Things are pretty quiet this time out for Invincible. All he has to deal with is the return of those Martian starfish-like aliens and a couple of recurring villains. This is probably a good thing given all the major threats the book has dropped on its protagonist in the previous two arcs.
We open with Alan and Nolan’s story. I must say, I wasn’t too keen initially on the diverging from the main story to focus on the cyclopean alien. However, the introduction of Nolan Grayson into Allen’s ongoing storyline has given it a real buddy cop vibe, which I like and I suppose it is important to break up your settings and narrative style occasionally. The two are acting as artifact hunters, after a fashion; they’re looking for ways to hurt the Viltrumites. This part of the story is a nice bit of table setting for later on in this arc.
On the main protagonist front, as I said, things are relatively quiet for Invincible. He dealt with what he thought was going to be a simple resurgence of the parasite invasion from astronaut Rus Livingston, or rather, his body being possessed by an alien. The alien being part of the same race from the previous time they faced, with the former astronaut throwing a ton of mind-control parasites and mind-controlled people at our hero and The Guardians of the Globe. After being overwhelmed by the enemy for too long, Mark is understandably short-fused and makes a conscious decision to stop this by killing the former astronaut. In epic fashion, he punches the man’s head clean off his body. This is a huge moment because it shows a change in the hero’s moral code, which is understandable after the events that led to the death and resurrection of the girl he loves. If you think about it, he now has something to kill for. From that perspective, it makes sense that he would make such a drastic change to his way of thinking. Love changes people like that.
The most interesting development from this set of issues involves Mark’s girlfriend Samantha’s surprise pregnancy. I like the way this has been handled thus far. When she first takes the test and gets a positive result, she’s horrified. Eve is still a teenager after all. It adds a sense of realism that she reacts like a teenager should. It’s also a nice move by Kirkman showing that all the sex scenes between the two superpowered teens weren’t there just for titillation, but they did serve a purpose. There is no wasted movement or page space when it comes to plot importance in Invincible; even if it seems like something is filler, it’s probably not.
This set of issues ends with Omni-Man and Allen the Alien coming to get Mark and Oliver and taking them off into space to bring the fight to the Viltrumites.The drums of war are beginning to beat loud and fast. How everything shakes out from here on should be fun to read.