Mild mannered teen comes into his powers and strides to be a great hero, like his father, the most powerful superhero on the planet.
Spoiler Level: Mild
Mark Grayson is a normal 17 year old teenager growing up on an Earth where superheroes exist, but he isn’t actually all that normal. His father is Nolan Grayson, Omni-Man, the most powerful man on the planet. Nolan comes from a planet called Viltrum, a race of superpowered aliens. With super strength, speed and flight, he came to Earth to be the planet’s protector. Mark idolizes his father and as a half Viltrumite he begins to exhibit powers like his father and starts his career as a superhero. But with great power comes great pressure and as things unfold, Mark finds out that being a hero, isn’t all it is cracked up to be.
Based on the comic book of the same name, Invincible is a new animated series on Amazon Prime. Written by one of original writers of the Image comics, the series puts a new spin on other hero stories in a similar vein. We have all seen the story of a teen who gains superpowers and needs to become the hero the planet deserves, but after becoming that hero, Mark comes to the realization it isn’t as easy as it looks. Seeing people die and having to deal with the realization that he can’t save everyone is a hard pill to swallow.
The animation is reminiscent of old Saturday morning cartoons I use to watch as a kid, mixed with an anime vibe, and the voice cast boasts a wide array of great actors. Sandra Oh as Debbie Grayson, Marks’s mother, and wife to Nolan, is perfect as the human wife who has become so desensitized to her husband being in peril, but also showing a bit of jealousy towards the new bond her son has with his father. J.K. Simmons as Nolan is amazing. His voice fits perfectly for Omni-mans look and persona. Zachary Quinto as Robot lends a certain emotion to the unemotional leader of the New Guardian’s of the Globe. Seth Rogan lends his comic talents as the Alien, Allen, who Mark fights but then befriends. And finally, Steven Yuen as Mark, shows a great range of emotion in his vocal performance. He shows a certain vulnerability for a character called Invincible.
For the most part I enjoyed the first episode. It was well written and engaging. The characters had clever dialogue and was well performed by all the actors. I was thinking this would be a fun series to watch…And then the end of the first episode had a twist that shocked me, having not read the comics, I did see it coming. The animation turned from reminiscent of my childhood to ultra-gory. I knew, being an Image Comics adaptation, that this would be geared more towards adults, but the end of the first episode really turned me off. I know in today’s day and age, this is just the norm, but I still don’t like it.
The show did redeem itself a little in the next two episodes. There was still a bit of gore, but I now know that the twist to the series is how a young hero learns that being a hero isn’t as “romantic” as he thought it was. The reality of what he is, the ramifications of what he does and when to celebrate and when to mourn. Understanding this, I can now enjoy the episodes and revel into witnessing how the mystery unfolds.
The dialogue is clever, engaging and well performed, the plot flows well and the storyline is interesting, but the blood and gore is a bit much especially for an animated series.
Invincible: Blood And Gore Animation Style!
Writing - 9/10
Storyline - 8/10
Acting - 10/10
Music - 9/10
Production - 10/10
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