There’s only one scene in Justice League that really gives us a taste of what to expect when Arthur Curry gets his own standalone movie next year. But even then, it turns out that at least one thing we saw won’t carry over to Aquaman: Specifically, the way these characters talk to each other.
In Justice League’s sole Atlantis-set scene, Aquaman and Mera talk to each other in the wake of Steppenwolf’s successful attempt at stealing the Mother Box Atlantis has guarded for thousands of years. But they do so in an elaborate and showy manner—Mera uses her abilities to form a churning pocket of air around herself and Arthur, so the two can bluntly set up each others’ moody backstories ahead of Aquaman.
It’s a cool acknowledgement of Mera’s unique powerset in the comics, which lets her manipulate water on large scales, and create “hard” objects out of it, but it also raises an intriguing question about Aquaman’s cinematic future. While Mera’s abilities are fine for a single short scene of dialogue, you can’t do that for an entire movie about an underwater civilization and its future king. Especially considering that in the comics, Mera’s abilities are unique to her, so it’d require actor Amber Heard to be in every scene creating water-free “rooms” for everyone to chat in.
But that’s not going to be the case for Aquaman, according to director James Wan. In response to a Hollywood Reporter piece about how Justice League paves the way for the Aquaman solo movie—which ended with a quip about how Justice League handled communication in Atlantis—Wan simply stated that there’d be no “air bubbles for dialogue” in his movie.
Which begs the question: How will characters in Aquaman talk to each other underwater? Will it be telepathically, just like Arthur’s own power to talk to sea creatures? Are they just gonna talk like they’re not underwater and have it be put down to some Atlantean ability we’ve yet to see? Or will there be some other way? Time to speculate wildly in the comments!