This is how superhero comics should be done. A great story, made up of several strong and developed characters. Brilliant conflict, not stemming solely from a big bad guy. Intrigue, with much of the drama being derived from the interactions between characters and their motives. And awesome artwork, which places equal emphasis on facial and physical nuance as it does on delivering action scenes that convey energy and a sense of direction. Needless to say, Invincible fills this criteria with ease, and then a bit more.
As we've all come to expect by now, Kirkman continues to prove that he is the shining light of the industry. He fills this single issue with enough content to keep the ball rolling for several issues. He seamlessly changes the status quo, doing it in a way that entirely befits the characters and seems natural, while also maintaining their integrity. The characters continue to be alive with this integrity. It is what lends emotional weight to the conversations and drama, it is what causes us to become invested in them, it gives the series gravitas, and it lets Invincible live up to its namesake. Creatively this series is all that. While we all read Avengers Vs X-Men this week, and if you, like me, felt disappointed by the lack of substance, than maybe it is because we have become accustomed to this series. While AvX boasts an impressive catalogue of creative talent, this single issue of Invincible captures the essence of the series and delivers an awesome monthly installment that reminds us why we keep coming back.
In terms of artwork, we've all come to expect nothing less than perfection from Ryan Ottley. He offers up a crisp and detailed book with attention to the individual nature of each character. His action scenes continue to be the best in any comic, and I found myself staring at certain panels for the shear energy they conveyed, and this issue, the pain on the characters faces-see Dinoceraus. The art is kickass as always.
Once again, we are gifted with an awesome issue of Invincible that manages to juggle the elements that made up the premise, while also giving a sense of narrative direction that is clearly comparing us for a jaw-dropping #100. Needless to say, 10 issues out, and I've begun getting goosebumps just at the thought. That is how a comic should be, and that is why Invincible continues to be the best superhero comic of the shelf. Kirkman is having a lot of fun, and so are we.