Atlantis, officially the Kingdom of Atlantis, is an underwater kingdom located somewhere deep in the Atlantic Ocean. It is home to the ancient, isolated, and highly advanced Atlantean culture. Originally part of a larger Atlantean empire, the present-day Atlantis is now one of four surviving kingdoms after the Great Fall.
As Atlantis is heavily isolated from the surface, the only way into the kingdom is a colossal glowing gate in front of an ancient bridge that is heavily guarded by both stinger squadrons and shark cavalry and enforced by a massive array of powerful hydro-cannons.
During the First Invasion of Earth, the armies of Atlantis sided with the Amazons and the tribes of Mankind to fight off Darkseid's army and prevented the destruction of earth from the Apokoliptian conqueror. Aided by the Old Gods and Yalan Gur, the armies of Earth fought off the invaders, at a heavy price.
However, the forces of Earth were successful in driving away the invasion. Afterward, the Mother Boxes retrieved from the Apokoliptians were given to the armies of Earth for safeguarding, anticipating the eventual return of the forces.
Eventually Atlantis developed a series of new technologies centered upon their greatest achievement - the discovery of an inexhaustible source of energy, allowing the creation of machine walkers, advanced aircraft and the powerful Trident of Atlan. During a test of the Trident, a massive energy pulse violently radiated outward and destroyed Atlantis, causing it to sink into the sea with great loss of life.
As a result of the disaster, Atlantis and its empire splintered into seven successor kingdoms. Atlantis itself would form its own kingdom while others, such as Xebel, the Kingdom of the Deserters, the Fishermen, the Trench, the Brine, and the Missing Kingdom were formed from breakaway factions. As time went on, the seven Kingdoms would eventually undergo significant changes, either surviving, evolving to a new form, collapse or completely die out: Atlantis and Xebel would survive to the present day and retain the original characteristics of the ancient Atlanteans. The Kingdom of the Fishermen evolved to become fish-like and are considered adverse to conflict. The Kingdom of the Brine evolved into a crab-like and brutish people. The Kingdom of the Trench has regressed into savage creatures incapable of speech or intelligent thought. The Kingdom of the Deserters died out as the Sahara became a desert. The Missing Kingdom was reported to have completely disappeared, leading to it being called "lost."
The Fall had an unexpected side effect: the energy pulse affected the survivors biologically, causing them to gain the ability to breath underwater and superhuman strength needed to survive in the deep ocean. Alongside the biological improvements, the survivors safely harnessed the energy source to rebuild their destroyed civilization despite the Atlantean empire splintering.
As a result of the Fall, the despondent King Atlan took the Trident and went into exile, never to be seen again by anyone. His last words were copied onto a recording device and left clues to his whereabouts for future generations to find.
The Myth of Atlantis
With the fall of Atlantis, the records of its existence practically fell into the realm of myth over the years. Yet even as a myth, the idea of Atlantis failed to fully dissappear. In 360 B.C., the philosopher Plato wrote a text called "Timaeus" which contained the first known recorded reference of Atlantis since its fall. In 200 A.D., the individual Zoticus wrote an epic poem based around Atlantis. In the year 1627 A.D., the Renaissance Utopian Francis Bacon wrote a text called "New Atlantis". In 1898 A.D., the American Poet Edith Willis Linn Forbes wrote the text "The Lost Atlantis."
During these interceding years, various theories were crafted about the possible reason for Atlantis' fall. The second most popular theory that came about was the idea that Atlantis was the victim of an initial alien attack and was followed up by later abductions. The theory posited the notion from the idea that Atlantis was simply too advanced for Earth at the time.
The Search for the Missing Paradise
The ensuing secrecy and uncertainty of Atlantis' existence later prompted various enterprises to try their hand at finding the missing kingdom. The first-ever recorded expedition was carried out in 1892 by a Catalan team armed with the latest in scuba-diving technology. They sought to find it near the northwestern coast of Africa. After numerous failed attempts, the expedition came to a frustrating end, with the team disbanding soon after.
The second recorded expedition was manned by a Peruvian diving team, who in 1941, began testing diving depths off the coast of the Mediterranean. Due to the onset of World War II, however, the diving team soon ran out of financial sponsors, forcing them aground.
The third and last well-known recorded expedition was led by the American brothers George and William Falken during or after the year 1971. They carried out the venture believing that they had uncovered an intricate hatch or entrance to Atlantis itself. Upon departing their skipper, they utilized their scuba-diving equipment to reach a remote depth within the Atlantic Ocean. Their whereabouts afterwards would be left unknown to the world at large.
The fourth and final expedition was carried out by Arthur Curry, the first born son of Queen Atlanna and a claimant to the throne. Raised all his life in the human world, at the age of 13, Arthur Curry met the royal advisor Vulko who regaled him with stories about Atlantis, its inhabitants and the various wonders involved in its existence, showing him items from the place and teaching him more about its customs. As a result, Arthur began fantasizing about going to the place on his own one day. Regardless of Vulko and Arthur's fathers opposition to going to Atlantis at that point, Arthur began preparing for an expedition of his own, going on short trips to scout ahead. After packing a disposable camera, a scuba suit, beef jerky and Atlantean coins, Arthur set off towards the direction of Atlantis. At a certain point, Arthur blacked out underwater and was rescued by a whale that towed him back to shore. Upon awaking on shore, he was chastised by Vulko, which in turn angered Arthur.
During his return to Earth, Steppenwolf invaded the Atlantean Stronghold in his quest to re-obtain and unify the Mother Boxes. There, he faced off against Mera and Arthur, as well a few numbers of the Atlantean guards. Despite their attempts to combat his invasion, Steppenwolf successfully retrieved the Mother Box, escaping through a Boom Tube. Aquaman decided to join the Justice League and Steppenwolf was later defeated.
- It was stated when Atlantis split into seven kingdoms, four of the seven are needed to ascend and attack. At the beginning of Aquaman, it had to be unanimous among the four remaining kingdoms to attack. This implies that this law is not focused on majority rules, but rather having a strong enough army to conquer the surface.
- It was initially a majority rules system, but the law seems to be written such that the number of kingdoms was never expected to change, as with three kingdoms inactive, the remaining four need to agree unanimously.
- Beall, Will, Wan, James, Johns, Geoff (writers) & Wan, James (director) (December 21, 2018). Aquaman.
- Terrio, Chris, Whedon, Joss (writers) & Snyder, Zack (director) (November 17, 2017). Justice League.
- West, Alexandra (November 6, 2018). Aquaman: Arthur's Guide to Atlantis. United States: HarperCollins.