Review: Invincible #106
After a few rough arc, Invincible seems to be finding its stride again story wise. #106 is a good example of Robert Kirkman going deeper into the superhero genre, but he missed a couple of great opportunities to go further.
Krikman keeps the focus of this issue on Mark and Eve visiting Debbie and Nolan for a nice dinner. The set up is very sitcom, but works in the favor of the characters. Their history is developed so well that the usual interactions stay out of the realm of cliché. Like Mark not telling his Mom that Eve is pregnant. Classic sitcom style, but is very entertaining as a scene. Kirkman works in past storylines, and their explanations, seamlessly. This has become a lost art for some writers, who seem to look at the editor’s note as a godsend. The conversation between the generations of Graysons is where I see Kirkman missing an opportunity. Discussing the pros and cons of having a baby as a superhero would have been interesting to read. These characters turn a mirror onto the superhero genre well, often examining multiple sides in one take. But oh well. The trivial strength contest was funny, and showed how much things have changed since the early days of comics. Something like this would have been the focal point of an issue in the 60’s.
What excited me the most about Invincible #106 was the teases that Kirkman weaves into the story. They don’t take that much space away from the Graysons, and still get their job done. The problem between Rex and Monster Girl is finally making some headway. I’d still like to see them get their own back-up or miniseries, as their story is well worth the price of admission for a comic. As with the Grayson’s and their story, Kirkman also references older storylines well without editor’s notes. A while back, I complained about this, as there were three editor’s notes in the span of a few pages. It doesn’t look good, and forces the reader to go elsewhere to understand the issue in their hands. The new moon base is a great example for that. Having Rex make hidden rooms is a nice addition. He seems to slowly becoming more villainous in nature, and that’s going to be a tough fight for Invincible and co.
What is there to say about Ryan Ottley that hasn’t already been said a thousand times over? The guy is a beast on Invincible. Characters are incredibly expressive, and loaded with tiny details. Debbie’s neck making an awkward position when she finds out Eve was pregnant was a personal favorite of mine. We’ve all seen that before when someone is surprised, but it’s something that we don’t think of. The blood and gore look disgusting. John Rauch nails the color of blood perfectly, as it’s not shiny red when it gets right out of the body. Battle Beast’s…erm…battle flows well through the panels. His new girlfriend (or slave depending on how you look at it) added some comic delight to the issue.
Invincible has worked out its kinks after the disastrous (no pun intended) aftermath of issue #100. Kirkman and Ottley are back to making Mark the centerpiece of the series.
Invincible #106 gets 4/5.