I feel as though there's a bitter irony, one that every reviewer has secretly felt at least once in their lives, to the idea of desperately wishing to pad out a critique of a story that suffers from filler. The dilemma is this: there's little to say about a filler story but writing a short review is an extremely easy thing to do and reeks of incompetence. Invader Zim #13 isn't bad, it's just filler. Unlike the best Invader Zim stories, it relies entirely on a single joke premise for its runtime. The joke this time is suspiciously similar to the episode of the original show “Abducted”, one character is brought up into an unfamiliar space and is forced to deal with a duo of two aliens who are so far removed from human logic that they deny the things they're told despite their inherit truth.
It wasn't Zim's best episode back in the day and, honestly, it's a little boring the second time around too. The aliens in “Abducted” had enough elbow room to showcase personality traits beyond their misunderstanding of the situation around them, but comics being short as they are, these two only exist to completely misread an obvious situation.
That said, this is still Invader Zim. The colors are still vibrant, the writing is still goofy and charming enough to enjoy and by no means was this issue a bad time, but it is undeniably filler.
There's also a short comic at the end revolving around Invader Zim collecting sweat off the bodies of people who are working out and then GIR drinks it and I thought that was pretty gross.
As a small addendum, and by no means whatsoever to be intended as filler, I feel like this comic is the first time I've actually felt the strain on the series left by Jhonen Vasquez's absence. I didn't feel it with issue #11, even though I was not a fan of it at all, and I didn't feel it with #12 because it was a riot of an issue. This is the first time, however, that the slog of reading through it came from the sheer fact that we've been here before.
A series I've known for the longest time as being consistently fresh is showing its age. That's a scary thought. Still though, God knows this isn't the worst we've seen Zim.
[su_box title="Score: 3/5" style="glass" box_color="#8955ab" radius="6"]
Invader Zim #13 Writer: Eric Trueheart Artist: Warren Wucinich Publisher: Oni Press Price: $3.99 Format: Ongoing; Print/Digital