In many ways, Walter is just like the other young whales. But in one way—the way that seems to matter most—he is different. Walter was born without a tail. All the other young whales have tails, but since Walter does not, he is seen as different. And according to the other whales, different is not good.
Different means Walter is not included when the other whales played tug-of-war. Different means he doesn’t get to race. His friends call him a tadpole or turtle, saying his tail is weak and Walter is slow. Walter knows better, of course. His tail does all sorts of amazing things, but the other whales never give him a chance to show them.
One day, the ocean feels strangely quiet. Walter is the first to realize all his friends have been caught in a fisherman’s net. They desperately need his help, and for the first time, they see Walter for the amazing whale he is. Walter is a hero, even without his tail. It turns out it’s okay to be different because different can also mean special.