HBO Max has shared an extended preview of its new limited animated series Aquaman: King of Atlantis, and it’s quite the departure from the silver screen version of the character.
The three-part mini-series tells the story of Aquaman just as he’s ascended to the throne as king of the ocean. It stars Cooper Andrews (Shazam) as King Aquaman, Gillian Jacobs (Community), and Thomas Lennon (Reno 911).
While Aquaman the movie was a tentpole DC movie, Aquaman: King of Atlantis is a hilarious departure from that serious superhero tone. In fact, it’s reminiscent of Adult Swim properties like Adventure Time and Regular Show.
In the preview, we see King Aquaman in his court trying and failing to fit into his new throne. He addresses his subjects (who are unimpressed with him) while interacting with his two aides.
The show’s contrast to the movies doesn’t mean it’s not connected. James Wan, the director of both Aquaman and Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, is the executive producer of the series. The show’s meant to be a more lighthearted take on the Aquaman universe.
The show’s plot centers around King Aquaman’s struggles to reign over the underwater kingdom and keep his half-brother Orm (Dana Snyder as the Ocean Master) from retaking the throne.
Showrunners include Victor Courtright and Marly Halpern-Graser, and Sam Register, and Rob Hackett are fellow executive producers along with Wan.
Courtright and Halpern-Graser said they wanted to find a nice middle ground between the DCEU Aquaman, played by Jason Momoa, and the more traditional versions of the character.
“Because you can’t ignore that aspect of Aquaman’s history, we tried to take the cooler, more grounded Aquaman that is becoming the way people think of him and just put him in a sort of goofy sort of cartoony world and have him bristle at that a little bit,” Halpern-Graser said. “Because he’s sort of a serious guy, and he doesn’t totally love how silly the world around him is. And he’s a little bit the audience’s point of view.”
The first episode is called “Chapter One: Dead Sea” and it will be out on October 14th, followed by “Chapter Two: Primordeus” on October 21st, and Chapter Three: Tidal Shift” on October 28th. HBO Max will air all episodes.