- "I knew you couldn't stand on the sidelines forever. Your mother always knew you were special. She believed you'd be the one to unite our two worlds."
- ―Thomas Curry to Arthur Curry[src]
In 1985, Thomas, a lighthouse keeper in Amnesty Bay, Maine, found and rescued Atlanna, the queen of the underwater nation of Atlantis, who was washed ashore unconscious near his lighthouse. He soon fell in love with her, and in January of the following year, Atlanna gave birth to their infant son, Arthur.
In 1989, elite Atlantean solders attacked the lighthouse due to Atlanna's abandonment of her people, and although she fended them off, Atlanna was forced to return to the oceans in order to face King Orvax for her betrayal, leaving both Thomas and Arthur behind. She did, however, promise to return one day. For the next 29 years, Thomas went out to the pier every single day waiting for Atlanna's return, but to no avail.
By January or February of 2018, Thomas had become used to his son becoming a publicly-known hero a year after Steppenwolf's invasion of Earth. While he and Arthur were drinking beer at a local bar and discussing Arthur's heroic rescue of several Russian Navy soldiers, a tough-looking group of patrons approached the two with seeming intent to pick a fight, but who rather wanted pictures with Arthur.
Threatened by Orm
Reunited with his true love
After Arthur defeated Orm and was crowned as the rightful King of Atlantis, Thomas walked down to the pier once more until he was surprised to Atlanna waiting for him. At the sight of his one true love, Thomas rushed up to Atlanna and happily embraced her, before they shared a kiss.
Thomas is dedicated, compassionate and courageous. He is supportive of his son's heroics and believes in him more than Arthur did. He also loved his wife Atlanna and would wait at the pier every morning until she came back twenty years later.
- "You want me to have them put that in a sippy cup for you?"
"How is that I can breathe underwater, but you can still drink me under the table?"
"That's my superpower."
- ―Thomas and Arthur Curry[src]
- Peak human metabolism: Thomas Curry has consistently drunken his son under the table, despite the latter's high-born Atlantean anatomy.
Behind the scenes
- In the DC Comics universe, Tom Curry was originally the biological father of Arthur Curry along with Atlanna. On her deathbed, Atlanna revealed to her son that she is the exiled Queen of Atlantis and he would someday inherit rule of the seven seas. Tom then raised Arthur and taught him to control his powers, eventually allowing him to grow up and become Aquaman. In Post-Crisis, Tom Curry found Arthur as a child swimming in the ocean. He became the boy's friend, mentor and gave him the name Arthur. One day, Arthur returned from a swim in the sea to find his foster father gone. Presumably, he was dead, because he never returned, Arthur was then left to return to the sea alone. In the New 52, Atlanna rescued Tom from a terrible storm and the two soon after fell in love. Together they had Arthur but Atlanna was forced to return to Atlantis. When Arthur's superhuman abilities began to manifest, Thomas was forced to reach out to Doctor Stephen Shin, believing his hunt for answers about Atlantis would make him the best qualified. Shin became desperate in his desire to reach Atlantis, and the believed Arthur could lead him there. He eventually went public and in act of desperation, he turned to Black Manta to recover a small sample of Arthur's blood to verify his claims. Instead, Manta attacked the lighthouse and attempted to murder Arthur, where he had a heart attack. He later dies at the hospital after spending his final moments with Arthur.
- Clint Elvy was a stunt double for Temuera Morrison in the role of Thomas Curry.