‘Invincible’ is a 2021 animated superhero action series adapted from the comics by Robert Kirkman, Cory Walker and Ryan Ottley from Image Comics. It is an adult animation series that revolves around a high school teen, Mark Grayson, who is the son of the strongest man on the planet Omni Man. The show follows Mark’s discovery of his own powers and his ventures as a superhero along with his father, of course, with a bit of a twist. It features Steve Yuen as Mark Grayson, Sandra Oh as Debbie Grayson, his mother, and J. K. Simmons as Omni Man.
What is it about a comic strip no one had heard about that it storms the stage of superhero series in a whiff?
The first thing to note from Invincible is definitely the multiple plot points that open up and methodologically discussed them in progression. At first viewing, one might be startled by the extremely large number of characters, but it all ties up in the future. The episodes are vividly balanced with colors and simple imagery and also gore and graphic violence, somewhat unexplored by other series. As a newbie myself, having never read the comics, it has left an impact and really pushes you to research beyond the pre-existing comics from Marvel and DC. It is indeed a revelation to see how popular it has become in garnering fans in just a few months since its release. The first season is currently streaming on Amazon Prime Video, with 2 more scheduled to come in next years.
Besides its already beautifully structured plot, what works for Invincible is how much it leaves us guessing and gasping throughout the show. Just when you think you have got an answer to what happened, you’ll be questioning much more about something else. This paired with great voice acting from Yuen and Simmons, and some old-school animation right from the drawing board adding to the graphics makes it a pleasure to watch. We are shown implied connections to the DC and Marvel comics, but it is dissimilar in the strictest meaning of the word as the story just exceeds any expectations that one might have.
The directors’ attention to details is worthy of mentioning. For example, every time the title sequence is played, there’s a layered splash of blood, possibly hinting at the amount of blood spilled in that episode. It is almost impossible to review the show without revealing too much, but one theme is maintained; it steers away from the notion that superheroes are demigods who have no flaws and focus more on why they should exist at an esteemed status at all. Its closest comparison can be made to the show The Boys (2019-) but there is the cultural aspect of superheroes of it that are not talked about in Invincible.
Why should you watch Invincible?
One thing about the show is that it is not just any animated superhero series you can just casually watch for an hour and forget about. It has characteristics of a drama, scenes of pure action and bloodshed, thrills of an adventure movie and humor of a sit-com, all making it a very enjoyable viewing experience. It is also not everyone’s cup of tea because of the same, but it will promise to keep you entertained throughout, even if you feel overwhelmed by all that is happening on screen. Try it by watching the first episode, and if that doesn’t get you hooked, then you can check out the review on Free Guy (2021) or for the romantics, The Kissing Booth 3 (2021).