Career Day: Summary

Written by Rob Hummel
First aired on 5/4/2001

It’s career day at school and Dib has been paired up with a paranormal investigator named “Bill”, while Zim goes to work at a fast food restaurant called “McMeaty’s”, which is word play on McDonald’s. However, after discovering Zim is moulting due to the galactic equinox, Dib tries to convince Bill to help expose Zim. The moulting process, while disgusting and explosive, only lasts a few seconds, so it’s important that “Bill” pays attention. Bill, however is only interested in catching a false vampire from a cereal called “Count CoCoFang”, which Bill believes is an actual vampire. Dib must trick Bill into going to McMeaty’s, but Bill is distracted with catching CoCoFang and doesn’t see Zim moult. After moulting, Zim is fired from his job.

• This episode is included on the Operation Doom DVD 

The Wettening: Summary

Written by Roman Dirge, Eric Trueheart, Rob Hummel 
First aired on 4/24/2001 

During a rainstorm after school, Zim discovers that water (or rather , the pollution in it) has a harmful effect on his Irken skin. Dib also learns this and attacks him by splashing him with a puddle, and later, a water balloon. Zim realizes he must defend himself and he discovers that paste protects his skin from the effects of water. Dib constructs an automatic water balloon launching weapon over the weekend to destroy Zim. On Monday morning, Dib turns up at school with his water balloon launcher and prepares to annihilate Zim-but when he attacks, he finds Zim has been replaced with a hologram of himself. Zim is in fact on a space station with his own water balloon-based weapon. The space station steals all the water on Earth (including all oceans, lakes, and rivers) and puts it into a massive water balloon of his own, which he then drops on Earth. It causes apocalyptic flooding and destruction (though no major characters were killed or harmed). The whole water balloon plan was to kill Dib (and possibly any other human Zim finds annoying), but, as usual, Zim goes completely overboard. At the end, Zim goes off to the remains of his base, saying that he is to bathe in paste. But then his head is caught in an actual toilet instead of the fake toilet that he uses to access his underground lair, because he gets mixed up between the remains of his base and the remains of a men’s bathroom that GIR was playing in.

Attack of the Saucer Morons: Summary

Zim’s spaceship is sent plummeting out of control after an encounter with a bee and it crash-lands in a park. Zim attempts to recover it, but a UFO cult discovers Zim’s ship before he has a chance to take it back to his base. Zim is then captured by the UFO group after his disguise falls off, and they begin to worship him as their prophesied alien ruler (fortold by Frank, a member of the cult). Zim cannot contact GIR directly after the crash due to GIR attending a rave party. Eventually, after GIR leaves the party, Zim gets in contact with him. GIR is able to rescue Zim and recover the spaceship (by disguising himself as a “government man”) , only to crash once more in the middle of another UFO cult as a result of the same bee.

Pilot Episode: Summary

Written by Jhonen Vasquez in 1999
Never aired
Read the transcript

Zim discovers that he is severely allergic to the schol cafeteria’s meat, and Dib uses this fact to try to prove to the other childern that Zim’s an alien. Zim  escapes and uses a listening device placed on the back of Dib’s head to spy on Dib in his house-Zim discovers that Dib plans to kill him with the cafeteria food. Zim and Dib stange an apocalyptic food fight in the cafeteria, which ends with the school being destroyed, Zim escaping, and Dib being blamed for the whole thing. Billy West was the voice of Zim for this episode only.

This episode was also created as an animation test. Richard Horvitz was picked for the series role after the pilot was shown to Nickelodeon because West’s voice was too noticable from Futurama, according to Invader Zim’s creator, Jhonen Vasquez’s DVD commentary.

Dark Harvest: Summary

When a pigeon lands on Zim’s head in class, he is sent to the nurse’s office for having “head pigeons”, but he becomes concerned that the nurse may discover that he’s inhuman. To avoid this from ever happening, Zim steals human organs from the other children and replaces them with random objects and ingests them himself-resulting in having multiple hearts and spleens. When Dib notices Zim had been out of class for an extended period of time, he discovers what Zim had been up to and plans to stop him. In the end, Zim passes his examination in the nurse’s office, and after it is discovered that Zim had swapped a mooing can toy into Dib’s body. Dib is immediately dubbed as inhuman by the nurse and is also dubbed a “hideous mooing cyborg boy” in a resulting newspaper article.

NOTE: This episode (along with the series in general) became controversial when it was mentioned at Scott Dyleski’s trial.

Germs: Summary

Zim watches a B-rated movie with GIR reminiscent to the 1953 film version “War of the Worlds”, where advanced alien species are felled by common germs. Zim becomes highly germophobic and dedicates himself to studying/exterminating all of the Earth’s bacteria. He goes on a cleansing montage and uses germ spray on himself and GIR. After running out of germ spray, he heads out to buy more, but GIR runs off to McMeaty’s. There, Zim discovers that he can shield himself from germs by using a germ-resistant hamburger “meat” made of used napkins, which is sold there. Assumptuously, after covering himself in meat, it invaded Zim’s skin and he almost went blind after it invaded his eyesockets;this was mentioned in “Battle of the Planets”. This may have happened offscreen, since the episode leaves off with Zim in class saying “How’s it goin’?”

Walk of Doom: Summary

Zim goes on a trip to the downtown area in order to test a new guidance chip he installed in GIR, but when GIR removes the chip before leaving to store a cupcake, Zim and GIR are left lost and having to resort to public transportation methods to find their way back home. Their journey is complicated futher by Zim temporarliy losing his vision by staring at the sun, his disguise being mistaken for the one a bank robber has on, and his escape from the authorities being wrecked by GIR replacing his rocket fuel with tuna. Zim then waves over a cab, who drops him and GIR off in Mexico. How Zim and GIR return home is unknown to me, since they appear back at their base in the episode after this one, “Germs”.

Parent Teacher Night: Summary

Written by Jhonen Vasquez and Rob Hummel
First aired on 4/6/2001 

Parent Teacher Night is approaching and Zim is confronted with the fact that he has no parents, since Irkens are cloned in a gene bank. He makes use of his robot parent decoys to attempt to fool the students, teachers, and parents. However, Zim knows that the Roboparents aren’t ready for such a job. Zim puts GIR in charge of controlling the parental dvd that is to be uploaded into the Roboparents, but GIR changes the dvd over to public broadcasting. Some of the programs display proper human communication, while others display idiotic themes, such as “Poke of Doom”. Dib, who brings his dad’s communication device, tries to prove that Zim is an alien. The robotic parent decoys malfunction and cause chaos during the meeting, but nobody discovers that they aren’t human or that Zim is an extraterrestrial.

NanoZiM: Summary

Written by Jhonen Vasquez and Rob Hummel
First aired on 4/13/2001

Dib sneaks into Zim’s base, takes incriminating pictures of Zim undisguised, and puts them on a floppy disk. Zim discovers Dib moments after the pictures were taken and shrinks down to microscopic size to enter Dib’s body via microscopic submarine. Zim accesses Dib’s nervous system, giving him control of Dib’s arms, and makes him crush the floppy disk. Dib reveals he has another copy of the disk hidden somewhere in his house, so Zim travels to Dib’s brain to wipe the memory of the disk’s location, and, as an added bonus, damage Dib’s brain down to the point where he will no longer be a threat again. Dib then swallows a mini-submarine, created by his father, and begins to fight Zim, using controls that look uncannily like a laptop. When Zim accesses Dib’s brain, Dib loses control, and Gaz, who thinks this is merely an online game, begins to fight Zim. Gaz saves Dib’s life and organs from Zim, who is later disposed of, but never realizes that this was more than a video game. This episode features intense computer generated sequences. Computer-generated imagery had been used in the series, but this episode was the most demanding.

Bestest Friend: Summary

Written by Rob Hummel, Roman Dirge and Jhonen Vasquez
First aired on 4/13/2001

Zim notices that all the other kids in the school have friends except him and sees this as a threat to his “all-important” mission, as well as a potential exposure of his real identity. He decides that as he doesn’t want to appear strange, he must also have a friend. Zim chooses an annoying classmate, “Keef”, to be his friend and once people have acknowledged that Zim does have a friend, he attempts to abandon him. Keef, however, doesn’t get the hint so Zim must use more drastic measures to dispose of him. Keef tries to throw a surprise party for Zim after school, which doesn’t come as a surprise on account of GIR, but instead, Zim makes Keef think he is a squirrel.