Invincible season 2 is finally arriving, and while it hasn’t done much to change the formula, that is both its strength and weakness.
It has been two-and-a-half years since we last checked in with the world of Invincible. While creator Robert Kirkman promises we won’t see any more delays of quite that length – they’ve already recorded voices for season 3 – the lengthy pause certainly hasn’t done any favors for the series. Superhero fatigue is setting in to be sure, and even the world of superheroes with questionable ethics is becoming some well-worn ground. Lets not forget that this does come from the same service that shows both The Boys and Gen V. While all of these shows take different roads and journeys, they all seemingly end up at the same destination of, “putting on a costume and being a hero can be a bit weird.”
As season 2 kicks off, Mark (Steven Yeun) is still being a superhero, but trying to do it on his own terms. While also sneaking out at night to help people, he is preparing for his Freshman year of college. As one might imagine, trying to balance both is not necessarily easy. He is also dealing with the trauma that the last time he saw his dad, Omni-Man (J.K. Simmons), he nearly beat him to death.
While season 2 deals with the duality of Mark’s life, it also has a lot of other plates it’s spinning: The threat of the Viltrum Empire is growing, Debbie (Sandra Oh) is dealing with the aftermath of her husband being revealed to be a would-be conquerer, the Guardians are trying to form a new team, Atom Eve is learning everything she does has a consequence, and the series is trying to expand its scope a bit with more intergalactic flair.
And while that sounds like a lot, it is, and it also means that each of the stories moves far slower than one might like. Every time you’re settling into one of the stories, it’s time to go check in on someone else, and you just don’t feel like you’re getting as much time to let stories breathe. The Guardians storyline quickly delves into some personal side stories that really just didn’t feel like they even needed to exist. Yes, you learn far more about the characters involved, but at the expense of focusing elsewhere.
Perhaps if this wasn’t coming so soon on the heels of Gen V, which I really enjoyed, I would have been in a better place with Invincible season 2. It’s not that it’s bad by any means, it just doesn’t feel as fresh as it did with season 1. Perhaps things will improve with the second half of the season, but the first half left me somewhat cold.
If you already have Amazon Prime Video, then Invincible is ab easy recommendation. If you don’t currently have the service, you can definitely pass on it for the time being. We’ve enjoyed what we’ve seen so far, but it would be difficult to call it a service seller.
Amazon Studios provided us with the first four episodes of Invincible season 2 for the purposes of this review. We watched all four to completion before beginning this review.