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When a bunch of tiny people need to restrain a (to them) giant one, a classic method is to bind the bigger creature to the ground while asleep. Waking up, the large person finds they've been tied down by string -- lots of it -- stretched over their body between stakes, allowing one of the mini-people to perform a Colossus Climb onto their chest and make demands.

Prone to Fridge Logic, as the amount of string used is often far more than a bunch of miniature people would logically have on hand. How they could pound stakes deep enough into the ground to be effective, without waking their intended captive, is likewise often Hand Waved.

A sister trope to All Webbed Up, in which the binding is done by Big Creepy Crawlies rather than little people. Subtrope of Bound and Gagged, minus the gag.

Examples of Gulliver Tie Down include:

Comic Books / Strips


  • In Army Of Darkness, the little Evil Ashes that spring from a broken mirror tie Ash to the floor with twine while he's knocked unconscious.
  • In The Pagemaster, Horror gets captured by Lilliputians this way.
  • In Jurassic Park 2, a tranquilized T. rex is seen lying on a transport pallet, bound heavily enough to immobilize it. In this case, the tiny (to it) humans had the sense to use metal braces rather than string.
  • Happens to Ginormica at the very beginning of Monsters vs. Aliens shortly after being hit by a meteorite full of Quantonium and subsequently mutating into a giant.
  • Happens to Mrs. Jumbo in Dumbo as a result of her attacking a mean boy that was threatening her title son, and consequently being locked up for this reason.


  • Gulliver's Travels is the Trope Namer.
  • Professor Mmaas Lecture features a horde of termites catching a drunk guy in a ditch and promptly tying him down For Science!, using miniature cement strings (presumably made with their advanced Organic Technology). This includes tying down every single of the man's hairs separately.
  • Discussed in Truckers after one of the Nomes sees the illustration in a copy of Gulliver's Travels. Masklin concludes that the most impressive thing about it is the amount of co-operation required; if a group of Nomes tried it, they'd start arguing and never get the job done.

Web Original

  • In The Adventures of The League of STEAM episode, "Bitter Gnomes and Gardens", the gnomes tie up the League's zombie manservant Zed in this way, using a garden hose.

Western Animation

  • On The Littles, a young Big girl has run away from home, and the Littles set up a ruse to convince her to return. They need to delay her long enough to prepare their trick, so one of them ties her clothing to the floor when she stops to nap in a barn.
  • Mickey Mouse was subjected to this trope in Gulliver Mickey, and did something like it to a giant in The Brave Little Tailor.
  • The Gulliver animated series shows it failing hilariously, with Gulliver effortlessly sitting up and breaking the bonds in the process.


  • In this commercial for the Acura RDX Gulliver has been tied down by the Liliputians in order to give him a car.
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