As you can tell from the recent trailers, the Amazon-exclusive animated adaptation of Invincible is not meant for kids. It’s an R-rated superhero show that’s half-optimistic and half-bloody since we’re dealing with superheroes and villains who can punch through regular people like butter.
Writer Robert Kirkman and artists like Corey Walker and Ryan Ottman (alongside other guests) knew how to portray the visceral bits of superhero stories in a very, VERY detailed fashion. And there are even some shocking bits that don’t come with blood and guts either.
We’re going to point out the infamous parts of the comic that would make us curious about how they’ll look in the Amazon series. The show may deviate a lot from the comic book story arcs, but we’re guessing they’ll hit the same plot beats and their effects listed below.
Just a warning: the following comic book panels are going to be very, VERY violent and has moments that can trigger people. Also, major plot spoilers; that’s also important to point out if you want to watch the Amazon series fresh.
Nolan Murders This World’s Version of the Justice League
This one’s going to happen in the first season. Nolan, or Omni-Man, calls the Guardians of the Globe back in the homebase and proceeds to murder all of them simultaneously to accelerate his plans to conquer Earth for his Viltrumite race. This is just 7 issues in, so you can imagine how shocking this turned out back in 2003.
We’re pleased to report that the animated version of this scene is done in a very gratuitous fashion. At least they made this universe’s version of Aquaman feel useful before his headache of an end.
Nolan Beats Up Mark To Near-Death
This one’s going to happen in the first season, definitely. Nolan lets Mark know about his plans for assimilating Earth for the Viltrumites. Mark flats out refuses. Nolan beats Mark to near-death all across the city, and also lets him know that he never cared for his mother. In a fit of frustration and because Mark does not want to join his dad, Nolan left Earth and is torn up about it.
This also led to Mark’s mom Debbie Grayson also in a state of depression and resorting to alcohol. See, all that banter between Nolan and Mark? It was leaked to the public since it was spoken through an intercom given via the government since Nolan was working for the Pentagon’s top brass Cecil Steadman. This naturally put a toll on Debbie Grayson’s mental state.
Mark’s Half-Brother Accidentally Kills The Mauler Twins
Through some circumstances, Nolan ends up having another child with another lover after his betrayal of Earth. So now Mark has a half-brother named Oliver. He gets to know him and spends time with him on Earth alongside Mark’s mom, who take a shining to him.
Despite his genetic makeup and his alien strength, Oliver is still pretty young, naive, and doesn’t think highly of Earth and its people. When out patrolling and trying out the superhero gig, Oliver attempts to stop the Mauler Twins from committing their usual science-related crimes. Oliver does not know his own strength, loses his temper while fighting the twins, and then this happens…
This is why Batman trains his ward hard; so that they don’t accidentally kill the bad guys they try to apprehend.
Right in front of the current superhero group trying to contain the problem. Oliver did try to justify his actions, but Invincible chastised him, telling him that’s not how it works on Earth. Of course, Oliver did bring up a problem that even Invincible had trouble answering: humans don’t seem to think that their lives are precious due to the wars and troubles they love to start. Why should Oliver, since he knows he isn’t human?
This becomes a conundrum on Mark’s mind throughout the series too.
One of Invincible’s Adversaries Accidentally Fries His Own Family To Death
In a rather inadvertent and morally-grey story bit, Invincible went up against a villain named Powerplex who blames him for the death of his sister. She was in the city and was one of the casualties during the Invincible & Omni-Man fight.
Powerplex then asked his wife (who supports Powerplex fully) and his child to act as kidnapped victims to lure Invincible so that he can get his revenge for his dead sister. Because Powerplex can’t control his powers after absorbing a lot from Invincible’s kinetic punches, he ends up frying everyone in the vicinity.
He lashes out at Invincible for this, but in the end, he calmed down and turned himself in. He does vow to one day kill Invincible for the collateral damage he has done, and to avenge all the deaths he’s caused. It’s rather chilling and effective that the series takes a few dark turns with this kind of story-telling.
Conquest Kills Eve; Mark Returns The Favour
After a catastrophic world event involving Mark’s many, many evil clones, a Viltrumite named Conquest comes down to claim Earth. Mark attempts to fight him off, but he’s clearly over his head as Conquest is built and bred for fighting tons of Viltrumites. So it seems like a one-sided fight, especially with the rest of the Invincible-verse heroes out of commission at the time.
During the skirmish, Eve gets out of her coma and attempts to help Mark, but she ends up getting killed in a brutal fashion.
Mark, obviously pissed off at seeing his beau die in his arms, goes all out against Conquest in yet another violent moment where our hero deals with the threat permanently in this masterful comic panel layout.
Though Eve did come back to life due to her powers, Robert Kirkman at the time knew how to pull our strings with major deaths like these. See The Walking Dead for proof of this.
Viltrumite Grand Leader Nearly Kills Mark, Oliver, & Nolan
If you thought Conquest was tough, wait until you see what Viltrumite Emperor Thragg is capable of. During the Viltrumite War saga, the trio of Mark, Oliver, and Nolan teamed up with an ex-Viltrumite, Allen the Alien, and the Coalition of Planets to deal with the Viltrumite army.
They succeeded, committing genocide and destroying the Viltrumite homeworld through a last-ditch effort involving a space gun and flying through a planet’s centre. This angered Thragg, who then proceeded to nearly execute the heroes.
I said “execute” because it’s akin to a one-sided fight. Try as they might, Mark and Nolan had no chance against the king of all Viltrumites who knows all the combat techniques of the universe since birth. The only reason the trio survived is because Thragg came to his senses and decided to assimilate themselves into Earth; this was clearly inspired by Nolan’s previous “takeover” attempt in a twist of irony.
Mark Imagines Bloody Hypotheticals
Post-Viltrumite War, Grand Regent Thragg and his Viltrimite loyalists fly to Earth to assimilate with the humans. Mark feared the worst, and flew back to Earth with Nolan after recuperating in Talescria. Mark has a lot of horrific hypotheticals running in his head, like the one below.
Seeing Thragg standing over the corpses of his mother and loved ones is pretty messed up, even if it’s just a “what if?” scenario.
The New Invincible Covers Up His Girlfriend’s Accidental Murder
So this one time, Mark contracts a Viltrumite space disease that makes him lose his powers. So he has a pal named Bulletproof taking over his spot, helping Atom Eve out with the Invincible Incorporated hero mercenary business. Issue 91 and onward showcases a bit of Bulletproof/Zandale’s life with his girlfriend and his parents.
Turns out he has a twin brother named Tyrone who was a scientist trying to get superpowers via science stuff. He drugged Zandale and proceeded to use him for said science stuff, only for him to accidentally get vaporized. Zandale got his superpowers as a result.
He pretended to be Tyrone because he knew he was their favourite. So he led a double-life. When he confessed all this to his parents, they threatened to call the cops on him. Frustrated, Zandale’s girlfriend ended up hitting his mom with a frying pan, unwittingly killing her.
One thing led to another, and both parents are dead. Zandale and his girlfriend covered it up, saying that they died from a car crash. Yet another dark entry in the seemingly-bright Invincible universe.
Dinosaurus’ Las Vegas Stint
David Anders, a seemingly normal person, can transform into super-criminal Dinosaurus if he starts getting bored. Funny transformation, but lethal results. Dinosaurus made his presence felt by vaporizing an entire city into glass.
Why? Because Dinosaurus wanted to save the world in the long-term. Of course, this does affect Invincible’s viewpoint later as he teams up with Dinosaurus and somehow justifies upending the world to save billions in the future. Basically he’s taking in Thanos’ point of view before realizing it’s catastrophic.
Dinosaurus “Kills” Invincible
Dinosaurus makes a statement by fake-killing Invincible. See, he made a clone and switched it with the real Mark via teleportation to fool the world, so that Invincible can pretend to be dead to escape the world. This didn’t fly with him, and thus he and Dinosaurus had another debate on the latter’s actions.
The fact that the issue starts off with the top image is proof enough that the comic can still shock and awe people.
Angstrom Levy’s Final Fate
So Angstrom is a super-smart villain who can travel between dimensions. He was the one responsible for bringing in evil parallel Invincibles to destroy Earth in an effort to tarnish the original Invincible’s reputation. To control the evil mob, he stranded them in a deserted universe. Only one survived; he proceeded to nab Angstrom and deal with him in his own universe.
Angstrom gets dissected by the evil Invincible’s scientists. It’s a pretty grisly fate for one of Invincible’s long-time adversaries.
Robot’s Master Plan Goes Into Motion
Robot ends up pulling off his big plan of taking over the world without being on the forefront. He does this with his army of Robot mecha clones (improved ones that can counter-attack Viltrumites and folks like Mark) and kill a lot of superheroes & folks who would not agree to his “takeover”. This includes Cecil Stedman and traditional superheroes like Black Samson.
The crazy part about all this? It worked! Robot managed to get the cooperation of the Viltrumites and created world peace, and all with him running things behind the shadows. The line he needed to cross to achieve world peace is pretty much obliterated thanks to his incredibly long experience dealing with the Flaxans. Now imagine this arc played out with Zachary Quinto’s voice; that would be worth waiting years for, if we’re being frank.
Mark Loses 5 Years Of His Life
In a “reboot” story of sorts, Mark ends up going back in time and solve all the errors he did in the past. While a lot of lives were saved in that parallel Earth, he wasn’t happy and did not actually conceive a child with Eve; Rex Splode was still alive after all.
Mark understandably wants to erase this new timeline and future, since he rather see his current life through, potentially dooming countless lives but also giving him a drive to make things better. This led him to come back to his current timeline, but with a 5-year timeskip.
The gist of it is: his child is already grown up and is attending school, Eve has marital problems since she didn’t have Mark for 5 years, and a lot of the world has moved on. This also includes Robot/Rex making Earth a better place to live in and also being tight with the Viltrumites and Mark’s dad Nolan (who rules the Viltrumites). Alongside all this baggage, his time in alternate Earth also made him question about what it means to be a hero: is it truly worth sacrificing your own happiness for the greater good? At least Invincible’s last few issues made that very, very clear. It’s not visceral shock, but rather an emotional one that plays out in several issues.
Mark Gets Raped By A Viltrumite
Probably the most controversial scene in the comic that may be animated involves a later story arc when Mark returns from a parallel universe trap initiated by former ally Robot. After being dumped by a pregnant Eve for going after Angstrom Levy on a “hunch”, Mark was pretty much alone. Then Viltrumite flies into the fray.
Anissa, who is infuriated with the inferiority of the males on Earth she wishes to mate with for the Viltrumite grand plan, ends up being allured by Mark as of late. He obviously refuses her advances, since she is batshit insane, bloodthirsty, cruel and so forth. However, she isn’t going to take this lying down. She proceeds to beat the shit out of him and…
I’m not going to post the rest of the story here because it can be very harrowing and trigger-inducing. Still, I’m pretty impressed that this story angle was handled with some level of class, seriousness, and had repercussions down the line that influenced the story right to the very end.
Know any shocking Invincible moments you’re looking forward to seeing in the Amazon animated series, you sick puppy you? Let us know!