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Human Zim

Invader Zim
by yo go re

After Zim Series 1 came out, a lot of customizers debuted their own Human Disguise Zims. That was pretty stupid, because you just knew there was no way Palisades would pass that up as their Series 2 variation. Think ahead, guys, and save yourself some time.

In order to pass undetected among the humans and learn their weaknesses, Zim needed a brilliant and flawless disguise. After scanning the entirety of the human race during a fly-by in his Voot Cruiser, he designed his new human identity: a pair of contact lenses and an Elvis wig. PERFECT!

The sculpt, from the neck down, is the same as the Series 1 Zims and the ToyFare-exclusive Angry Zim. He's got the same conical body with the inset stripes, little black boots that raise over his knees and pink banded arms. He's supposed to have his little Irken survival pak, but this one doesn't. That makes Gir, Zim and the Robo-Parents that have all had one major problem or another. Very disappointing.

Zim moves at the neck, shoulders, gloves and waist. His left glove is glued in place, sadly, and considering how thin his arm is and the alarmingly bad breakage rate we've seen in Series 2, I'm not about to force it. Palisades has really gone downhill fast.

This Zim is in his human disguise, which means that he's got white eyes and black hair, rather than pink eyes and antennae. Surprisingly, he doesn't have a neutral look on his face, but instead a sinister smile. It looks great, but it's unexpected - guess those customs weren't so dumb after all. His pupils are square, and the wavy line of his interlocking teeth is sculpted in.

The accessories with this figure are sparse: he gets a machine for remote channel domination to go with Exclusive Gir's TV, a fundraising box of Poop Cola Candy Bars (the only candy made entirely of sawdust), a new style of Irken monitor and a gray figure stand that matches the sidewalk on Gaz's section of the build-a-base. Not that Zim needs it - he balances well by himself.

Buy all the figures in Series 2 (or at least most of them) and you can build a nice diorama of Zim's house. The section included with Human Zim is the front door and windows. The door has the men's room sign on it and the windows fade perfectly from pink to purple. Six tubes of various size fit into the sides of the house, there's an "I Love Earth" flag and two sentry gnomes for the yard, and most of the surface details are molded. Overall, it's a lot like the Simpsons playsets in style and execution, but you didn't have to pay upwards of $20 just to get it.

The Hot Topic exclusive Zim figures, released a bit before the regular series, really run the gamut. Some, like Doggie Suit Gir, are indispensible to your Zim collection; others, like the Robo-Parents, have almost nothing to offer. The exclusive Zim definitely falls into the first group.

After Gir's incompetence results in Zim cleaning his face with bacon, he is stricken with the most horrible affliction known to "normal" human children - a pimple. But Pustulio is no ordinary pimple, and appears to have hypnotic powers...

Again, the body is the same, although exclusive Zim didn't lose out on his backpack. He's got an extraordinarily odd expression on his disguised face, with his lower lip jutting out strangely. It's probably supposed to be a stern little frown, since that's what the art on the back of the packaging shows, but it just looks goofy and is really superfluous: it's not the face, but what's hanging off of it that we're buying.

Pustulio is a molded part of Zim's head, rather than a plug-in piece. The tiny face that Gir drew on the zit is duplicated well on the translucent green plastic. The purple-suited surplus robot body dangles beneath Pustulio via a handy balljoint. Sadly, it's a solid piece, so even if Zim offers, you can't hold his little hand. Now actually, it wasn't the zit itself that was hypnotic, but the motion of the liquid inside it - you have to realize, though, that there's no way Palisades could have filled this little bubble with anything and guaranteed it wouldn't leak or dry out, and the construction of the joint does make it look like there's something inside Pustulio, so this is still great.

In addition to Pustulio, Zim has a fine collection of accessories, including his first line of defense against the zit (and Gir's favorite snack food), a tube of Acne Blast cream. Proving that he's not one for hygiene, Zim's also got one of his head pigeons. Time to visit the skool nurse!

After that, we've got the most romantic gift ever, a big slab of meat. It's tied with a bright red bow and signed to Tak from Zim. Awww! He's got two more lawn gnomes (rounding out the set), the wrist control for Ultra Pipi, a leash for Gir and a little... brown... creature thing that's covered in lavender goop. Why's it covered in lavender goop? Because Tallest Red was going to eat it. It's an adorable little thing, with big goofy eyes and its little tongue sticking out.

We usually say that the best way to make an exclusive figure is to make a version of your character that's different enough to warrant a purchase, but minor enough that no one needs to buy it to complete their collection. Palisades didn't quite do that with this figure, because let's face it: everybody loves Pustulio. They should have saved this for the "main" figure in a future wave.


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