We Don't Deserve Justin Hartley's Forgotten TV Pilot

Photo: Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images
This Is Us is a game-changer of a family drama, and its cast is quickly becoming one of the most beloved squads in Hollywood. While the show boasts big names like Mandy Moore and Milo Ventimiglia, other cast members were relative unknowns before skyrocketing to fame on the NBC series. But, plot twist! Audiences were actually robbed of years of the real-life Kevin Pearson being a household name: Justin Hartley once starred in an Aquaman pilot, and it is a travesty that his series never made it to air.
The unaired pilot, which was scrapped by one-time network The WB in 2006 (this was before television decided it was going to make all the superhero shows) has resurfaced thanks to The Hollywood Reporter, who uncovered a trailer for the prospective TV series.
It is a true television gift.
You will find none of the grittiness of the current rendition of the DC characters in this trailer. Instead, the unsold Aquaman pilot is sort of like if The O.C. had a baby with...er, I don't know, that Disney Channel Original Movie The Thirteenth Year? All I know is that Hartley is a surfer bro version of Aquaman, the Bermuda triangle is involved, and sure, the CGI could be better, but there's some genuine heart to this thing! As we hear in a particularly unsettling voiceover, Aquaman's mom died in a plane crash, just like Jack Pearson potentially did on This Is Us. (We still don't know how Jack died. Just saying.)
Aquaman then has to find out what really happened to his mother, as well as the seemingly hundreds of thousands of people who also disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle. (There is literally a warehouse filled with photos of those who vanished in this particular section of the ocean, which makes no sense, but still. What a mystery!)
The trailer ends with the song "Downfall" by TRUSTCompany, because it was 2006.
According to THR, you can watch the entire pilot on iTunes, but I completely understand if it's too painful to see exactly what could have been. For just a taste of the action, watch this trailer:

More from TV

R29 Original Series