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Invincible Season 2 Part 2's 'Marvel' Cameo Explained - Was That Spider-Man?

Comic book superheroes and crossovers go together like peanut butter and chocolate, but those crossovers are a lot less prevalent when they transect the borders of publishing and intellectual property rights. From time to time, there have been official DC and Marvel crossovers, pitting Superman against Spider-Man, pairing up Batman and Daredevil, and throwing the Justice League and Avengers together, among other mash-ups. Image Comics is part of that legacy as well, and the "Invincible" Season 2 features a fun nod to Spider-Man. It's not an official Marvel cameo — just a parody and homage — but it might as well be.

Early on in the "Invincible" Season 2 finale, as Mark Grayson (Steven Yeun) is battling Angstrom Levy (Sterling K. Brown), he gets thrown through one of Angstrom's portals to a dimension where a hero resembling Spider-Man is battling a villain who looks a lot like Doctor Octopus in an alley. This spider-ish man is identified in the credits as "Agent Spider," and he's even voiced by Josh Keaton, a prominent voice actor responsible for playing Spider-Man in numerous video games and animated series. The villain is referred to as "Prof Ock."

The scene is an explicit nod to 2005's "Marvel Team-Up" Vol. 3 #14, an official crossover for Invincible and Spider-Man written by Image's Robert Kirkman and penciled by his "Invincible" partner-in-crime Cory Walker. These days, with movie and TV adaptations abounding, major comic book publishers seem to be a bit more protective of the characters on their rosters, and it seems clear from the "Invincible" Season 2 finale that a renewal of that official partnership was off the table this time. Still, the new scene is a great nod to the 2005 comic, and it's filled with fun Easter eggs.

Agent Spider vs. Prof Ock

In "Marvel Team-Up" Vol. 3 #14, Invincible encounters Spider-Man in nearly the exact same manner that he meets "Agent Spider" in the Season 2 finale. He emerges from a portal created by Angstrom Levy to see the hero battling Doc Ock in an alley. At first, Invincible is unsure if who's the hero and who's the villain. Spider-Man later takes him to Avengers Tower and introduces him to the rest of the team before Invincible heads home to his own dimension.

Presumably because Prime Video couldn't get the real Spider-Man this time around, things a bit different in the show. Agent Spider's suit is much more mechanical than most actual Spider-Man variants, with cybernetic eyes in the mask and a black, yellow, and silver color scheme. The colors make him look strikingly similar to Gray Fox from "Metal Gear Solid," and with the "Agent" moniker, there's a chance that isn't just a coincidence. There's also the obvious comparison to the Iron Spider suits used in the Marvel comics, which have become increasingly well-known thanks to their prevalence in the MCU.

Agent Spider's snarky persona matches that of the hero he's mimicking, and he even makes an explicit reference to the recent "Spider-Verse" movies. "I saw the portal," he tells Invincible after their accidental team-up. "I know you're from another dimension. I've got way too much experience with that, especially lately." All in all, it's a nice, brief homage to both one of the most famous superheroes and Invincible's 2005 Marvel cameo. It also isn't the first time that Image has intersected with its bigger competitors.

Image Comics is no stranger to intercompany crossovers

Long before the modern era of "Invincible" and "The Walking Dead" making Image Comics a pop culture powerhouse, the publisher was best known for "Spawn," the eponymous series of the dark antihero created by company founder Todd McFarlane. Spawn and Batman have crossed over in official intercompany events three times — twice in 1994, and again in 2022. Given that both characters have gained massive fanbases due to their gritty storylines and dark characterizations, putting them together just makes sense.

In the first crossover, Batman ventures to New York and battles Spawn before they discover that they're both in pursuit of the same twisted villain. The second crossover, "Batman/Spawn: War Devil," sees them facing off against an ancient demon.

Image has also crossed over with Marvel outside of the Invincible-meets-Spider-Man issue. For example, the Image superhero Badrock officially met Wolverine in 1996 and even journeyed to the Savage Land. The next year, Badrock also teamed up with Spider-Man several years before Peter Parker met Invincible. It would have been fun to get the real Spidey for the show, but it also might have been a bit distracting given the modern superhero adaptation landscape. For now, Agent Spider will have to do.