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What the Aquaman Post-Credits Scene Means for the DC Extended Universe

3 minute read

Warning: This post contains spoilers for Aquaman.

When it comes to movies in both the Marvel Cinematic Universe and DC Extended Universe, after credits scenes that set up future installments are pretty much the status quo. And Aquaman, the latest DC release, is no different.

Shortly after Aquaman (Jason Momoa) successfully recovers Atlan’s trident and defeats his half-brother Orm (Patrick Wilson), a.k.a. Ocean Master, Arthur Curry’s first solo adventure comes to an end. But judging by the post-credits — or in this case, mid-credits — scene, it won’t be his last.

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In the Aquaman end credit scene, an injured Black Manta (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), who was left for dead by Aquaman after falling off a cliff into the ocean, is found floating on a piece of debris by some fisherman and Dr. Stephen Shin (Randall Park), a scientist who is mocked earlier in the movie for his belief in the existence of Atlantis. Manta then wakes up in a laboratory to find Shin examining his Atlantean armor and the two strike a deal: Manta will take Shin to Atlantis if Shin helps him find and kill Aquaman.

The post-credits scene seems to clearly set up an Aquaman sequel with Black Manta as the primary villain. And Manta himself apparently agrees.

“[Black Manta] has an opportunity to show up anywhere where Aquaman is,” Abdul-Mateen II told Comicbook.com of his character’s sequel potential. “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 what I know and the human that the fans and the people in this universe have grown to love over the years.”

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Despite the fact that Warner Bros. has yet to officially greenlight a sequel, with Aquaman already pulling in big numbers at the box office, a second movie seems inevitable. So what does this mean for the DC Extended Universe?

If it was up to Momoa, some of Aquaman’s fellow Justice League members would make an appearance in the next movie.

“I love Flash. I absolutely love Ezra [Miller].He’s like family to me, so just to have him on set…” Momoa told Collider when asked which DC characters he’d like to see join Aquaman on screen. “I think Wonder Woman would be pretty rad, too. Flash and Wonder Woman would be my first two. I don’t wanna pick one, so I’ll pick two.”

Considering Aquaman director James Wan was originally offered the opportunity to make a standalone Flash movie, the possibility of a Flash cameo doesn’t seem too far-fetched.

Not to mention that the Justice League post-credits scene — featuring a newly escaped Lex Luthor (Jesse Eisenberg) recruiting Deathstroke (Joe Manganiello) for the villainous Injustice League — seemed to set up a Justice League sequel, a reunion that would presumably also include Aquaman.

In the meantime, DC enthusiasts can look forward to Shazam!, which will open on April 5, 2019 and stars Zachary Levi as the hero. There’s also a standalone Joker movie starring Joaquin Phoenix that will hit theaters on Oct. 4, 2019.

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Write to Megan McCluskey at megan.mccluskey@time.com