As the #DCEU prepares to make a splash with #Aquaman and news about #JasonMomoa's trip under the sea bubbles to the surface, there have been some pretty high-profile castings. #NicoleKidman, #PatrickWilson, and now #DolphLungdren will all be sticking on some tail fins and hopping into the ocean.
While Lundgren's part is still somewhat a mystery, his casting as King Nereus led many to believe that he would be playing (yet another) villain in the film — maybe he just has that kind of face? With a string of villainous roles in the likes of The CW's Arrow and Rocky IV, fans and news outlets assumed that his casting in #JamesWan's Aquaman would follow the same streak. However, when someone used the word villain to describe King Nereus, Wan was quick to jump to the character's defense.
Not So Cut And Dry
Given all the recent hype surrounding Lundgren's casting, it is unsurprising that we have turned to the comic books to find out more about Nereus, however, is it just more sleight of hand? When one journalist tweeted that Lundgren would be playing a villain, Wan took to social media to correct the statement with,"not quite villain."
It is a puzzling state of affairs, especially when flipping through the pages of a DC #comicbook. Although Nereus's tenure has been short, he has only ever appeared in an antagonistic capacity. Debuting in 2013, Nereus is relatively new to Aquaman, appearing in five issues of the main title.
During Aquaman's "Death of a King" arc, Mera found herself confronted by Nereus and a band of exiled Atlanteans known as the Xebels. We know that #AmberHeard will be playing Mera, so this is still a part of the story we could see play out. Later, during "Rise of the Seven Seas," Nereus offered to team up with Aquaman's half-brother Ocean Master to bring down our fishy hero, but with Wan promising that Lundgren won't be a villain, you can pretty much count that tale out of the equation.
Given that Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is appearing as Black Manta and Wilson will be portraying Ocean Master, three bad guys would certainly have felt like overkill for the wet 'n' wild adventure.
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Who knows what capacity Lundgren's role will be, but it will presumably have something to do with Heard's Mera or some plot against Aquaman. As the character is of some royal lineage, it isn't too hard to imagine him sharing some screen time with Kidman's Queen Atlanna. Also, with Nereus's limited appearances, it makes him probably the easiest character for Wan to overhaul without fan backlash.
More details will undoubtedly wash ashore in the wave of set pictures and trailers, but for the time being, let's park this one in the dry dock. Given a look at Marvel's recent Thor: Ragnarok, the #DCEU will have to pull something special out of the bag to take on the MCU, but Momoa's cheeky performance as Aquaman could be the big splash Warner Bros. needs.
Check out Aquaman in action in the Justice League trailer, and don't forget our poll below!
Are you excited for Lundgren's casting?
[Poll Image Credit: MGM]