Aquaman is just now hitting theaters, but we are already pondering how it will segue into the (hopeful) sequel down the road.
Spoilers incoming for Aquaman, so if you haven't seen the movie yet you've been warned.
Aquaman sets up a sequel in several ways, and one of the biggest ones is that by film's end Arthur is official King of Atlantis. After finding the Trident of Atlantis and taking down Orm in combat he is proclaimed King of the underwater city, so in the next film, fans will see Arthur's journey from someone who had a distaste and even hatred for Atlanteans to someone who is supposed to rule their kingdom.
Having Atlanna back erases some of that hatred of course, but they still sent her off to die essentially, so he will still be struggling with some of that lingering baggage in the next film. He'll also have plenty of fish out of water (sorry, couldn't help it) scenarios when it comes to being treated like and acting like royalty. Mera is already used to this way of life, but for Arthur, it is going to be much more of an adjustment.
As for Orm, he is not killed by film's end like so many superhero villains, and there might even be redemption in his future, as he softens a bit once it is revealed that his mother survived. He is now imprisoned, but we would bet that Arthur could eventually have to team up with him if a bigger threat threatens Atlantis. Speaking of Atlanna, she will also have an interesting journey in front of her. What role will she take on during her son's reign as King? Will she stay in Atlantis or stay on the surface with Tom? Hopefully, we'll learn more about what she decides to do in the sequel.
The world will also be fully aware of Aquaman after the events of the film, so the spotlight he gets on the surface will also likely increase in the sequel.
The biggest tease though is regarding Black Manta. As you might know from the end credits scene, Manta survives his brutal battle with Aquaman and Mera and ends up being discovered by Dr. Stephen Shin, who we see earlier in the film talking about Atlantis. Shin is trying to figure out how Manta's helmet works (which is based on Atlantean weaponry) when Manta wakes up, and by the end of the scene, it seems they have struck up a partnership, with Manta making it clear he wants to take down Aquaman.
Obviously, Manta will be the main villain in a sequel, but it will be interesting to see how he intends to even the odds since now he won't be just taking on Aquaman, but also the kingdom of Atlantis.
What do you want to see in a sequel? Let us know in the comments!