MBTI: Nolan and Robot- ISTJ and INTJ


I can’t recall having compared these two oh-so-similar yet oh-so-very-different types before so now is my time to shine (Oh wait- yes I did. Still, this has got some new stuff in it). If you’ve read Invincible like I told you to you know who these guys are. If you don’t know who these guys are because you didn’t do what I told you to because ain’t nobody the boss of you, then listen up because we can still all learn something together.

Though these two don’t have much interaction in any storyline, it doesn’t make much of a difference to their personalities and seeing them in action are great examples of their types, bizarre as their experiences are. One is a twist on the original superhero himself, Superman, while the other is sort of like if Iron Man were an INTJ. So, still a jerk.

But an INTJ jerk and there’s a difference.

Nolan Grayson, aka Omni-Man is the superhero Invincible’s dad. Originally sent to earth to conquer it, he instead started a family and began protecting the people of earth while reporting back to his home people that he was assimilating them slowly, breaking them down. He sped up the process by killing the Guardians of the Globe (Pretty much the Justice League).

When Invincible finds this out, a fight ensues and Nolan eventually leaves, having to resist killing his own son. Though his time in space would eventually lead him back to earth and making things right with the people he called family. Currently, he’s the leader of his people, the Viltrumites, and lives on the moon with his wife, assisting Invincible when necessary.

And all the other weirdos.

And all the other weirdos.

Robot has been the leader of the Teen Team (Pretty much the Teen Titans) and the Guardians of the Globe and has what may be one of the weirdest stories in comics. While his teammates believed him to be an actual robot with advanced AI and nothing more, it turns out Robot had actually been Rudy Connors, a deformed genius living through Robot from his secret “control center.”

After getting the DNA he needed from good-looking superhero Rexplode, Rudy cloned him and transferred his consciousness into his new ‘Rex’ body. Always improving on his creations, Robot eventually executes his secret long running plan of taking over the earth to make it a better place. Currently, his plan has succeeded and it’s only unfortunate that so many superheroes and former friends had to die for that dream to become a reality.

He's a little testy when challenged.

He’s a little testy when challenged.

The major difference in these two is how they follow the rules. ISTJ Nolan has been going along with his mission the entire time he was on earth but it was part of his goal to keep his true intentions of taking over a secret. INTJ Robot had his own ideas about what earth should be like and we don’t find out what they are until it’s already happening. Once Nolan’s plan was in effect, his ideals had changed without him realizing it, forcing him to leave and ultimately change his ways. Robot’s plan continued effectively as he tried to stave off feelings of remorse and guilt over killing so many of his friends.

So while Nolan’s ways changed over time, Robot had it in him all along to be the “villain” but was simply fighting for the right side…until he made his side the right side.

ISTJs, being the pretty serious-minded individuals that they are, take their duties seriously too. You know this. I know this. Nolan knows this. It’s why when finally began to take over, all the humanity seemed to be sucked out of him as he attempted to convince Mark “Invincible” Grayson to take over with him because, hey, earth people are weak. When he realizes he can’t follow through with his mission because it would mean killing his own son, he disappears like Metallica. What’s he do? He starts his own life on another planet and restarts the process all over again. It’s what he’d gotten used to so it’s what he did again.

This is Si in a nutshell, specifically those that lead with Introverted Sensing. Since this function is all about memory association, you’ll find that strong Si users can come off as close minded at times. Because however they experience a thing, person or place, that’s what any thing, person or place they come across will remind them of.

So how a lot of people feel about a song they relate to their ex is how many SJs live their whole lives. It’s not always negative, but you get the point. It’s subjective perception. While Nolan got used to his life on earth, he didn’t forget his priorities even after twenty years and seemed to become a different person once he revealed his true intentions. Why? He’d been taking over planets for much, much longer. He was just doing his job, don’t be so emotional about it.



Robot seems to work in a similar manner. Be it working as his actual Robot persona or in person, there isn’t really a difference. He’s intelligent, methodical and cold all the same. ISTJs use Si to let them know how to act in a given situation, INTJs use Introverted Intuition or Ni. This, in a sense, is all about seeing the subtle patterns beneath the surface and could be called a sort of long-term planning function. It’s why INTJs are known for planning, whether or not they actually plan. They’ll get ideas in their head and, provided they’re interesting enough, will take it as far as it can go.

And when it comes to fictional INTJs, Robot is as perfect as Doctor Doom or Heisenberg. He plays up to the secret masterminded arch-villain but without a hint of irony. As it turns out, much of the time we’ve seen him throughout the series he’s been planning his world takeover. But it’s not as simple as just becoming the bad guy. Robot knows he’s doing what’s considered bad but sees the changes he’s making as something future generations will thank him for.

Now THANK him!

Now THANK him!

The ISTJ and INTJ functions are similar enough that confusion between the two can be understandable. Both of them have auxiliary Extroverted Thinking and Introverted Feeling. It’s explains why such clear actions they take can seem to confuse people, specifically in emotional arenas. Both see their so-called villainous side as something that they must do regardless of who is being hurt now, their current actions being forgotten in lieu of their overall goal. In Nolan’s case, for his people, the Viltrumites. For Robot, humanity as a whole. But while one is looking into the past to see how he should do things (ISTJ Nolan), the other is looking far into the future (INTJ Robot) and he sees his actions as justified.

Both types are so logical it can be tiresome to those around them but in Nolan and Robot’s case, this can be deadly as well. The present hardly matters to either given how important their goal is to them. But it’s not without signs of sympathy. Nolan is clearly affected by the life he’s been living on earth that he’s eventually deemed a traitor by his people, while Robot is shown to feel remorse over the death of his former friends and teammates even though he’s their murderer. It becomes even tougher for him to explain to those around him that he does care and this is why it must be done.


This is the nasty side of Introverted Feeling- no matter what anyone says or does, if the Fi user can flip it in their mind (unintentionally or otherwise) that people are out to get them, humiliate them, etc. Or in Nolan and Robot’s case- “Why can’t you see what I’m trying to do here? You’re the one being selfish. I’m the one doing the hard work while you can just reap the benefits.”

Both are great examples of tertiary Fi in general, as violent as they are. They both have a hard time expressing themselves and do so in awkward ways that cause people around them to believe they don’t mean what they’re saying. When in fact, they just don’t know how to express it.

Just a little reminder of how similar such different types can be. Even more interesting when you see how disgusted certain online users get when you compare the two.



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