The long, arduous wait for new Invader Zim comes to its inevitable end next month, when Invader Zim: Enter the Florpus! arrives on Netflix Friday, August 16. As seen below, the announcement was made by one of the half-dozen Twitter accounts that Netflix has, alongside a short teaser.
You asked for it, so we’re delivering a fresh order of doom right to your doorstep. Zim is back. pic.twitter.com/VePp3kfFUa
— NX (@NXOnNetflix) July 23, 2019
Precious little is known about Invader Zim: Enter the Florpus!, but we do have some basic details on the books. We know from Nickelodeon’s original 2017 announcement that the project was greenlit for a runtime of 71 minutes, but how closely the finished movie sticks to that is anyone’s guess. We also know that the original voice cast returned for Enter the Florpus!, with Richard Steven Horvitz as Zim, Rosearik Rikki Simons as GIR, Andy Berman and Melissa Fahn as Dib and Gaz Membrane, and crucially, Wally Wingert and Kevin McDonald as Allmighty Tallest Red and Purple. Production wrapped last January, and that’s pretty much all we’ve got for concrete deets.
Today’s teaser is the first bit of multimedia seen for Enter the Florpus! since San Diego Comic Con 2018, where Invader Zim creator Jhonen Vasquez showed off the above trailer during a panel about the show. According to Vasquez, the trailer was cut together from random bits of animation that looked good enough to show in public, and most of the clips seen in the trailer were going to be sent back to Maven Animation Studio in South Korea for revisions. That was almost a year ago exactly, but even from this early footage we can tell that Invader Zim hasn’t lost its trademark disdain for humanity.
Grotesqueries abound as GIR continues to be a food-obsessed little weirdo, Zim plays the roll of dramatic interloper, and Dib desperately tries to get his absentee father, Professor Membrane, to pay attention to him. The trailer is light on details with regards to what the movie is actually about, but the Netflix placeholder page for Enter the Florpus! does give us a brief synopsis of the film. “When Zim suddenly reappears to begin Phase 2 of his evil alien plan to conquer Earth,” it reads, “his longtime nemesis Dib sets out to unmask him once and for all.”
Beyond the implication that Zim has been missing for some time, this just sounds like the basic premise of the original show. But is that a problem? Not really. Invader Zim has never really needed to be about anything in order to work, after all. Zim’s attempts to conquer the Earth and Dib’s attempts to stop him are but pretense; the choicest of Invader Zim moments are those presented without context or purpose.
Like when GIR has breakfast with a pig, who was never seen before or again, or when Professor Membrane cuts a parent-teacher teleconference short because his laboratory is about to explode. Not all of Invader Zim‘s “lol random” early-2000s humor has aged gracefully, but these little nuggets of absurdism still land just as well. If Enter the Florpus! handles those moments as well as the original series did, the actual plot is inconsequential.