Review: Invincible #99

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IMG120575With #100 right around the corner, #99 should have been the big ramp up to the landmark issue.  Instead, we got an issue so filled with fights it became a chore to read.

You’d think with the title “The Death of Everyone,” almost everyone would have died.  Instead, last issue’s cliffhanger is quickly swept away with one line.  So it appears that only a few thousand are going to die from all of these floods.  More must have died when Dinosaurus destroyed Las Vegas.  While the stakes were quite high from #98, they are quickly shot back quite lower.  Since not as many are going to die, the amount of grieving that everyone seems to be going through doesn’t seem as correct either.  Everyone should be sad, but where was this compassion for the people in Las Vegas?  It just doesn’t make sense on any level.  In classic fashion, Kirkman starts to bring back older threads.  This is a normal thing when it comes to big issues for Invincible, and it’s good to see him writing some part of the series right in this issue.

What made Invincible #99 a chore to read was the endless fight scene.  Ryan Ottley delivers a gorgeous issue, but the dialogue is a retread of everything Invincible and Dinosaurus have been talking about for the past year’s worth of issues.  Why go over this?  If this was the first part of the arc, I could see Kirkman wanting to catch readers up with what has been going on.  But this is the second part, where Kirkman should be setting up the dominos to fall in #100.  The cliffhanger is also a retread, as something like this happened not even twenty issues ago.  Now, the end result might be satisfactory, maybe even brilliant, but the set up leaves a bad taste in my mouth.  I was excited for the future of this series, as it brought Mark Grayson back to the center of attention.  But it quickly spoiled the new direction for a bad issue.

Ryan Ottley is the only saving grace for this issue.  The massive amount of fighting gives Ottley plenty of room to breath for his highly detailed pencils.  The huge amounts of water make for some interesting looking fights.  Most of the backgrounds are too similar to completely understand what is going on behind them, but it’s still a good looking issue.  One gripe with the art is how Grayson suddenly lost his uniform on the last page.  Dinosaurus is clearly ripping it off, but the majority of it was still on when the wall fell on them.  All of a sudden the rest falls off?  Including his mask?   Cliff Rathburn had a massive task for inking this issue.  The amount of changing shadows must have been time consuming, but he does a great job.  John Rauch’s colors are good, but he isn’t given a lot to color.  Most of it is just blue.

Let’s hope that Kirkman and company can turn around a good ending to “The Death of Everyone.”  Creators are allowed a bad issue now and then, but the timing of this one isn’t good for them.

Invincible #99 gets 2.5/5.

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