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Black Manta
Debut "To Another Shore" (September 2005)
Played by Michael Beach

Black Manta has appeared in Justice League as a villain. Despite actually being Aquaman's archenemy, Manta actually encountered Wonder Woman during most of his appearances. In fact, there has been some speculation that this version of Black Manta is actually a nemesis of Wonder Woman, since he is attempting to kill her numerous times.


Black Manta was originally supposed to make an appearance in an early Justice League episode "The Enemy Below, Part 1." He was intended to be the one that Orm hired to assassinate Aquaman. They changed it to Deadshot, however, since it wouldn't have been suitable for his character. Black Manta was asked by Gorilla Grodd to join his expanding Secret Society (a.k.a. Legion of Doom). An obvious choice because he took great pleasure and pride in his heinous work. Black Manta’s armor was greatly advanced by Lex Luthor, and Grodd put the souped up Black Manta to the test when he sent Black Manta out on a mission to retrieve the corpse of the Viking Prince, an ancient warrior that Grodd believed held the key to invulnerability, from a melting glacier. When Wonder Woman confronted him, Black Manta shot her with a poison dart, and if not for King Faraday, he would have killed her. When the Viking ship thawed, Manta towed it with a submarine, and was followed by Wonder Woman. He engaged the Amazon to fight in an underwater battle, after nearly poisoning Wonder Woman on the surface, and even though Black Manta was in his "natural" environment, Wonder Woman defeated him by catching him off-guard and cracking his helmet with her legs from behind, leaving him adrift. After having his armor destroyed Black Manta was handed over to authorities to be put away, but he soon escaped to rejoin the Society. Not long after, Manta was sent on another mission. This time he was sent steal the Heart of Nanda Parbat. Black Manta wouldn't allow anyone to stop him on this mission, so he disposed of the monastery's Master, Deadman's mentor. This allowed Luthor and Tala to steal the power force needed to enact Grodd's scheme. After the Secret Society was defeated in Gorilla City,Black Manta escaped and continued to run-ins with Batman and Wonder Woman while exacting his own schemes. Black Manta strongly resembles his comic book version, right down to helmet and a suit that allowed him to breathe underwater and withstand deep-sea pressures. It was also equipped with rocket boosters that enabled him to fly and navigate underwater, and two wrist-mounted guns. The guns in his gauntlets allow him to shoot poisonous or explosive stingers or laser bolts at his targets, and also an array of venomous or explosive trident-shaped stingers. The suit itself heavily resembles the suit Black Manta wore in the Filmation Aquaman cartoons.

  • Black Manta later appeared in Justice League Unlimited #26. He is aided by Felix Faust in an attempt to conquer Atlantis. Because of Felix Faust's appearance, the issue is out of continuity. Black Manta was called Devil Ray in the series because of legal issues.

Weapons & Equipment

Black Manta owns a massive arsenal of weaponry, equipment, and vehicles of his own designs. Most of these are naturally custom made, and are of his very own designs. As to how Black Manta is capable of manufacturing or who is manufacturing his supply still remains unknown. It is possible and most likely that Black Manta keeps maybe more than one storage throughout the world that holds all his weapons, equipment, and Manta suit if ever needed. He has amassed a considerable fortune over the years through his exploits as a treasure hunter, that pays for his equipment and henchmen.</p>

Manta Suit

One piece of Manta’s equipment (which in fact is a trademark weapon) is his custom made diving suit. Fitted and designed from durable and lightweight materials that covers his entire body below the neck, the suit gives him not only gives him resistance against the ocean pressure and temperatures, but also grants him a degree of super human durability and strength as well. He has been shown to be able to trade punches with Aquaman for a while, survive big falls, being smashed through a car by Aquaman and being shot point blank by a sniper bullet. Much like his names sake, Manta’s suit also serves as a darker form of a camouflage that’s very useful within dark spots, shadows, and even within caves that have him blended into the ocean environment perfectly. Finally the suit also greatly increases Manta's underwater mobility (through some sort of jet pack) and allows him to shoot out of the water at great heights.</p>

The massive helmet he wears is perfectly fitted for Manta and is capable of absorbing a certain amount impact that protects his head against most damages. Alongside the helmet are thick metallic breather tubes that connects with the compatible oxygen tank attached to his back, which the tank also has the same durable materials that protects Manta’s oxygen supply as well. The suit allows Manta to breathe underwater indefinitely. Within the helmet, Manta has a certain form of vision that’s either used by electrical or mirrored optical means seeing how his head is mostly placed within the neck portion of the helmet. What is known about Manta’s helmet is that it does contain infrared vision, scope vision, and possibly better viewing within his blind spots that has him more aware of his surroundings. Within the head portion of the helmet is a built-in device that causes the eyes of the helmet to fire powerful energy blasts that could harm a meta-human or easily kill a normal man.</p>

Among the features of Manta’s suit, overtime the suit found itself upgraded and added with extra weaponry such a jet-boots capable of giving Manta increase speed and maneuverability within and out of the water, wrist attachments fire pocket size missiles, electric bolts, fire rounds, harpoons, etc.</p>

Manta has also been seen in various modified suits that contains extra padding and more installation of weaponry and equipment. But despite how much features these new suit give, Manta always finds himself relying on the original.

  • Superhuman Strength
  • Superhuman Durability
  • Underwater Adaptation
  • Underwater Mobility
  • Electricity Insulation
  • Electrical Discharges
  • Powerful Optic Blasts (via helmet)

Powers & Abilities

Black Manta is one of the deadliest villains and although he does not possess any superpowers, his skills, equipment, and relentless drive more than make up for it.</p>

Expert Diver / Treasure Hunter

Black Manta is one of the world's best divers and treasure hunters. He is the first choice for missions that require the salvage of underwater treasures or the discovery of undiscovered sights. He is also an expert in underwater fighting.

Expert Assassin

Black Manta is also one of the world's best assassins. Manta has developed his own deadly fighting style (both underwater and on land), that utilizes his special suit and an assortment of piercing and slashing weapons (both melee and ranged). He is also very adaptable and able to use anything to his advantage such as his environment. His combat skills allowed him to keep up with Wonder Woman in a fight. He was able to nearly defeat Wonder Woman.

Black Mantis also has a deep understanding of martial arts, pressure points and human anatomy. He was able to inflict unbearable pain on Wonder Woman by jamming his fingers in a nerve cluster in her shoulder.


Manta is a master of planning and tactics. He uses ambushes, sneak attacks and his environment to his advantage. When fighting Wonder Woman underwater he planned to wear her down and make her waste energy so she would drown eventually. He was able to use his agility to his advantage and nearly defeated her by catching her in a hold and inflict excruciating pain through a pressure point in her shoulder. However he ended up defeated after she crushed his helmet.

Poison expert

Manta is skilled in the use of poison.

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