Atlantis (DC)

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Atlantis is a place that features in DC Comics.

Contents

History

Pre-Crisis

In an effort to stop the destruction, Atlena of Atlantis created machines to send the inhabitants of Atlantis into a limbo-dimension in order to keep them safe. However, the machines were not ready and it instead left Atlena trapped in the timeless dimension. (World Finest Comics v1 #262)

All the magic of destroyed Atlantis was said to had been recorded in the Lost Book of Thoth. (More Fun Comics v1 #58)

Post-Crisis

A source of great inherent mystical power came from the earth itself which was from where the ancients carved the Twelve Crystals of the Zodiac to focus and tap into this energy. These gemstones were distributed at even intervals around the planet in order to bring harmony around the world. (Aquaman v2 #1)

Early groups of explorers from Atlantis went out into world that became lost to their city's history. (Aquaman v5 #19) In time, there were the Seven Golden Cities of Atlantis. However, five lost cities of Atlantis that resided in the world that were practically incarnations of different aspects of Atlantean history. (Aquaman v5 #21) These included:

  • Thierna na Oge : was the third of the five lost cities and served as a mystic city of magic users that was once the stronghold of Atlantean sorcery. (Aquaman v5 #21)
  • Maarzon : city near Thierna na Oge whose green skinned natives were noted for being savages. (Aquaman v2 #1)
  • Tlapallan : a city populated by yellow skinned Atlanteans in Mayan designs and was the site of one of the pieces of the Zodiac Crystal. (Aquaman v2 #4)
  • Hy-Brasil : was named after the ancient high warlord Basil which was a place of potent weaponry, scientific defense and offense. (Aquaman v5 #21) One of the kingdoms of Atlantis was Hy-Brasil that was considered the most heavily armed city of the realm and held as the nucleus of protection of the continent. (Aquaman v5 #18)
  • Dreaming City : situated in the Himalayas where it became a place of spirituality. (Aquaman v5 #21) Half a dozen Atlantean tribes migrated here where they combined magic and science to fashion a home for themselves within the mountain. (Aquaman v5 #19) However, Orm and Neron would eventually blacken the soul of the place along with its people. (Aquaman v5 #21)
  • Sharaia : a city that was inhabited by a race of aquatic manta-people. (Aquaman: Sword of Atlantis v1 #48)

Since the sinking of Atlantis, each of the undersea cities developed their own unique culture as they all operated in isolation. (Aquaman v2 #1)

In 1043 BCE, a blonde-haired girl by the name of Gamemnae was born who had been expelled form the underwater empire due to the longstanding fear over Kordax. She managed to survive with her becoming a great sorceress and twenty-three years later she returned to Atlantis to raise the city above the water. With her power, she became Atlantis's undisputed ruler and she bound her soul to the continent that could not be broken unless it was destroyed. (JLA v1 #75) She later took a husband from another land with her ensnaring the statesman Rama Khan of Jarhanpur with the pair leading Atlantis to greatness in a time known as the Obsidian Age. (JLA v1 #70)

Aquaman came to fear for the fate of Atlantis if it ever faced a threat that would destroy it. Thus, he sought a means of providing shelter to his people and a safe haven where they could regroup. He determined that the solution lay in Atlantean history whereupon reading the Chronicles of Atlantis he learnt of a golden age long ago in which all were welcomed and peace reigned. Thus, he had enchantments so that if Atlantis ever faced destruction that the city would be transported back in time to that golden era with this serving as a contingency to protect the Atlanteans. This measure came to pass during the war against Imperiex leading to Atlantis transported back in time. However, Queen Mera and all her water breathing kin were stricken by pain upon arriving and forced underwater as they could not survive on the surface. They were then enslaved by their ancestors who used them as slaves and forced labour under the rule of Queen Gamemnae with Mera discovering that the Chronicles had been altered and left out the true nature of this dark time. Aquaman was enchanted and taken away where over the course of the next 15 years the Atlanteans of the ancient past subjected terrible cruelties to their descendants. (JLA v1 #72)

The New 52

Following the Flashpoint, a new version of reality was created with a different history of events. Around 47,000 years ago, when Atlantis was on the surface, its queen of Atlantis became pregnant with two male heirs with her husband the king first crafting the Zodiac Crystals. (Justice League v3 #16) The first magisters sought to continue its study and perfect it leading to their discovery of the Abyssal Dark. This was a dark demon of magic that sought to deceive and torment mankind leading to a ferocious magical war against it. Ultimately, the Dark was defeated and it was chained deep within Atlantis to be imprisoned for all time though its whispered to those that heard its voice in order to be freed once again. (Aquaman v8 #37) During Atlan's reign, Atlantis was at war with the inhabitants of the deserts but a peace would be forged whereby the deserters would share their arcane secrets. In time, Atlan would open his kingdom to the rest of the world to create a single great nation and his fear of outsiders would diminish. However, his brother Orin who led a sect that opposed Atlan's decisions that harmed Atlantean culture and he orchestrated a plot to kill him. King Atlan was wounded and fled but his wife and children were slain by the betrayal. A distraught Atlan would adopt a vow of silence whilst being hunted where he used the secrets of the deserters to forge the six Artifacts of Atlantis. After being equipped with them, he returned to Atlantis where he killed his brother and his wife whereupon he was attacked by the other Atlanteans. With his revenge accomplished, Atlan plunged his trident into the ground and shattered Atlantis which sank beneath the ocean. The cataclysm killed 90% of the population but the fragments that survived became the Seven Kingdoms of Atlantis with the survivors mutating to adapt in their changed environment. Four of these kingdoms were lost to modern times and the remaining three became occupied by the Atlanteans of Atlantis, the exiled people of Xebel and finally the monstrous Trench. (Aquaman v7 #24)

In an effort to ease tensions with the surface, Atlantis established an embassy called Spindrift Station that was to be headed by Mera. (Aquaman v7 #50)

Under King Rath's reign, the kingdom was isolated from the rest of the world whilst he had his forces remove any seditionists, mutations and other threats to his reign. (Aquaman v8 #25) It was separated from the world by the Crown of Thorns enchantment with Mera and Garth looking to break it leading to a conflict with the Silent School that were dispatched by King Rath. (Aquaman v8 #28) By this point, a resistance movement had formed against Rath with these forming the Undercurrent which fought for freedom. (Aquaman v8 #30)

With the aid of Xebel's War Host, the rebels in Atlantis managed to help Aquaman topple Corum Rath from the throne with the demonic Abyssal Dark fleeing the tyrant king. However, the city then began to rise to the surface as a result of a wish that Arthur Curry had secretly desired during the Dark Multiverse crisis. (Aquaman v8 #38) Mera was chosen to be the queen of Atlantis and its ruler with a coronation that crowned her as the new monarch. However, the rising of Atlantis saw it being seen as a threat by the nations of the surface world with them plotting secretly to sink the city back under the ocean. (Suicide Squad v5 #45)

Overview

Leadership in Poseidonis was held by the council of seven who by the rule of law conducted debates on the appointment of a new leader should the king die without an heir. (Aquaman v5 #11)

A number of locations within Atlantis include:

  • Caves of Death : a forbidden location with anything living that entered it having its life ripped from it and left as bones. (Atlantis Chronicles v1 #3)
  • Leviathan Gate : one of the gates that served as an exit Atlantis. (Aquaman v7 #36)
  • Nautila Theater : site of a bloody battle hundreds of years ago where there was a rebellion with a theater being built as a symbolic gesture of change. (Aquaman v7 #36)
  • Penitentiary Vault : a site used to hold prisoners. (Aquaman v8 #7)
  • Tower of the Widowhood : home to the Widowhood that were the most sacred order in Atlantis that inducted the monarchs betrothed into the wisdom and tradition of the Atlantean people. (Aquaman v8 #8)
  • Royal Treasury :
  • Catacombs : located beneath the Royal Treasury, it was guarded the spectres of dead venerable elders and high-ranking nobles that had agreed to continue their devoted service even after death as sentinels of this area. They were noted for being deadly but if one knew their true names then they could be turned back. (Aquaman v8 #28)
  • Library of Antis : situated in the Seventh Tride with a hidden cave system located underneath it. (Aquaman v8 #30)
  • Hall of Crowns : a chamber where the remains of Atlantis's kings and heroes along with all their secrets were kept. (Justice League/Aquaman: Drowned Earth v1 #1)

Atlantis was unlike any other landmass in the world as when its Atlantean's inhabitants died their electrical impulses and essence itself was absorbed into the strata where it became part of a city wide system. As such, it was able to sense the rule of Atlanteans only otherwise it would tear itself apart. This system was only in place when the previous ruler passed away whereupon control was transferred to the new reigning monarch. (Aquaman v7 #35)

The Royal Seal was an important relic to their people and seen as a national treasure as well as a symbol of the old ways. (Aquaman v2 #1)

The old tyrants of Atlantis were known to had used hook swords that were ceremoniously used to cut the hamstrings and Achilles tendons of their enemies rendering them crippled and helpless. (Aquaman v8 #28) It was known that at one point that blonde haired Atlanteans were considered outcasts from society and were slaughtered in the past. (JLA v1 #72)

It was noted for being the center of magic on Earth with it having a prominence in the planets history and culture that was noted for being immeasurable. (JLA v1 #68) White Magic was practiced by the good priests of Atlantis to overcome their more evil kin. (More Fun Comics v1 #58) Atlantean magic was driven by the spirit of Atlantis itself and thus was more powerful the more faith was placed in it. (Aquaman v8 #37)

Inhabitants

  • Atlanna :
  • Vulko :
  • Dardan : male leader of the Shalakites who sat on the council of seven who cautioned against leaving Atlantis that was suffering from an upheaval. (Aquaman v5 #11)
  • Ondine :
  • Krush :

Notes

  • Atlantis within DC Comics was created by Gardner F. Fox and Fred Guardineer where it was first mentioned in Action Comics v1 #17 (October 1939) but depicted in Action Comics v1 #18 (November 1939).
  • It was based on the Atlantis from mythology.
  • The Atlas of the DC Universe v1 (1980) had an entry on Atlantis that provided some background on the country. According to the guide, the kingdom of Atlantis was the earliest known civilization on Earth dating back 1,000,000 years with its rise to power coming as a result of their mastery of magic whereupon the Atlantean Empire was founded whose twelve city-states were based around the world. It was ruled by sorcerer-monarchs that sat on the Royal Conclave of Twelve that was headed by the king or queen who served as chairperson. Atlantis's downfall came as a result of the waning of magic and conflicts that erupted within their society.
  • According to History of the DC Universe v1 #1 (1986), after the emergence of man in the centuries that followed great civilizations flourished and empires formed with magic taking hold on Earth with it settling in the kingdom of Atlantis. Corruption among the mystics saw them wage constant war against the practitioners of science that threatened to destroy the island leading to some fleeing to the sea on board ancient Swan ships. One such group reached the land of Skartaris whilst violence remained in Atlantis until the rise of Arion who sought peace until aliens arrived that battled the high mage with the conflict sinking Atlantis leading to the end of the first heroic age.

Alternate Versions

  • In Action Comics v1 #18 (1939), Atlantis was shown to be a city that had sunken underneath the ocean long ago. From the Atlanteans did mankind arise from with their civilization responsible for raising agricultural plants and developed the domesticated animal breeds. They were described as the first students of the occult and were aware of the wealthy colony of Ophir. From their mother colony did Egypt and Greece emerge with them raising all manners of food stuff and the Atlantean armies held the greatest army legions in the world. Around this time, they came to worship a giant octopus called Roor. During their reign, Earth was orbited by two Moons one of which fell towards the planet causing fearful storms that flooded the world and Atlantis. As the city sunk, those of the higher order of mankind took shelter in subterranean chambers where over the course of thousands of years created a garden city to live in peaceful isolation. They came to believe that worship of Roor the evil one and ancient foe of all life had brought about the downfall of their civilization. The creature was sealed away within a temple and all were forbidden to enter otherwise the beast would be unleashed against the world. In the modern day, Zatara along with Setap discovered Atlantis where they discovered some of its inhabitants that included Gath and Loalla when Roor was accidently unleashed.
  • In Action Comics v1 #45 (1942), it was said that during the sinking of Atlantis that the people from its sister continent of Lemuria fled to Mount Shashta where they built a city refuge for themselves. New Lemuria was built 15,000 years ago on top of the mountain to avoid the flood where their descendants continued to reside with them where they watched the world peacefully until Ferro came to rule them. Ferro intended to use sound waves to kill everyone in the world except for those in the city but was stopped by the Three Aces.
  • In Marvel Family v1 #10 (1947), a version of Atlantis was shown to exist on the world of Fawcett Comics. Their civilization was advanced by 8000 BC where they had discovered an element more powerful than Plutonium or Neptunium that made an atomic bomb. This was Protium that was radioactive where it changed every 10,000 years where it altered into Neutrium then changing to Electrium. A key scientist from this era was Chal-Patzun who predicted the sinking of Atlantis but was called a madman by the people.
  • In Weird War Tales v1 #111 (1982), an alternate version of Atlantis situated in the Pacific was shown as being an advanced civilization thousands of years ago inhabited by the Atlantides. It terrorized Europe and Africa until prehistoric Athenian forces defeated when Atlantis sank beneath the ocean. Prior to their destruction, the inhabitants journeyed to Atlantis II that was made to be a sanctuary in case their home was destroyed. In time, the Atlantides replaced their bodies into mechanical parts that resembled flesh thus turning them into a race of robots that maintained their military in their underwater city. The Creature Commandos encountered them and managed to stop Atlantis II from conquering the world when G.I. Robot J.A.K.E. sacrificed himself by turning the city's weapons against it thus destroying it.
  • In Tangent Comics: Atom v1 #1 (1997), New Atlantis was created over the former site of Atlanta after its destruction in Earth-9's Cuban Missile Crisis in 1969 where it became a powerful center for trade and power.
  • In Old Lady Harley v1 #4 (2019), an alternate version of Atlantis was shown to had operated in a post-apocalyptic future where the villains ruled the world. On this Earth, Atlantis was forcibly transported by the Anti-Monitor to the location of California where it became New Atlantis. Aquaman opened the borders of the nation in order to get much needed revenue thus exposing the Atlanteans to everyday human culture.

In other media

Television

  • In The Superman/Aquaman Hour of Adventure, Atlantis appeared as a domed city at the bottom of the sea populated by Atlanteans and ruled by Aquaman who was the sovereign of the seven seas. During ancient times, it was revealed in the episode "The Return of Nepto", a race of undersea Viking styled giants once lived underwater with their leader being a red bearded one called Nepto who once was a tyrant at Atlantis and armed with a black trident that could fire energy blasts. However, by unknown means, he along with his three warriors fell into a deep slumber by a volcano until the modern day when they were awakened and defeated by Aquaman. In "The Rampaging Reptile-Men", the Atlanteans had established a power station to feed Atlantis energy until it was sabotaged by the villainous Reptile-Men who intended to conquer the city until they were sealed in their cave lair by Aquaman and Aqualad. In "The Deadly Drillers", a race of technologically advanced mole people from the center of the Earth had sent automated drill crafts from underground into the ocean were dispatched by their king to destroy Atlantis only to be driven back by Aquaman. The episode "Vassa - Queen of the Mermen" introduced a race of green skinned Mermen led by Queen Vassa who had constructed robotic whale ships that she launched to destroy Atlantis only for her forces to be defeated by Aquaman.
  • In Justice League, the undersea kingdom of Atlantis made a number of appearances in the DC Animated universe. It was shown that long ago, it resided on the surface where it was led by King Poseidon who used magic to keep the island afloat. This was until Earth drew the attention of extradimensional entities known as the Old Ones that were led by Icthultu. To protect his people, King Poseidon summoned all his magic to vanquish the Old Ones back but this came at the cost of the sinking of Atlantis that came to reside at the bottom of the ocean. By the modern day, Atlantis was ruled by Aquaman who served as King alongside his Queen Mera with their newborn baby being the prince of the kingdom.
  • In Young Justice, Atlantis and its inhabitants would make their appearance in the show with Kaldur'ahm raised there. The episode "Downtime" depicted the underwater kingdom with its capital being Poseidonis. A number of locations within Atlantis included the Conservatory of Sorcery that was a magical institution maintained by the Atlanteans with Queen Mera teaching its students in the use of magic and included combat sorcery that was said to require improvisation. Another site was the Science Center where Vulko was studying the echinoderm that they had discovered frozen in the ice. Black Manta was dispatched by the Light to recover the organism and laid siege to Atlantis causing widespread destruction until he was thwarted by Aqualad and Garth.
  • In The Flash, the Earth-2 Atlantis was mentioned in the episode "The Darkness and the Light". Jay Garrick stated that on his Earth Atlantis resided in the surface and he noted it as a place he visited.

Film

  • In Justice League: Throne of Atlantis, the underwater city was said to had once been on the surface until a cataclysm caused it to sink beneath the ocean. It was the king of Atlantis that saved his people and the city by using magic to turn the Atlanteans into an aquatic race. Powerful mystical seals were created that hid Atlantis from the rest of the world allowing the Atlanteans to live isolated for centuries until the modern age.
  • In Aquaman, Atlantis featured in the setting of the 2018 live-action film set in the DC Extended Universe. It was shown that thousands of years ago that it resided on the surface where it was formed and ruled by King Atlan with it dominating the world as the most advanced civilization on the planet with incredibly advanced technology. This was until they were seemingly attempting to harness a new power source whose energy created a great cataclysm that sank the city beneath the ocean. The power though caused a change among the Atlanteans that led to them evolving into a water-breathing race. Over time, the civilization of the Atlanteans became divided into seven kingdoms with Atlantis being one of these tribes. Atlantis was hidden from the world where they developed into an advanced aquatic civilization with their city being heavily protected by hydra cannons. Custom and immigration was protected by the main gateway to ensure that people did not sneak into the city.

Video games

  • In Injustice: Gods Among Us, the royal throne room of Atlantis featured as a playable stage in the video game.
  • In Injustice 2, Atlantis appeared in the video game sequel where it was a playable stage and featured in the story mode. After the fall of the One Earth Regime, Aquaman cut ties with the surface world and adopted a period of isolationism. Batman dispatched Hal Jordan to enlist Atlantis's aid to fight Brainiac's invasion but Aquaman decided to defend his city and people. Atlantis was one of the many cities that were collected by Brainiac on-board his Skull Ship.

Appearances

  • Aquaman:
  • JLA:
  • Aquaman v7:
  • Suicide Squad v5:

External Links

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