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[[quoteright:350:[[WesternAnimation/PinkyAndTheBrain http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/22e0e5844a8652237d66016748c186e2.png]]]]
[[caption-width-right:350: One's a genius, the other's insane.]]

-> ''"I may be small, but I have a big brain!"''
-->-- ''WesternAnimation/JimmyNeutronBoyGenius''

Being the smallest in a group will always make you smarter (and usually more agile) than the rest. This, of course, is supposed to [[WeakButSkilled make up for being physically weak]].

Reflectively, in a BigGuyLittleGuy OddCouple the short one is always the planner, the schemer, the wise one. The taller may be TheHero, the DumbMuscle or the loon, [[FatIdiot the lazy one]], or just the wild one, but the short guy is always somehow smarter. The TeenGenius WiseBeyondTheirYears is especially often paired with a GentleGiant, and the child in a BadassAndChildDuo will often at least attempt to play the smart guy for the pair. [[HypercompetentSidekick Results]] [[CuriousAsAMonkey will]] [[SmallAnnoyingCreature vary]].

Naturally, seen often with TheSmartGuy and TheBigGuy of the FiveManBand. Interestingly enough, the TropeMaker of the modern FiveManBand, Anime/ScienceNinjaTeamGatchaman, had a TagalongKid as the Smart Guy, who was only 'smart' in the {{trickster}} sense rather than the technical sense. The two roles would become conflated later.

And, of course, everpresent in TheShortGuyWithGlasses.

Contrast GeniusBruiser and BadassBookworm.

See also BrainsAndBrawn and GeekPhysiques.


[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* Kai (or Kaisuke, in the manga) and Yamagata from ''Manga/{{Akira}}'', with Kai being the short, smart guy in question.
* Yue Ayase of ''Manga/MahouSenseiNegima'' is the shortest of the post-pubescent characters, and easily one of the smartest.
** Naturally, the ReallySevenHundredYearsOld [[OurVampiresAreDifferent Vampire]] character Evangeline acts as a CynicalMentor to the entire group.
** And of course, ''Negi''.
* Koushiro "Izzy" Izumi of ''Anime/DigimonAdventure''. He and [[BrattyTeenageDaughter Mimi]] are both ten years old, but she's a good foot taller, while he's roughly the same height as eight-year-old Hikari.
* Gene Starwind and Jim Hawking in ''Manga/OutlawStar''.
* Chiyo from ''Manga/AzumangaDaioh'', the petite resident CheerfulChild, is [[ChildProdigy the most intelligent of the bunch]]. She's small[[note]]Her official height is 1.33m, or 4'4".[[/note]] even for ''her age''.
* ''Manga/DeathNote'' plays with this in the cases of Mello and Near. While Mello is average-short for a man (5'7) his companions in the Mafia are all a good six inches taller than he is. Near is only 5 feet, but he's [[spoiler: the one who takes Kira down in the end, so he must be fairly intellegent.]]
* ''Manga/DragonBall Z'' example: Vegeta and Nappa. Notable in that shorter is also more powerful as well.
* ''Manga/ThePrinceOfTennis'': Ryoh Shishido, with is taller, stronger doubles partner Ohtori. Of course, this is in part due to the fact that he is Ohtori's upperclassman.
* ''Franchise/LyricalNanoha'' has the [[spoiler:[[BadassFamily N2R Nakajima Sisters']]]] Cinque, the white-haired TokenMiniMoe who's actually the [[OlderThanTheyLook oldest and most experienced of the bunch]], one of the two strongest Numbers, and serves as the Squad Leader. She's also described as being especially "mature and adult-like" by Subaru.
* In ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist'', being the complete genius he was, Edward Elric would probably be the short and smart person of most of the cast, despite the fact that many others are probably just as wise, but don't fit the age group. Just...don't [[BerserkButton mention the short part to him]].
* In ''Manga/DetectiveConan'', Conan Edogawa is the shortest of the Detective Boys, even shorter than the girls. This was, however, subverted with his [[OlderThanTheyLook teenage alter ego]] Shinichi Kudo, as Shinichi is of a more appropriate height for his age.
* Chiriko from ''Manga/FushigiYuugi''. Not only is he the shortest Seishi, he's also the youngest.
* ''Manga/{{Naruto}}'':
** Inverted. The smartest character, Shikamaru, is pretty tall. Among the rookies, the title character is the shortest boy and he's also [[WordOfGod tied for being the second]] [[IdiotHero dumbest]]. After the TimeSkip he's smarter, but he's also one of the taller ones. As an adult he's extremely tall, but he's outgrown most of his IdiotHero trait by then.
** Played straight with Dosu - he was the shortest of his squad, and was always [[PrimalStance hunched over]] (making him look even shorter), but was smarter and more logical than his squad.
* In ''Manga/MuhyoAndRoji'', Muhyo is one of the most intelligent and talented Magic Law practitioners, but also shorter than virtually everyone else.
* ''Manga/OnePiece'':
** Nami is the shortest human member of the crew and one of the shortest grown-up characters overall (she's even shorter than Luffy!), but is both [[OnlySaneMan the most normal member]] and incredibly smart. Robin (who is very tall) is probably even smarter, though, at least as for book-smarts.
** Also, Chopper's "Brain Point" [[{{Animorphism}} form]] boosts his analytical ability and also makes him the ''very'' shortest member of the crew.
** Completely inverted with Luffy himself. Even though WordOfGod says he's taller than for example Nami, [[YourSizeMayVary he's drawn shorter than her most of time]], and is all in all a little midget compared to most One Piece characters. He is also [[TheDitz dumb as a rock]].
* Suzu from ''Manga/SeitokaiYakuindomo''; [[BerserkButton just don't remind her]].
* Exsedol Folmo from ''Anime/SuperDimensionFortressMacross'' is [[AttackOfThe50FootWhatever relatively]] one of the smaller Zentradi and serves as an advisor/historian. Inverted in ''Anime/{{Macross 7}}'' where he's one of the largest cast members, if largely by virtue of most of his crewmates being human and Exsedol himself preferring to remain at full size instead of shrinking himself like most of ''7''[='s=] other Zentradi.
* Subverted in ''Manga/AttackOnTitan'': Armin's intelligence is repeatedly praised in-series, and he's the second shortest male among the 104th Trainee Corps...the only boy shorter than him among them is [[TheDitz Connie]]. Krista is shorter than both of them, but [[AvertedTrope her intelligence is not particularly noted]]). Zoe Hange and Erwin Smith, who are both called brilliant by several characters, are also fairly tall.
* Eddie from ''Anime/YokaiWatch'' is noticeably shorter than his friend Nate. He is a tech-savvy and smart kid.
* ''Anime/{{Pokemon}}'': Satoshi/Ash's Noctowl is aside from being a Shiny Pokémon not only much smaller than regular Noctowls, but also more intelligent than them.
* Kenny, [[OnlyKnownByTheirNickname better known]] as "The Chief", from ''Anime/{{Beyblade}}'' is 4'2 despite being 11 at the start. He doesn't usually blade but instead acts as the others technician and mechanic.
* Marucho from ''Anime/{{Bakugan}}'' is the shortest of the main brawlers and remains like that throughout the series, [[OlderThanTheyLook despite being 17]] in the last season. He's also TheSmartGuy of the FiveManBand, knowing all the rules and strategies of the game.

* ''ComicBook/{{Asterix}}'' from the comic of the same name is much smaller than his pal Obelix, but is the brains of the duo. Hell, he is that when compared to the entire village; [[{{Pun}} short]] of maybe [[MiniatureSeniorCitizens Geriatrix]] he's the shortest guy around, and his wits is only matched by fellow [[OnlySaneMan Sane Man]] Getafix.
* Of the three ''ComicBook/{{Bone}}'' cousins, the two shorter ones (Fone Bone and Phoney Bone) are more intelligent than the tallest one [[CloudCuckoolander (Smiley Bone)]], although they both have different ''kinds'' of intelligence.
* The Dalton brothers in ''ComicBook/LuckyLuke'' superficially extend this trope to four persons, but actually are a subversion. Joe is both the shortest and the leader of the gang, while Averell is the tallest and the most obvious dimwit. However while Joe clearly thinks he's the brains of the gang (rather in the way that Oliver Hardy's character believed himself to be much smarter than Stan Laurel's), he's actually just as stupid as his brothers, only in a different way. [[WordOfGod Goscinny himself once pointed out]] that Joe is merely the most malevolent or evil of the Daltons and that evil does not equal smart.
* In ''ComicBook/{{Watchmen}}'', the local crime boss leading the rioting in prison is a man named "Big Figure," who is half the height of his two thugs. His FatalFlaw is a NapoleonComplex.
* Teela from ''ComicBook/PocketGod'' is the shortest pygmy of her tribe, but is also a GadgeteerGenius.
* Inverted in ''Franchise/SamAndMax'', where the shorter Max is the less rational and more anarchic of the two.

[[folder:Fan Fic]]
* ''Webcomic/AxisPowersHetalia'' fanfic ''[[https://www.fanfiction.net/s/11886910/1/Gankona-Unnachgiebig-Unità Gankona, Unnachgiebig, Unità]]'': Out of the former Axis Trio, Japan is the shortest. He also happens to be ''very'' smart. Not that Germany and Italy are dumb, but still.
* ''Fanfic/CalvinAndHobbesTheSeries'': Sherman, a hamster, is also TheSmartGuy.

[[folder:Films -- Animated]]
%%* Bobble and Clank from the ''Franchise/DisneyFairies'' movie.
* Notably the ''[[WesternAnimation/JimmyNeutronBoyGenius Jimmy Neutron]]'' page quote comes from the climax of the film where the villains are privately laughing at a seeming suicide run by the title character by mocking his size, before he [[AttackOfThe50FootWhatever changes it]].
* ''Disney/TheLionKing'':
** Timon and Pumbaa are a subversion. Timon only ''thinks'' he's the smart one, while Pumbaa doesn't realize how smart he really is.
** Mufasa is a wise king, but lacks the [[SiblingMurder lethal]] cunning of his smaller, frailer brother Scar:
--->'''Scar:''' Well, as far as brains go, I got the lion's share. But, when it comes to brute strength... I'm afraid I'm at the shallow end of the gene pool.
* Disney usually inverts this trope with villains. Honest John and Gideon from ''Disney/{{Pinocchio}}'' and the Walrus and the Carpenter from ''Disney/AliceInWonderland'' are notorious inversions. Subversions of inversions include Napoleon and Lafayette from ''Disney/TheAristocats'' and Gaston and LeFou from ''Disney/BeautyAndTheBeast''.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
%%* Inverted with ''Film/JayAndSilentBob''.
* ''Film/ThePrincessBride'': Vizzini is more or less a [[TheNapoleon a tiny-sized, dictatorial control freak]] with a brain... until the Man in Black shows up, anyway.
* Pintel and Ragetti from ''Franchise/PiratesOfTheCaribbean''. At least, Pintel (short) has the more practical intelligence; Ragetti (tall) is several bottles short of a rum crate, but what's ''left'' sometimes drops erudite comments about, for instance, the Scandinavian origin of the word "kraken".
* Charlie and Raymond Babbitt from ''Film/RainMan'', the latter being a [[TheRainMan low-functioning yet genius autistic savant]].
%%* Master and Blaster from ''Film/MadMaxBeyondThunderdome''.
* In the movie adaptations of ''Film/{{Hellboy}}'', compare Bruiser Hellboy to his partner Abe Sapien, who's both smarter/more well-read and psychic. (Note that this is AdaptationDisplacement at work; in the comics Hellboy is a GeniusBruiser and Abe has no psychic powers.)
* Inverted in ''Film/TheIcePirates''; the towering Killjoy is the smartest one of the pirates, if not the smartest person in the movie.
* In the ''Franchise/StarWars'' universe the wisest of all Jedi is little Master Yoda. "Size matters not. Look at me. Judge me by my size, do you? Hmm? Hmm. And well you should not.".
* In the ''Film/HomeAlone'' movies, Harry Lyme isn't really that smart himself (he never made it to the sixth grade in fact), but he's much less stupid than his sidekick Marv Merchants.

* Marco from ''Literature/{{Animorphs}}'' is the team's manipulative, wisecracking tactician, and is frequently described as being the smallest Animorph. Which also implies being shorter than the character who is under five feet tall.
* George and Lennie in ''Literature/OfMiceAndMen''.
** As well as those cartoons that spoofed the movie version. Creator/TexAvery's George and Junior is the most blatant imitation.
%%* Mr Pin and Mr Tulip from ''Literature/{{Discworld}}'' novel ''Discworld/TheTruth''. ----ing right.
%%** Subverted in that Mr. Tulip, despite being dumb enough to snort curry powder, has an encyclopaedic knowledge of art history.
* In ''Literature/RangersApprentice'', Will is constantly described as short and smart in the same breath, while his friend Horace is both tall and happy to let others do the thinking for him.
* ''Literature/VorkosiganSaga'': Miles Vorkosigan, under five feet tall (among other physical shortcomings) due to complications in pregnancy, is both the shortest and the cleverest member of any team he's part of. There's a direct causal link between his shortness and his smartness; though he had a fair amount of native intelligence to begin with, he set out to be the smartest in the room to counteract his physical unimpressiveness.
* In ''Literature/ASongOfIceAndFire'', arguably two of the smartest characters in the series are Petyr "Littlefinger" Baelish, a short {{Chessmaster}}, and Tyrion "the Imp" Lannister, a cunning dwarf.
* In, ''Literature/HarryPotter'', it's implied that Hermione is the shortest of the group (and she's obviously the smartest as well).
* [[TheChessmaster Kruppe]] from ''Literature/TheMalazanBookOfTheFallen''. Frequently smarter than ''gods''.
* Played straight with Bean in ''Literature/EndersGame,'' although this is [[JustifiedTrope justified]] in the [[Literature/EndersShadow Shadow series]] because Bean has been genetically modified. He will never have an adolescent growth spurt, but his body and brain will continue growing slowly his entire life. This makes him fearsomely smart, but he'll eventually run afoul of the SquareCubeLaw and die prematurely.
* Short is common among Deal Relway's crafty secret police in the ''Literature/GarrettPI'' novels, although this is a result of recruitment bias rather than innate intelligence: Relway favors cops who can be both cunning and inconspicuous, and he knows others tend to underestimate short people.
* A lot of Eoin Colfer's characters seem to have this. At any rate, all the [[TeenGenius Teen Genii]] do.
* Silk, resident SmartGuy of ''Literature/TheBelgariad'', is significantly shorter than any other male adult in the party. When first introduced he's described as being barely taller than the then-prepubescent protagonist.
* Scobie in ''Literature/DontCallMeIshmael'' is the shortest of the main characters, and the smartest. He is also the best debater on the team and good at all school subjects, except anything relating to physical activity.
* As noted in the Film category, Vizzini from ''Literature/ThePrincessBride'' falls into this. The book gives it a bit more attention than the movie, explaining that when he came to understand that his body (which is implied to be frail and possibly misshapen) was never going to get him places, he began purposely working to become exceptionally intelligent. He also specifically sought out Inigo and Fezzik for their fencing skills and brute strength, respectively, because he reasoned that with his intellect calling the shots, the three of them would be unstoppable. His career bears out his plan for many years, until he meets the Man in Black.
* [[JustSoStory According to]] Aesop's Fables, Hermes distributed an equal measure of intelligence to everyone, but the dosage is stronger for shorter people than it is the taller.

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* Mr Vandemar and Mr Croup of ''Series/{{Neverwhere}}'' by Creator/NeilGaiman. Croup, though not necessarily the smarter, is the more eloquent of the two, and both are equally (which is to say [[NightmareFuel frighteningly]]) competent at what they do.
* Bud and Kelly Bundy in ''Series/MarriedWithChildren'' with Bud being the smart one and Kelly [[TheBrainlessBeauty very much not]]. This one is probably coincidental -- David Faustino (Bud) was a prepubescent when the show started, but even as an adult he remained shorter than Christina Applegate (Kelly).
* Kerry and Bridget from ''Series/EightSimpleRules''. This seems to be an unintended result of making Bridget taller ([[InformedAttractiveness i.e. hotter]]) than her sister.
* ''Series/TheMightyBoosh'''s Naboo the Enigma, a tiny stoner shaman who probably measures out to stand less than five foot, is the smartest main character. But considering the other three are a demented jazzman, a bubble-headed pop singer and a talking gorilla, the title was pretty easy to win.
* The smallest person on the ''Series/{{Firefly}}''-class freighter ''Film/{{Serenity}}'' is five-foot-nothing, ninety-pound River Tam, and there is absolutely ''no'' doubt that she's the [[BadassBookworm smartest]] person on the ship. Similarly, her brother [[TheMedic Simon]] and the WrenchWench Kaylee are also pretty small compared with the rest of the crew, and they're also the brains of the ship.
* Benjamin Linus might not be ''the'' smallest guy on ''Series/{{Lost}}'', but he's quite a bit shorter than most of the other men -- and probably the cleverest person on the island.
* ''[[strike:Valerie]]'' ''[[strike:Valerie's Family: The Hogans]]'' ''Series/TheHoganFamily'' featured fraternal twins Willie & Mark; they started out about the same size, but as the actors grew up it ended up that Willie (the irresponsible one) was taller than Mark (the brainy one). Note though that these characterizations appeared before the split in height.
* [[TeenGenius Doctor K]] from ''Series/PowerRangersRPM'' - tiny, but the brains behind just about everything they have.
* ''Series/GilmoreGirls'' has Paris Geller who wants to remain the best in her class and is shorter than her two BrainlessBeauty friends and her competition, Rory.
* Inverted in ''Series/TheBigBangTheory'': Sheldon, supposedly the smartest character, is also the tallest. Though it's hard to tell, as every character on the show, aside from BookDumb Penny, is extremely intelligent.

* In most productions of Creator/WilliamShakespeare's ''Theatre/{{Othello}}'', the MagnificentBastard Iago is portrayed as shorter than Rodrigo, who is jealous of Othello and plays [[UnwittingPawn directly into Iago's plans]].

[[folder:Video Games]]
* In ''VideoGame/TalesOfSymphonia'', the second-shortest (and youngest) character, Genis, is TheSmartGuy (and also a bit of a BrattyHalfPint). Furthermore, the most cunning of the [[GoldfishPoopGang Desian Grand Cardinals]], Rodyle, is also the shortest.
** Another ''Tales'' series game this follows into is ''VideoGame/TalesOfLegendia'' where Jay the Unseen is one of, if not, the smartest members in the party and also the shortest. It's even lampshaded throughout the game
* Gomar and Shioh in ''VideoGame/FZero''.
* Inverted in ''VideoGame/ProfessorLaytonAndTheCuriousVillage''. While Layton and Luke are both smart, the titular tall character is the smartest and Luke is his apprentice.
* Reese Worthington of ''VideoGame/BackyardSports'' placed in the 99th percentile in a class test and was placed in the honors program. But he's ''really'' short.
* Zexion of ''KingdomHearts''. Compare him to every one else (except Roxas and Xion), and you'll find he's the shortest out of them, especially the other "Basement Members." Then again, he's the youngest apprentice...
* Erik from ''VideoGame/TheLostVikings''.
* [[SonicTheHedgehog Miles "Tails" Prower]] of SonicTheHedgehog is a [[ChildProdigy mechanical genius]], and his IQ is implied to be [[ImprobablyHighIQ 400]]. He's two and a half feet tall.
** Subverted with Dr. Eggman who is certainly one of the taller characters, even by human standards. He is also a genius with an IQ of 300 and easily one of the smartest characters in the series (save maybe his grandfather who's also pretty tall, and Tails).
* The Engineer from ''VideoGame/TeamFortress2'' is the shortest of the nine playable classes, though always standing up straight obfuscates this. He holds 11 [=PhDs=]. The Medic is one of the tallest characters (and his posture makes him look even taller), but he is also built lightly.
* ''[[Franchise/ShinMegamiTenseiPersona Persona]]'':
** [[KidDetective Naoto Shirogane]] from ''VideoGame/Persona4'' is the shortest playable character (at one point before the [[SamusIsAGirl reveal]], Yosuke even refers to her as a "shrimpy, half-pint detective"), yet she is also the most intelligent character in the Investigation Team, using her incredible powers of deductive reasoning to bring the team one step closer to finding the killer. Her tag-line in ''VideoGame/Persona4Arena'' is even "The 2000 IQ Killjoy Detective".
** Futaba Sakura from ''VideoGame/Persona5'' is absolutely tiny compared to virtually ''everyone else'' in the game, but she's a tech genius whose hacking skills become essential to the Phantom Thieves' success.
* ''VideoGame/MegaManX'' series: ''X5's'' Shining Firefly/Izzy Glow and ''X8's'' Gravity Antonion. Both are extremely intelligent {{reluctant mad scientist}}s and are the smallest bosses in their games due to being based off a firefly and an ant respectively.
* Kiel from ''VideoGame/RuneFactory4'' is the resident DitzyGenius and shortest of the bachelors (he's even in the running for shortest adult in town; only the TokenMiniMoe girls Amber and Xaio Pai are shorter than he is, plus Pico, the ghost with an unknown but presumably prepubescent age).
* In ''VideoGame/FreedomWars'', Citizens are genetically modified to favor brains over brawn, being intelligent while having small, energy-efficient bodies. Sinners, in comparison, tend to be only of average intelligence while being genetically modified to be strong enough to lift concrete slabs connected to rebars with their bare hands, making them more suited for combat.
* In ''VideoGame/KingsQuest2015'', Manny is by far the shortest of the knight hopefuls - even shorter than Graham, in fact, and he's also the most intelligent. He's Graham's opponent in the Duel of Wits. [[spoiler:He's also a slimy, cheating, scheming ManipulativeBastard. Bonus points for being voiced by Wallace Shawn, Vizzini from ''The Princess Bride'', with more than a few allusions to that character.]]
* In ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBros'', [[VideoGame/FireEmblemAwakening Robin]] is the shortest ''VideoGame/FireEmblem'' character in the fourth game. Robin's also the only one that's not a pure melee fighter (being primarily a spellcaster).
* Shulk is the shortest male party member in ''VideoGame/{{Xenoblade}}''. He's also an engineering student back at Colony 9.
* Regardless of whether [[VideoGame/DragonAgeII Hawke]] is played as male or female, they're unfailingly taller than their best friend Varric, who is a dwarf. Varric, who is both a merchant prince and a published author of considerable renown, is shown repeatedly to be smooth, cunning, and exceptionally clever; of particular note, the devs have stated that no matter how much trouble he's in, the moment Varric is allowed to start talking, ''he's won.'' Fortunately for all of Thedas, Varric is unequivocally one of the good guys.

[[folder:Web Original]]
* Played with to hell and back in ''WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries'' with two of the Dark H--"Steves" that try to rid of Yugi and Kaiba--[[spoiler:the audience originally lead to believe the suave-voiced villain and squeaky-voiced idiot are the tall and short Steves respectively. Then their faces, and thus, lip movements, are revealed]].
* [[CousinOliver Jeffy]] in ''WebVideo/SuperMarioLogan'' is about twice as tall as both Mario and Rosalina, yet the two latter are much more wise and smarter than him.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/PinkyAndTheBrain'': Even though they're lab rats and already pretty small by default, Brain is also shorter than Pinky, who's also an idiot.
* ''WesternAnimation/HeyArnold'':
** Arnold is shorter than a good number of his friends by mere inches and is also one of the smartest characters on the show.
** Helga's best friend Phoebe, who happens to be shorter than Arnold himself, as well as the shortest student in Mr. Simmons's fourth grade class is a straight-A student and easily the most intelligent student in the class. She was even (temporarily) promoted to the sixth grade.
* Rita and Runt from ''WesternAnimation/{{Animaniacs}}'': although Runt is based on ''RainMan'', he decidedly lacks his inspiration's savant skills.
* Disney/MickeyMouse and Goofy also would qualify. The latter is almost twice the former's height, but probably twice as dumb too.
* In ''WesternAnimation/DragonHunters'', Gwizdo is much smaller than the enormous Lian Chu, and also the brains of the operation.
* Dexter from ''WesternAnimation/DextersLaboratory''. Not so much when paired with his much taller rival Mandark, but definitely when paired with his sister Dee Dee.
* Severely inverted with [[spoiler: GeniusDitz Bulkhead]] in ''WesternAnimation/TransformersAnimated''.
* Inverted in the animated TV show ''WesternAnimation/AladdinTheSeries''. Recurring shortarse baddie Abis Mal is an absolute doofus compared to his tall, thin lackey, Haroud.
* This is both inverted and technically played straight in ''WesternAnimation/ThePenguinsOfMadagascar''. Kowalski, the tallest penguin, is also the smartest. However, the leader Skipper is the second smallest but is quite intelligent at times.
* Debatable in ''WesternAnimation/InvaderZim''. The Irken society bases authority on height, but at least one of the Almighty Tallest is somewhat scatterbrained.
** [[GeniusDitz Zim]] himself is the shortest Irken known, and is about as tall as a human child.
* In ''WesternAnimation/JimmyTwoShoes'', [[MadScientist Heloise]] is smarter than her tall friends [[IdiotHero Jimmy]] and [[FatIdiot Beezy]].
* Velma Dinkley in ''WesternAnimation/ScoobyDoo'', by far the shortest and also the youngest-looking of the primary characters (though she is actually supposed to ''be'' two years younger than Shaggy, Daphne and Fred).
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Ben 10}}'''s Grey Matter transformation. We eventually meet the race: the Galvans are a PlanetOfHats whose hat is being geniuses. However, the ''other'' "smart" alien, Brainstorm, and his fellow Cerebrocrustaceans, are not so tiny.
* [[OurOgresAreHungrier Toadwart]] from ''WesternAnimation/AdventuresOfTheGummiBears''.
** Even more so with his cousin, Tadpole.
* Charles Foster Offdensen of ''WesternAnimation/{{Metalocalypse}}''. His somewhat short stature is even remarked on by another character at one point. Bonus in that not only is he the smartest of the six main protagonists (he's been called a genius, particularly on financial matters), he's also an insanely formidable BadassBookworm to boot.
* Brainiac 5 from the ''WesternAnimation/LegionOfSuperHeroes'' Then again, he is twelve.
** Averted in the comics.
* Inverted in ''WesternAnimation/TeenTitans''. The shortest member of the team is Beast Boy, who is also the least intelligent (though he ''does'' have his moments, particularly where pop culture trivia comes up); the team's [[TheSmartGuy Smart Guy]] is Cyborg, who is also the tallest and, after [[CuteBruiser Starfire]], second-strongest.
* Rocky of the ''WesternAnimation/LooneyTunes'' gangster duo Rocky and Mugsy.
* Played straight in ''WesternAnimation/YoungJustice'' where Robin is the shortest and youngest member of the team but is the most all-around intelligent.
* Of the male characters on ''WesternAnimation/TotalDrama'', the four shortest--[[DoggedNiceGuy Cody]], [[TheSmartGuy Noah]], [[HomeschooledKids Ezekiel]], and [[BubbleBoy Cameron]]--are all intelligent and geeky (though Ezekiel's intelligence is [[AllThereInTheManual mostly confined to the manual]]). There are [[AvertedTrope aversions]], however, including the tall, lanky geek Harold.
* On ''WesternAnimation/{{Gargoyles}},'' Lexington is TheSmartGuy as well as the shortest, wiriest member of the Clan.
* Inverted on ''WesternAnimation/{{Recess}}'', as genius girl Gretchen is the second tallest member of the gang.
* ''WesternAnimation/AlbertTheFifthMusketeer'' is probably the best example among French cartoons.
* ''WesternAnimation/RockyAndBullwinkle''.
* WesternAnimation/TheTick and Arthur, most definitely.
* In ''WesternAnimation/TazMania'', the alligator Axl tends to accidentally ruin the shorter Bull Gator's plans.
* ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales'' has [[IronicName Big Time Beagle]], who is about as tall as Huey, Dewy and Louie, and is easily the smartest of the Beagle Boys.
* ''WesternAnimation/GravityFalls'':
** Parodied with [[ShowWithinAShow Duck-tective]], who is "better at finding clues because he's closer to the ground".
** Played straight with [[GenreSavvy Dipper]], who is a millimeter shorter than his sister Mabel.
* ''WesternAnimation/DanVs'' plays with the trope. Dan is in fact the shortest member of the main cast, and is shown to be fairly smart at times, but his knowledge tends to vary based on what he thinks is useful for his purposes. He is almost certainly smarter than his much taller, naive friend Chris, and by Chris' admittance it is hard to tell exactly what Dan does or does not know.
* Inverted in ''WesternAnimation/RegularShow'', where [[TheFool Rigby]] (the immature, hyperactive ManChild) is way, way dumber than his tall best friend, [[OnlySaneMan Mordecai]].
* ''WesternAnimation/SwatKats'' have some weird examples that downplay it, play it straight, ''and'' subvert it. Of the titular duo, Razor's just a bit shorter than T-Bone and the "gadget guy". Played straight by [[ThoseTwoGuys Burke and Murray]], a couple of {{jerkass}} deliverymen who constantly mock the SWAT Kats in their civilian identities; Murray is quite a bit shorter than Burke, and just seems a bit smarter.
* Of the three human sidekicks in ''WesternAnimation/TransformersPrime'', Rafael Esquivel is easily the shortest, being a twelve-year-old. He is also the smartest, having skipped several grades to be in high school with fellow humans Jake and Miko.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Kaeloo}}'': Played straight with [[RobotMaster Olaf]], who is the shortest of the cast, inverted with Quack Quack, who is second tallest and averted with [[TheDitz Stumpy]], who is second shortest.
* On ''WesternAnimation/TheKwickyKoalaShow'', Joey Bungle is less intelligent than his shorter brother, George.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Averted in real life. Indeed, people tend to believe the opposite, assuming that taller people are also more intelligent. This was reinforced by pre-modern economies having a limited ability to produce food, with protein especially being limited to the upper classes. People well-fed enough to reach their genetic potential could tower over the commoners, while also having far more access to education. The ancient stereotype is actually correct - taller people are on average slightly more intelligent than shorter ones, even in modern times.
* A number of [[ChildProdigy Child Prodigies]] are leagues smarter than much older people. One example being [[http://college.usatoday.com/2015/05/22/11-year-old-graduates-college-with-3-degrees/ this kid]], who graduated college with three degrees.
* Inverted with conditons like [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Down_syndrome Down syndrome]] and [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microcephaly microcephaly]], which inhibit mental development ''and'' physical growth.
* Robert Reich, who was U.S. Secretary Of Labor from 1993 to 1997, generally considered one of the most prosperous times in American history, along with multiple other posts for other presidents, has degrees from Dartmouth, Oxford and Yale and is overall considered one of the most respected economic and political minds around, suffers from Fairbanks Disease and stands at a mere 4"9.