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20px-Cquote1.png Who did this? Who dares to soil my normal-boy head with this... pork cow?!

Invader Zim Episode
Dib's Wonderful Life of Doom
Dib's Wonderful Life of Doom (Title Card).png
Previous: GIR Goes Crazy and Stuff
Next: Tak: The Hideous New Girl
Episode No: Episode 19b
Production No: 19a
Airdate: May 24, 2002
Writer(s): Jhonen Vasquez
Eric Trueheart

"Dib's Wonderful Life of Doom" is the 2nd segment in the 19th episode of the first season of Invader Zim. It first premiered on May 24, 2002, on Nickelodeon.

Plot Summary

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

Wonderful life 4.jpg

While at Skool one day, Zim throws another fit about the lunch food. Dib, tired of letting Zim get away with his "things he do", throws a muffin at him, which causes Zim to run out of the lunch room. That night, a pair of Meekrob come to Dib in his sleep and grant him marvelous superpowers before lulling him back to sleep, which Dib decides to use the next morning to put an end to Zim once and for all.

Wonderful life 1.jpg

When Dib manages to suppress Zim with ease, he decides to use his power for the greater good. Dib starts to live out the wonderful life he always dreamed of... perhaps too wonderful. He succeeds in proving that both ghosts and lake monsters are real.

His exploits climax in saving the world when the Irken fleet invade to destroy Earth. It's eventually discovered in a interview with Alan that it was a scheme by Zim to find out who threw the muffin at his head using a Virtual Reality chamber. Dejected, Dib walks out, but a cannon blocks his way and, as Zim's final revenge, it shoots a muffin at his head.

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

Facts of Doom

Cultural References

  • The episode's title and plot are a parody of the 1946 film It's a Wonderful Life.
  • When they first show Dib in his spaceship, the shot of him is virtually the same as Guld Goa Bowman 

    The Meekrob in their shoe disguise.

    from the anime OVA Macross Plus.
  • The alien race in this episode is called the Meekrob. Meekrob is the name of a Thai dish that Fillerbunny had to eat in Jhonen Vasquez's comic book of the same name. When translated, Meekrob means "crispy noodle".
  • The opening scene, where the lunch food invades a kid's eyes, is an obvious nod to the Black Oil from The X-Files.
  • Just after the TV studio audience turns into Irkens, there is a scene with Dib in a chair in the middle of a large egg-shaped room. This is a visual nod to the last shot in the 1985 film Brazil, where the main character is strapped into a chair in the torture chamber.
  • The scene where the Massive crashes into the desert is similar to the end of Independence Day.


  • Throughout this episode are various telltale hints that the events unfolding weren’t real:
    • First of all, the Meekrob who came to Earth to help Dib wouldn't have really done such because nobody (except the Tallest and the Irken Army) knows that Zim is on Earth, let alone that he isn't a real Invader.
    • Also, Dream-Zim warns Dib of the arrival of the Irken fleet, but Earth was never actually marked for conquest by the Tallest. Zim thinks it is marked for conquest, so his false belief was projected into the illusion. However, to confuse fans even more, Jhonen Vasquez stated that while Zim's mission is actually an exile, Earth was still filed by the Irken Control Brains as a possible planet for conquest that is being infiltrated by a former elite, meaning that in a way Zim is an Invader and his people are giving him more chances to prove himself. Knowing that all of these events shown of Dib's life are actually dreamlike illusions projected by Zim, causes certain lines between Zim and Dib to make more sense.
    • When the Massive's side pods rupture, Tallest Red is the one who freaks out, while in reality Tallest Purple is the one more likely to lose his head, first. However, it's possible that the loss of his snacks are Red's "weak spot". Despite this, Tallest Purple appears completely calm during Red's freakout, further adding to the confusion.
    • When Dib arrives at Zim's house, Zim gave up much too easily.
    • Gaz wouldn't apologize to Dib the way she did in the illusion, at least not willingly. It's also unlikely that she would join up in her brother's efforts (during the scene where the institute is given its grand opening).
    • The Meekrob and Alan have very similar voices, hinting that Zim was recycling recorded audio for the illusion.
    • Upon closer examination, many of the background characters don't seem to be aging, especially Alan.

      Dib's new abilities.

  • This episode marks the only appearance of the Meekrob.
  • Melissa Fahn, Gaz's voice actress, was eating and spitting Triscuits in the recording room for the scene with Gaz and her toast.
  • We learn that Dib sometimes sleeps with his blanket around his head, talks in his sleep, and even wiggles.
  • This episode makes it clear that Zim knows Dib pretty well.
  • In a bitter sense, this episode also shows that maybe for the first time in his life, Dib was actually happy as he received the praise and recognition in the illusion he had been wanting for all his life.
  • Zim would eventually carry out a plot similar to the one in this episode, albeit for rather different motives, in Issue 37 of the comic series.
  • It's unknown how Zim brought Dib into the virtual reality chamber.

Changes & Cuts

  • The title of this episode was originally supposed to be The Happy Smiley Dib Show, a reference to the film The Truman Show, which has some plot similarities.
  • According to the DVD commentaries, there was supposed to be a song in this episode, but apparently Andy Berman couldn't sing, unlike Richard, Melissa, and Rikki. However, in Enter the Florpus, Dib was singing in Tak's Ship when he and Gaz try to rescue Professor Membrane from Moo-Ping 10.

Things You Might Have Missed

  • At the beginning of the episode, just before the food splashes into the kid's eye, you can see a child with a sword on his belt standing in line.
  • An adolescent version of Gaz was planned to appear in one of the scenes, next to an adolescent version of Dib, but then this was removed. Later it was added again, but is only seen as a cameo. This grown-up version of Gazlene still wears her skull necklace, however.
  • We see the “Property of Earth” satellite in this episode, which would appear again in the episode "Tak: The Hideous New Girl". It can be seen for a brief moment as Dib's team goes after the Massive, before it's destroyed by an Irken ship. This satellite is also seen in "Bloaty's Pizza Hog".
  • When Dib destroys the tree with lightning, play the scene frame by frame: Professor Membrane is hidden in the smoke.
  • If you look hard enough, when Dib destroys a ship in the Armada, what appears to be a LEGO brick comes at the screen.
  • When Zim's standing on the table yelling and you see it from the crowd's point of view, you can see a kid with orange-ish hair who doesn't have pants on.
  • When Dib goes to talk to Zim after he's been captured, you can see Zim is reading a book right before Dib fully opens the door.

Inconsistencies and Animation Errors

  • When GIR explodes, Zim's PAK is not there. In one or two scenes, it's just an outline.
  • When Gaz says "Actually, that was kind of funny.", her legs are gone.

See also