|This article is about a/an episode in Power Rangers Zeo, the second installment in the Zordon Era.|
A Small Problem is the twenty-eighth episode of Power Rangers Zeo.
Prince Sprocket has tried to create a device to allow the Machine Empire to grow monsters without the use of Orbus. However, his attempt backfires and instead he creates a device that shrinks things. At first he thinks it a failure, but when King Mondo gets his hands on it, he realizes that it could be used to turn the Rangers into a much smaller problem.
Katherine and Tommy are working on their ecosystem project, a terrarium. They decide to go collect some specimens in the desert as Tanya and Raymond drop by to help. As they go, Tanya tells Kat to be careful, but she's unworried, saying "what could go wrong in the desert?"
Meanwhile, Orbus and Klank are arguing with Prince Sprocket over his claim that he can grow monsters even bigger than they can. When he tries to demonstrate on a rock, it shrinks instead, to Orbus and Klank's amusement. Mondo drops in to see how things are going, and is very pleased by the results, saying they can shrink the Rangers with Sprocket's device.
Back at the Juice Bar, Bulk and Skull show up in mining gear. They've been hired by the granddaughter of a gold hunter to look through his old notes, and they believe they've discovered the legendary Mother Load. In spite of Ernie's skepticism, they gather their tools and head out.
Tommy, Kat, and Raymond arrive in the desert, and Raymond gives out assignments; Kat will look for plants, Tommy lizards and maybe spiders, and he'll investigate an old mine in the area. Kat and Tommy soon discover a lizard, which they chase. Mondo and Sprocket are watching, and decide to try out the new weapon on the pair. Along with a posse of Cogs, they confront the Rangers, who duck the shrink ray so it hits their jeep. They morph and fight back, but are overpowered and shrunk. Calling them cute, Sprocket asks if he can keep them, and Mondo agrees. Sprocket puts them in the terrarium despite their protests, and leaves to collect more "pets."
As Tanya is painting the backdrop for the terrarium, Raymond comes in, saying that Kat and Tommy left him in the desert. Tanya's surprised, and calls the two on her communicator watch. When they don't answer, she calls Zordon, telling him to send the other Rangers to meet her at the mine. The three of them discover the shrunk jeep, which they decide to take to Zordon.
Ignoring the Rangers' continued demands to be let out, Sprocket leaves. Tommy tries with no success to call Zordon, and deduces that their powers have been shrunk as well. Kat points out a hole in the wire mesh on top of the terrarium, and they get to work on escaping.
Before Tommy and Kat can escape, Sprocket returns with a new "playmate"--a tarantula he names Harry. Tommy suggests Kat distract the arachnid, and starts a rock slide that creates a wall between them and Harry. Sprocket's disappointment is interrupted by the arrival of Bulk and Skull. The two enter the mine and encounter a glittering wall full of gold. Excited, they start hacking out chunks until Sprocket interrupts and scares the pair away.
Harry starts to climb the barricade. Out of ideas, Tommy says their only chance is escape. Bulk makes it out of the mine, yelling for Skull, only to encounter the Gold Ranger and flee again. He finds the terrarium and takes the pair out. Sprocket returns and throws a fit, summoning more Cogs. Putting Tommy and Kat down, the Gold Ranger fights, attracting the attention of the other three Rangers. Naturally they join in, and seeing they have everything under control, the Gold Ranger slips out. Sprocket and his goons flee, and the Rangers take their teammates back to base.
Sprocket whines about his defeat to King Mondo, who cheers him up with Orbus and Klank's newest creation--the Tarantabot.
Back in the Power Chamber, Tommy and Kat explain what happened, and Billy describes the ray's effect as a reduction of the space between molecules. He tests out his newest device, a Molecular Respacer, on the car, which works. At that point, the alarms go off; the Tarantabot has been sent down. Zordon says that this monster will require the entire team to deal with it, and instructs Billy to proceed with caution. The ray works perfectly, to everyone's relief.
The fight with Tarantabot is less easy, drawing the attention of the Gold Ranger once again. The team calls upon the Zeo Power Cannon, blasting the monster so that Orbus and Klank have to revive it at giant size. Both the Zeo Megazord and Red Battlezord are tangled in the monster's webbing, but Pyramidas is able to vaporize it. The Gold Ranger transmits instructions to the other Rangers to combine all of their Zords into the Zeo Ultrazord, and Tarantabot is destroyed quickly.
Later, a dehydrated Bulk wanders through the desert. He sees the Gold Ranger, but when he rubs his eyes, the superhero is gone and Skull is wandering down the ridge towards him. When Bulk asks where he's been, he just says he needed some fresh air.
The Rangers finish the terrarium and are confronted by Raymond. Tommy and Kat say they got lost in the desert and apologize. Raymond accepts it, and pulls out one last addition to the terrarium: a tarantula. Elsewhere, Bulk and Skull are showing Det. Stone all the gold they dug up, but Stone reveals to them that it's actually iron pyrite -- Fool's Gold.
- Catherine Sutherland as Katherine "Kat" Hillard (Zeo Ranger I: Pink)
- Nakia Burrise as Tanya Sloan (Zeo Ranger II: Yellow)
- Steve Cardenas as Rocky DeSantos (Zeo Ranger III: Blue)
- Johnny Yong Bosch as Adam Park (Zeo Ranger IV: Green)
- Jason David Frank as Tommy Oliver (Zeo Ranger V: Red)
- Brad Hawkins as Trey of Triforia (Gold Zeo Ranger, voice)
- David Yost as Billy Cranston
- Paul Schrier as Farkas "Bulk" Bulkmeier
- Jason Narvy as Eugene "Skull" Skullovitch
- Gregg Bullock as Detective Jerome Stone (Ending credits only)
- David Fielding as Zordon (face)
- Bob Manahan as Zordon (voice)
- Donene Kistler as Alpha 5
- Richard Steven Horvitz as Alpha 5 (voice)
- David Stenstrom as King Mondo (voice)
- Alex Borstein as Queen Machina (voice)
- Barbara Goodson as Prince Sprocket (voice) and Orbus (voice)
- Oliver Page as Klank (voice)
- Darren Press as Raymond
- ??? as Tarantabot (voice)
- This episode uses Skull as a red hearing for the not-yet-known identity of the Gold Ranger, in that Bulk and Skull are separated after fleeing from Prince Sprocket. When Bulk goes looking for Skull, he finds the Gold Ranger twice, first when outside of the mine, the second when he is severely dehydrated and saw the Gold Ranger on a ridge. After rubbing his eyes twice and seeing the Gold Ranger both times, he rubs his eyes a third time to see the Gold Ranger gone and Skull at the bottom of the ridge running towards him. When Bulk asked where Skull had been, he answered "I needed a little fresh air."
- First appearance of Klank and Orbus in original footage.
- The resolution of the Bulk & Skull subplot is featured during the credits in place of the usual episode bloopers.
- Although this episode retained two Rangers shrunken down for one episode, but the next season's episode "Honey, I Shrunk the Rangers" has four Rangers shrunk for two episodes.
- First appearance of the Zeo Ultrazord.
- When the Gold Ranger picks up Tommy and Kat, he does so with his right hand, however, when the Cogs appear, he is shown holding them in his left one, then when he lets them down again, they are in his right one again.
- The Schematics for Zeo Ultrazord Battle mode shows Zeo Zord 2 on the left, while the hidden Zeo Zord 1 would be on the right. When the footage of them going inside is shown, the two are switched.