Though intended for children, the Nickelodeon show SpongeBob SquarePants has numerous “grown-up only” moments that inescapably didn't set off alarms for television censors. Thus, many of the devious writers of the show ended up having a lot of these jokes make it to broadcast. Knowing Nickelodeon's past history of passing along “grown-up” jokes in classic series such as Rugrats, Ren and Stimpy, and Rocko's Modern Life, it is not really surprising that Spongebob has a ton of them.
Of course, my parents didn't allow me to ever watch Ren and Stimpy due to its graphic nature, but my nieces are permitted to watch SpongeBob SquarePants, which is very shocking when you consider the hidden content, most of them of an extremely vulgar nature. Maybe the writers at Nickelodeon just have gotten a bit more savvy as time goes on.
In this article, I will bring to light fifteen very inappropriate moments in the SpongeBob SquarePants series. Quite honestly, I was spoiled for choice, as there are really a lot of them, and some are a little more obvious than others. Still, I think Rocko's Modern Life has this show beat in terms of “grown-up” content and jokes. Don't agree? Drop a line and let us know. Now, let's all visit Bikini Atoll. Ahem. I mean Bikini Bottom.
15 Nosey Briefs
Indeed, SpongeBob SquarePants is pretty much an anthropomorphic sea sponge wearing clothing. So when Spongebob ends up wearing his underwear on his head with his large nose noticeably pointing out, I am pretty sure that almost all the grown-up audiences of the show immediately knew the joke that was being broadcasted on kid-friendly Nickelodeon television. Based on the past history of Nick programming, especially watching Rocko's Modern Life as a child, this network tends to push the envelope of what is acceptable in children's animation. Does this moment seem too vulgar? Keep reading. It gets worse. This one starts to seem really innocent when you see where the rest of the franchise goes.
14 That Time Of The Month
When Squidward points out a red blimp to Mr. Krabs, everyone in the room knows exactly what he's implying. It is a well-placed female anatomy joke smackdab in the middle of this Saturday Morning cartoon. Is it in good taste? No, not really, but who cares. Frankly, in this series' case, you have to assume the writers were just trying to squeeze in any raunchy jokes they could without much rhyme or reason. This one isn't even particularly clever, but you can bet the writers had mischievous grin written across their face when they saw it broadcast live on television. You have to wonder if the censors also knew what they were letting the writing staff get away with.
13 Best Day Ever!
It will take a little sleuthing to fully understand this next entry. The twentieth episode of Season 4 is aptly named “Best Day Ever.” For those who don't know, the number 420 has very specific connotation when it comes to "substances." 420 is code-word or inside-joke about the culture of smoking. Given that a lot of adults who end up watching SpongeBob SquarePants are probably on some sort of medication herb, then this episodic titling is much more than meets the eye. And I don't mean Transformers, by the way. This title has also gone on to even headline several other Bob-related material such as a soundtrack sharing the same name.
12 Drop The Soap
When Spongebob gives some soap to Gary called “Doubloons,” he quickly advises him “don't drop the soap.” You don't have to watch a lot of the series Oz to understand that little quip. For those who don't have an idea about what “dropping the soap” means, make sure that you are actually old enough to be on the internet and reading this article. The term “dropping the soap” refers to prison culture, where dropping the soap forces someone to bend over to pick it up, leaving them vulnerable for other unholy hi-jinx. Please watch a few episodes of Oz, and everything probably would be explained. Either Spongebob was in prison for a while, or he watched a lot of television to figure out that lingo.
11 Caught Red-handed
Patrick and SpongeBob SquarePants are the best of friends, and neither are the sharpest tool in the shed. Honestly, if there was an aptitude test given to the entire cast of the show, these two might be on the very floor of Bikini Bottom. But that doesn't mean that they are too dimwitted to involve themselves in a little grown-up hi-jinx. In this particular scene, Patrick and Spongebob get caught in their birthday suits, obviously involved in some sort of business transaction that necessitates the transferring of money and services. Thus, Patrick is caught “red-handed” or whatever color he is. Is it a pinkish red? I am not quite sure. Another lewd joke from kids' series — think they pick up on this stuff?
10 Squidward Blows
Squidward Tentacles is probably the grumpiest sea creature in the world of SpongeBob SquarePants, but that doesn't stop him from joining this circus. Though his name is Squidward, he is actually an anthropomorphic octopus with quite a mean streak. The controlling and cynical octopus hates every other resident in Bikini Bottom, but probably no one more the good-natured, but dimwitted Spongebob. If there is someone who might one day murder Spongebob or Patrick in a future episode, Squidward would be the obvious choice. In this scene, Mr. Grumpy-pants is enjoying a moment of cleanliness with this blower. To the innocent mind of chid it might not seem like much, but again, knowing how the writers love to sneak stuff like this in, it's fair to assume it's yet another "blue" joke.
9 Sorry For The Scabies
Though scabies is a condition where a mite burrows into someone's skin, it is actually spread through "adult" activities. So, nothing was more shocking to audiences of a more advanced age to see this cake that Spongebob purchases for Patrick for his birthday. On the cake, it reads “Sorry For The Scabies,” which is probably great evidence that the relationship between Spongebob and Patrick is something a little more than a platonic or “bromantic.” This also proves that they are spending too much quality time together. That being said, Patrick should really get that skin problem looked at. I heard it could get quite nasty. Yet another in a long line of adult jokes — it only gets worse.
8 This Blows
Featured in one of my earlier articles, this very grown-up moment of Spongebob gave me the inspiration to pen this very list. The episode in question is when Spongebob blows up some balloons that look very similar to an "adult" item needed for recreational use. Because censors probably thought that Bob was merely making some well-meaning balloon animals, this heavily-implied and suggestive moment somehow passed without raising one red flag. Sure, you might think that I am just looking too much into this. Still, given the lewd subtle nature, this show often has, it's not hard to imagine the writers and animators planting this joke for grown-up fans to catch.
7 Changing The Channel
In one episode, Spongebob appears to be watching a program featuring a realistic sea sponge that somehow gets him a bit too excited until his friend Gary ends up walking in on him. Though, it seems quite innocent, don't be fooled. Spongebob quickly changes the channel to a pro football game, but his buddy doesn't seem to believe him one bit. Somehow, Gary's expression doesn't deviate as he stares at Bob's television in amazement and horror. At least Spongebob keeps his square pants on for this scene. I am sure a lot of males had someone walk in on them at least once in their lives. Geez wiz, Spongebob. Lock the door before you indulge.
6 I Hope It's A Nose
When Squidward and Mr. Krabs find Spongebob buried in the dirt, our boxy protagonist reasoned that Squidward told him to do it. Quickly, Mr. Krabs assesses the situation and what seems to be Bob's appendages sticking out of the ground and gives this very silly response: “Please tell me that is your nose.” Upon further inspection, this is a pretty obvious lewd joke that flew over the censor board. Jokes like these made the SpongeBob SquarePants series popular to viewers of all ages, especially the ones who can understand these dirty quips. I am quite sure not a lot of parents sit down and watch the cartoon together with their children. If they did, they are hoping that their kids don't quite understand these jokes.
5 Mr. Krab's Undies
For a children's show, SpongeBob SquarePants still has a fair amount of grown-up moments, including several characters being in their birthday suits from time to time. This moment features a very frustrated Mr. Krabs wearing a bra which obscures his large chest area. Why is he wearing this garment? The answer is up for debate. Though Mr. Krabs is probably not a woman in disguise, it probably correlates to him needing this due to his portly body. Indeed, Mr. Krabs seems very out of shape most of the time, unless you consider “round” a shape. These underwear moments are actually the more tame scenes of the series, and that is saying a lot.
4 Krusty Krab, Eww
Spongebob works at a fast-food restaurant called the Krusty Krab, which is located at Bikini Bottom. Very keen readers will already see the correlation that I am trying to draw here in this entry. If you don't understand it, you might be a little too young or naive to be reading this list all the same. To be a bit more blunt: these locations parallel some very dirty and grown-up situation and "issues." Crusty, and crabs, are two words that should never be mentioned together, especially when you actually understand what it actually means. Without trying to dive too much into this topic, let's move on to the next unsavory moment of SpongeBob SquarePants, shall we?
3 See You Next Tuesday
This might be the most insane inside joke of them all. Poor Mrs. Puff often has to put up with the antics of Spongebob, but none worse than what he said to her after a very disastrous boat-driving course, where they end up crashing. After causing a tremendous mess and equal amount of grief for the defeated Mrs. Puff, Spongebob runs off telling her, “See You Next Tuesday.” Though it might not seem to be all that terrible, this is a well-known acronym for a vicious and derogatory term against women. Still not getting it? Try breaking it down to single letters... C... U—— There we go, we know you'd get it. Geez, SpongeBob. Tone it down!
2 Be Insertive
The residence of the sea often tries to manipulate SpongeBob SquarePants due to his trusting and naive nature. When Mr. Krab's arch-nemesis, Plankton, tries to build the Mega Bucket, he convinces Spongebob to become assertive. Unfortunately, our very stupid protagonist ends up poking his sea sponge finger into someone's pants pocket with a devious and satisfied smile. Plankton responds with a facepalm and admonishing him. “Not insertive!” he yells. Though this might have passed over children's heads across the country, us adults knew what Spongebob was thinking. And it's not an acceptable thing whatsoever. Bad Bob!
1 What Bob Really Is
Just the idea that SpongeBob SquarePants is a sponge living in Bikini Bottom is something that might be more grown-up than what was previously thought. Bikini Bottom is actually based on a real-world area called the Bikini Atoll, which is located in the Marshall Islands. It is notable for being a place where the United States tested hydrogen bombs right at the beginning of the Cold War. So, it only makes sense that Spongebob is the product of nuclear weapon much like the mythical Godzilla. What I didn't really realize until now is that Spongebob is a sponge in Bikini Bottom... Much like a below-the-belt hygene product used all over the world. Yes, that's exactly what I'm getting at. Gulp.