The Smell of Success Gallery Transcript
Season 4 Episode 8b
The Smell of Success
Original Airdate September 20, 1997
DVD release Season 4
Previous Episode Faire Play
Next Episode Dust Bunnies

"The Smell of Success" is a Season 4 episode of Rugrats.

Characters Present


After trying countless rememdies to fix Chuckie's stuffed-up nose without any success, Chas takes him to Dr. Brander, who cures Chuckie's congestion with "The Noserator". Afterwards, Chuckie can smell anything and everything. But success has its price... - Description from Klasky Csupo


The episode begins at Tommy's house, where Chuckie blows his nose into Chas' hankerchief. Stu, having overheard while working on his solar-powered lawn mower, asks Chas if Chuckie is still congested. Chas tells Stu that Chuckie is, and his condition is getting worse, even though he's tried everything; decongestants, herbal remedies, and even chanting, but nothing seems to work.

Chuckie walks up to Spike, who is covered in dandelions, and sneezes them off his face. Phil, Lil, and Chuckie all chase after Spike, but poor Chuckie is out of breath and unable to keep up with the twins. Tommy sees this and asks Chuckie what's wrong. Chuckie tells Tommy that because his nose is so stuffy, he has to breathe through his mouth, causing his tongue to dry up and stick to his teeth. Lil then interrupts, saying that on hot days, she likes to suck the juice out of grasshoppers. Chuckie then continues, saying his condition wouldn't be so bad if it didn't make his arm hair all crusty.

Stu tells Chas that his new lawn mower is powered by the sun's rays, and on a sunny day like today, he could mow a whole park with it. Chas tells Stu that while he does like his invention, he asks him if it would be easier to just push it. Didi, who is relaxing in a lounge chair while reading a newspaper, has overheard, and tells Chas that there is an invention in the paper he could use. Chas asks her what it is, and she tells him that famous sinus specialist, Dr. Brander, has come up with a device that will clear up even the stuffiest nose. Chas then sees Chuckie sneeze into his shirt, and decides to at least give that device a try. Later that day, Chas takes Chuckie to Dr. Brander's office. Dr. Brander introduces herself to Chas and Chuckie, the latter of whom sneezes on her. In her examination room, as Dr. Brander examines Chuckie's nose with a nasal light, Chas asks her if her invention can help clear Chuckie's sinuses. Chuckie then sneezes on Dr. Brander's nasal light, and Dr. Brander decides to show them something as she wipes off her nasal light.

Dr. Brander shows Chas and Chuckie a lab rat named Cheddar, who is able to smell cheese, run up to it, and eat it. While Chuckie is impressed, Chas isn't, and tells Dr. Brander that all rats eat cheese. Dr. Brander then tells Chas that he's going to show him and Chuckie what Cheddar was like before she used her invention, the Noserator, on him. She then shows them a video of Cheddar being so stuffed up, he is unable to smell cheese, and all he can do is sneeze. Then, after she applied the Noserator prototype to him, Cheddar was able to smell again. This time, Chas is impressed, and tells Dr. Brander that he'd like her to use the Noserator on Chuckie. Dr. Brander secures a frightened Chuckie into the Noserator, and Chas tries to calm him down by telling him that this procedure will be over soon. Dr. Brander tells Chas to stand aside as she pulls the lever, activating the noserator, and sending shocks into Chuckie's nasal system, frightening Chuckie in the process.

The next day, Tommy is in the backyard, watching a caterpillar as it crawls onto his finger. As Chas talks to Stu, Chuckie says hello to Tommy. Tommy is surprised to hear the way Chuckie sounds, as Chuckie doesn't sound as nasally as he did before. He asks Chuckie why he sounds like that, and Chuckie tells him that Chas took him to a doctor who put a big spider on his head, made it jump, and this morning, when he woke up, he could breathe through his nose again. Tommy asks Chuckie if things are different for him now, and Chuckie tells him they are. He then asks Tommy what he could do when he breathes in through his nose. Tommy thinks for a minute, then tells Chuckie to try breathing in the flower below them. Chuckie sniffs the flower, then tells Tommy that it give him a funny feeling in his nose. Tommy tells Chuckie that those feelings are called smells. Chuckie asks Tommy if other things have smells as well, and Tommy tells him they do.

Chuckie goes all over Tommy's house, sniffing whatever he can. He sniffs a cup of tea and finds it smells good, he sniffs some dirty laundry and finds it smells bad, and he even smells Spike. He then asks Tommy what else they could smell. Phil and Lil arrive, and Lil asks Tommy and Chuckie what they're doing. Chuckie sniffs Phil and Lil and finds out they smell bad (possibly indicating they may need a diaper change). He asks Tommy what that smell is, and as an embarrassed Phil and Lil stare at Chuckie, Tommy tells Chuckie that it's a smell he'll get used to.

Tommy, Phil, Lil, and Chuckie chase Spike all over the backyard, and for the first time, Tommy, Phil, and Lil all get tired before Chuckie does. Lil cheers Chuckie on, and Phil tells Tommy that he's never seen Chuckie run so fast before. Tommy tells Phil that it could be because Chuckie's nose isn't stuffed up anymore. Chuckie catches Spike by his tail, and Spike pulls Chuckie across the yard, causing Chuckie to lose his pants in the process. Chuckie, however, is so happy he caught Spike, that he doesn't even care.

Later that day, Stu takes his solar-powered lawn mower to the park to test it out. The sun activates it, causing it to run off on its own and Stu to chase after it. Tommy, Phil, and Lil are all eating snacks in the sandbox, and Chuckie walks up to them and tells them that it's a neat day, and that it smells like blueberries and grandpa feet. Sure enough, a barefoot Lou is behind Chuckie, eating blueberries. Tommy, Phil, and Lil are all impressed, and Lil tells Chuckie that it seems like his nose can smell everything. Chuckie tells her that he may not be able to smell everything, but he still thinks his nose is the best ever as he removes his shoe and smells the inside of it. He, along with Tommy, Phil, and Lil then overhear Angelica getting into a fight, and Tommy worries that Angelica might be in trouble. Phil then tells him, Chuckie, and Lil that they should see what's going on.

A Bully is fighting Angelica over her Cynthia doll, and Tommy tells the Bully to leave Angelica alone, as she doesn't have to share her Cynthia doll with him if she doesn't want to. The Bully asks Tommy who can tell him otherwise, and Tommy nervously tells him "All the growed-ups in the world". The bully then pushes Tommy down, takes Angelica's Cynthia doll from her, and buries it in the sand. Chuckie sees this, and is angry at the Bully for bullying Tommy and Angelica. Tommy tries to tell Chuckie that they should leave, as the Bully is too big for them to handle. Chuckie then tells Tommy that the Bully may be big, but as long as he has his new nose, he isn't afraid of him. As Angelica tries to dig her Cynthia doll out, Chuckie talks to the Bully. The Bully asks him what he wants, and Chuckie tells him that he bets he can tell everything he had for lunch, and if he's wrong, he can have Cynthia and their snacks. Angelica is shocked when she hears this, but Chuckie continues, telling the Bully that if he's right, he has to leave him and his friends alone. The Bully decides to take Chuckie on, and Chuckie asks him to open his mouth. The Bully does so, and Chuckie smells pizza, pudding, and apple juice through a straw on the Bully's breath. The Bully, not wanting to admit Chuckie was right, decides to take Phil and Lil's snacks anyway. Phil and Lil are shocked, and Tommy tells the Bully that he can't go back on his promise. The Bully asks him why not, and before he can eat Phil and Lil's snacks, Chuckie stops him and tells him that if he doesn't keep his promise, he'll tell everyone the other thing he had for lunch. The Bully denies that he ate something else, and Chuckie tells him that unless he's wrong, which he highly doubts he is, the other thing he ate was broccoli. The Bully gasps, and Angelica, Phil, and Lil tease him for it. The Bully tells them that he didn't want to eat the broccoli, but his Mom made him. He then tosses Phil and Lil's snacks in the sandbox and runs away, crying. Tommy, Phil, and Lil all cheer for Chuckie, and Angelica finds her Cynthia doll. She then thanks Chuckie for helping her, and asks him if she has to do anything for him in return. Chuckie tells her he doesn't, as it's just great be like him, the best smeller in the world.

The next day at Chuckie's house, as Chuckie has his breakfast of milk and oatmeal, the phone rings. Chas answers it, and Dr. Brander is revealed to be on the other end. She tells him that she has bad news. Chas asks her what it is, and Dr. Brander tells him to come over to her office and bring Chuckie with him.

At her office, Dr. Brander shows Chas and Chuckie that Cheddar is as stuffed-up as he was before, indicating the effects of the Noserator are only temporary. Chas tears up when he finds out about this, as since Chuckie has affected by the Noserator, soon he will be just as stuffed-up as he was before.

Later that day at the park, Chuckie is sitting sadly in the sandbox with Cheddar, who is now in a cage next to him. Tommy walks up to them and says hello to Chuckie. He then asks Chuckie who his new friend is. Chuckie tells Tommy that Dr. Brander gave Cheddar to him as a present, figuring that they belong together. Tommy, missing the point, tells Chuckie that he's way too big to fit in Cheddar's cage. Chuckie tells Tommy that the reason he and Cheddar belong together is because Cheddar's nose is all stuffed-up again, and soon, the same thing will happen to him. Once that happens, he won't be special anymore.

The Bully returns, wanting revenge on Chuckie for humiliating him yesterday. He tells Chuckie to sit up so he can kick sand in his face, but Chuckie refuses to move. The Bully then sees Cheddar, and pushes Tommy down to get him. Chuckie tells the Bully to put Cheddar down, as Cheddar didn't do anything to upset him. The Bully refuses, and he and Chuckie fight over Cheddar. Tommy, seeing that Chuckie in trouble, decides to help him. He tickles the Bully's armpit, causing the Bully to lose his grip on Cheddar's cage. He then tells Chuckie to run away, and they do so together. The Bully chases after them through the tunnels and onto a rope bridge. Tommy and Chuckie jump on the rope bridge, causing the Bully to lose his balance. Next, the Bully chases them to the swings. Tommy and Chuckie split up around one swing, causing the Bully to run into it and get swung about. Tommy and Chuckie then run past an anthill, where Chuckie realizes that his nose is about to get stuffed up again. Tommy tells Chuckie that they can't stop running, or the Bully will catch them. Chuckie runs out of breath and tells Tommy to go on without him, as he's doomed anyways. Tommy tells Chuckie that they can't give up now, as he can do great things even with a stuffy nose. Chuckie tells Tommy that without his new nose, he's a nobody, and it's over for him. The Bully catches up to Tommy and Chuckie, and Tommy tries to pull Chuckie out of the way, but Chuckie gears up to sneeze. Then, suddenly, Chuckie sneezes the most powerful sneeze he's ever sneezed at the Bully, pushing him into the anthill and causing the ants in it to crawl into his pants. The ants bite the Bully's butt. The Bully runs away crying.

Tommy congratulates Chuckie for defeating the Bully with his stuffy nose. Chuckie is amazed, and tells Tommy that he was right, and that he can be special even with a stuffy nose. He then tells him that he may not always be able to catch Spike or smell a flower, but he can still live his life the best way any baby with a stuffed nose can. He then asks Cheddar if he agrees, and Cheddar squeaks in approval. A caterpillar then crawls up one of the bars of Cheddar's cage, and Cheddar sneezes it off. Chuckie laughs at this as the episode ends


  • This episode is loosely based off the science-fiction story Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes, written in 1958. It was adapted into a movie, Charly, in 1968.
  • This episode is one of a few to have Angelica be bullied.
  • Some goofs in this episode: In this one Phil and Lil stink, however in "Feeding Hubert", it is revealed that Betty bathes the twins whenever they stink. Also Chuckie has smelt things in other episodes such as when he said that the cave was stinky, and it is a bit uncharacteristic that Chuckie, Tommy and the twins would dislike broccoli as it is Angelica who dislikes it, as seen in "Pickles vs. Pickles".
  • Moral: Be proud of your nose.
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