Omni-Man killed the Guardians of the Globe because the heroes were a threat to the Viltrumites’ plans of conquering Earth.
Omni Man, aka Nolan Grayson, is part of a vicious alien race – the Viltrumites – who revel in conquering diverse planets throughout the cosmos. It only took a few millennia, but the powerful empire discovered Earth and marked the planet for takeover.
Nolan entered Earth undercover but soon stole the spotlight and became the planet’s most powerful defender. The publicity served the alien well, as it helped him gain the public’s favor – a crucial factor for his next steps.
Omni-Man bided his time: he got married, had a child, and became friends with various superheroes – including members of the guardians.
But the clock started ticking.
Nolan had grown to care about his life, but Viltrumites lived for thousands of years – his time on Earth was a blip. The only thing he meant to take from the planet was his son, Mark.
Would Mark join him? See the logic in his ways? He didn’t know, but he hoped so.
So Nolan acted.
The success of Nolan’s mission as an infiltrated agent required weakening Earth’s defenses – and the logical place to start was this Universe’s version of the Justice League.
So Nolan called the Guardians to their headquarters and killed every single one of them.
Or so he thought…
The Immortal was the only one to survive.
With that name, it was the least I expected from him.
For the longest time, no one knew who had killed the Guardians. But eventually, Immortal returned to fight Omni-Man, and their conversation revealed to Mark and the rest of the world that the infiltrated Viltrumite was the murderer.
Why do the Viltrumites Want to Conquer Earth?
The Viltrumites wanted to Conquer Earth for its resources until more pressing reasons became obvious.
The progression of Viltrumite’s motivations kept me hooked o their arc because the way events unfold subverts the commonplace in alien conquerors’ stories. Yes, the superpowered beings were far more powerful, but the writer conjured up clever explanations of why and how Earth’s allies could destroy an intergalactic empire.
The ancient aliens had formed their empire by conquering hundreds of worlds throughout millennia. Their command was the personification of their societal values: strength, ruthlessness, and survival.
Viltrumite civilization is formed solely by the strongest of their kind. It’s common practice to challenge fellows in duels to determine the best warrior, and as weaknesses aren’t tolerated, these battles end in death.
There’s no mercy among Viltrumites.
Conquering other worlds highlights the ruthlessness of Viltrumite civilization; they subjugate the weak to show their power as they do among themselves. Besides, colonizing planets provides resources to further expand the empire’s reach and influence over the Universe.
Initially, Earth was just another pawn in the world-domination game: a weakling planet ready to be ripped of its life and resources. But when Mark Grayson – aka Invincible – refused to join his father in conquering the blue planet, the hero raised the stakes.
Once again, when Invincible convinced his father to join him, things became critical for the vicious aliens. The alliance exposed many of the empire’s flaws – including the fact there were less than 50 pure-blood Viltrumites left in the Universe.
This information was a game changer, and with that reveal, I went from thinking the Viltrumites would annihilate the humans to believing earthlings had a chance.
The conquerors soon realized their predicament as well; thus, conquering Earth wasn’t a formality anymore. It became a matter of life or death. If the Viltrumites didn’t subdue the planet, they risked losing everything because Earth’s protectors could end their reign once and for all.
Earth needed to be made an example for symbolic and practical reasons.
When I mentioned Nolan joined Mark’s side, you probably wondered how?
After murdering your friends in cold blood and battling your son to near death, how can you come back?
It turns out a seed for good had been planted in the gory fight between father and son. When Omni-Man held a bloody Invincible in his arms, he realized he couldn’t kill someone he loved greatly.
So the Viltrumite flew away – conflicted by the shame of unfulfilled duty and the love for his family – until he found a new planet to reside in.
In Thraxa, Omni-Man became the planet’s ruler – not for greed, but because the native aliens’ short lifespans made Nolan more suited for the role. In his new home, the Viltrumite had time to think, take care of a new son, and realize the errors in his ways.
So when he reached out to Mark, Nolan was ready to leave Viltrum’s ways behind him.
Still, I thought Mark forgave his father rather quickly. At that point, I wasn’t convinced Nolan had earned absolution, and I felt the older Viltrumite would turn on his son at any moment.
But thankfully, the writers did a good job developing Nolan’s story, and by the comic’s completion, the former villain had the best redemption arc in the series, followed closely by Rex’s.
Were the Viltrumites Successful?
Invincible is a bleak comic, but not to the point of making the villains thrive in the end. Although the heroes squirm and bleed throughout the comic’s 144-issue run, author Robert Kirkman wrote a happy ending – and I’m thrilled by that.
I’m a sucker for happy endings, and I believe writers’ eagerness to be edgy can often ruin a story’s conclusion. But that’s far from the case here.
After many gory battles, heroic sacrifices, and heavy drama, Invincible defeated Thragg and his troops – the last remnants of the Viltrumite way of living.
But even before that happened, the comic had one other twist.
Before the final confrontation, the heroes discovered Nolan was the rightful heir to the throne instead of Thragg, which changed everything. I didn’t like this development because I’m not a fan of the lost heir trope.
Making your protagonist royalty sends the message that you must come from a particular lineage to be the hero, and it solves narrative conflicts too conveniently.
Still, I went along for the ride and liked where the author tied this thread. After accepting his lineage, Omni-Man initiated a new reign: he released conquered planets and taught the Viltrumites about compassion and forgiveness.
Once Nolan died, Mark had a different legacy from the previous generations to take care of. He led his people into an era of harmony – the formerly cruel civilization now helped bring peace to the Universe.
A fitting conclusion to a comic full of war and gore. Omni-man showed that people can change and violent beginnings can have delightful ends.
Question: Will Guardians of the Globe Come Back?
Answer: None of the original Guardians of the Globe members, except for Immortal, came back from the dead in the comics. So it’s unlikely that will happen in the series.
However, even though the original heroes didn’t come back, the team did with new members. Since many heroes leave or die during the comics, this becomes a recurrence.
Question: Which Guardian of the Globe Survived?
Answer: Immortal was the only active member of the Guardians to survive Omni-Man’s attack. I say active because another original member survived due to not being part of the team at the time: Black Samson.
After Samson lost his powers, the guardians kicked him out of the group. At the time, the hero was upset, but he wouldn’t be alive if it weren’t for that.
Question: Could The Guardians of the Globe Beat Omni-Man?
Answer: Part of the reason Omni-Man defeated the Guardians so easily was that he took advantage of the element of surprise. Since the heroes believed Nolan to be an ally, the Viltrumite acted while the guardians had their guard down, which made it almost impossible for them to react.
However, despite Omni-Man’s superior strength, I believe the result could have been different if the scenario had been a fair battle.
A Long Story
This article was just a short explanation of Invincible’s convoluted narrative. If you have more questions, the answers probably lie in this Invincible Universe Guide. To learn more about the Guardians of the Globe original lineup and its subsequent rosters, check out this Invincible Characters Guide.
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