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Invader Zim Issue
Issue 23
The Arc of Virooz, Part Two: The Spark of Virooz
Previous: Issue 22
Next: Issue 24
Publisher: Oni Press
Publication date: September 13, 2017
Story by: Eric Trueheart
Art by: Warren Wucinich
Color by: Fred C Stresing

Official Summary[]

There’s a virus in GIR’s head. This virus is mean, determined, and probably covered in spikes and stuff. Most importantly, it’s making GIR want to kill ZIM, and ZIM can’t really let that happen. But the only way to destroy the virus is to travel inside GIR’s broken robot mind, and the inside of GIR’s broken robot mind is a virtual madhouse of crazy. PART TWO OF A FOUR-PART STORY![1]


Issue 23 was released on September 13, 2017.


Issue #23 has a total of 2 cover variations. 

  1. Warren Wucinich standard retail cover
  2. Jey Odin variant cover

Characters in Issue #23 (In Order of Appearance)[]


SPOILER WARNING OF DOOM: This section or article may contain spoilers!

Virooz located

Virooz located on top of the Operational Core

The issue opens in medias res, with Zim in an arena inside GIR's mind, fighting against programs known as Legless the Clown, Sgt. Oysterface, and Susan Sad-Orb. He wonders how he ended up here, and the story flashes back to the timeframe of the end of the previous issue.

Outside of Zim's Base, the Roboparents tell a confused Dib that he's not in this issue. Inside the base itself, Zim is explaining to Minimoose how the Virooz virus tried to make GIR kill him. Zim attempts to remove the virus, but all his efforts fail, until the Computer suggests that Zim enter a virtual reality interface of GIR's mind where he could destroy the virus but would be at risk of real harm.

Zim enters GIR's mind, a world of bizarre aspects where nothing works right. He discovers that Virooz is located at GIR's operational core, but soon finds himself attacked by several Virooz-affected programs. He attempts to flee, but is captured due to the nature of GIR's faulty mind, and sent to the arena seen in the beginning of the issue. Zim defeats the programs and is rescued by a hooded figure driving a Chihuahua-shaped car, who takes him to the safety of a bar.

Infiltration ya yaaaa

Zim and Hok infiltrate the core

The figure reveals himself to be GIR's error-correcting program, which is based on the brain-scan of Hok, the Irken scientist who first created and programmed the SIR Units. He reveals that since Virooz arrived, it has been corrupting everything it touches and making them all deadly, but he hasn't been able to bring himself to destroy it, since its actually the only thing in GIR's mind that works right. Under pressure from Zim, however, he agrees to help.

Hok's bar is attacked by several Virooz programs, and he and Zim escape and make their way to the operational core, using a "disguise" of stuffing Hok into a poor costume and wearing him like a hat to make Zim look like one of the infected programs. They're eventually spotted, but the two make their way into the core, which contains GIR's operating system - a giant, rampaging version of himself. They climb towards the top of the core to reach Virooz, passing GIR's "like stack" along the way (with Zim being grossed out by seeing how GIR feels about him).

Zim and his star map thing

The coordinates of the creator of Virooz

Reaching the top of the core, they're surprised to see that Virooz isn't there. A suspicious Zim becomes convinced that Hok is actually Virooz in disguise, and feeds him to the giant GIR. However, Zim soon finds himself captured by the actual Virooz virus, which reveals that infecting GIR was a trick to lure Zim in and give him a message, which it does by summoning a floating golden baby. As the baby spells out the message, Zim activates the anti-virus that Hok gave him, destroying Virooz and all its infected programs. Afterwards, he sees that the message is a set of coordinates.

Back in the real world, Zim realizes that Virooz was never the name of the virus, but its creator, who wants Zim to come find them. Tracking the coordinates to a planet, Zim begins to swear revenge, only for GIR to accidentally delete the coordinates.

"To be continued..."

End of Spoilers: There are no further spoilers for this section or article. You can breathe now.

Facts of Doom []

  • This is the second multi-part story in the Invader ZIM comic series. The first were Issues 1 and 2.
    • This is the first story with 4 parts.
  • At the start of the issue, the Roboparents tell Dib that he's not in this one, thereby breaking the fourth wall, something that until this point only Recap Kid has ever done.
    • This is also the second time Dib has been specifically excluded from the plot, as opposed to simply not showing up.
  • We find out in this issue that an Irken scientist named Hok is responsible for the original SIR programming.
  • The way Zim throws Hok to his doom is similar to how Zim killed Emperor Zim in Issue 12, both in the act and the fact that Emperor Zim and Hok insult Zim as they are falling.
  • A running gag in this issue involves Zim questioning everything around him, which is something that usually Dib would do.
  • GIR's "Like Stack" has some emojis.
  • Zim is in GIR's "Like Stack" and Zim saw how GIR views him. We don't get to see it, but it apparently disgusted Zim.
  • Hok's Chihuahua-shaped car looks like Madness.