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Invincible #84 Review

3

In the wake of tragedy, Mark Grayson has had some time to consider how he wants to save the world - we might not like what he has it mind. Or maybe we will. We have no clue.

The Good

I really like that this book seems to have settled down with the plot threads running through each issue. While my main complaint about issue #63 was that too much was going on, this month things seem to have condensed a little. There are still events that make me shake my head, but not so much that I'm worried about whiplash.

The Bad

I've been following Invincible for a couple issues, and I can't help but feel like there's a consistent lack of cohesiveness to the way the characters are portrayed. Mark has slowly made a downshift into a more "true neutral" character without any of the indicators of valid character change.

I know this is what Kirkman wants: he wants us to see that Invincible has been affected by the messed up things that he's seen, and maybe not for the better. He wants Invincible to start straddling the "for the greater good" line with increasingly bad decisions until there's breaking point where he's forced to do something drastic. He wants us to feel like we've seen Mark Grayson at his worst hour.

But as it stands, that feeling just isn't there: all I got while reading this book was a profound sense of "Oh Mark, you blockhead."

The Verdict

There's a difference between having your character go through a bleak patch in their life and having the audience catch on to that fact far too early. When I can look at the decisions Mark is making and say, out loud, "Well, that's not going to end well", it kind of ruins the moment for when the proverbial poop does hit the fan.

Instead of being surprised or depressed by things going bad, the reader has already made a moral decision, and can whether themselves for the bad/stupid stuff to come. I've already decided that I'm not going to like Invincible's new plan because there hasn't been any reason for me not to; he's told us all issue that we wouldn't (through other characters), and has not given the reader any reason to trust that he might be doing something right. It's almost like Kirkman is saying "trust me on this one, guys. Remember, me? I wrote good zombie books, right?"

The question is whether we want to give him that chance again.

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Matt is taking part in Movember this month! Want to donate to him? Click here! Like what I have to say and want to read more? Want to yell at me about comics, the Internet and whatever else? Follow me on my Twitter or my personal Tumblr!

18 Comments
Posted by Primmaster64

So Mark will become some kind of Earth Emperor?

Posted by inferi22

I hate to sound like such a fanboy but you are ALWAYs way too harsh on this book, "I wrote good zombie books, right?" I mean come on that's ridiculous. If you haven't liked Invincble so far this isn't the arc for you anyways.

Edited by doordoor123

I have to say "Matt Demers" (if that IS your real name) that I really don't like your reviews. But it makes sense that you're reviewing because you are the typical angry fan boy that gives everything bad reviews unless it fits your specific criteria.

And by the way, I think you're going to find mark in a ditch soon. Remember the teaser of a new Invincible a while back? A black invincible? Same thing that the Ultimate Marvel universe did? My guess is something like suicide. Because Kirkman likes doing crazy stuff like that.

Posted by johnnyliar

Totally disagree with this review.

Posted by skaarason

when it comes to an invincible comic there is nothing bad about it , 5 stars every issue !!!

Posted by Kallarkz

@doordoor123 said:

I have to say "Matt Demers" (if that IS your real name) that I really don't like your reviews. But it makes sense that you're reviewing because you are the typical angry fan boy that gives everything bad reviews unless it fits your specific criteria.

And by the way, I think you're going to find mark in a ditch soon. Remember the teaser of a new Invincible a while back? A black invincible? Same thing that the Ultimate Marvel universe did? My guess is something like suicide. Because Kirkman likes doing crazy stuff like that.

I thought that was a joke...they are really going to get rid of Mark? wow.

Edited by doordoor123

@Kallarkz said:

@doordoor123 said:

I have to say "Matt Demers" (if that IS your real name) that I really don't like your reviews. But it makes sense that you're reviewing because you are the typical angry fan boy that gives everything bad reviews unless it fits your specific criteria.

And by the way, I think you're going to find mark in a ditch soon. Remember the teaser of a new Invincible a while back? A black invincible? Same thing that the Ultimate Marvel universe did? My guess is something like suicide. Because Kirkman likes doing crazy stuff like that.

I thought that was a joke...they are really going to get rid of Mark? wow.

No its supposed to happen in 2012

@johnnyliar said:

Totally disagree with this review.

everyone does

Posted by snowtires

I think this review shows that you don't really get this comic.

Posted by MattDemers

@snowtires said:

I think this review shows that you don't really get this comic.

Care to elaborate?

Posted by JonesDeini

@snowtires said:

I think this review shows that you don't really get this comic.

You can't make a proper critical assessment of a title this long running having only followed it for a few issues. What you can do is give a purely subjective opinion, which is what we have here.

Posted by snowtires

@JonesDeini: That's exactly my point. Invincible, more than almost any other comic out there, is something that you really need to start from issue #1 and continue on, to get the full grasp of everything. Mark's decisions don't seem so out of the ordinary if you take into account everything that he has seen and done. He is different from his father because he thinks before he rushes in fighting. He has always had the big picture in mind, and now he's finally ready to put his money where his mouth is.

Posted by inferi22

I agree with your score but your written review seems intensly negative and doesn't really match the score

Posted by Wattup

I think Invincible is a lot weaker than it used to be, and it used to be one of my favourite bookes. If Kirkman can't keep up the quality because of his outside interests, why not give the book to another writer for a bit? It'll help him re-charge his creative energies.

Posted by Gordo789
I've been following Invincible for a couple issues, and I can't help but feel like there's a consistent lack of cohesiveness to the way the characters are portrayed. Mark has slowly made a downshift into a more "true neutral" character without any of the indicators of valid character change.

If you've only been on board for a few issues you might be missing some of the characterization. I think this is a great series, haven't read this issue yet, so maybe it is a 3/5, but in general it's a pretty high quality book.

Edited by NexusOfLight

@snowtires: And not only that, but it's been pretty evident all through the series that Kirkman's making a general statement on how super heroes are in general and what they've essentially devolved to over all the years of comic history. Put simply, super heroes have become less and less about actually helping people in a practical way and more about just stopping the latest bad guy's plan from working. There've been a few other story arcs from various comics that've addressed this, but Invincible is definitely one that's been consistently tackling that problem, and through Mark, actually developing a solution to it. Super heroes helping out practically.

So like the others, I gotta fully disagree with the review simply because there's no real grasp of the thesis of the book as a whole. The current story arc isn't about Mark going through a "bleak patch," or low point in his super hero career, this isn't about him falling to some proverbial breaking point, and he isn't even making a "bad decision." He's making the only decision that coincides with the development of his character thus far.

Posted by dannymalt

I agree with commenters. The reviews from this site on Invincible have been unjustly negative for a while now. Invincible is definitely a series that needs to be read from the beginning to enjoy, and if this reviewer has just been following "for a couple issues", then I cannot take his review seriously.

Posted by Grim

@MattDemers: The easy answer here is that you have obviously not been reading from the start. Invincible has been changing as a person since issue 1.There have been 84 issues (as well as a dozen or so crossovers) that equal out to around 95% focus on Mark. there are dozens of plot points leading to the decision Mark made in this issue, and as a result just reading the last two or 5 or 10 wont cut it. You want this comic to make sense? try reading the first trade.

As my Letter (which was published in this issue!!!! Evan "Sevan" Battle!) to kirkman states, he is consistently putting REAL thought and emotion into the characters decisions, something we rarely see in superhero comics. That two page spread of Mark calmly making a realization? that happens offten in Invincible, and it adds depth.

seriously, if you want to find out why so many of us love this comic, pick up the first trade and start from there. But realize that picking up a random copy of Invincible is NOT like picking up a random copy of Spiderman. You do not know these characters if you have not been reading, and that in turn will affect how you see the choices and decisions made. And let me just say... your missing out.

Edited by ArtisticNeedham

SPOILERS AHEAD!!!

I liked this issue a lot. Not only has Mark Grayson's character been changing, but the whole comic's approach to what a superhero is, should they kill, the greater good, has been questioned. Mark has gone from being ANGRY at Cecil for hiring killers, to having killed someone to save thousands, to now teaming up with a killer of thousands for the greater good. Plus, like with the idea of Viltrumites living among Earthlings, this new concept of teaming up with Dinosaurus to embark on creating a better world. Even though it seems like he is becoming a traitor and teaming up with a bad guy, its like how Cecil teams up with bad guys all the time to save the day. Only this time Invincible is teaming up with an insanely brilliant bad guy who can actually help change things, and with Invincible guiding him (no killing) could make things better for everyone. Its funny how some of the characters, in my opinion, can be so wrong and blind. Cecil teams up with bad guys all the time, save the body of a bad guy who nearly murdered Invincible so he can ask him questions once he heals, makes tons of mistakes that turn around and cause serious damage, but still thinks he is always doing the right thing. Cecil and Mark have a talk after Mark killed someone to save a city, he tells Mark that he killed someone but is still a good person. And says its the same with the killers he employs, but its never addressed that Mark is a hero who killed while the people he hires are killers who are trying to do good things. I guess I am rambling now. My point is this comic occasionally approaches the idea of what makes a super being a hero, and stuff like that. This issue goes into the idea that a bad guy's evil plans would actually help, and Invincible wants to try to use that evil genius to help change the world for the better without killing. What if they did a future issue, like when Mark went into the future, and we see that Mark and Dinosaurus have created a Utopia without killing anyone.

This comic was fun I thought. I'd give it maybe a 4 out of 5.