Invincible has been on an incredible roll since it started it’s final year centered around Invincible leading the Coalition to stop Thragg’s powerful Viltrum Empire. The war between the two sides has continued to Invincible has only gotten better with each issue. With Invincible going straight after Thragg on Viltrum’s new home planet things should only intensify. Will Invincible be able to lead the Coaltion to a big victory that will turn the tide if a war that has consumed the universe? Or will Thragg overpower Invincible and grow even more powerful? Let’s find out with Invincible #136.
Writer: Robert Kirkman
Artist: Ryan Ottley
Colorist: Nathan Fairbairn
Story Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Art Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Overall Rating: 9 Night Girls out of 10
Synopsis: On the Viltrum Empire home planet, Thragg watches as the capital is destroyed as his children fight off the Coalition forces from his tower. A ship suddenly crashes through the tower, forcing Thragg to fly into all the chaos.
Thragg spots Omni-Man and Invincible and calls his entire Viltrumite Empire to converge on him. All of Thragg’s children rapidly appear and Thragg orders them to bring him all of the Coalition’s forces skulls.
Allen freaks out at Thragg’s army’s numbers. Invincible says that they need to stick to the plan. Omni-Man, Allen, Invincible and Atom Eve all stand their ground and get ready to do everything they can to move their plan to phase two.
Over in Talescria, Haluma and Deborah Grayson are having tea are having small talk. Haluma eventually asks Deborah if she has hear from the front lines. Deborah that she hasn’t heard anything. They both suddenly hear something and Deborah rushes to the children.
Deborah finds that Terra broke part of the ceiling. Deborah tells Terra that it is to dangerous to fly inside.Terra expresses her boredom hanging out with babies and says her parents will need her in their fight.
Haluma comes in and grabs her babies and starts crying because after Oliver died any little thing causes her to worry that something happened to them. Terra starts crying and talks about how sorry she is that Oliver died and does not want that to happen to anyone ever again.
On Viltrum Empire home planet, Thragg’s children are trying to overwhelm Invincible with numbers. Invincible is able to punch and headbutt his way through Thragg’s children, killing them since they aren’t as strong as him.
Elsewhere Atom Eve is creates an energy shiled to keep the Thragg’s kids at bay and is able to escape the huge horde of them. She tries to use her powers to hold them off but their numbers eventually overwhelm her shield.
Omni-Man, covered in blood, acts quick and flies into the horde and saves Atom Eve. As Omni-Man is flying Atom Eve away some of Thragg’s kids tackle Omni-Man from behind.
Atom Eve armors up and starts fighting Thragg’s forces. Invincible spots Atom Eve and fights his way to her side as more of Thragg’s forces arrive. Invicible then flies Atom Eve away.
Elsewhere Ursaal flies through the destruction going on and goes to Thragg’s side. Ursaal yells at her father that they should stop before they lose more of her brothers and sisters, especially since they have won with the Coalitions forces are running way. Thragg grabs Ursaal by the throat that the fallen are weak and his Viltrum Empire only has room for the strong. He then asks her if she is among the weak as she can join those that have died.
On another part of the planet Atom and Omni-Man are wrecking shop on Thragg’s forces. Invincible and Atom Eve comment that things are going well so far as the remaining Coalition forces escape.
Sometime later, Thragg remarks how they are now going to go after the Coalition and finish them.
In one of the Coalition’s ships Atom Eve mentions to Invincible how “great” a honeymoon this is. Allen goes gets an update on how things are going.
Omni-Man comments how they were successful in drawing Thragg to their stronghold. Invincible reveals that the stronghold they are leading Thragg to is actually Earth. End of issue.
The Good: After all the build up as to what Invincible and the Coalition will do next we finally what there plans actually being executed. Invincible #136 is a non-stop, violent action-filled comic book that positively progresses the war with Thragg and his Viltrum Empire. As action packed as things got Robert Kirkman did not forget about developing the characters involved further, strengthening everything we saw happen in this issue.
Kirkman wasted no time setting the standard for the type of action we are going to be seeing as Invincible comes to a close. It was pure popcorn for the eyes seeing Invincible, Atom Eve, Omni-Man and Allen wrecking shop on Thragg’s forces. Everyone got in their moment to look like a badass, even Atom Eve who before this was shown to not be match for other Viltrumites. Seeing this helped show how far Invincible and Atom Eve have come in a short time in terms of power as they were able to do a lot of damage.
The huge war while on the surface looked shallow Kirkman injected plenty of character work. This battle did a lot for developing Thragg’s current mentality in making his Viltrum Empire the most powerful in the universe. The lack of caring that he showed all his children as he became consumed by his own power-hungry anger over the Coalition have the balls to try to invade his planet was great to watch.
This mentality of Thragg’s also gave some much needed sympathy for Ursaal. Kirkman has done a very good job developing Ursaal into an intriguing character following her close brother’s death. It’s clear that her brother’s death continues to weigh on her and this fight just brought out some of those thoughts of losing more of her family. The fact that Thragg did not show the same sympathy when Ursaal brought the losses of her brothers and sisters up to him is an eye opening moment for her. Now there is further interest in where Ursaal goes from here as she is clearly scared of Thragg but is showing signs of rebellion.
On the other side of this war, it was great to see how this entire battle turned out to be part of Invincible, Atom Eve and Allen’s plan to draw out Thragg. The final shot of Invincible revealing that the stronghold they are leading Thragg and his forces to is Earth creates more excitement for what comes next. Since taking his family to space, we haven’t seen much of Earth. So with Earth now being a focal point in the Coalition’s plans it instantly creates a sense of importance around all of Invincible’s allies that we haven’t seen in a long time.
As much as Invincible #136 was about pushing the war between the Coalition and Thragg’s Viltrum Empire, Kirkman was able insert some character development outside these two sides. I continue to enjoy how Kirkman has been able use this war to develop Terra into a more complex character. While she is still a little kid, Terra has already seen more than any one person should see. Her breakdown over not being able to fight by her parents side is understandable.
This scene with Terra became even harder to read with how Kirkman wrote Haluma. This was the first bit of solid character development for Haluma, as she has been mostly a background character up to this point. It also gave more weight to Oliver’s death, which is the catalyst for this new war.
With how much action there was in Invincible #136, Ryan Ottley was more than up for the challenge of deliver incredible artwork. There was never a moment in this issue that felt small. Ottley was able to get across how big and chaotic this war between the Coalition and Thragg’s Viltrum empire is. Seeing the hordes of Thragg’s children attacking Invincible, Atom Eve, Allen and Omni-Man was a sight to see as each one had time to show off their skills.
The Bad: The one very minor complaint I have for Invincible #136 is that I did not care about how many of Thragg’s kids died. Outside of Ursaal, we haven’t seen Thragg’s kids get any sort of development. Seeing them die at the hands of Invincible and the others had the same impact of when the Power Rangers always took out Lord Zedd’s Putty Patrol. A little development on that side of the story will go a long way to make Thragg’s side feel more important as things escalate.
Overall: Invincible #136 was a great, action-packed issue that delivered on showing off the scope of the war between the Coalition and Thragg’s Viltrum Empire. Robert Kirkman choreographed the action perfectly, while being aware of how this fight can help develop Invincible and everyone involved. Probably more impressive, was Ryan Ottley, who had his time to shine with incredible artwork that delivered on the scale of what Invincible and everyone going all out should look like.