Trash-O-Madness is second segment of the sixth episode and the original pilot episode of Rocko's Modern Life in the first season.
It aired on Nickelodeon on December 12, 1993.
Original Pilot Version:
The sun rises over O-Town as Earl, a dog who escaped from the science lab wakes up, growling and barking crazily, bitting off the lid to the trash can he resides in, and drinks weed-killer, and gazes at a house behind him. In there, someone is sleeping, and their pet dog is fast asleep too. The dog, named Spunky has his stomach rumbling, and the owner jolts awake in fright, as in fact, he's a yellow-colored wallaby named Rocko. He spots his dog's stomach bump, he yawns and tells Spunky that he's "too hungry to dance'. He grabs his family portrait with his mother, father who is angry at his photo bill, his little sibling, his dog and himself. Remarking that they never had a real breakfast since they migrated from Australia. He then daydreams about the breakfast that his mother used to make him, such as toaster waffles on a stick and even he remembers his mom making him Billy Bob's bacon-bums. Spunky even remembers being fed "Heart Valve Bits". Rocko puts on a blue Hawaiian shirt that has purple triangles decorated on it and clips his toenails, all while telling Spunky if he promises not to electrocute himself today, he'll get to buy him a puppy-pooch meal at Barfy's. He puts on his orange shoes and asks Spunky if he'd like that, only to find the mind-dead dog eat his toenail clippings. Suddenly he hears a noise and investigates to see what's going on by looking out the window. A Hill-O-Stench garbage truck crushes someone's car flat. Rocko realizes that it's garbage day, and that the garbage men have never been by for around six months, and figures out that their license has been reinstated. He grabs together a pile of garbage while telling himself that they can't miss the event today, and that they don't know when they'll come around again, and panickingly instructs Spunky to grab all the garbage that he can, and Spunky quickly eats the toenail clippings.
Downstairs, Rocko puts multiple piles of garbage while Earl sneaks around the house while peeking through the windows occasionally. Rocko plugs in his vaccum, the Suck-O-Matic, while Spunky stands in front of the sucking tube. It vaccums up everything in his nose, including screws, nuts, bolts, a small wedge of cheese, and a fish. The poor dog gets sucked up into the tube. Rocko realizes this, and hits reverse on the vaccum, inflating Spunky and bursts toward the ceiling.
In the kitchen, Rocko throws out any garbage in the fridge, such as a bone, a flat plastic-like surface with holes in it, and comes across a container that reads "Buy War Bonds". He opens it, revealing a slime smut ball being what's left in it, disgusting Rocko. He empties the container as the slime ball oozes out. Spunky examines it out of the trash can, and he barks at it. All the thing does is just squirt a black liquid-like substance.
Spunky plays with the ball, but not before being caught by Rocko, and silently instructs the dog to spit that back out into the can. The dog hesitantly tries, not only to realize that it's also sticky, but while running out the window, the garbage men are coming closer. Rocko puts the rest of the trash out onto the now-huge pile of garbage. Spunky digs himself into the pile before Rocko carries it out to the trash-compactor, the Compact-O-Matic, which is in the kitchen. Rocko chooses either large, small, and decides on Chinese Take-Out Box size, and peeks under to see not only has it compacted the garbage, but his dog Spunky at the front as well. He notices the garbage men are getting even closer, and Rocko hurryingly attempts to carry the now-take-out-box-sized garbage out to the front lawn's trash bin, only to be jump-scared by Earl, causing his brain to literally pop out of his skull. He quickly shuts the door, and looks out the peephole. He nervously chips off his fingernails with his teeth.
Atop the roof of his house, Rocko ties the trash and dog to a fishing pole in order to lure Earl into the garbage truck. Earl becomes suspicious of what's going on, and Rocko snickers, calling Earl a big, ferocious dog. He tells Spunky that they're shakin' but doesn't realize that Spunky was still compacted into the garbage, and the face that's on the back of the truck eats the trash, escalating the problem and freaking Rocko out, eyes bulging out of his skull and all, within the fact that his beloved pet dog has been crushed. He reels back and Earl follows, and eats the compacted trash cube and Spunky. Rocko lets go of the pole in shock, causing Earl and the pole to plummet to the ground. Rocko turns at the screen, and says that garbage day is a very dangerous day. He heads to the area where Earl is at now, and politely tells him that small dogs and trash are not part of a balanced diet. Before he can say anymore, Earl punches him in the face. He comes back, now less polite and offers him a steak instead. That doesn't work either, as he still gets punched back. Now not taking it anymore, he launches at Earl's face and screws it up, pulling the line from the fishing pole, then wrestles with the tough dog, and socks him straight into the snout. He realizes that what he did was wrong and undoes it by pulling it back out. He remarks that it's good as new, and Earl finally spits the dog and trash out in enragement and physically abuses the poor wallaby offscreen.
Back inside Rocko, now beaten to a pulp, walks to the kitchen to remove Spunky from the the trash and flattens him out like dough, and grabs an air pump to inflate Spunky, and spins him so the dog can at least look at him dead in the eyes. Spunky grins, causing some air to free from his ear.
At bath night, Rocko now cooled down, realizes that in fact they did get the trash out, and that it just scared him. He tells Spunky how much he loves him, saying that he's all the kangaroo boy's got now, and tells him that he'd do anything for him, but not before he notices that Spunky has in fact brought the slime ball that Rocko disposed of earlier with him the entire time, and tells him to get rid of it, before realizing that he didn't mean to throw it away earlier, while Spunky erects his tongue with the slime out and into the water, as Rocko tells him not to, and tries to flee from the bathtub, but fails to do so, as the slime bursts everywhere, causing the poor wallaby to scream in agonizing and excrutiating pain.
11-minute revised version:
8:00 in the morning, Spunky's stomach grumbles, waking up Rocko. The two tell about their childhoods in Australia. Then, a Hill-O-Stench Inc. garbage truck passes by. Rocko and Spunky need to bring all of their garbage outside before it's too late. When they try to catch up to the garbage-men, Earl peeks through the window and gets ready to eat the two. when they look in the fridge, they find a box with a green slime-ball inside. When he tries to get rid of the slime, Spunky tries to play with it, but the slime sprays ink on Spunky's face, then he gets it in his mouth. In the new version, Spunky tries to chew on it like bubble gum, but the sludge sprays on Spunky, they chase each other until the slime lands in his food bowl. all of a sudden, the slime grows bigger and bigger until it sprays ink on Rocko's face. Spunky grabs the slime and walks away, but Rocko grabs the slime and puts it in the trash. Spunky climbs in the trash and grabs the slime in his mouth.
Rocko puts the trash in the dish washer, pushes an "Chinese Take-Out Box Size" button, and Spunky becomes the size of a cube. Rocko opens the door, and Earl appears, Rocko screams and closes the door real hard. He grabs a fishing rod, ties Spunky, and uses it on the roof. Before that, in the new version, Rocko tries to go the back door to escape Earl. Later on, the garbage truck eats Spunky, Rocko is terrified and he tries to get back Spunky, but Earl catches him in his mouth. Rocko replies "Garbage Day is a very dangerous day." to the watcher. Rocko manages to get Spunky back, but he's beaten up by Earl. Rocko and Spunky now shaped like a balloon appear again in a bathtub at night. Rocko finds out that the slime is in Spunky's mouth all the time. Rocko tells him to get rid of it, but the slime grows beyond the size of the house, popping through the windows and other parts of the house.
This episode was made as the pilot for the series. Originally, "A Sucker for the Suck-O-Matic" was going to be pilot, but Nickelodeon decided that having Heffer in the episode would not test well with focus groups. Joe Murray animated half of the pilot by himself. Originally, the pilot was only seven minutes long, but additional animation was added to fill the eleven minutes, with an extra few seconds of credits for the pilot.
Difference between original version & the new version
- Rocko was colored yellow in this episode. He was changed to beige-ish gray after a toy company did not want to market plush toys because "they thought he looked like a talking Australian banana". The color was also changed because the toy company already had a yellow character, but after the series released the toy company steped down from making toys for the series, thus making the color change pointless.
- New music, sound effects, and extra scenes, replacing some scenes are used in the new version.
- In the new version, the alarm clock tells Rocko to get up, not Spunky's stomach sounds.
- The new title card has a blue background.
- The slime moves in the new version, acting more like the main villain, unlike Earl. In the end of the pilot version, the slime appears in the bathtub scene in Spunky's mouth, bursting Rocko. It overgrows Rocko's house in the new version.
- The new title card is rendered like other episodes of the series unlike the original title card.
- The original is 8 minutes long while the new version is 11 minutes long.
- In the new version, the original 1992 Joe Murray Studios logo is replaced with the Games Animation logo.
- Heffer, and the Bigheads don't appear in the episode, but they did appear unnamed in drawings in the intro of the pilot version. Filburt did not appear in the pilot nor the drawings because he was not created yet.
- The clips of Rocko saying, "Heh heh, good as new" and yelling "SPUNKY!!!" in the original version of the theme song are from this episode.
- In the video game Spunky's Dangerous Day, the second level is named after this episode.
- The credits in the newer version of this episode feature a slightly longer version of the theme song with one extra verse and one extra bark from Spunky.
- This was the only Rocko episode to be animated in-house at Joe Murray Studios, with ink and paint work being sub-contracted to Karen Johnson Productions, an ink and paint and animation studio located in Racine, Wisconsin.
- Rocko: Spunky! Earl has escaped from the science lab again! (Chatters Teeth)
- Rocko: (laughs) Big dog. Big ferocious dog. We're shakin', aren't we, Spunky? ...Spunky?
- Rocko: Garbage day is a very dangerous day.
- Rocko: Earl, buddy. Small dogs and trash are not part of a balanced diet.