While an Aquaman sequel is still merely a conversation, the first outing for the Atlantean king set the stage for an interesting character to stand out in the next adventure.
Spoilers for Aquaman follow. Major spoilers!
Early on in Aquaman, the film introduced Randall Park's Dr. Stephen Shin character. To the casual moviegoer, this character seemed to be nothing more than a laugh during an otherwise intense beat where Orm had sent tidal waves to the shore and caused massive amounts of destruction. However, when Dr. Shin showed up in the post-credits scene as an aid to Black Manta, the relevance of his role proved to be more important.
"Listen, I love Randall Park," Aquaman director James Wan told ComicBook.com. "I'm such a big fan of his, and when this project came along, at the very start of casting, I was like I've got to get Randall Park in my movie somehow. I love the guy, and I want to work with the guy, and so even though he's not in this movie a lot, his character is a very important character. And, again, I love him. I would love to see more of his character in whatever future stories."
Why is he so important, though? Well, it seems his story from the pages of DC Comics might be flipped if he continues aiding Black Manta in his quest to hunt Arthur Curry.
In DC Comics, Dr. Stephen Shin is an ally to Arthur Curry and Mera, having been a friend to Arthur's father Tom previously. Like the live-action counterpart, Dr. Stephen Shin is more privy to knowledge of Atlantis, its people, and its technology than other surface dwellers. As the story goes on, Dr. Stephen Shin's trust is in question by Mera when Tom Curry is found dead in his lighthouse. He ultimately plays a role in Black Manta becoming more powerful by helping him discover and obtain the Dead King's Scepter.
Whether or not an Aquaman sequel will pursue such a story is unknown by Dr. Shin helping Black Manta to rebuild his technology in the post-credits scene seems to hint at a form or it. Perhaps the sequel will skip any Tom Curry connection or friendship with Arthur and dive straight into Dr. Shin being an ally to Black Manta?
[Black Manta] has an opportunity to show up anywhere where Aquaman is," Black Manta actor Yahya Abdul-Mateen II told ComicBook.com. "Anywhere where he has a device or plot to get back to Aquaman, he's going to use it. So he can show up wherever. But when he does I hope that we get to see more of his wit and more of the comedic parts of Black Manta and see more of the things that make him that I know and the human that the fans and the people in this universe have grown to love over the years."
Aquaman is now playing in theaters.