Script and overall character development is lacking
I’ve always looked forward to DC’s animated works—be it movies or TV shows. Mostly because, even though their live action movies leave much to be desired, their animated productions are actually entertaining. Recently, however, I find myself watching the DC animated movies out of habit as opposed to actually wanting to watch them.
Fans of Smallville might understand where I’m coming from. After years of following a specific brand (or universe—call it what you want), it’s hard to pull yourself away from continuing that journey.
This led me to watching the most recent DC animated movie Justice League: Throne of Atlantis.
An important thing to note is, if you’re a reader of the comics on which this movie is based, the movie takes a fair bit of liberties with the source material—much like all of its predecessors since the debut of the DC Universe Animated Original Movies banner.
While the movie benefits from the decision to not introduce Aquaman in the preceding animated film set in the same continuity—Justice League: War—the transition of drunken loner to Atlantean king ends up becoming a tad rushed. Nevertheless, the straightforward plot is driven with Aquaman as the primary passenger, allowing viewers to quickly understand not only Arthur Curry’s upbringing, but also a touch of Atlantean politics.
Unfortunately, this pretty much leaves the movie feeling like the rest of the Justice League were present ’cause, you know, their name’s on the DVD. Short of adapting the title of the comic arc, the movie might have been better off having been called Aquaman and the Land-Dwelling Heroes.
The overall going-through-the-motions tone of the narrative ended up making the movie feel rather bland, despite the decent action and acting. If that’s your kinda thing, then you should totally watch this movie… although I’m not sure why anyone would be looking to watch something lackluster.
While these movies may be a convenient way to keep in touch with the current DC universe short of having to actually read the comics, you may be better off just watching reruns of the Justice League (Unlimited) animated series.