“Mystery of the Squirmy Wormy” is the fifth episode of the first season of Wild Kratts, originally airing on PBS Kids on January 7, 2011 . The episode was written and directed by Chris Kratt and Martin Kratt.
Aviva builds the Kratt brothers a new machine, a miniaturizer, allowing them to shrink down to virtually microscopic levels. After a rainstorm, the brothers decide to use it solve the mystery of why earthworms come up to surface after a rainstorm. They decide to stage the experiment in NYC's Central Park. They then spend the day with an earthworm named Pinky, tunneling underground, and observing the every day life of a worm, and their struggle to survive. But after their new worm friend is carried off by a bird and left on the sidewalk to die, Chris and Martin race to save the worm before the sun dehydrates her. Will Chris and Martin save Pinky and solve the mystery?
The episode begins with a live action segment. In the rain, the Kratt brothers talk about the nature of the earthworm and ask the question: “Why do worms come out when it rains?”. Afterwards, they ask their “What if?” question and the show transitions into the cartoon segment.
As it showers in a park, Chris and Martin avoid stepping on worms, when Jimmy teleports them Aviva’s new invention: the Miniaturizer. Martin tries it out first and safely shrinks. Chris gets exited, and he miniaturizes as well.
The Kratt brothers get back to finding out why worms come out when it rains. Then the sun comes out, and the worms enter their holes. The Kratt brothers hop on a worm Martin previously named Pinkie as it dives down into the wet and moist underground, but Chris starts having trouble not slipping. The Wild Kratts first hypothesize that worms come out of their tunnels so the will not drown, but this was refuted when Chris slips through the tunnels and into a pond, where he discovers a live worm underwater. The Kratt brothers return to the tunnels, and ride a worm as it bores through the dirt. They later end up above-ground, even though it is not raining. They realize that worms like darkness because it is like the underground. As they return to the tunnels, Chris starts slipping once again. To help Chris get around the slippery tunnels, Aviva, Koki, and Jimmy build an invention Aviva calls the Wormmobile. Jimmy teleports it to Chris. Now everybody (Chris, Martin, Pinkie) and the Wormmobile can easily move through the dirt.
Not long after, they hear vibrations from a star-nosed mole, Chris cannot hear him, but he moves out of the way in time, outmaneuvering the mole as he tunnels. They exit the underground. They quickly head underground again, since worms can not take the sun. After hearing more vibrations, Pinkie and the Kratt brothers head up again. But they find themselves in the clutches of a robin, which snatches Pinkie, with Martin holding onto him. Another Robin tries snatching the Wormmobile, but it ends up splitting it in two. Chris then gets chased around by blue jay and brown thrasher. He avoids them, and he subsequently uses blades of grass to fix what is left of the Wormmobile.
The robin takes Pinkie and Martin to his nest. They avoid being food for the robin’s chicks, and they parachute down on a leaf to the pavement. To prevent further loss of slime, Aviva builds the Sliminator, and Jimmy teleports it to Chris. Chris and the Wormmbile arrive, and Chris blasts slime on Pinkie and Martin. Wild Kratts kid Ellie picks the Kratts and Pinkie up, and she puts them all back on the dirt. Pinkie enters the worm world and steadily moves away. The Kratt brothers then realized that they solved the mystery: worms come above-ground when it rains because it is easy to get around. Afterwards, the Kratt brothers play with worm-slime.
The show transitions into the concluding live action segment. After it stopped raining, the Kratt brothers and a couple of kids bring worms stuck on the pavement back to the grass. Afterwards, they conclude the episode by saying: “Keep on creature adventuring; we’ll see you on the creature trail!”
- Earthworm: Pinkie
- Animal of the day: Earthworm
- Worms come above the ground when it rains because they are able to do so. This is because worms need to be wet and slimy, and the underworld helps keep them that way, unlike the dry and sunny ground above, unless there is rain, which produces an environment to their underground one.
- A worm moves through the dirt with contracting segments, slime, and a torpedo-shaped head.
- The ecological topics shown in the cartoon segment are predation and dehydration.