The end is near. Who will make it to the final issue? Place your bets now! Your Major Spoilers review of Invincible #134 awaits!
Writer: Robert Kirkman
Artist: Ryan Ottley
Colorist: Nathan Fairbairn
Letterer: Rus Wooton
Editor: Sean Mackiewicz
Publisher: Image Comics/Skybound
Cover Price: $3.99
Previously in Invincible: Thragg is ready to mount his final attack on the Coalition Of Planets and Invincible, finally returning the Viltrumite Empire to glory.
Mark “Invincible” Grayson is officially sick of being a hero and ready to fight back, with lethal force, if necessary. This will get ugly…
Interestingly, this issue begins not with Mark or with the cover-featured Allen The Alien, but with evil emperor Thragg himself, finally tracking down the Viltrumite girl whose brother was summarily executed by our hero a couple of issues ago. It’s a remarkably (perhaps even disturbingly tender scene) as she rages against her father for viewing his children as mere soldiers. (The word ‘soldiers’ is misspelled, which only dulls the drama a little bit.) Thragg actually comforts his purple daughter, leaving me in a weird position to feel empathy for him and distrust of our main character. Speaking of Mark, he and Eve are visited by Allen, who comes clean on the plan that led to Oliver’s death in battle: He intentionally set it up in the hopes of luring the Invinci-couple back into the fray to assist the Coalition against the encroaching Viltrumites. Eve attacks him with her powers, but Mark actually understands and forgives Allen’s manipulations, reminding everyone that the needs of the many sometimes have to outweigh the needs of the few. Mark agrees to rejoin the battle, even convincing his father, the former Omni-Man to return and speak to the remaining Viltrumites on Earth who view him as their leader as well. In the final pages, Allen begins to lay out the plan, until Mark steps in with a plan of his own…
A SENSE OF FINALITY
…which we won’t see until next issue, at least. With Kirkman’s love of dramatic reveals, we may not know what it is until the series ends in… Ten issues? Can that be right? *cue Sarah MacLachlan song* Don’t go, Invincible! I can change!
Aaaanyway, the strongest parts of this issue are all in character interaction, from Eve finally putting herself and Mark back in costume to their daughter laughing at their costumes to Omni-Man and Invincible aggressively hashing out their issues about working with the Coalition again. Of course, these sort of issues are usually followed by murder, death, pain and suffering for Kirkman’s characters, so I say enjoy the lovely stuff while you can. Ryan Ottley is in top form as well, and the shot of Thragg finding his hiding daughter/soldier is a lovely one, as is the reveal of the Coalition’s army and the Graysons back in costume. The whole issue looks great, and makes me hope that we’re going to go out in a beautiful kaleidoscope of space murder…
THE BOTTOM LINE: WHAT MAKES ‘INVINCIBLE’ GREAT
The careful reminder of the families and loved ones of our cast in this issue has me worried that we’re about to see ten issues of righteous slaughter, but I still enjoyed the whole issue. I even felt bad to see Terra Grayson in tears that her parents were going off with the Coalition, but didn’t feel horribly manipulated by it, which is both rare and wonderful. Invincible #134 sets up the conflict, reminds us of the stakes, gives us several very important character moments and brings back the costumes (ATOM EVE COSTUME! WOOT!), earning a very much deserved 4 out of 5 stars overall.
(Five bucks says Nolan doesn’t make it to the end.)