According to Deadline, Marge Dean, Executive Producer of Amazon’s animated series Invincible said that the series enjoyed hardly any marketing, and succeeded mainly on word of mouth. She emphasized and elaborated on this disparity during her keynote at the MIA Market event in Rome.
“I love Amazon, they’re great, but there was barely any marketing for this show. This thing just popped up but I had no idea what it was or what was going to happen.”-Marge Dean, Invincible executive producer
According to Dean, Invincible receives less than a twentieth of the budget of The Boys, Amazon Prime Video’s other flagship superhero series. That’s quite a significant difference, and one most glaringly stark in the realm of marketing and advertising.
Yet despite its budgeting challenges, Invincible’s acclaim is palpable. Its first season launched in 2021, and the series ably rubs shoulders with The Boys in terms of viewership, often venturing capably into Amazon’s top-five most-watched shows.
This is no slim feat, especially considering that many fans who hit upon the series weren’t traditionally or initially devotees of the superhero genre.
Invincible executive producer Marge Dean says Amazon put almost no resources behind marketing the hit series.
The formidable comic-writing team of Robert Kirkman, Cory Walker, and Ryan Ottley first conceived and developed the comic that would later become the show. Like the comic on which it’s based, the Amazon series charts the journey of Mark Grayson as he transforms into a superhero.
Truly and impressively, Invincible has carved a bonafide niche in the superhero genre, in no small part due to its superb voice cast: J.K. Simmons, Sandra Oh, and Steven Yeun.
For her part, Dean conveyed satisfied surprise at the show’s success, a triumph all the more unlikely given the lackluster promotional push from Amazon. The producer opined: “I love Amazon, they’re great, but there was barely any marketing for this show. This thing just popped up but I had no idea what it was or what was going to happen.”
Thus, Invincible’s success speaks to the sheer quality of the content—alongside the potential, outsized reach when a series resonates with an audience.
Adult animation faces an uncertain future, regardless of its recent and robust success. Amidst the labor strkes roiling the entertainment industry, Dean’s show persevered. But the Invincible producer pointed out that other programs in the genre will be a long time coming, delayed in production by the labor disputes.
Dean’s expertise and enormous experience in the animation industry lend weight and credibility to her observations. Beyond Invincible, her keynote observations touched on the much-discussed impact of AI on animation.
In her talk, Dean expressed skepticism about AI’s actual ability to animate while acknowledging its welcome and beneficial usage in the development stages of production.
Marge Dean’s producer credits on animated projects include Gen: Lock, Robot Chicken, and numerous titles in franchises like Barbie, Monster High, and Scooby-Doo.
The producer also made an impassioned plea to the entire entertainment industry to consider adult animation as seriously as it does any other high-budget genre. Dean highlighted the depth, richness, and maturity of content adult animation can embody—urging its liberation from the stringent confines of “kids and comedy.”
It’s true—beyond Invincible, noted directors like Guillermo del Toro, Wes Anderson, and Richard Linklater have all seized on the power and potential of animation, Dean pointed out. Moreover, she communicated how adult animation retains the ability to deliver profound, nuanced emotional experiences, all amid dynamic, action-oriented narratives.
Which is something we can all get behind.