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Aquaman 2's Mysterious Villain's Disturbing Origin Story Explained

The recent trailer for "Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom" teased the arrival of several new characters to the undersea world of Atlantis. The film will feature the likes of the shark villain Karshon (Indya Moore), as well as Stingray (Jani Zhao), to go with the film's main bad guy, Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II). However, one thing that leaked from the reveal of a new action figure from McFarlane Toys was the role of King Kordax in the film.

In the comics, centuries before Aquaman would become King of Atlantis, the "Atlantis Chronicles" told stories of the Royal Family from the past. In the lore-expanding DC Comics tales by Peter David and Esteban Maroto, readers are introduced to Kordax, who is the son of Dardanus, who himself is the son of the Atlantean sorcerer, Shalako. In the complicated history, Dardanus would go after King Orin (the first to use the name), believing he was responsible for his father sacrificing and killing his mother while turning his kind into creatures by trusting them with a serum that allowed them to breathe everywhere under water. 

To get revenge, Dardanus sexually assaulted Orin's daughter, Cora, leading to the birth of Kordax. However, when Kordax finally showed his face and made a claim for the throne, he wasn't welcomed with open arms, as he was seen as an outcast due to his scaly skin and monster-like features.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

What could Kordax's role in Aquaman 2 be?

Kordax, armed with the ability to control sea life, would make a play for power, leading the Tritonians against the Poseidonians (ruled by King Orin and his descendants), but would ultimately lose his battle against them. As a result, he was banished from the kingdom and had his left hand chopped off. Kordax's failed attack would also lead Atlanteans to adopt the omen, "The Curse of Kordax," leading to any blonde-haired individual born in Atlantis being abandoned, with Atlanteans believing it was a sign of deformation. Aquaman himself was left to die as an infant by the former King Trevis as a child due to the curse.

The action figure reveals a much more monstrous look for Kordax than he appeared in the comics, with the live-action version looking like he could be part of the Trench. How could Kordax fit into "Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom?" With the movie featuring Arthur Curry (Jason Momoa) and Mera's (Amber Heard) baby, they may be asked to abandon their child in the name of the curse. It remains unlikely Aquaman or Mera would agree, which could set up the central conflict of the movie. Or, it's equally possible that Kordax is looking to get revenge on Atlantis and its people and will join Black Manta in fighting against the kingdom after his own abandonment. Regardless of his role, Kordax's appearance in "Aquaman 2" will expand the film's lore even more and introduce a villain with one of the most tragic origins in comics. It will be interesting to see which elements make the cut in live-action.