VIDEO: Invader Zim

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Phil follows up his previous review of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic by watching Invader Zim, the cult series canceled too soon by Nickelodeon. While Zim is about an incompetent, self-centered alien who disguises himself as a schoolboy in a futile attempt to destroy the human race, and My Little Pony is about pretty ponies in a magical fantasyland learning lessons about friendship, Phil explains why they have quite a lot in common.

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TV Show: Invader Zim

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  • Good video, though I disagree with it on a few levels.  I’ve never considered Invader Zim to be a “masculine” show.  Describing it as 90’s Goth is absolutely accurate, but the thing about 90’s Goth is that it was never gender exclusive.  It was all encompassing, much like the show itself.  So I’d argue it’s not a good comparison for My Little Pony, which at no point gives off any other vibe than it was clearly intended for really young girls.

    A better comparison, at least from my own childhood, would be Dragon Ball Z and Sailor Moon. Both shows were clearly intended for one sex over the other, yet there was a huge cross pollination of males who dug SM and chicks who loved DBZ. No one felt guilty about it, and no one cared which one you dug. =)

    But regardless, keep on rockin’ Mr. Buni.

    • MichaelANovelli

      I, for one, loved Sailor Moon!

      • TheCrazyFish

        Also, any guys watching Sailor Moon could just say they were watching it because they thought the girls were attractive.

        And any girls watching Dragon Ball Z could just say they were watching it because they enjoyed watching two guys stand opposite each other and scream while charging giant energy balls for 5 episodes in a row.

      • I did as well! =) 

    • On paper, Zim is a boy’s cartoon. Sure goth is as much girl as it is boy and that’s the point, but Zim is about aliens and fighting and NEVER about girly things. In fact the “romantic” episode was all fighting. They don’t even give girly gifts in the Zim universe for Valentines Day.

      Sailor Moon was popular, as was Dragon Ball, cause it was basically all we got in American of anime. As soon as I had more masculine anime to watch, I ignored Sailor Moon. “Sailor Moon is for hentai” was something I know I said in high school. 

      So while I agree with you that goth is ambiguous, Zim just isn’t. As cute as Zim gets, it’s always backseat to something boyish. Dumb humor, violence, not getting ready for a school dance. 

      And if you REALLY want me to nitpick, in Goth there are clear lines drawn. Men’s makeup, black (only) nails, lipstick and eyeliner on the more moderate side. Girls can wear makeup in any color as long as it feels gothy or is paired up with blacks. But then they also were rouse and extended hair and eyelashes, things that a masculine goth would never wear. 

      If I had to say if Zim was boys or Girl’s goth I’d say boys. So really until emo, goth had a big gender divide. 

  • Cristiona

    Man, a quality remake of Bucky O’Hare would rule.

  • Thomas Stockel

    A good review.  I tried to get into Invader Zim but it never really clicked for me.  One or two episodes I found funny but yeah, the screaming was annoying and the characters were just a little too stooopid for my tastes.

    • Tedzey71

      This sums up my feelings towards the show. I think a nicktoon which demographic which you can argue was more gender specific was “The Fairly Oddparents.” It’s main character jumped into comic books, played with dinosaurs, hung out with space aliens… and yet I always saw girls buy the merchandise. 

  • I think you just touched on why girls could like boys’ shows, but boys “can’t” like girls’ shows. Most girls shows are crap, so it makes perfect sense for a girl to be watching the better boys’ shows. The other way around doesn’t make sense. Of course it’s not as simple as that. Girls wearing guys’ clothes is fine, but the other way around isn’t, and I honestly am not quite sure why, but with shows, I do believe that at least part of the reason is because girls’ shows tend to be crap while guys’ shows tend to be better.

    • TheCrazyFish

      There’s still a very large feeling in our society that girls are “inferior” to guys. They’re convinced that marketing something to girls means dumbing it down to retard level and adding the color pink and maybe a dress up game. That’s why us guys get stuff like GI Joes and Transformers, while girls get stuck with the Bionic Woman and her Bionic Beauty Salon.

      For that matter, compare Mighty Max to Polly Pocket. There’s no comparison. Even though Mighty Max was actually the knockoff, it makes Polly Pocket look like crap.

      As for the clothes, I think it’s the same thing. A woman dressing as a man is considered okay because it’s like she’s trying to raise herself up somehow, whereas a man dressing as a woman is somehow “degrading” himself by dressing up like one of those inferior women.

    • Didn’t I say that? That was part of my point.