A relative newcomer to comics, Invincible is a break-out hit at Image Comics becoming in some ways the flagship character of the company (especially for the latest imprint Skybound). The series is a love letter to Silver Age comics, mashing up elements of Superman/Superboy, Marvelman and Kid Marvelman, Dragon Ball Z’s Goku, Raditz, and the Saiyans, Star Wars’ Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader, and Spider-Man to make up the self-titled lead. Part of the success is in no small part to the supporting cast and super-villains. Invincible has interacted with virtually every major hero of Image (being part of four super hero teams in his relative short career: the Pact, Teen Team, New Guardians of the Globe, and the Coalition of Planets) and has often associated with several characters from his creator Robert Kirkman’s other works in Brit, Tech Jacket, Capes Inc, and Wolf-Man. Invincible would not only feature new villains, but on occasion adopt those of Kirkman’s other works.
The story focuses on Invincible, the son of Earth’s champion Omni-Man (a pastiche for Superman), as he learns his father is not only from a super-powered alien race, but a warrior race that seeks to conquer the universe by sending what few members of their bloodline remain to integrate into society and make it vulnerable to invasion. The truth revealed after Omni-Man slaughters the Guardians of the Globe (analogous Justice League of America), son battles father and when the elder nearly slaughters his child, he instead turns on his people to stand beside Earth. Battling family and friends would be a theme for the series. Invincible would fight the likes of Battle Beast, Titan, Powerplex, Dinosaurus, Universa, and Thragg only to either befriend or fight beside them later. Longtime ally Allen the Alien and Invincible’s half-brother Young Omni-Man recently battled the hero when the pair threatened to eliminate life on Earth to prevent a future threat.
Invincible fought many foes deriving from Earth such as Machine Head and his criminal empire, the Order (reminiscent of the Secret Society of Super-Villains), Mauler Twins, Master Mind, Rampage, Elephant (homage to the Rhino), the Reanimen, and Doc Seismic. Likely the hero’s greatest Earth-born threat being Angstrom Levy who was able to open up portals to alternate realities and would download the knowledge of his other world counterparts and forced Invincible to battle across several realities in order to wear him down (a plan that failed). Levy would return this time with an army of evil doppelgangers of Invincible across the multiverse, nearly killing not only their intended target but many of Earth’s heroes itself in the so-called Invincible War. This said, the hero would be challenged even further by alien threats.
Several alien races have targeted Earth and fought Invincible, such as the Flaxans, Octoboss and his Squidmen, and the Sequids (reminiscent of Starro). One of the greater threats was Omnipotus (an amalgamated variation of the Beyonder and Galactus), the Shaper of Worlds, who sought to consume Earth and nearly defeated all of its heroes before being stopped. But these battles all paled against the Viltrumite War. The race Omni-Man, Invincible, and Young Omni-Man belong to, the Viltrumite captured Omni-Man when he rejected his mission on Earth (sentenced to death before he escaped), appointed his son to finish his work and had their agent Anissa battle him when he also rejected the job, and sent Conquest to relieve him (which he interpreted to murder Invincible, his family, and the people of Earth). When Conquest failed, the race’s ruler Thragg personally led his people against Invincible and the Coalition of Planets (heroes across the universe banded together, the Viltrumite their chief concern) as the heroes invaded the enemy homeworld. Omni-Man and Thaedus (a rebel Viltrumite and the Coalition leader) destroyed their planet, leading the aliens to move to Earth where they plan to mingle in its society and use it as a mating colony to invade in the future. However, Thragg would learn Omni-Man and Invincible descended from the original Viltrumite king, making them viable candidates to rule their people; in other words, Thragg can’t allow either to live.
7. GREEN LANTERN
A cosmic policing force, the Green Lantern Corps are peace keepers of thousands of sectors across the universe. This distinction is bound to bring some of the most powerful foes amongst the stars. Hal Jordan, greatest of the Lanterns, would face threats on Earth like Goldface, Dr. Polaris, Sonar, Hector Hammond, Tattooed Man, Shark, Black Hand, Javelin, Puppeteer, Lamplighter, and Major Disaster with enemies throughout the universe in Sinestro, Myrwhydden, Evil Star, Star Sapphire, Krona, Qward, Dr. Ub’x, Predator, Manhunters, and Nekron. However, in recent years with the War of Lights story, Green Lantern’s life got significantly more difficult with several emerging Lantern Corps. In recent years, the Red Lantern Corps, Agent Orange (Larfleeze), Sinestro Corps, Star Sapphires, Indigo Tribe, and Black Lantern Corps have emerged. These groups have strong ties to the Green Lantern making their appearance troubling.
Atrocitus, leader of the Red Lanterns, had his entire family and race slaughtered by the Guardians of the Universe’s Manhunters and was imprisoned on the abysmal world of Ysmault where he brought together the victims of the Sinestro Corps to form his organization of power ring wielders. Carol Ferris, longtime on-and-off again love of Hal Jordan, was possessed by the Star Sapphire, becoming a dangerous enemy and slew fellow Green Lantern (and wife of Jordan’s GL friend John Stewart) Katma Tui, was forced to again carry the power in order to aid her love and lead a group that rivals, and sometimes aids, the Green Lanterns. Black Hand, longtime enemy of Hal Jordan, would help Nekron resurrect the dead to form a super-powered Black Lantern Corps made up of the loved ones, allies, and enemies of the universe’s heroes, complete with their knowledge. For the Sinestro Corps, the group was founded by Hal Jordan’s former comrade and nemesis Sinestro.
A Green Lantern and best friend of Abin Sur (the Lantern that passed his ring on to Jordan), Sinestro was considered the greatest of the Corps. It was Jordan, from the neighboring sector, that uncovered Sinestro’s homeworld as being under his control and it was Jordan who brought him to justice. Sinestro was exiled to Qward, homeworld to the Guardians’ then greatest enemy, where he convinced the world’s Weaponers to make him a yellow power ring. In time, we learned the ring was powered by the Corps’ greatest enemy, Parallax, which was the yellow impurity of their rings and who corrupted Hal Jordan into slaughtering his own Corps. Sinestro fought for years alone (though, one of the greatest crises to face the Corps came from Sinestro convincing the MadGod Sector 3600 T:D:H:D to run rampant and wipe out entire star systems), but in recent years formed his own Corps with some of the universe’s most deadly. Together with the likes of the Anti-Monitor (who nearly wiped out the multiverse), Superboy-Prime (who killed many Green Lanterns and several of Earth’s heroes), Cyborg Superman (who wiped out Coast City, Jordan’s hometown, and made the hero susceptible to Parallax), Manhunters, Ranx the Sentient City (said to wipe out the Green Lantern’s living planet Mogo), and later Mongul, it looked grim for the Green Lanterns. Today, the various Corps hold an alliance, but it’s shaky at best.