‘Aquaman’ Post-Credits Scene Explained

Chris HydeGetty Images

Warning: this article contains spoilers for Aquaman.

If a superhero movie doesn’t contain a post-credits scene these days, is it even really a superhero movie? Aquaman certainly is as it follows in several of its predecessor’s footsteps and contains an end-credits scene. This time around there is only one scene that fans needed to wait for and it didn’t take long. A little before half-way through the credits the scene popped up, and not at the very end as one might expect.

The finale of Aquaman saw Arthur Curry becoming the rightful King of Atlantis after he defeats his brother, King Orm (Patrick Wilson) for the throne. While Orm was the main antagonist throughout the film, Arthur still had to battle David Kane (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II) at the film’s beginning and halfway through. Kane was ultimately working for King Orm and was seeking vengeance for his father who drowns at the beginning of the film after a fight with Aquaman. Despite losing in his second fight with Arthur, Kane was proven to be alive during the post-credits scene, via CNet.

The end-credits scene shows Kane recuperating from his battle alongside Dr. Stephen Shin (Randall Park) who fans saw in a TV interview briefly at the beginning of the film. Shin is one of the only surface dwellers who believes in the existence of Atlantis and can be seen arguing with news anchors in a very short scene. It appears as if Kane and Shin will be working alongside one another in the possible upcoming sequel to Aquaman, or even Suicide Squad 2.

In the sequel (which has yet to be announced), Kane will continue to take on the popular Aquaman villain role of Black Manta who debuted halfway through the film. Kane’s grandfather had been given the manta nickname in his past piracy, and now Kane wields the same knife featuring the animal’s symbol. Kane donned the Black Manta suit during his fight with Aquaman in Sicily and introduced himself as such, but the real storyline will continue in a future DCEU movie.

In the comics, Black Manta has a hatred for the sea and seeks to defeat Aquaman, who he sees a symbol of the oceans. Kane was kidnapped as a young boy and forced to work on a boat. He spotted Aquaman one day and tried to get his attention to save him, but he went unnoticed. Once he became older he formed an army and attempted to become master of the ocean, but ultimately failed. Black Manta was also a member of DC’s Injustice League and is currently a member of the Legion of Doom.

As for Dr. Shin, he is friends with Arthur’s father, Tom Curry, in the comics. Dr. Shin also helped train Arthur in his young age, but eventually turned on him when Arthur would not reveal the location of Atlantis. Later in life, Arthur and Mera seek the help of Dr. Shin in identifying where the trench monsters came from. Arthur and Shin eventually argue again after Arthur refuses to leave the monster’s body with him, creating even more angst in the doctor. Shin’s story is fairly open after that, leaving the DCEU to create any storyline they see fit.

Aquaman is now in theaters everywhere.