Our reviews of Spongebob Squarepants:
Season 5, Volume 1 (published December 12th, 2007), SpongeBob SquarePants: The Complete First
Season (published November 10th, 2003), Spongebob Squarepants: Season 5, Volume 2
(published November 27th, 2008), Spongebob Squarepants: The
Complete Third Season (published February 8th, 2006), SpongeBob SquarePants: The Complete Seventh
Season (published December 11th, 2011), SpongeBob Squarepants: 10 Happiest
Moments (published September 19th, 2010), Spongebob Squarepants: Fear Of A Krabby
Patty (published August 31st, 2005), Spongebob Squarepants: Friend Or
Foe? (published August 29th, 2007), Spongebob Squarepants: Home Sweet
Pineapple (published January 19th, 2005), SpongeBob SquarePants: Legends of Bikini
Bottom (published December 12th, 2010), Spongebob Squarepants: Nautical Nonsense / Sponge
Buddies (published March 19th, 2002), Spongebob Squarepants: Sponge For Hire
(published February 9th, 2005), Spongebob Squarepants: Spongebob Vs. The
Big One (published March 16th, 2009), Spongebob Squarepants: Spongebob's Pest Of The
West (published April 25th, 2008), Spongebob Squarepants: Spongicus (published
April 9th, 2009), Spongebob
Squarepants: The Great Patty Caper (published March 13th, 2011), SpongeBob SquarePants: The Seaside Capers
(published March 13th, 2004), Spongebob
Squarepants: To Love A Patty (published February 6th, 2008), SpongeBob Squarepants: Triton's Revenge
(published September 11th, 2010), Spongebob
Squarepants: Truth Or Square (published November 20th, 2009), Spongebob Squarepants: Where's Gary?
(published December 14th, 2005), Spongebob Squarepants: Who Bob What
Pants? (published November 13th, 2008), and Spongebob's Runaway Roadtrip (published
September 25th, 2011) are also available.
Before this disc arrived at my door I'd never seen an entire SpongeBob
SquarePants episode and knew only the barest plot or character details. What
little I had caught didn't lead me to seek out anymore because I found the look
of the show fairly ugly and the voice acting obnoxious. But, as an intrepid
reporter, I dove under the sea to catch all eight episodes included on To
SquarePants or Not to SquarePants. Here are my thoughts:
• "To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants"
the only new episode on the disc, and takes "the clothes make the man"
pretty literally in the case of SpongeBob. Distracted by Patrick while doing his
laundry, SpongeBob accidently shrinks all his square pants. Sadly, the clothing
store won't have any in for months, so SpongeBob decides on round pants instead.
Suddenly, no one recognizes him and he must start all over again in Bikini
Bottom. This was one of the slighter entries on the disc, with the core joke
being fairly well-handled with no one recognizing SpongeBob, but it went on just
a little too long 5/10.
• "Squid's Visit"
As usual, SpongeBob is obsessed
with hanging out with Sqiudward. In this case, old Squiddy says he won't sleep
over at SpongeBob's because he doesn't want to leave the comforts of home. This
prompts SpongeBob to copy Squidward's entire house, to maddening effect. This
was another episode where the central idea was better than the execution. I
liked the idea of driving someone mad by copying everything about their house,
but it was also a little too long and ran out of visual ideas before the story
• "The Splinter"
SpongeBob accidently get his
spatula stuck in the ceiling so he builds a tower of boxes to retrieve it. On
his way back down, his tower falls, sending him skidding across the floor which
puts a nasty splinter in his thumb. When Squidward finds out he threatens to
send SpongeBob home, and so begins several frantic attempts to remove and/or
hide the offending splinter so SpongeBob can stay at work. This episode actually
surprised me. I didn't think a network like Nickelodeon still ran gross-out
comedy like this one. SpongeBob's thumb festers throughout the episode, and when
the offending splinter is finally removed it unleashes a torrent of green goo
that is gagging. In between the gross-outs we get some great visual comedy, so
the nastiness is worth it. 8/10.
• "Slide Whistle Stooges"
SpongeBob and Patrick
obtain slide whistles and proceed to soundtrack Squidward's life with them. This
drives Squidward increasingly insane, with predictably funny results. This was
probably my favorite episode on the disc because the whole "slide whistle
soundtrack" idea was funny, but I never felt like it overstayed its
welcome. Although I can see the sound of the slide whistle getting annoying on
the fourth viewing, the instrument is versatile enough to make this episode
• "Boating Buddies"
SpongeBob goads Squidward
into his first speeding ticket, so he must go to boating school with, you
guessed it, SpongeBob. I'm just not a fan of the episodes that focus on
SpongeBob antagonizing Squidward. I can see it being cute for a single episode,
but by this point it's just obnoxious, and even though some of the gags are
funny they can't overcome the weariness of the premise. 3/10.
• "The Krabby Kronicle"
Mr. Krabs realizes that
the newspaper business can be very profitable, so he hires SpongeBob as a
reporter. The problem is that the truth doesn't sell that well, so SpongeBob is
told to make up whatever stories he can to sell papers. Eventually, this angers
the citizens of Bikini Bottom as the lies spread. This was an excellent episode
that combined a good message (lying can hurt people) with some clever jokes
(like Edward marrying a pole). This one might go a little over the heads of the
kiddies, but it's a solid morality tale. 8/10.
• "The Slumber Party"
Mr. Krabs' daughter kicks
him out of the house so she can have a slumber party. Worried that his house
will be trashed by the young girls inviting over young boys, Mr. Krabs convinces
SpongeBob to help him infiltrate the party to ensure things go smoothly.
Naturally, they don't. This premise was a little tired, but combining the
sleepover idea with a zombie movie kept things fresh enough, and the idea that
parents meddling causes more trouble than just leaving kids alone is something
the young ones will appreciate. 6/10.
• "Grooming Gary"
For the annual pet festival,
SpongeBob gets Gary all fixed up, but discovers that he's not up on the latest
in snail fashions. This leads him to paint Gary's shell and get him a
diamond-studded collar so he can win a prize at the festival. Naturally, Gary
and the other pets don't appreciate this treatment and revolt. This was another
good message episode that wasn't too heavy handed. It makes good points about
treating pets are friends, not objects, and appreciating friends for who they
are, all while providing hilarious looking examples of snail design.
There you have it, a solid collection of SpongeBob SquarePants
episodes. My only serious problem with this set is that it's only eight episodes
long; a more complete season-style release would be more efficient. On the
technical front everything is fine, with the bright, solid colors of Bikini
Bottom shining through clearly and all the dialogue and effects clear and
detailed. The only extra is an art gallery that contains storyboard panels and
some character art.
To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants didn't turn me into a SpongeBob
fan, but now I see the attraction.