Tuesday’s Tragic Moment in Comics comes courtesy of Aquaman and the Black Manta
In the 25 issue storyline, from back in the 1970s, Aquaman gives us one of the darkest and cruelest moments in comic book history. In the storyline now known as Death of a Prince, Aquaman battles many of his old new villians, including Black Manta and the Fisherman. In the tale Aquaman is dethroned by a democratic council and usurped by Karshon. He returns and reveals that Karshon is actually the Shark and defeats him, but refuses to take the crown and continues on as a superhero.
During this time, Black Manta kidnaps Arthur Curry Jr, otherwise known as Aquababy, the son of Aquaman and Mera. As he forces Aquaman and Aqualad to battle one another, he places the baby in a sphere and slowly begins to fill it with air. The reverse of drowning someone, he suffocates the baby with air.
With the death of their baby, Mera blames Aquaman and their relationship dissolves. Aquaman hunts Black Manta down but cannot bring himself to enact his vengeance. Mera and Aquaman try to reconcile but the death of their son will always come between them.
For Black Manta, his incredible act of cruelty is not forgotten in the DC Universe by the criminal element even more than the heroes. His act of murdering the infant earns him a dark place in the infamous realm of DC villians