was who he claimed to be, though, so Aquaman goes in search of him.


They find Orm, along with the god Poseidon, who claims to be Aquaman’s father.

The story continues in the next issue.

Action 517 – the quest for an alien grayl, and Aquaman begins


Gerry Conway, Curt Swan and Dave Hunt put Superman into an alien Christmas story in Action 517 (March 1981).


Superman is attending the Daily Planet Christmas party, and almost winds up under the mistletoe with Lana Lang, but whooshes away when he sees an alien ship approaching.  I love that Perry White gets a shirt that says “Foxy.”


But aside from that, this is a pretty average tale.  Superman learns that two warring alien races are competing to find the “grayl.”


They each believe it is the key to victory, although there are prophecies that it will bring disaster.


Superman is basically an overseer in the tale, as the two peoples lose their power source, and have to learn to work together in peace to survive.

And Clark manages to kiss Lois under the mistletoe.


Aquaman’s series moves over from Adventure Comics, joining the rotating line-up, by Jean-Marc deMatteis and Don Heck.  Cal Durham is still around as a supporting character, along with Mera and Vulko.


Aquaman faces off against his evil half-brother, Ocean Master, but he is simply an operative in a bigger battle against Aquaman.


Orm lets some of this slip, when he refers to their, supposedly dead, mother.

The story continues in the next issue.

Action 443 – Superman saves the Justice League


Maggin, Swan and Blaisdel give Superman a big line up of allies and enemies in Action 443 (Jan. 75).


The story opens in a very disorienting way, with Superman as a nebbishy newscaster, picked on by Steve Lombard and rejected by Lois Lane.


While Clark Kent is the one leaping into heroic action against Queen Bee and her drones.


Queen Bee is leading a host of villains against the Justice League of America.  Most of them are regularly appearing big names – Chronos, Sinestro, Ocean Mchroaster, Grodd and Brainiac.  Matt Hagen makes his first appearance in over a decade as Clayface.  Merlyn and the Harpy are both newcomers. Harpy, the villain assigned to Black Canary, had appeared in Green Lantern, while Merlyn, who would go on to become a regular Green Arrow enemy, had only debuted recently in Justice League of America.


The assembled villains had already triumphed over the rest of the Justice League, and in flashback we see them taking down Batman, Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Aquaman, Black Canary, Elongated Man, Aquaman, Atom and Red Tornado.  At this point, Wonder Woman and Hawkman were not members of the JLA.


Superman has used a Kandorian machine to reverse people’s perceptions of Superman and Clark Kent, simply to puzzle the villains.  They bring him aboard their ship, which is what he wants.  As he struggles with Grodd and Clayface, his heat vision pierces the capsule the Flash is being held in, and the Flash exploits this, and frees himself, and the rest of the League.


A lot of characters.  The story is fun, but I cannot honestly say it makes the most of its cast.


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