Amazon Studios today announced it has greenlit the hour-long animated series Invincible from acclaimed writer Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead, Oblivion Song) co-creator Cory Walker and artist Ryan Ottley. Based on the popular comic book series of the same name, the eight-episode series will premiere globally on Amazon Prime Video in over 200 countries and territories. But before you think the blood-and-guts heavy, visually graphic story will make a transition to live-action entertainment, a la The Walking Dead, just wait; there’s a twist!
Based on the Skybound / Image comic of the same name, Invincible is an adult animated superhero show that revolves around Mark Grayson, a normal teenager except for the fact that his father is the most powerful superhero on the planet. Shortly after his seventeenth birthday, Mark begins to develop powers of his own and enters into his father’s tutelage. The series is suspenseful, action-filled, and emotion-packed, yet builds upon poignant and heart-warming moments of love, friendship, and humanity.
This quaint description of the story glosses over the fact that Invincible opts to play into the ultra-violence that is bound to happen when superheroes really tear into each other. This thing is bloody and gory and has to be done in animation to do it justice, otherwise the blood-and-guts budget would be off the charts. I’m happy to say, however, that it’s one of the few “R-rated” adaptations meant for adult audiences from my list that’s actually getting to see the light of day. But make no mistake, the gore-factor merely heightens a powerful story at the heart of Invincible, so this is a win for Amazon, Kirkman, and fans of good storytelling everywhere.
Here’s what Sharon Yguado, Head of Scripted Genre Programming, Amazon Studios, had to say:
“Robert has an uncanny talent to predict the zeitgeist, and we are incredibly excited to see him break boundaries in an animated one-hour format. In a world saturated with superhero fare, we trust Robert to subvert expectations while encapsulating a story filled with heart and adrenaline. We love his ambitious plan for the show and believe it will look like nothing else on television.”
“I couldn’t be more proud of the series Cory Walker, Ryan Ottley and I did together for over 15 years. To know our characters will live on in multiple iterations in other media is almost too exciting to bear! What Amazon is allowing us to do in animated form is nothing short of ground-breaking, and I can’t wait for our rabid fan base to experience it!”
Invincible is produced by Skybound, with Simon Racioppa (Teen Titans) serving as showrunner. The series is executive produced by Kirkman, Racioppa, David Alpert (The Walking Dead, Fear the Walking Dead), Catherine Winder (The Angry Birds Movie, Star Wars: The Clone Wars) with Supervising Directors Justin & Chris Copeland (Avengers Assemble, Ultimate Spider-Man). Invincible, Kirkman’s second-longest comic-book series, concluded in February 2018 after a 15-year run. The full series is available across 23 countries and in eight languages and is also currently in development separately as a feature-length movie.
In related news, THR reports that Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg are still set to write, direct and produce the feature-length adaptation of the title, with Kirkman on board through Image Comics’ Skybound imprint and their first-look deal with Universal Pictures. Skybound’s Alpert and film/TV co-presidents Bryan and Sean Furst are attached to both the feature and the Amazon series.
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