Comic Review: Invincible, Vol. 2: Eight is Enough

Published: May 10th, 2004
Written by: Robert Kirkman
Art by: Cory Walker

Image Comics, 128 Pages

Review:

I’ve only read the volume before this one, so my knowledge of the broader Invincible universe isn’t very deep.

So far, I like what I’ve read, including this volume, which covers the second story arc in the series. Where the first volume is essentially the origin and backstory of the character and his family, this one serves to kill off the already established heroes of the main characters’ universe, leaving a gap for new heroes to grow up and enter the fray.

The old heroes, who we barely meet before they are murdered, are parodies of Justice League characters. They’re not too imaginative or exciting but I guess it was to symbolize a killing off of old heroes (in this case, a shot across the bow at DC Comics), in an effort to establish younger and more hip characters (a.k.a. Image Comics new breed of superhero titles that were coming out at the time). There is even a few shots thrown at Marvel, most notably in the form of the ridiculous villain Bi-Plane, who is a parody of the Spider-Man villain Vulture.

I do love the lightheartedness of this series. It is reminiscent of classic Spider-Man in the best way possible and also has a sort of charm similar to classic Superman. I talked about the similarities to both those long running series in the last review though.

This chapter also sees the disbanding of the teen superhero team that Invincible got pulled into in the previous story arc. It may feel too early in the series’ existence to start changing some things but I feel like it is in a state of flux with this chapter, as Robert Kirkman was still trying to find the proper footing for the series and was refining the details a bit.

Not a whole lot happens, other than the changes I’ve discussed already. But we do get to see cameos from the Savage Dragon, Super Patriot and Shadowhawk, who have all been a part of Image Comics since it launched in 1992.

Rating: 7/10
Pairs well with: The Invincible collected editions that follow this one.

Comic Review: Invincible, Vol. 1: Family Matters

Published: December 12th, 2006
Written by: Robert Kirkman
Art by: Cory Walker

Image Comics, 120 Pages

Review:

I have heard great things about Invincible for several years. I have also loved Roberet Kirkman’s work on The Walking Dead, his most famous creation. So I figured that delving into Kirkman’s lighter side was long overdue.

I have often times heard of the character of Invincible as being a mixture of Superman’s powers with the personality of Spider-Man. I guess that’s pretty accurate, after having read his first story arc. His father is actually more of a Superman type of hero and then Invincible hits puberty and develops similar powers albeit not yet as strong as his father’s.

This story serves as the origin tale for Invincible and his family. It also goes to setup his super powered team of teens that are trying to keep their town free of scum and villainy.

There isn’t enough to the story here to get the full feeling of the series. It’s a good place to start, obviously, and it has made me interested in reading through the first few volumes to see if it is a series I want to stick with over the long haul. I guess the only real negative is that it feels like too much of a rehash of things I’ve read elsewhere and for years. I hope that Kirkman takes this series in a direction that allows it to stand out and not just be a hybrid of Superman and Spider-Man while retreading all too familiar territory. I hope that the comic finds its own voice, even if it is a solid homage to its influences, thus far.

Invincible has the makings of something interesting and Kirkman is certainly an accomplished writer. If he can make zombie stories interesting for over ten years, I’m sure he can do the same for a young hero.

Rating: 7.5/10
Pairs well with: The Invincible collected editions that follow this one.