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 Mark: I think I'm finally getting superpowers.

Debbie: That's nice. Can you pass the potatoes?

File:250px-Invincible01.jpg


Created by Robert Kirkman & Cory Walker, this Comic Book series revolves around the life of Mark Grayson, who is pretty much your typical high school student, except for the fact that he is the son of Omni-Man, the most powerful superhero on the planet. Over the course of his heroic career, he has fought aliens, joined super-teams and bounced from dimension to dimension. All the while, he has to deal with choosing a college, graduating high school, and, of course, falling in love.

No relation to the 2005 movie about Vince Papale starring Mark Wahlberg, or Werner Herzog's 2001 film about Zishe Breibart.

Now has a character page which Needs More Love. Please put all character related tropes there.

Tropes used in Invincible include:
  • Alas, Poor Scrappy: In-universe example: Rex Splode.
  • Aliens Speaking English: Lampshaded.
  • All There in the Manual: All the information, such as Shrinking Ray's possible origin, insight on Atlantean culture, and background on villains like Kursk, revealed in The Official Handbook of the Invincible Universe
  • Alternate Company Equivalent: The original Guardians of the Globe (except maybe Black Samson, a Flash Gordon/Doc Samson ) were thinly-veiled clones of the Justice League of America. Additionally, most villains faced in the first volume are 1:1 counterparts of Marvel villains. Mammoth=Rhino, the Lizard League=Serpent Society, etc.
    • This was acknowledged by the creators themselves in the second trade paperback. They went with easily recognizable archetypes because they simply didn't have time to come up with wholly original characters and make the reader care about them as well.
  • Appropriated Appellation
  • Arch Enemy: Eve can't think of another way to describe Killcannon, who she's been tangling with since she was little. Mark's is probably Angstrom Levy: even though he appears only rarely, he's the only major villain in the series with a personal vendetta against Mark -- and vice-versa.
  • Arm Cannon: This is Killcannon's gimmick. He actually still has a working hand on that arm, which gives him a leg up on a lot of other characters who have this.
  • The Atoner: Thadeus and Omni-Man not only want to atone for their sins, but but for the sins of the whole Viltrumite empire.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Thragg, the head of the Viltrumite Empire, is the strongest, best fighter of his people. Not a single one of the group sent to kill him gave him more then a bloody nose.
  • Badass Mustache: Every male Viltrumite (Conquest has a particulary nice one). It was not known if it was cultural or biological, but Mark and Nolan both grew stubble on the alien planet, so presumably it's cultural.
    • Really, if Mark ever starts growing a mustache, watch out.
  • Battle Butler: Black Samson's butler Sanford, emphatically against his employer's wishes, crashes the Guardians of the Globe's funeral because he had been preparing to kill them himself.
  • Big Bad:Robot and Thragg.
  • Blood Knight: Battle Beast and Conquest.
  • Body Horror: The Sequids escape annihilation by hiding in their host's throat.
    • They try this again later with Rex. It doesn't work, as he manages to crush them both before they can latch onto him.
  • Brick Joke: Objects Mark tosses across the world with his super-strength will occasionally crash down several issues later. In London.
  • Brought Down to Normal: Black Samson lost his powers, and was booted from the Guardians of the Globe. Crestfallen, he stayed in his mansion for weeks. He developed a power suit to compensate, and got into the new team. His powers eventually returned.
  • Calling Your Attacks: "Invincible Punch!" ...which is mercilessly mocked and Lampshaded by everyone who hears Mark say it.
  • Captain Ersatz: Almost everyone.
    • Damien Darkblood, Demon Detective, who dresses exactly like Rorschach from Watchmen, looks just like him when viewed from the back, and has some of the same speech quirks.
    • The Guardians of the Globe are a whole super-team of really obvious Captain Ersatz. There's Aquarius (Aquaman), the Red Rush (the Flash), Darkwing (Batman), the Green Ghost (Green Lantern), War Woman (Wonder Woman), Martian Man (Martian Manhunter) and they all die. Whether Omni-Man or the Immortal is the "Superman" of the group is debatable.
      • And then there's another shapeshifting Martian later on in the series, but he's a Plastic Man expy.
      • As a bonus, all of their profiles in the Handbook obliquely mention the pasts of their Justice League counterparts. Especially Darkwing.
    • The Viltrumites themselves resemble the Saiyans from Dragonball Z given their world conquering tendancies.
  • Cardboard Prison: Stronghold Prison is broken out of so often that they go out of their way to hire Invincible just to slow things down... and then they have another breakout.
  • Catch Phrase: "This is so gay," when he's carrying another man (in a necessarily suggestive pose) while flying. May be said by Invincible, the passenger, or some third party, for slightly mysterious reasons.
    • At least one female passenger has uttered the line after simply realizing that the person he most usually transports this way is male! In a similar vein, Atom Eve says it while she's carrying her boyfriend while in flight, commenting on the role reversal rather than the contact.
    • Eventually Mark starts carrying people by holding onto them just under their armpits. He still receives a common complaint -- that it's really uncomfortable.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: The Reanimen. For that matter, any character who appears briefly is likely to become important later on.
  • Clark Kenting: Omni-Man and Atom Eve. Mark himself may qualify given how often his mask gets ripped.
    • Lampshaded and/or deconstructed. In two early stories, Mark is recognized even with his mask on. Apparently masks are enough to hide your identity from the general public, but not from people who actually know you.
      • The second time isn't really surprising. Invincible and Atom Eve show up at the home of their teacher, who we saw earlier knows them well enough, and Eve wasn't wearing a mask or a different hairstyle, so it would have been easy to figure out who she was, and then guess at who her companion could be.
  • Cloning Blues: The Mauler Twins are a mutated mad scientist and his clone. They simply cannot agree on which was the original.
    • Eventually, a sequence of events occurs which guarantees the original- whichever he may have been- is now dead. The Twins miss a single beat... and then commence arguing over which is the lower-generation clone!
    • They are also, coincidentally, blue clones.
  • Color Character: Past Members of the Guardians Of The Globe: Red Rush, Green Ghost and Black Samson (though this appears to be Black Samson's actual given name).
  • Completely Missing the Point

 Invincible: "In about six hours I lose my virginity to a fish."

Cecil: "Good lord. You're a virgin?"

  • Corporate-Sponsored Superhero: Capes Inc, and their leader Captain Capitalism.
  • Cousin Oliver: Lampshaded, as Mark's recently introduced younger half-brother's name is actually Oliver; the requisite Soap Opera Rapid Aging Syndrome has been hand waved or justified, depending on who you talk to, by his mother being from an alien species that ages much faster than humans or Viltrumites.
    • His name being Oliver is also a reference to Ol-Vir, a Daxamite (Superman pastiche) Legion of Superheroes villain, who also started out as a bratty kid with superpowers.
    • Not to mention when he gets older, he vaguely looks like Damian Wayne from Batman...with purple skin.
  • Curb Stomp Battle: Machine Head produces a team of super-powered bodyguards, most of whom are easily defeated Elite Mooks. Then there's Battle Beast, who effortlessly beats Invincible and puts Black Samson and Bulletproof in the hospital. The former makes him a major breach of the Sorting Algorithm of Evil, as he may be stronger than the average Viltrumite.
  • Cute Monster Girl: Subverted by, uh, Monster Girl, who is cute... except when she's a monster.
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Issues 80 and 81 lampshade this heavily. In 80, Mark encounters a guy who'd invented a "gravity gun" in his basement and used it to rob a bank. He had considered selling his invention, but he needed the money now and that sounded like a long and complicated process. He is really bad at being a supervillain, and Mark lets him go (and returns the money back to the bank) with the advice that he should just sell the technology. In 81, it turns out that he sold the gun...to a bank robber. He didn't know who to see or call about this stuff. After capturing the second robber, Mark takes the guy to Cecil, who gives him a very high-paying job to invent new weapons.
  • Dangerous Sixteenth Birthday: Subverted, since he got his powers when he was 17, and not only did he know they were coming, he couldn't wait to have them.
    • Of course, Monster Girl was cursed to age backwards when she was 16...
  • Darker and Edgier: It doesn't get much darker than Midnight City (which is blocked from all sunlight), but when local superhero Darkwing bites it, his sidekick takes up the cowl and starts killing insurgent criminals.
  • Deal with the Devil: At the end of issue 77, Mark accepts Thragg's cease-fire arrangement.
    • Later on Issue 84 has him break out and up with Dinosaurus in an attempt to find better ways to save the world.
  • Depending on the Writer: Invincible and The Astounding Wolf-Man have an odd case of this happening between two series by the same writer with the character of Cecil Stedman, who appears in both series. In Wolf-Man, Cecil is shown to be much nicer than in Invincible; for example, he's willing to believe the best about Wolf-Man (that he didn't kill his wife), whereas he always believes the worst about Invincible (that he's a bad guy working with his father).
  • Development Gag: Several, but especially Bulletproof, who has Invincible's original development name, costume, and the same exact powers.
    • The Bulletproof costume also appears in the first issue as a prospective outfit for Mark, and on one of the alternate Invincibles during the Invincible War.
  • Disappeared Dad: Easily one of the only examples that is more horrifying than the one from Guyver.
  • Elite Mooks: Machine Head's super-powered bodyguards, one of whom turns out to be strong enough to potentially come back as a Big Bad.
  • Embarrassing First Name: Mark's real first name, Markus.
  • Enemy Mine: Invincible teams up with stony supervillain Titan to take out crime lord Machine Head. Titan was using Invincible to eliminate the competition.
    • Later Mark teams up with Dinosaurus, because despite being a sociopath he actually has good ideas for how to improve humanity. He just doesn't care how to get there.
  • Enfante Terrible: Oliver is sliding down the slippery slope towards this because he can't emotionally connect with humans due to both having a longer and shorter lifespan than them - it's complicated. He may as well be twirling a mustache (He is a Viltrumite, after all...) with 666 on his forehead by now.
    • They seem to have dropped the Oliver being a tiny evil Omniman plot thread, despite how heavily they were foreshadowing it when he was first introduced.
  • Evil Twin: The Invincible War was all about this -- Angstrom Levy recruited 16 evil versions of Mark as part of his revenge scheme. Mark himself barely fought any of them, though.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Robot is a robot, and is labeled accordingly, right on his chest. In parentheses, for some reason.
    • No, he's not.
  • Expy: Originally, Invincible was going to be named Bulletproof before Kirkman & Walker changed his name and costume; later in the series, the Guardians of the Globe inducted a new member, Bulletproof, with the aforementioned costume and similar powers to Invincible.
    • Gets taken a step further when after Mark is taken out of commission by being exposed to a virus, Bulletproof to help Eve with their business takes up Mark's costume to do the jobs.
  • First Episode Spoiler: More like Volume One Spoiler if you're going by the hardback collections. Omni-Man and the Viltrumites are ruthless conquerors.
  • Fish People: The Atlanteans.
  • Flying Brick: Invincible, Omni-Man, The Immortal, Allen, and Bulletproof all have this power set.
  • For Science!: Sinclair's main motivation.
  • Freudian Excuse: Rex Splode and Monster Girl's respective backstories. Rex's difficult behavior stems from how he literally has no friends and a family that never wanted him, while Monster Girl's self destructive vices are her way of coping with her "condition".
  • Gilligan Cut: in #73, Oliver emphatically refuses to eat any of the big alien bug Nolan's caught for dinner. The next page has him messily eating it and asking if there's any more.
  • Good Girls Avoid Abortion: Averted hard with Atom Eve.
  • Gorn: Used to an extreme degree, and very often. The Viltrumites absolutely tear their victims apart, and nearly every fight seems to leave someone missing a limb, their intestines, a cycloptic eye, or their brain. Notably, every battle where this happens is a really big deal.
  • Heel Face Turn: D.A. Sinclair and Omni-Man.
  • Heel Realization: Omni-Man has one of these when he's about to kill his own son. This eventually leads to his Heel Face Turn.
  • Hero-Killer: The Viltrumite villain Conquest, twice responsible for the worst beatings Invincible has ever received. The first one resulted in both of Mark's arms being broken (after which he headbutted Conquest to death and promptly passed out), and the second one had Conquest disembowel Mark while being choked to death.
  • Heroes-R-Us: The Guard Organization.
  • Heroes Want Redheads: Inverted, in that Atom Eve is the one that wants Invincible, who's dating another girl. It ends up being played straight, as Invincible breaks up with his initial girl and ends up in a relationship with Eve.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Rex Splode and Darkwing II during the Invincible War.
  • Human Aliens: Viltrumites. They all have black hair, and adult males all have the same kind of mustache, and apparently don't grow any other facial hair. The ancient alien Thadeus removed his fake beard to show his Viltrumite mustache in a pretty hilarious reveal. Justified, seeing as how they're nearly 100% genetically similar to humans.
    • Averted by just about every other alien race in the series, however. After the Viltrumites and Expies of the crew of the Enterprise, the freakishly musclebound, three-fingered, cyclopean Allen is the most humanlike alien in the universe.
  • Humanity Is Infectious: The reason behind Omniman's Heel Face Turn. And now that the Viltrumity war is over, with those remaining explicitly going under the radar on Earth in order to repopulate, odds are they or their children are going to be highly susceptible to this.
  • Hypocritical Humor: "Don't you think that's kind of cheap?"
  • Identical Panel Gag: Hilariously invoked in this page, featuring a comic book artist talking about reusing panels.
  • Idiot Ball: Probably well within the borders of Too Dumb to Live. Cecil Stedman, putting world-destroying villains in Cardboard Prisons, and faking their deaths.
    • It's especially frustrating Since Stedman always emphasizes lethal force as the best course of action to Mark's face but never follows his own advice.
  • Informed Attractiveness: The aftermath of the Conquest event, Eve reforms her body from scratch; after awakening in an intense care unit Mark is happy to see that she's alive and fine, then he notes that her boobs look bigger, Eve remarks that when she rebuilt herself some "improvements" were unconsciously made. That said, her bossom doesn't look any different than usual, Eve was always quite busty since day one, the way Mark immediatly notes how bigger she is now doesn't match the unnoticeable "change" in her actual design.
  • Intercontinuity Crossover: Teamed up with Spider-Man.
  • In the Blood: A theme that comes up later in the series is Mark struggling with his natural Viltrumite violent streak. Of late, it seems to be winning.
  • Is That What He Told You?: In issue #2, Omni-Man tells Invincible about the Krypton-like world that he came from. In issue #11, he admits that he left out the part where they were a conquering race of Supermen.
  • Julius Beethoven Da Vinci: The Immortal was Abraham Lincoln. This is particularly shocking given how big a Jerkass he is.
    • Who's to say how much somebody's personality can change over centuries, if they live that long? Also, the Immortal having been Lincoln wasn't part of the original plan; it was just a coincidence that he looked like Honest Abe, and Kirkman added it to the backstory after numerous fan comments noting the resemblance.
  • Just Eat Him: Averted when Komodo eats Shrinking Ray. The last we see of Ray is him being popped into Komodo's mouth, but presumably he does chew him; otherwise he could probably regrow himself in Komodo's belly before the digestive juices went to work.
  • Karma Houdini: D.A. Sinclair and Darkwing are both shielded from justice by Cecil, who has use for their unique talents. Learning this drives Mark to leave Cecil's employ permanently.
  • Killed Off for Real: Conquest, although it took two tries, Rus Livingston, Thaedus, Magmaniac, and possibly the Mauler Twins, since both clones were killed by Oliver.
  • Knight Templar: Cecil.
  • Large Ham: Doc Seismic's villainy is of the "old school, histrionic" variety.
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: In an issue where Mark is bounced from dimension to dimension by Angstrom Levy, he meets Batman and ends up on worlds similar to Y: The Last Man and The Walking Dead, the latter of which Kirkman writes.
    • Actually Word of God makes it NOT The Walking Dead universe, just a generic Zombie world. Kirkman wants to keep TWD seperate to increase realism.
    • And, of course, when Allen the Alien's flight back to Earth interrupts the travel of the almost-Enterprise-D. The crew of which became recurring characters up to and during the Viltrumite War.
  • Legacy Character: Aquarus, War Woman, and Darkwing of the original Guardians of the Globe all had someone take up their mantle after their deaths. Aquarus probably deserves a special mention, because the position comes hand in hand with being king of Atlantis -- there will more or less always be one. After the death of Rex Splode, Robot took his name to honor him.
  • Mad Scientist: They don't come madder than D.A. Sinclair, who would perform painful operations on living people to turn them into superstrong zombielike minions. He'd tear out their vocal cords so they wouldn't be able to scream when he cut one of their arms off and such.
  • Male-to-Female Universal Adaptor: Both Omni-Man and Allen the Alien have interspecies romances with plenty of sex, so this trope is implied, though not explicitly shown.
  • Mayfly-December Romance: Between Nolan Grayson (Omni-Man) and Debbie Grayson. Possibly also between Mark and Eve, unless her powers make her functionally immortal.
  • Meaningful Name: Atom Eve, Dupli-Kate, Multi-Paul, Rex Splode, Shrinking Ray.
    • No, not Invincible.
  • Me's a Crowd: Dupli-Kate, and her villainous twin brother Multi-Paul. Interestingly, it's made explicit that each of them has a "number zero" body far from the "number one" which most people (readers and characters alike) think is the original, as a sort of backup copy in case something bad happens to all of the rest of them. This comes in handy, of course, when the Lizard League somehow manage to kill all of the bodies Kate creates to fight them, along with Shrinking Ray.
  • Messianic Archetype: Curiously enough, Battle Beast is this for his own people. He brought his planet peace and utopia... but in doing so, became addicted to battle and left to seek out worthy opponents. Apparently they still hope for his return.
  • A Million Is a Statistic: Omni-Man's family and friends seem to be more upset about him lying to them than him killing thousands of innocent people. Even though Omni-Man has a Heel Face Turn later on, he doesn't seem to feel remorse about those deaths either. Of course it's possible this issue will be dealt with in future Invincible stories.
    • However, the deaths were a consequence of the battle between Invincible and Omni-Man, and not something Omni-Man intended to do... at the time. Omni-Man seemed to be more apathetic about the lives lost, seeing their deaths as proof of his and Invincible's superiority and why choosing to rule over them was the "right" course of action.
  • Mood Whiplash: Starts off as a lighthearted teenage superhero comic, then, all of a sudden Omni-Man kills off the Guardians of the Globe in a particularly gruesome fashion; from that point, the series continues to bounce back and forth between light-hearted and somber. Kirkman has said he deliberately started it out light-hearted just to make Omni-Man's murder of the Guardians that much more shocking.
    • Issue 80 contains funny scenes about William's coming out, a hilarious lampshading of Cut Lex Luthor a Check, a jab at the DC reboot (and at Kirkman's own difficulties keeping a proper release schedule) and Las Vegas and everyone in it getting utterly vaporized. Ow, my neck...
  • Most Common Superpower/Breast Expansion: Parodied. Eve did herself a boob job on the verge on death using her powers. It is that important for a female superhero.
    • And Knockout in the Capes, Inc backups wears Gag Boobs to help her image. Her boyfriend, a fellow member of Capes, points out that they're ridiculous, until she points out that her salary went way up after she started using them.
  • Mundane Solution: His neutralization of Allen the Alien in issue #5.
  • Myth Arc: Invincible and Allen's struggle against the Viltrumite Empire.
  • My Brain Is Big: Angstrom Levy, much to his dismay.
  • No Endor Holocaust: Thadeus, Omni-Man, and Invincible end up destroying the entire planet Viltrum. Since there are no living Viltrumites on the planet, this is supposed to be a heroic act. But weren't there any other life forms living there? The subject is never brought up.
    • Other than that, Invincible usually averts the No Endor Holocaust typical in many superhero comics: whenever there's a big battle that destroys buildings and levels cities, a large number of civilians die. One story arc even has the family of one those deceased civilians trying to avenge her by killing Invincible, who they view as being responsible for her death.
  • Non-Mammal Mammaries: the female members of the unnamed race whose king Omni-Man has become have these, despite clearly being insectoids. The fish people of Atlantis have them as well.
  • Not So Invincible After All: Mark provides a Lampshade Hanging in issue #42:

  "'I'm Invincible.' Ugh. I've got to stop using that line right before I get the snot beaten out of me."

  • Not So Harmless (Doc Seismic seems like a pushover, but he nearly took Invincible out in his first appearance. Then he engineered a plot to take out the world's heroes, which largely, to his surprise, succeeded in phase 1. Did we mention he utterly defeated Invincible in that same issue?
    • The Lizard League. Even they admit they're seen as jokes...until the Guardians have to fight them for the first time without any of their heavy hitters. It doesn't go so well.
  • Older Than They Look: Monster Girl and Robot are both in their late 20's but in the bodies of young adolescents due to one being a clone and the other deaging.
    • Bulletproof, who appears to be roughly Mark's age, at one point claims to be almost 40 years old.
  • Outside Context Villain: The Battle Beast. He first appeared early in the series when Mark was possibly the strongest person on Earth, at a time when no Viltrumites other than Mark and Nolan had been seen, and was a apparently nothing but an Elite Mook for the issue's villain. Then he easily beat Mark nearly to death, and only retreated because he had expected a greater challenge. He has since come back to fight Viltrumites.
  • Outside the Box Tactic: In one issue, the main character faces a villain with the power to absorb force and kinetic energy; he wins by punching the badguy until he's been overloaded with so much energy it travels through the floor, vaporizing his family and emotionally crippling him This was NOT his intention.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Viltrumites apparently need nothing more to disguise themselves than a fake beard. To the point where the removal of a false beard is considered ultimate proof of Viltrumiteness.
      • Actually, that's not a fake beard. It was the leader of the Coalition's REAL beard. It's just that the mustache is the only facial hair that sticks on a Vilturmites face if they pull the beard off.
    • It's implied that all male Viltrumites eventually grow a very distinct giant mustache, and are incapable of any other facial hair growth; therefore, a false beard is a pretty good disguise.
    • Mark and Nolan are shown with beard stubble and even ragged beards after a long time stranded on an alien planet, so presumably the mustache thing is simply cultural.
  • Power Perversion Potential: Dupli-Kate abuses it.
    • Atom Eve also uses her powers to remove clothes... and place them, neatly folded, in a drawer. She's not irresponsible.
  • Psycho Electro: Powerplex, who is genuinely out of his mind in his fanatical obsession with killing Invincible.
  • Puberty Superpower
  • Punch Clock Hero: The entire staff of Capes, Inc. Invincible himself becomes this shortly after severing ties with Cecil, Eve having set up Invincible, Inc. so he could support himself.
  • Punny Name: Atom Eve[1], Rex Splode, Dupli Kate, Multi Paul, Shrinking Ray.
  • Puppeteer Parasite: the Sequids.
  • Put on a Bus: Robot and Monster Girl in issue 71/the first issue of Guarding the Globe. They're back as of issue 82.
  • Randomly-Gifted: Mark inheriting powers was not a sure thing, and a few heroes manifest theirs spontaneously.
  • Ray Gun: As a pastiche of old-timey pulp space heroes, Space Racer naturally carries one of these. Except his is more akin to a handheld Wave Motion Gun - it's a weapon so powerful that it can punch through anything made of matter, and is what enables Thaedus, Invincible, and Omni-Man to destroy the Viltrumite homeworld in a single blow.
  • Reality Warper: Atom Eve.
  • Reconstruction: To a degree, the series is a reconstruction of superheroes, or maybe just of the Nineties Anti-Hero subgenre. The book is incredibly gory and bloody, yes, but that's just what would happen if a Flying Brick punched a normal person. Mark tries hard to be The Cape (without actually wearing one), and it's getting very hard to stick to his code of conduct, but he's still helping people because it's the right thing to do. He doesn't like or agree with Cecil Steadman, but he admits that with world-ending threats all over the place, Steadman is often the lesser evil. Storylines that would be Crisis Crossovers when published by other companies have the same long-lasting implications without the massive tie-ins and Kudzu Plots.
  • Red Right Hand: The males of the Viltrumite race all have mustaches. With four exceptions, all of them are bent on galactic domination which they believe is their right due to their inherent superiority to the "lesser" races. In addition, the villain Conquest, second strongest warrior of the Viltrum empire until Mark kills him, has a mechanical hand.
  • Ridiculously Human Robot: Averted, Robot can't really relate to his teammates' problems, and he doesn't particularly want to either. No Tin Man here, no sir.
    • Somewhat subverted in that The visible Robot is actually being remote-controlled by the (horribly deformed and unable to survive outside of his nutrient tank) human who just doesn't relate to humanity, probably in part due to his superhuman intelligence and isolation. After being cloned into a new human body, he starts relating more.
  • Royal Blood: A DNA test showed that Mark, and potentially his father and brother, are the long lost descendants of the old Viltrumite King of which Thragg is supposed to hand the throne over to when found. So far no one but Thragg actually knows, since he killed the scientist that discovered it.
  • Rule of Fun: A fairly recent issue had a fan write in asking why the Sequids go for an all out attack instead of guaranteeing victory by slowly infiltrating our society. Kirkman's answer? "Well that wouldn't make for a very fun comic, would it?"
  • Screw Destiny: Invincible refuses to follow in his father's footsteps as a world conqueror.
  • Secret Project Refugee Family: Subverted: Atom Eve was the only "good" subject. When the others escape, they try to kill her because of the Hell they were put through to live up to her. Her "family" dies... but at the end, she turns a picture of her real family into a picture of them.
  • Shared Universe: Has fought villains from some of Robert Kirkman's other comics, and has teamed up with Zephyr Noble, Firebreather, & Shadow Hawk. In general, characters from Kirkman's other books (besides The Walking Dead) show up often -- a few of them being major supporting characters, like Brit and Cecil (Brit), Tech Jacket and Donald (Tech Jacket), and Kid Thor and Knockout (Capes).
    • An odd example; Invincible frequently guest-stars characters owned by other Image creators, like the Savage Dragon, and the series has a number of Heroes of Other Stories that clearly aren't main characters of the Invincible title but are created and owned by Kirkman himself. The series evokes a Shared Universe like Marvel or DC, but this one title does almost all the heavy lifting for it.
      • Due to the whole "creator-owned" thing, Image as a whole does an odd variant of the shared universe: there's a slightly different "Image universe" for each creator, where the other creators' characters exist, but aren't as big a deal as they would be in their own universe.
    • He also briefly crossed over with Spider-Man when Kirkman was writing Marvel Team-Up.
  • Shout-Out: Each trade paperback is named after a different sitcom.
  • Show Within a Show: Mark's favorite comic is Science Dog.
  • Silence, You Fool: Monarch Prime, the Immortal.
  • Simultaneous Arcs: The Sequid/Lizard League arc.
  • Stealth Pun: The Official Handbook of the Invincible Universe put forth the idea that minor villain the Elephant has total recall, a perfectly photographic memory. That's right. The Elephant never forgets.
  • Superpowerful Genetics: Every hybrid child of a viltrumite will inherit their powers. But more than that, their genes are explicitly "more dominant than dominant", often making their children have a higher percentage of viltrumite genes than their other parent's. Humans are already genetically similar enough that human/viltrumite pairings produce hybrids that are nearly 100% viltrumite.
  • Super Senses: Invincible has to keep reminding people that he doesn't have these.
    • Doesn't have super-hearing, at least. His father regularly reacts to threats further away than Mark can notice, although that might just be Cecil giving him heads-ups, and Mark tends to be the first to see things when flying.
  • Super Soldier: Whatever purpose D.A. Sinclair originally intended for his Re-Animen, this is what they became once Cecil hired him. He's even managed to make ones out of the dead alternate Invincibles from the Invincible War.
  • Take That: In response to the promotional campaign for Marvel's "Heroic Age" event (which spawned some Memetic Mutation), a series of similar images were released depicting various Image characters joining the Guardians of the Globe - with plenty of snark toward the Wolverine Publicity used by Marvel's campaign.
    • Issue 80 contains an obvious Take That at the DC reboot. Mark goes to his local comic shop to catch up after returning from space and is surprised to see so many books have been relaunched. The clerk derisively snarls that "these companies have no integrity."
  • Tear Jerker - Invincible fighting his dad

 Omni-Man: You will live to see the end of this civilization! Everyone and everything you know will be gone! WHAT WILL YOU HAVE AFTER 500 YEARS?!

Invincible: You, dad. I'd still have you.

  • Ted Baxter: The Immortal. He always acts like he's the most powerful hero on Earth, but, as Invincible points out, he is actually fairly weak in comparison to the other Flying Bricks in the series.)
    • He could be the most powerful non-Viltrumite on Earth and he would still look like a Ted Baxter, considering that the protagonist is a Viltrumite.
    • You know it's bad when even the non-flying brick heroes start kicking his ass.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: Magmaniac and Tether Tyrant.
  • Took a Level In Badass: Allen the Alien. Literally.
  • Transplant: Many characters from Kirkman's other Image comics have become minor characters in Invincible once their own series have ended. Most notable examples are Tech Jacket and Brit.
  • The Plague: The main one infected the Viltrumite population killing 99.999% before a vaccine could spare the rest.
    • Later after the end of Viltrumite war with most of the Viltrumite's hiding on Earth, the Coaliton of Planets decides to recreate a stronger one and try again, despite the fact that a majority of the Earth's population would also probably die.
  • What Do You Mean It's Not Heinous?: Apparently Kirkman really dislikes infidelity; Rex Splode cheats on Atom Eve once, and is treated like crap by everyone for it until he dies.
    • Except, nothing bad happened to Dupli-Kate when she cheated on him. And after Rex got a decent amount of Character Development the other characters got along with him just fine. The only person who treated him like crap until he died was Eve, who ends up feeling really bad about it.
    • Then again, while nothing explicitly bad happened to Dupli-Kate, she doesn't have nearly as many friends as she used to.
  • When All You Have Is a Hammer: After having both his arms broken, Mark beat a man to death with his face.
  • Who Wants to Live Forever?: The issue is raised multiple times, mostly by Nolan - especially considering that aside from Conquest, Thaedus, and Thragg, he could well be one of the oldest characters in the series. Viltrumites live so long that even romantic links with other Viltrumites dissolve over time, and to love a "lesser" species initially seemed unthinkable to him.
  • Women in Refrigerators: Atom Eve.
    • Averted. Hard.
  • The Worf Effect: Battle Beast is killed the second he tries to attack Thragg.
  • You Fail Geography Forever: The secret base of the Lizard League is supposedly located in the Everglades. Surrounded by mountains. Uh huh.
  • You No Take Candle: Kursk, in the few instances he's seen speaking English. He appears to be learning, because his English has improved dramatically the second time he's heard to speak it, but his grammar and syntax are still very poor. Octoboss' English is probably worse, though; you often need to really use your imagination to understand what he's trying to say.

Notes

  1. i.e.Adam & Eve
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