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Dora's Dance to the Rescue
Swiper Is Free
Airdate Tuesday, October 11, 2005 (VHS and DVD)
Friday, November 11, 2005 (Nickelodeon)
Saturday, August 11, 2007 (Noggin)
U.S. Premiere Time (est.) 11:00am
Season 4
Episode 10 (airing)
22 (production)
Written by Eric Weiner
Storyboard by:
Anna Burns
Carol Datuin
Enrico Santana
Jose Silverio
Janice Tolentino
Kuni Tomita
Ysty Veluz
Directed by George Chialtas
Henry Madden
Sherie Pollack
Previous The Mixed-Up Seasons (Season 4; airing order)
Journey to the Purple Planet (airing order in general)
Dora's Fairytale Adventure (production order)
Go, Diego, Go!: Linda the Llama Saves Carnival (production order in general)
Next Dora's First Trip (Season 4; airing order)
To the South Pole (airing order in general)
Dora's World Adventure! (production order)
Go, Diego, Go!: Rainforest Race (production order in general)

Dora's Dance to the Rescue (or simply known as "Dora III: Dance to the Rescue!") is a Dora the Explorer TV special and the 3rd double-length episode. It is also the 10th episode of Season 4.

In production order, it is the 22nd episode of Season 4. The special also marks the debut of the new art style introduced in Go, Diego, Go!.



Dora and Boots recall a time when a mean Dancing Elf tricks Swiper and traps him in a bottle, and Dora needs to dance to the rescue! Help Dora and Boots move and groove their way through a pyramid, across the ocean, and to King Juan el Bobo's castle so they can win One Big Wish and save Swiper!


The episode starts with Dora and Boots dancing before getting ready to tell the viewer about the time Dora used her dancing powers to save Swiper the heroic fox from a magic bottle. In the story, the magic bottle contains a little-dancing elf but the only way he can get out is if someone opens his magic bottle, and they get magically sucked in. Swiper is walking by the dancing elf with his sidekick cane, decides to trick Swiper inside the magic bottle and then Swiper opens up the magic bottle and magically get stuck into the magic bottle, and the dancing elf is free and goes dancing happily. Swiper now says "Oh, man!" without snapping his fingers and calls Dora and Boots for help and they’re shocked to see that Swiper is stuck inside the magic bottle. Dora tried to opened the magic bottle, but Swiper warns her that if she opens up the magic bottle, he'll get out but she’ll get stuck in. The magic bottle comes to life and says that the only way to get Swiper out from the magic bottle is to go to the castle for the King's dance competition and the prize is one big wish. The problem is that they don’t know how to get there, so they asked the Map for assistance. Map tells them that they have to go through a pyramid and sail across the ocean to get to the castle. So first they have to go through the pyramid. Dora, Boots and Swiper find Tico to hopped on an airplane and they get a ride. Then they got three parachutes and jumped off the airplane. The trio got help from a mountain goat and they all walked into the pyramid, it was very dark inside the pyramid. Luckily, Swiper gets a flashlight from his pocket inside the magic bottle. As they try to go inside the pyramid, the Mountain Goat warns them about the bugs inside the pyramid. They must dance like the marching ants, wiggling spiders and sneaky snakes. After they got past all the dancing animals, the pyramid is opening, and he saw the fountain inside the pyramid. Just like an elevator, then the garden is growing, then, they saw the three Mountain Goats, down near from the pyramid and the Mountain Goat hopped down the pyramid to the Mountain Goat family and then, Dora, Boots, and Swiper slide down from the pyramid. Now they need to figure out where to go next. Map tells them that made it through the pyramid. Now they to sail across the ocean. The dancing elf said to his cane that they’ll try to stop them at the ocean. They found Isa and her bike and Dora, Boots and Swiper rode the bike towards to the ocean. They succeeded and their next part of their journey is the ocean. Dora, Boots and Swiper called to Pirate Pig and his piggy crew to help them sail across the ocean. So they got on the pirate ship and off they went.

There are big waves in the ocean which caused Swiper to fall down in the water. Then a whale came out. Swiper tried to tell the whale to be careful not to swallow him. The whale didn’t hear him so he actually swallowed him! Backpack starts to sneeze, because there's an object that makes her sneeze. So Dora has a brilliant plan of making the Whale sneeze bigger, harder and louder to send Swiper out of the Whale. So they called Backpack and Backpack had some pepper. The gang used pepper on Whale and he sneezed out Swiper. While they’re sailing with the pirates, a Stormy Storm comes and tells them to get past him is to do the pirate dance. With the viewer’s help, they did so and the Stormy Storm is impressed and gives them pirate treasure. They wonder what‘s inside. They open it and their ride across the Ocean turned into a pirate party with balloons, cake, goody bags, streamers and music. Map tells them that so far, they walked through the pyramid, and sailed across the ocean. Now, all they have to do is to walk in the castle. Dora, Boots, and Swiper, they thanked the pirate piggies, and they got to the castle. When they approach the steps to the castle, a castle guard tells them that they can’t entering to the castle unless they have any fancy clothes. All hope seems to be lost, until Benny the Bull comes in his hot air balloon and gives them their fancy clothes. Boots wears a red bowtie and Dora is wearing a purple and pink gown with red stripes and purple flats. They went back up the stairs. The castle guard accepted their clothes and told them to go inside and King Juan el Bobo announces the start of the dance competition. Suddenly, the dancing elf showed everyone how good he is at dancing. He spins like a tornado and knocks over a few people. Boots told the viewer that the elf is mean, but he is still great at dancing. First, they dance like they got ants in their pants, then they dance like a fish. The dancing elf does all the dances correctly but Dora and Boots are able to keep up with them. King Juan el Bobo says it’s a tie between Dora, Boots and the dancing elf, then the king says that to win the contest, they are to make his mother dance but she says she doesn’t like dancing because she's just not good at it. King Juan el Bobo thinks that's very silly. Dora, Boots, and Swiper, gets everyone in the castle and even the King’s Mommy to dance and King Juan el Bobo declares everyone to be the winner and the guards and bringing their wish box that allows them to make their one big wish. Dora and Boots and wish for Swiper free from the magic bottle and he is free but the magic swirls around the dancing elf but Dora asks if the dancing elf can be free from the magic bottle forever and King Juan el Bobo accepted her request. The dancing elf apologizes for tricking Swiper and he is able to dance out of the magic bottle for good. King Juan el Bobo‘s mother dances with the dancing elf and everyone can dance in the castle dances happily as Dora now wins the title of being the Dancing Champion of the world.

Places in this episode[]

  1. Pyramid
  2. Ocean
  3. King Juan el Bobo's Castle


  • Forest where Swiper encounters the Dancing Elf
  • Dock to the ocean

Dances learned[]

  • Marching Ants Dance (first part of pyramid)
  • Wiggling Spiders Dance (second part of pyramid)
  • Sneaky Snakes Dance (third part of pyramid)
  • Pirate Dance (to get past the Stormy Storm)
  • Ants In Your Pants Dance (first dance contest challenge)
  • Fish Dance (second dance contest challenge)
  • Everyone Can Dance Dance (third dance contest challenge)

Items in Backpack (clockwise starting from the top right)[]

  • A yellow raincoat
  • A pink sock
  • A navy blue comb
  • A banana
  • A red yo-yo
  • Some pepper (correct item to save Swiper from the whale)



  • This is the last episode of the series (in production order) to be written by co-creator Eric Weiner before his departure to focus on Disney's Little Einsteins.
  • This is the first episode where co-creator Valerie Walsh is credited as an executive producer alongside Chris Gifford.
  • This episode premiered (on VHS and DVD) a day after Linda the Llama Saves Carnival premiered.
  • This is the first double-length episode to feature a Character Find during the closing credits.
  • This is the second episode (first in airing order) where Swiper travels with Dora and Boots after Swiper the Explorer. It will happen again in Dora Saves the Three Little Pigs (excluding Dora's World Adventure! where he travels with Dora without Boots).
    • This is also the first episode where Swiper has a favorite part at the end of the episode. It will happen again in the third episode mentioned above.
  • This is the 2nd and last double-length episode to have the usual 3 places instead of 4.
  • A different font style was used in the closing credits.
  • This is the last episode to premiere in 2005.
  • This is the 3rd double-length episode of the series.
  • This is the only double-length of the series to use the 2005-2009 Nick Jr. Productions logo with the correct audio; as well as the 2nd episode to use it after Dora and Diego to the Rescue!. Dora's World Adventure! and Dora Saves the Mermaids will use that same logo, but with the 1999-2005 Nick Jr Productions logo audio.
  • This is the first double-length episode (and first episode of Season 4 all-together) produced in 2005 according to the end credits.
  • If you count the alternate name for the episode, this is the only double-length episode to not start with Dora's name.
  • In production order, this is the final episode in the "Bonus Map" format and the final episode where the star pocket is visible.
    • This is the only episode to feature the star pocket in the Season 5/Go, Diego, Go! art style.
  • While "Dora's Pirate Adventure" had a music theme and thus had lot of singing and dancing, this special has a pure musical dancing theme and there is a lot of dancing in this episode:
    • The episode begins with Dora and Boots dancing.
    • Swiper is trapped by a Dancing Elf in a magic bottle which also dances.
    • Dora and Boots say they'll dance along the way to the castle.
    • Many of the songs in the episode are alluded to teaching new dances, such as marching like ants, the Pirate Dance, and the Everyone Can Dance Dance. Characters also dance throughout the musical numbers, aside from most of the Dancing Elf's theme and the reprise of "One Big Wish".
    • King Juan el Bobo is hosting a dance contest, which Dora and Boots have to win to earn one big wish.
    • When Map is reviewing where to go, he says "We danced through/across..." upon passing a location.
    • The "We Did It!" song is sung as a dancing celebration.
    • The Favorite Parts segment at the end is themed to have Dora, Boots and Swiper talk about their favorite dances they learned. They also dance accordingly to which dance was mentioned.
  • When Dora is asking "Where do we go first/next?", she only raises her right arm when asking because her left arm is holding the magic bottle.
  • This is the only episode where Backpack lists all the items going clockwise before asking the viewer to find what Dora needs.
  • As Dora, Boots, Swiper and Pirate Pig have a pirate party across the ocean, Dora wears a pink and yellow striped party hat similar to the one in the episode Whose Birthday is It?. Also, Boots' party hat is not blue, but it still has yellow polka-dots except the party it is purple.
  • This is the 86th episode of the show (87th if counting the Noggin premiere of "To the South Pole").
  • Dora and Boots' voices are the same as in previous episodes, but they sound noticeably different (possibly because Dora's voice actress and Boots' voice actor went through puberty at the time this episode was being produced). The matured voices have already debuted in the Go, Diego, Go! episode Linda the Llama Saves Carnival before this episode aired. They will be heard again in Dora's World Adventure and Dora Saves the Mermaids. This was done to confirm those episodes as part of Season 4.
    • The matured voices is due to the fact this episode was produced when Go, Diego, Go! began production.
  • This is the second and last double-length episode where Map is asked more than once, and the second and last double-length episode with no picture pop-up sequence.
  • This is also the first double-length episode without star catching, although the star pocket can be seen on Backpack throughout the episode.
    • Due to the special featuring no star catching, a Character Find plays in the end credits in place of an Explorer Star minigame.
  • This is the first double-length episode to be presented as a flashback; the second is Dora's Christmas Carol Adventure.
    • Similar to Backpack!, the flashback continues throughout the episode into the ending scene without ever leaving it.
  • This is the only episode in the season where Map's zoom-wipe effect is used after telling the viewers to go to the first location.
  • This is not only the first double-length episode without star-catching and explorer stars, but also the last double-length episode where Dora's star pocket is shown. It will be removed in the next two double-length episodes (Dora's World Adventure! and Dora Saves the Mermaids).
  • This was the second episode to use the extended version of We Did It!. The first was Dora's Pirate Adventure.
  • In the Travel Song:
    • The song was only sung once, on the way to the Pyramid.
    • The line that goes "Come on, say it with us!" to begin the song is not included, because the line says "Say it with us!".
    • Dora and Boots ask "What do we need?" and answer "One big wish" instead of "Where are we going?" then the last place, the exact same question from the Season 1 episode Sticky Tape.
    • Also, at one point during the song, Benny, Isa, Baby Blue Bird, the Grumpy Old Troll, and the Big Red Chicken can be seen between the first and second stanza.
    • In addition, Boots asks "What do we need?" first instead of Dora; Swiper asks it third, and Tico asks it fourth. The Fiesta Trio don't join in.
    • At the end of the song, Dora, Boots, and Swiper don't say "One Big Wish!". Instead, Swiper says "And then, I'll be free!"
  • Pirate Parrot does not appear in this episode.
    • This is the first episode where Pirate Pig and the Pirate Piggies appear without Pirate Parrot.
  • Before everyone starts singing We Did It!, Dora and Boots do not yell out the "We did it!" phrase. Instead, King Juan el Bobo yells out "Let's dance!" to begin the song.
    • However, if Dora and Boots were given the chance to do so, they would most likely say it before the Fiesta Trio play their fanfare like in "The Super Silly Fiesta" and "ABC Animals".
  • Swiper is on his good side without any swiping, because he's stuck in the bottle and wants to get out of it, so Dora and Boots help him get out which he appreciates.
  • Dora does not use the picture pop-up sequence that show the places she's going, she instead uses Map as her guide, just like in Dora's Fairytale Adventure. This is the last double-length episode in which this happens.
  • King Juan el Bobo did not show up at Dora's birthday party in Dora's Big Birthday Adventure, so this is his last appearance in the show.
  • This is the first episode Swiper sings the Travel Song with Dora and Boots although they don't say "Where are we going?" or the last place after saying that as the answer.
  • The Fiesta Trio don't sing the I'm The Map song with Map, which means he sang the short version from Season 2. This is the last episode in production order to use the short version introduced in Season 2.
  • The singing voice of the Stormy Storm bears resemblance to the singing voice of the late trumpeter Louis Armstrong.
  • When Dora and Boots are surprised finding Swiper stuck in the bottle by Dancing Elf, Dora makes a sad look when she calls him a poor fox instead of sneaky fox, and when she tries opening it until he warns her not to because then she'll get stuck in the bottle as well like him, it seems very interesting that she can make sad looks, but she almost never makes angry looks whenever she sometimes gets mad. However, she got mad and only got mad but she never made an angry look in Lost and Found when Mr. Scarecrow scared Baby Blue Bird.
    • This is one of very few times Dora's eyebrows were visible.
  • Unlike all other episodes, when Dora, Boots and Swiper climb up to Tico's airplane, they do not say "Seatbelts, so we can be safe!" when they buckle up.
  • It is unknown how the Fiesta Trio got to King Juan el Bobo's Castle and ended up on his crown.
  • The copyright year reads "2005", which means that it was produced the same year as the premiere of this episode.
  • This episode premiered on TV on Veterans Day 2005.
  • This episode premiered on TV exactly 2 years after Dora Saves the Game premiered.
  • The episode does not take place in Shape Hill and Star Mountain, but the PC game does.
  • Roberto and Disco Star appear in the PC game, but not in the episode.
  • Scenes from this episode were incorporated into the "Dance Along Musical Adventure" DVD.
  • This is the only double-length episode where the Fiesta Trio do not speak.
  • The Pyramid was later used for the Go, Diego, Go! Flash game Diego's Puzzle Pyramid.
  • Following the scene with the framing device, the grass, trees and bushes seem brighter and paler. This is to give the viewer a feel the plot is taking place in a flashback.
  • This episode is released along with the CD release of "Dance Fiesta!".
  • This was the last episode to premiere before the Toggolino rebrand in 2008.
  • Map only zoom wipes in the first segment, just like how he did in Star Catcher, and the first three seasons.
  • This episode premiered in the United States the same that as Catch the Babies premiered in Latin America and Brazil.

Remastered version edits[]

In the remastered version, there were a few script changes:

  • All lines of dialogue where Dora or Swiper would ask the viewer to stand up have been removed or edited, in the case the viewer has a disability. However, the closed-captions, animation, and lip-sync were not adjusted.
    • In the pyramid scene, when Swiper tells the viewer to stand up, he says, "I wanna march like an ant".
    • During the pirate dance, when Dora asks the viewer to do the pirate dance she instead asks the viewer if they're ready. Pirate Pig then says, "We all want to dance like pirates".
    • During Everyone Can Dance:
      • Dora asks the viewer to do it with them rather than telling them to stand up. In one verse, she says, "Stretch up straight" instead of "Stand up straight".
      • The shot of Dora, Boots, and Swiper dancing after the line "Merengue!" was replaced with shots of a kid in a wheelchair and a kid with crutches.


  • In promotional images, the magic bottle is green; but in the animation, the bottle is blue.
  • When Dora sings the Travel Song, her hand keeps going through to the magic bottle.
  • Instead of looking inside Backpack for fancy clothes, Dora, Boots, and Swiper ask Benny for help who wasn't with them until called for, breaking the fact that Backpack has anything Dora might need on her trip.
    • It's possible that Backpack was in a rush and didn't prepare fully for this trip.
  • In the credits it said "Dance to the Rescue". The word "Dora’s" is left out.
    • It's possible that this is the working title for the episode.
  • According to this episode, the King's Mommy NEVER dances until the Everyone Can Dance dance. However, she has danced before, at least to We Did It!, in both What Happens Next? and A Crown for King Juan el Bobo. It is still unknown why she hated dancing in this episode.
  • When King Juan el Bobo is awarding the one big wish, the bottom of Dora's dress is colored in the same light shade as her top.
  • All of the trailers, descriptions and even merchandise completely leave out the framing device of Dora recalling the special as a flashback.
    • It is possible the framing device was added at the last minute.


  • The scene where the castle guard tells Dora, Boots, and Swiper that they are not allowed to enter the castle without any of their fancy clothes is a reference to the “No Dogs Allowed” scenes from Snoopy, Come Home; including the Disney's Little Einsteins' episode "The Glass Slipper Ball" where June can’t enter the ball, unless she needs a ballgown for the ball and win the Glass Slipper. Also, Paramount (a ViacomCBS/Paramount Global firm) distributed some Peanuts VHS tapes.

Video game by Atari based of this TV special[]


Dora the Explorer-Dance to the Rescue videogame

Character Find[]

Swiper the Fox

Dora the Explorer Season 4
Star Catcher | Dora's Fairytale Adventure | Daisy, La Quinceañera | Big Sister Dora | Super Babies | Catch the Babies | Dora's Got a Puppy | Dora and Diego to the Rescue! | A Crown for King Juan el Bobo | The Mixed-Up Seasons | Dora's Dance to the Rescue | Dora's First Trip | Baby Jaguar's Roar | Boots to the Rescue | Dora's World Adventure! | Star Mountain | Baby Crab | La Maestra de Música | Dora Saves the Mermaids | The Shy Rainbow| Super Spies 2: The Swiping Machine | We're a Team! | Save Diego! | Swiper the Explorer
* - Denotes held-up episode