Any time a comic book property is adapted for the screen, changes have to be made. With decades of comic book history, multiple comic book universes, and a lot of reset timelines, it can be nearly impossible to make a complete “comics accurate” story or character. That’s also the case for DC’s movies featuring Aquaman characters like Mera.
When Mera made her comic book debut, it was in the 1960s. She was a woman from a kingdom under the sea who fell in love with the man who would be king of Atlantis. Over the years, her story has been fleshed out to make her much more than just the love interest of a superhero. Her live-action appearances on film, played by Amber Heard, have done their best to combine different aspects of her story with the live-action continuity, providing a new version of the character who doesn’t always fall in line with her comic book counterpart.
10 Accurate: Mera Falls For Aquaman
Mera’s backstory in the comics has been retconned to make it clear that she was never actually supposed to fall for Aquaman. She did anyway because she found him to be a genuinely good person despite what she’d been told about him.
In the movie, she’s not looking for love, but for someone to help her save the kingdom. Arthur wins her over in spite of her initial reluctance to have anything to do with him. While she originally sees him as brash and unworthy of a throne, she comes to know him better than that.
9 Inaccurate: She’s Not Sent To The Surface To Bring Him Back
The movies see Mera go to Arthur specifically to help her save Atlantis. In Justice League, it’s to help save the entire world, but in Aquaman, it’s to stop Orm from leading all of the underwater kingdoms.
The comics see Mera journey to find him for a very different reason. She’s supposed to befriend him, then assassinate him so that he can’t lead the people of Atlantis. Mera is part of a very old revenge plot that involves her being trained in combat as well as in spycraft.
8 Accurate: Her Costume Is Comic Inspired
Both Mera’s Justice League and Aquaman costumes are very accurate to the comics. The costume of the former is designed based on the one she wears to war in the comics.
In Aquaman, her costume is more akin to her everyday wear in the comics. Even her jellyfish adorned dress in the movie is like the gown she wears to her coronation in her comic book miniseries – though she doesn’t accessorize with jellyfish there.
7 Inaccurate: Mera Can Actually Defeat Ocean Master Alone
Mera brings Arthur to Atlantis because she wants him to eventually challenge his half-brother for the throne in the movies. She doesn’t think Orm is fit to rule all seven underwater kingdoms, but she never outright challenges him herself. She could.
In the comics, even in weakened states when she’s been without water for days, she’s more than a match for Orm. Mera has actually defeated him in combat more than once on her own.
6 Accurate: Her Ability To Draw Moisture From A Body
Twice on screen Mera uses her ability to manipulate water in a unique way. She draws water out of people’s bodies with incredible control.
The first time she does it is to pull water from Arthur’s father’s lungs so he doesn’t drown. The second time is in the Kingdom of the Deserters when she pulls a drop of water from Arthur to bring moisture to a dried out Atlantean device. In the comics, she uses this ability in combat as well, pulling enough moisture from an opponent’s body to appear as though they’ve been without water for days.
5 Inaccurate: Nereus As Her Father
Dolph Lundgren portrays Nereus for the movie. He’s the leader of Xebel, one of the Atlantean kingdoms, and Mera’s father. That’s not actually who Nereus was in the comics.
In the comics, Nereus was the man Mera left behind that she’s supposed to marry. That plot point becomes part of Orm’s story for the movie instead.
4 Accurate: Mera Does Not Understand The World Above The Water
Unlike Arthur, Mera doesn’t spend any of her formative years on land. She lives and breathes for her underwater kingdom and its people. Mera values their history and their customs.
She does not understand the customs above the water at all. In fact, on more than one occasion, she’s come to the surface and completely ignored any rules or regulations in favor of doing things her way. The movie plays up her confusion with the surface for comedic effect – like eating roses – but the comics make it more serious – like her ripping doors off of jail cells to free her friends.
3 Inaccurate: Atlanna As Her Teacher
Mera makes mention in the film that she and Orm learn from Atlanna as children. She teaches them, presumably, about both Atlantis and the surface since she has already given birth to Arthur at that point. Orm refers to her teachings as “treason.”
In the comics, Mera never studies under Atlanna. In fact, she doesn’t even spend any time in Atlantis as a child, only meeting Atlanna well into her relationship with Arthur.
2 Accurate: Mera Always Wants The Best Leader For Atlantis
Mera has been embroiled in a lot of royal conflict on behalf of Atlantis. Much like her deciding to go against Orm and track down Arthur, Mera’s place in the conflict always stems from the same place.
Mera cares deeply for Atlantis and its people. She places the safety and prosperity of the kingdom above anything else. As a result, Mera is always committed to the kingdom having the best ruler it can, even if it’s not her.
1 Inaccurate: She’s Actually From A Forgotten Kingdom
The way the different kingdoms are structured in the movie is very different from the comics. Like the comics, Mera is from Xebel. Unlike the comics, Xebel isn’t exactly an Atlantean ally.
Mera’s home is actually a place separated from the rest of the ocean by a dimensional rift. It becomes known to surface dwellers as the Bermuda Triangle. Historically, it’s a place where Atlanteans who disagreed with the royal family were sent. There, the residents initially hold a lot of hostility toward Atlantis, which is why Mera is first sent to get rid of Aquaman.NEXT: Arrowverse: 5 Times Melissa Benoist’s Supergirl Was Comics Accurate (& 5 Times She Wasn’t)
Is Amber Heard's Mera comic accurate? There are some instances where she has been, and some she has not.