Publish date: June 19, 2013 Publisher: Image Comics
I have to say that this is quite odd. I haven’t read a single issue of Invincible outside of the first one (which you can read for free on Comixology here) and I’m reviewing Invincible #103. Now why would I jump into a series 100-and-some-odd issues in, you may ask? Well because I’ve heard for years now how good Invincible is. I’ve hear it from podcasts, friends, and general people on the Internet. Honestly, I don’t know why I haven’t gotten around to it until now.
But why would you just jump-in specifically here, you may ask? There are dozens of issues to go back and read which could help you judge the quality of this one, you might say. To that I reply, no. Firstly, I can read them on my own time, thank you very much. Second, variety is the spice of life. Sure it might be easier on the senses to go back and establish timelines, characters, relationships, and much more, but for the sake of keeping it fresh I’ve decided against it (for now, of course) Plus, isn’t one of the many marks of a good serialized story, and more importantly a good storyteller, that a reader can enter at any time and become interested in the fiction? Nevertheless, jumping in like this could be as jarring as getting slapped in the face with a ton of bricks, or getting hit by a bus, or getting crushed by an avalanche of in-flight neck pillows. Either way it could be a quick, painful, and slightly awkward experience.
But wait, you came here for a review didn’t you? Not to hear the ramblings and failures of a self-proclaimed comic-book fan? Well if you say so…
Invincible #103 is firstly a stopgap story, a setup for the space that will fill several issues to come. Reeling from what seems to have been big events in this universe, this issue slows things down a bit. No crazy fights, no weird events, no nothing (although it does pick up at the end.) This is the filler that a series needs to move on to the next big plot point and storyline.
With that said, this issue follows Atom Eve’s coming to terms with her pregnancy and the effects of having to deal with everyday life without using her superpowers, lest she hurt the child growing inside of her. This also marks the return of an apparently familiar villain, but I have no idea what his name is. For right now let’s just call him Brain-Man.
One thing I will say that this issue is good at, and maybe this is just Kirkman representing his talent as a veteran comic writer, but as someone that just picked up this issue randomly I could immediately tell what was going on. Invincible just had a battle between a character named Dinosaurus, which (if I remember correctly from my friends) is a stoner who can Incredible Hulk-style turn into a giant dinosaur. People are repairing the damage, but everything is at relative peace. That is, until unnamed Brain-Man (who I now know as Angstrom Levy – thanks internet!) shows up and ruins everything.
There really isn’t any reason why this issue is a must-buy. It’s nice, but like I said earlier it’s clearly a stopgap between two more interesting storylines. It’s the comic book equivalent of watching the hero eat at Taco Bell between saving the world and killing terrorists. Yeah the hero has to eat somewhere, but killing the baddies is the thing we came for. Nevertheless, the hero still needs to eat that Chulupa darn it! Similarly, we need to see the unnamed bad guy come back and watch Eve deal with being “normal”.
Wayne came here to write articles and chew bubblegum, and he’s all out of ideas for articles. After years of reading books, watching television, and playing video games, he finally started talking and writing about them. With a background in blogging for many sites over the years, he now considers himself the self-proclaimed Leader of the Mole People, as well as a lover of storytelling and music. Part-time comedian, full-time awesome. Available for life/marriage/legal counseling through his Twitter feed @ThatWayneO.