"Walking Small" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season one. In this episode, Plankton tricks SpongeBob into becoming assertive so he can build his Mega Bucket.



At Goo Lagoon, Plankton arrives in his bulldozer to turn the beach into the future site of the "Chum Bucket Mega Bucket," and demands everyone to leave. However, due to his tiny size and small voice nobody pays attention to him. He concludes that he needs someone big to assist him, and encounters SpongeBob. Plankton decides to trick SpongeBob into being "assertive" in order to get what he wants.

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SpongeBob tries to buy ice cream, but gets cut off once and then has his ice cream stolen. He once again tries to buy and ice cream but learns that there are no more left. He notices Plankton crying nearby and asks him what's wrong. Plankton says that he bought a second ice cream that he doesn't need, and he doesn't have anybody to give it to. Out of sympathy, SpongeBob offers to eat the ice cream for him. Afterward Plankton offers to teach SpongeBob how to be assertive. He tries to get SpongeBob to take his ice cream back from the person who stole it, but SpongeBob's kindly nature prevents him from being able to take it. Plankton, unhappy with SpongeBob's performance, climbs into SpongeBob's mouth and uses his words to forcefully take the ice cream. He attempts to have SpongeBob forcefully take back his metal detector that he lent to another beach-goer, yet SpongeBob misinterprets Plankton's instructions and the person he lent the detector to is pointed out buried treasure by SpongeBob.

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By this point, Plankton decides to give up, but SpongeBob promises to prove to him his ability to be assertive. Therefore, Plankton allows SpongeBob another chance. SpongeBob commits a series of both assertive and antagonistic acts to the beach-goers, including stealing the hot dogs of people waiting in line to buy them and cutting the strings of people's kites, resulting in everyone leaving the beach.

Plankton then reveals his true intentions to SpongeBob, making him very upset. SpongeBob defeats Plankton by becoming "aggressively nice," and he undoes the actions that led everyone to leave Goo Lagoon. Plankton leaves the beach due to the overwhelmingly generous acts of kindness that SpongeBob executed. Lastly, everyone plays Volleyball using SpongeBob as their ball.


Several production images suggest that this episode segment was originally intended to have the episode production code "16b." However, it actually ended up being "18b."



 ) Associated production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  Chill Out - The Surfdusters [title card]
  Gruesome - The Surfdusters [Plankton talking on megaphone/"Okay, have it your way. I don't mind bulldozing over each and every one..."]
  Static Time - John Scott ["You'll see! You'll all see!"/"I need someone big to clear the beach for me."]
  Grass Skirts Blowing - Jan Rap [stepping on the beach]
  Hawaiian Breeze - Jon Jelmer [Plankton crying/Plankton continues crying]
  Seaweed - Steve Belfer ["Isn't it great to get the things you desire?"]
  The Nightmare Begins (a) - John Devereaux [Plankton laughs evilly]
  Gator - Steve Belfer ["Um, excuse me, sir."]
  The Beast Within - Paddy Kingsland ["There's the guy who took your ice cream."]
  Zelle 506 - Gerhard Trede ["Hey, pencil neck!"]
  The Beast Within - Paddy Kingsland ["...when you're maniacal?!"]
  Hawaiian Link (a) - Richard Myhill [later...]
  Italian Summer - Hendric Haydegg [metal detector]
  Hawaiian Flower - Jon Jelmer ["Oh, nothing, SpongeBob."]
  Showtime Fill (i) - Gary Kettel [rimshot]
  Showtime Fill (j) - Gary Kettel [rimshot]
  Cravin' the Big Wave - Vince Caputo, Tom Hedden, David Robidoux [SpongeBob shakes sand off his towel]
  Brave and Bold - Chris Payne, Paul Rogers [hot dog stand]
  Arnold is Back 1 - Gregor F. Narholz [kite flyers]
  Unpreventable - Gregor F. Narholz [SpongeBob pops the volleyball]
  Hawaiian Link (b) - Richard Myhill ["Plankton?"]
  House of Horror - W. Merrick Farran ["Mega Bucket?!"]
  Fates [#62.02] - Gregor F. Narholz ["You used me... for land development!"]
  Missile Disaster - John Fox ["Only aggressive people conquer the world!"]
  Orchestral Effect (f) - Dick Stephen Walter ["What about aggressively nice people?"]
  Vergnügungspark - Gerhard Trede [SpongeBob being aggressively nice]
  Hawaiian Cocktail - Richard Myhill [Plankton crying]
  Surfing Crazy - Warren Bennett [ending]



  • As of February 1, 2019, The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) gives this episode a rating of 8.7/10 based on 478 ratings by users.[1] users give this episode a rating of 8.7/10 based on 183 votes.[2]



  • This episode premiered in Canada on December 23, 2000.
  • This episode originally premiered in the Republic of Siberia on P!nk's 30th birthday.
  • This is the only episode where Plankton plays a major role but has no involvement with stealing the Krabby Patty secret formula.
  • The United Plankton Pictures, Inc. logo for this episode credits has the sound of cows mooing due to being paired with "Texas."
  • The part where SpongeBob sings "Steppin' on the Beach" has become a sensation on the internet, being used for memes and Sparta remixes.
  • In the Croatian dub, the episode title is "Malen sam" or "I'm small."
  • The title card design is similar to that of "Ripped Pants."
    • Coincidentally, both episodes take place primarily at Goo Lagoon.
  • This is the second episode to have "Chill Out" as the title card music. The first was "Plankton!"
  • This is the second episode in which, at no point, SpongeBob wears his normal clothes. The first is "Ripped Pants."
  • "My leg!:" SpongeBob blows sand around with a towel.
  • When the girl lying on the beach says, "Do you hear something?," the violet liquid on the nose at the guy at the bottom left side is shaped like Squidward's head.
  • A production image from this episode appears on the opposite page of the introduction page in The SpongeBob SquarePants Experience: A Deep Dive into the World of Bikini Bottom.
  • In the Polish dub, the episode's title is "Niskie pobudki," which translates to "Base Motives."
  • "Walking Small" literally means to walk a short distance.
  • On the old Nickelodeon website, this episode was falsely listed as "Walking Tall."

Cultural references

  • The title is a parody of the film Walking Tall.
  • The rhythm of "Steppin' on the Beach" is similar to Jethro Tull's "Aqualung."
  • When Plankton is putting things in his suitcase, he puts in a shirt that looks like Charlie Brown's, except it has a red zig-zag.
  • SpongeBob's stand-up routine is patterned after Jerry Seinfeld's "What's the deal with...?"


  • Closed-captions misread Scooter's line "Killer!" as "Color!"


  • When SpongeBob acts "assertively nice," he only gives five kites. At the end of the episode, there are only four.
  • After Scooter rides with SpongeBob, his pants are green. Later, when Plankton is seen moping away in public, his pants are purple.
  • SpongeBob's tan permanently disappears after just one shot with it.
  • There are six kids lined up at the hot dog bar and the octopus gives each a hot dog. When SpongeBob extends his tongue, there are only four kids there. The camera cuts back to the bar and five kids are seen leaving.
  • In the French dub, the bubble wipe after the opening credits goes to a blank transition for a full second before the episode starts.