Megalopolis: City of Collectibles
In the the world of DC super heroes, Aquaman doesn’t always get the respect he deserves. Sure, in most incarnations he dresses like a University of Miami alumni who also happens to be a goldfish, and his most widely known superpower (talking to fish) doesn’t exactly scream street cred, but that’s just not the whole story.
When you look past the silly, the garish, and the aquacentricities, you’re still left with a hero who can go toe-to-toe with Superman and Wonderwoman in terms of strength and invulnerability (you need to be tough to withstand the crushing pressures of the ocean’s depths), can move with superhuman speed while in his element, and just so happens to rule the 70% of the world’s surface that’s covered in water. He’s also got access to a magical trident (of the kind that Ursula the Seawitch was so taken with) capable of controlling the seas, changing the weather, and calling down frigg’n lighting. And yes, Aquaman can talk to fish, but judging him on that power alone is like describing Warren Buffet as a ukulele player — it may be true, but there’s quite a bit more worth mentioning.
Which is, in part, why Aquaman’s most recognizable villain is such an interesting character. After all, when you really take note of what he’s up against, it’s pretty clear that Black Manta is punching above his weight.
From Super friends, to Injustice 2, to the upcoming Aquaman feature film, Black Manta appears in essentially every Aquaman property ever released. But unlike the reigning King of Atlantis, Black Manta’s not some meta-powered, magic-imbued embodiment of the oceans’ fury; he’s really just a dude with a submarine and a chip on his shoulder. That’s not to say that he isn’t badass (his Young Justice incarnation was a show stealer, and in Injustice 2 he’s like a homicidal cross between Batman, Aquaman, and Ironman), but at the end of the day he’s still kind of a fish out of water. You can probably imagine it would be hard to fight a guy who can control the oceans, while you’re in the ocean, but for Black Manta that’s just his day to day.
Of course, there’s more backstory than all that: As a treasure hunter, he and his wife were once captured by other-dimensional beings from Xebel (Xebel being an ancient and long-forgotten Atlnatian penal colony). He may or may not be a former resident of Arkham Asylum. And, on occasion, writers have gone out of their way to turn him into various superhuman monstrosities (and then doubled back to undo the damage). But at his heart, Black Manta is something beautifully simple — a guy who hates Aquaman enough to willingly give up the home-field advantage. Swim a few miles out into the Atlantic and start a fistfight with a shark, and you’ll have an inkling of Black Manta’s chosen career path.
But even if Black Manta appears as though he’s out of his league, he nevertheless consistently gives the King of Atlantis a run for his money, and that’s worth commemorating — with a Black Manta figure from Megalopolis.
For a detailed, poseable, all-around Black Manta goodness, check out the DC Essentials Black Manta action figure from DC Collectibles. DC Collectables brings Black Manta back to the basics, ready to take on the Atlantean throne with little more than an oversized helmet full of a head full of dreams. Based on the designs of Jason Fabok, this DC Collectibles figure is the perfect addition to any DC toy collection.
For a more updated (and heavily stylized) look, how about the Injustice 2 Vinimate Black Manta toy? This vinyl figure is designed based on how Black Manta appears in the hit video game Injustice 2, with detailed body armor design and merciless red eyes, and equipped with twin daggers. Daggers? Doesn’t Black Manta’s Injustice 2 suit shoot laser beams and feature shoulder mounted torpedo launchers? Sure it does, but who’s to say that he can’t enjoy a little knife work too? Injustice is about throwing down, not about making sense, and this figure is just the right amount of fun and ferocious to honor that spirit.
From Xebel to Atlantis, from the Atlantic to the Pacific, you can be sure that when Black Manta appears, the oceans are going to run red. So top off your collection with the ultimate underdog, and show that fish-chatting tyrant Aquaman that even the pressure at the depths of the sea can’t crush the human spirit.
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