Aquaman's Main Villain Has Been Revealed, Here's What We Know

The DC Extended Universe has fired its two shots for the Year 2016, with Suicide Squad in theaters and the Ultimate Edition of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice entertaining fans at home. Even next year's efforts, Wonder Woman and Justice League, are far along in their process, so when it comes to further developments, we're starting to look ahead to 2018, and the solo movies DC has on its slate. Expect movies centered around The Flash and Aquaman, and now we know who the villain of the second film will be.

Without a massive Rogue's Gallery to choose from, it sounds like James Wan's Aquaman movie will lean on Black Manta as its chief villain, according to a report in The Wrap. This is the natural choice, as Black Manta likely ranks as Aquaman's most famous antagonist, and will be an outstanding addition to the ever-expanding DC Extended Universe.

Black Manta in Aquaman

What do we know about Black Manta? There have been different versions of the character introduced over the years, though he was shown off in the pages of Aquaman in 1967. His original origin is dark, starting off as a young boy who liked to play in the Chesapeake Bay who is abducted and held against his will. He tries to connect with Aquaman for help and fails. This snub leads to a conflict with Aquaman, which is developed over the years. Black Manta was a regular man who designed a high-tech swim suit, and used it to battle Aquaman at different stages.

Naturally, there's a New 52 reboot version of Black Manta, as well. In the New 52 universe, Black Manta has a long history with Aquaman and a team known as The Others, who were created from Atlantean relics. At different stages of his career, Black Manta was even in Belle Reve prison, and was offered a chance to join Amanda Waller's Suicide Squad... but he turned it down. (So, there's a chance for cross pollination in the DCEU already. You know that Warner Bros. has that in the backs of their collective minds.)

So far, in the DCEU, we have been exposed to a number of members of the developing Justice League. The Flash (Ezra Miller) popped up in Suicide Squad, and Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) fought alongside Batman (Ben Affleck) and Superman (Henry Cavill) in Dawn of Justice. We haven't seen much of Jason Momoa's Aquaman, though he was featured prominently in the Justice League footage Zack Snyder brought to San Diego Comic-Con.

What do you think of Black Manta as the Aquaman villain? Who do you think should play the villain? Aquaman will be in theaters on July 27, 2018.

Sean O'Connell
Managing Editor

Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. He's frequently found on Twitter at @Sean_OConnell. ReelBlend cohost. A movie junkie who's Infatuated with comic-book films. Helped get the Snyder Cut released, then wrote a book about it.