Invincible just finished an earth-shattering conflict with his other dimensional duplicates. I guess writer, Robert Kirkman, operates under the edict of when it rains it pours because the dupe fight was only the tip of the punchy hurty iceberg. As invincible is trying to help the world recover from what he hath wrought, wouldn’t you know it, a Viltrumite shows up. This one goes by the name of Conquest and he’s a mean old bastard. This is bad news for young Mark Grayson because as his father’s alien race ages they get more powerful, and Conquest has the scarred body of a man that has been through many a war. When the two meet, Conquest states his intention to kill Invincible. Mark, who is, to be fair, still dealing with the emotional and physical fallout from his previous battle, says to the old man, “I just want to hit something really hard.” Conquest is all too happy to oblige this request. What follows is three issues of breakneck conflict with gallons of blood-spilling action.
At various points through this shockingly brutal fight those closest to Mark Grayson try to help him take on the vicious Conquest and get smacked aside like the gnats they are to the extremely powerful Conquest. Seriously, when Kid Omni-Man tries to turn the fight into a team up, the crazed old Viltrumite tries to rip him in half like a piece of jerky. As the dust-up progresses, it becomes more and more clear Conquest is enjoying the hell out of himself. Meanwhile, Invincible is taking everything that this guy can dish out like a champion human punching bag. Sure, he get some licks in, but it’s hardly a back-and-forth contest.
When Atom Eve wakes from unconsciousness still reeling from the fight with doppelgänger versions of her boyfriend, because…love, she feels the need to go try and stop the madman making a fool out of the best superhero Earth has to offer. Samantha gets beaten to death for her troubles. Like so many other male superheroes before him, watching his girlfriend gets stuffed in the proverbial refrigerator lights a fire in the bruised and broken Invincible. With a renewed vigor the hero is able to really take it to Conquest, breaking the man’s cool robotic fist with a punch of his own and then headbutting him until his adversary’s face is turned into a jelly. Despite all that carnage, Mark is lucky to escape the fight with only a broken arm and leg. He ends the war with Conquest in a bloody heap next to his newly resurrected red-haired girlfriend who rebuilt herself on a cellular level. Wait a minute. A resurrected girl with red hair. Where have I seen this before? it’s almost as though Samantha Wilkins rose like a Phoenix from the ashes of all this pain.