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Have you tried sporting a new look? Perhaps, you wore something out of your comfort zone or dyed your hair a different color. Well, I love crazy makeover stories! Just this year, I tried sporting a semi-bald haircut— a first for me!
My friends were quite surprised by my decision to have a bold makeover, but I loved it. It was a new look that made me feel unrecognizable to some people. That’s why I can relate to SpongeBob’s dilemma in “To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants.”
This episode premiered on June 20, 2009, in Ireland and the UK. It highlights SpongeBob’s unusual transformation of wearing round pants instead of his usual square pants! While I’ve seen SpongeBob change his looks and personality, it’s rare to see his friends not recognize him because of this outfit change.
If you were SpongeBob, what would you do whenever this happens? Let’s explore how SpongeBob reacted to his peers until the end! In this blog, I’ll share every interesting detail about the episode from the plot, characters, and trivia facts you’d love to know.
Bottom Line Up Front
Round SpongeBob is a fan-made term for SpongeBob wearing “round pants.” It’s a popular alter ego of SpongeBob, having a new yet unfamiliar look.
In this episode, SpongeBob’s clothes shrank in the dryer because they sat too long when he had a very lengthy conversation with Patrick on the phone. That’s why he wore his tidy whities in the mall while searching for alternative bottoms—until he found the ROUNDPANTS!
What is the “Round SpongeBob” in SpongeBob SquarePants?
Round SpongeBob is a version of SpongeBob who wears “round pants” because of a laundry accident. It’s quite funny how I could relate to SpongeBob’s shrinking clothes! In “To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants,” SpongeBob scoured through the mall’s clothing stalls to find a new pair of pants.
Eventually, he found a pair of round pants and loved wearing them. He decided to purchase one and enthusiastically wore it all day. However, his friends seemed to forget who he was—of course, he was called SpongeBob “SquarePants” for a reason.
The only person who recognized him was Mr. Krabs; Sandy, Patrick, and even Squidward forgot who he was. Because of the “selective amnesia” from his peers, he decided to start his life fresh and applied for his job back at Krusty Krabs. Since Mr. Krabs recognized him, he was immediately hired. He followed Squidward‘s scheming antics and defiant attitude. Soon after, Mr. Krabs called him out for it.
Round SpongeBob isn’t exactly the most popular meme in the SpongeBob universe. However, many fans still made memes and had a few laughs about this iconic episode.
Plot: Round SpongeBob (To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants)
The Episode Pans to a Quiet and Peaceful Bikini Bottom-But Not For Long!
Grim videos of natural disasters play as the lightning strikes. Trees were blown strongly by the wind as if a storm had ensued. All this because SpongeBob changed his PANTS!
It’s quite hilarious to think that people are panicking and natural disasters are happening just because of this!
It felt like a regular chore day for SpongeBob. He starts the day by doing his laundry and carrying a pile of dirty pants to the washer. Of course, he includes Gary‘s shell—kinda weird to see how SpongeBob easily pulled out Gary‘s shell. What’s even weirder is seeing Gary’s bare butt.
SpongeBob Runs His Laundry in the Washer
SpongeBob walks to the washer, wearing only his white undies, all while running the washer with Gary‘s shell. He completes other household chores such as vacuuming the floors, washing the dishes, and dusting his TV, still wearing his underwear! I’m not here to judge SpongeBob; walking in your undies is truly comfortable. Do you agree?
The telephone rings and SpongeBob rushes to answer it. Patrick is on the other line, asking for his friend “SpongeBob Squarepants.” He then asks his friend whether he’d love to hear him fiddle with his tongue and make some weird sounds.
Patrick Bothers SpongeBob on the Phone
SpongeBob quails and tells Patrick he is quite busy. Of course, Patrick, being Patrick, wants to take SpongeBob’s time. That’s why SpongeBob obliged and listened to his friend while sitting on his sofa. Patrick’s never-ending spluttering has kept SpongeBob distracted from his laundry for quite some time now. He asks Gary to check on the laundry, which has been sitting in the dryer for a while now.
SpongeBob Listens to Patrick Finish His Nonsense Spluttering
Gary went to the dryer. He took and wore his sparkly shell and left SpongeBob’s square pants to dry much longer. After some time, SpongeBob is bored to his wits. Fortunately, Patrick finally stopped. SpongeBob walks towards the laundry, only to discover that Gary has failed to follow his instructions.
When SpongeBob opened the dryer, he was surprised to see that all his square pants had shrunk. Despite the obvious size difference, he still tried them on, so they eventually ripped. He exclaims, “I’m gonna need to get new pants.”
SpongeBob Goes to the Mall And Starts Window Shopping
SpongeBob heads to the mall with no pants on! It’s funny how he could simply walk in on a mall without people giving him weird looks. The store clerk assisted him, but unfortunately, the store is not expecting another shipment of square pants for months.
Much to his dismay, SpongeBob tried on different pairs of pants—most of them were significantly longer for his legs. He tried on flared pants, ripped jeans, and khakis before finally discovering the bottoms that looked exactly like his except for their ROUND!
As he Checked on Different Pairs of Pants, He Found Something He Loved: ROUNDPANTS!
SpongeBob’s eyes sparkled as he saw the round pants. He excitedly tried them on and loved them. He said, “Whoa, these pants hug my body better than my mother.” He goes out for a walk and stumbles upon Patrick walking past him. He calls Patrick and asks him if he notices anything different about his looks.
No One Seems to Recognize SpongeBob’s New Look
Oblivious, Patrick thinks deep and hard while SpongeBob poses to make the change obvious. Patrick, still clueless, asks SpongeBob if he knows him. Of course, SpongeBob boisterously laughs and tells Patrick that he is indeed SpongeBob.
Patrick looks at the drawing on the palm of his hand—it is of SpongeBob wearing square pants. He is in disbelief at SpongeBob’s identity and calls him a mysterious stranger while walking away.
Still feeling positive and delighted with his new get-up, SpongeBob continues walking until Sandy greets him, “Well, howdy, stranger! I don’t recognize you in those newfangled dungarees. [wolf whistles] You must be SpongeBob FancyPants. Clothes really do make the man!” This caught SpongeBob by surprise, and he even thought the round pants were more powerful than he thought.
Still, he tries to reconcile the fact that Sandy is a “squirrel” and can’t comprehend what goes on in a Squirrel’s head. He continues to walk further and exclaims that Squidward could definitely recognize him, especially since they’ve been through so much together.
While walking home, SpongeBob merrily hums a tune as he arrives on Conch Street. Squidward looks bothered by the sight of SpongeBob—which he doesn’t recognize either. SpongeBob greets him, but he only thinks of SpongeBob as a “yellow freak.” Squidward asks him if he knows him, and SpongeBob tells him who he is. Unfortunately, Squidward also tells him that he has never seen him ever in his entire life.
Trying to Enter His House, Patrick Stops and Tells Him he Isn’t SpongeBob SQUAREPANTS
This revelation made SpongeBob quite sad, but he convinces Squidward that he is indeed SpongeBob by showing him pictures of them together. Everyone seems to not know SpongeBob because of his round pants.
He walks straight to his pineapple house, only to find that it’s locked. He calls for Gary and repeatedly bangs his door. Patrick opens the door, still not recognizing SpongeBob.
SpongeBob asks Patrick why he is in his house. Patrick sounded mad and defensive that the house belonged to his friend, SpongeBob Squarepants. Teary-eyed, he tells round pants SpongeBob that his friend left him.
He Tries to Get His Life Back While Being SpongeBob Roundpants
Because of repeatedly being unrecognized, he finally believed that he no longer was SpongeBob SquarePants. He plans to start over again, so he goes to Krusty Krab and applies for his job. SpongeBob tries to introduce himself but coughs and grunts while blurting out his complete name. Consequently, Squidward looks shocked by the sight of this yellow freak in town.
SpongeBob tries to introduce himself one more time and reasons that he is quite nervous. He tells Squidward that he is “SpongeBob RoundPants” seeking employment in Krusty Krabs. Squidward knocks himself out, so SpongeBob rummages through the till and finds the application papers.
Mr. Krabs seems to hire him on the spot and tells him to get back to work.
Deadset with his new identity, SpongeBob fills out the form as SpongeBob RoundPants. He tells Squidward in a sing-songy manner that they’ll be co-workers. Mr. Krabs bursts out of his office, looking pretty annoyed. He tells SpongeBob, “What’s going on here? Get back to work” He’s pretty excited since he got the job.
SpongeBob asks Squidward to show him the ropes. Irritated by his new co-worker, Squidward hesitantly agrees. SpongeBob drags him to the kitchen and asks him what he needs to do to do his job. Annoyed, Squidward tells him to get a Krabby Patty and put it on the grill. He immediately leaves the kitchen. This prompted SpongeBob to ask him if he should watch it. Sarcastically, Squidward responded that the Krabby Patty isn’t going anywhere. Both SpongeBob and Squidward walked out of the kitchen, and the Krabby Patty burned to ashes.
Squidward Trains SpongeBob About the “New” Job
SpongeBob continues bothering Squidward and badgering him about his duties while holding a notepad. Squidward tells him he’s going to the restroom, and SpongeBob immediately follows suit. He awkwardly asks Squidward questions and even invades his privacy by peeking through his bathroom stall.
Squidward starts serving the customers in a rude manner, which isn’t a good example. SpongeBob innocently writes down what he sees as if it is the best practice to do. During closing time, Squidward and SpongeBob brought a garbage bag filled with trash to the bin. Instead of walking to the bin, Squidward threw it out from a distance. SpongeBob, obligingly, followed what he saw. The bag popped, and trash flew in all directions.
SpongeBob Becomes Rude and Nonchalant When Dealing With Customers
Both of them seem to have a unique understanding. While serving the customers, SpongeBob and Squidward were both rude and unhelpful. This led to the customer walking out of the establishment.
They continue to throw garbage bags from a distance without them being inside the garbage bin. SpongeBob rudely throws the food as he serves it to the customers; Squidward looks quite proud to see this pan out. Both of them are sleeping on the restroom stalls as customers are lining up to use the restroom.
Together With Squidward, He’s Doing His Job Poorly
Trashes are starting to pile up outside the bin as they improperly dispose of their garbage bags. They’re serving burnt Krabby Patties and throwing food on customers’ faces. They also slept on the till as the long queue of customers were waiting for their orders to be taken. Once again, Mr. Krabs bursts outside his office and tells them to get back to work.
It’s Finally Revealed That Mr. Krabs Fully Recognizes SpongeBob’s True Identity!
He lectures both of them about their work ethic and tells SpongeBob “SquarePants” that he expects more from him. SpongeBob tells him that he isn’t “SpongeBob SquarePants” and points out that his pants don’t look square! Mr. Krabs wonders how SpongeBob got this information. Mr. Krabs suggests that SpongeBob just take off his pants—imagine working in his undies.
Now, he opens the door with an order of Krabby Patty in his hand. Sandy jokingly tells him that he’s SpongeBob “Underpants.” SpongeBob immediately notices that he’s just wearing his underpants and scream to the top of his lungs!
Who Are the Characters In the Episode?
Like most SpongeBob episodes, the “To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants” episode showcases SpongeBob and Squidward’s usual banter. It also highlights some supporting and background characters that were never before seen in the show. The episode also highlights a lot of incidentals.
Here’s a rundown of the characters in the episode:
- French Narrator
- SpongeBob SquarePants / SpongeBob RoundPants (debut)
- Gary the Snail (minor character)
- Patrick Star (minor character)
- Sandy Cheeks (minor character)
- Squidward Tentacles (minor character)
- Eugene H. Krabs (minor character)
- Incidentals: This episode also featured several incidentals. Like the show’s main characters, they were surprised to see SpongeBob wear a different outfit. Fred, Incidental 49A, and Sandals are among the most remarkable incidentals SpongeBob interacted with.
It’s Time for Meme Review: Top Roundpants SpongeBob
I love relatable memes, and this one hits the mark! Whenever we go shopping, she always warns me not to buy things I NEED — emphasize on NEED. She tries to convince me not to check out things I like and just use the ones we have at home. Eventually, I just stopped asking her to buy me stuff. How about you? What does your mom say when you go shopping with her? Meme Rating: too relatable/10
My girlfriend wears high-waisted jeans or sweats; there’s nothing in between. I showed her this meme, and she found it incredibly hilarious. Most people wearing high-waisted jeans do look confident even though they can look uncomfortable. With fashion trends changing, low-waisted jeans are becoming more popular. I’m not quite sure how to feel about that, but SpongeBob RoundPants strutting in confidence is a 9/10 in my bucket.
SpongeBob is the most memable cartoon! The show adds more to the character by creating different alter-egos and personalities! Every alter-ego just gets better; his quick costume and outfit changes are a bomb. I could truly agree with this meme 1000/10.
If you use adblocker on your web extension, I could tell you hate pop-up ads! I have an adblocker on my browser, and it pains me to turn it off just to access a website. That’s why I find this meme funny and relatable. Every time I turn off my ad blocker, the sketchy ads come popping—most of which are R-rated; Gary‘s bare butt is tamer than most of the ads. I rate it R18/10.
Fun Facts About Smooth SpongeBob in SpongeBob SquarePants
- The original episode title is shortened since it is considered too long.
- In this episode, SpongeBob is seen to own multiple square pants instead of just one!
- The 1940 Tacoma Narrows Bridge footage was used in this episode just like in “Two Thumbs Down.”
- The conversation between Patrick and SpongeBob lasted for hours and wasn’t clearly defined by the French Narrator—which is uncommon. The French Narrator usually mentions the time (e.g., 5 hours later)
- SpongeBob could just hang up or leave the phone to check on his pants, but he waited for eternity.
- Gary has a dark, selfish side; he deliberately disregards SpongeBob’s request!
- It’s the very FIRST time we see Gary‘s buttocks!
- The round pants are extremely similar to the inflated pants, as seen in “The Sponge Who Could Fly.”
- SpongeBob was walking around in his underwear half the time in the episode—he was even allowed entry to a mall despite being naked!
- Wearing the round pants gave SpongeBob a free pass to be sloppy and indifferent.
- Everyone failed to recognize SpongeBob except Mr. Krabs.
- Before wearing round pants, SpongeBob tried on:
- Extremely long pants
- Cowboy pants
- Knee-ripped jeans
- American flag pants
- Gary only has ONE shell that was washed in the laundry, along with SpongeBob’s pair of pants.
- The episode’s air date in the US commemorates two special occasions—David Haselhoff’s 57th birthday and the show’s tenth anniversary.
Frequently Asked Questions
Answer: SpongeBob’s square pants shrunk partly because of Patrick’s insistence. On a call, Patrick wanted SpongeBob to listen to his monotone spluttering. Since it took forever, SpongeBob’s laundry sat too long on the dryer, causing his pants to shrink.
Answer: Not to be confused with Smooth SpongeBob, Round SpongeBob, or Roundpants SpongeBob debuted on Season 6 as the 116b episode. It premiered in the United Kingdom and Ireland on June 20, 2009.
Answer: “To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants” is written by three creative writers, Luke Brookshier, Nate Cash, and Steven Banks. Nate and Luke worked as a duo on the later part of Season 5 through to the eighth season. The duo were also the storyboard directors for this episode.
Answer: SpongeBob isn’t seen wearing round pants again, but he seems to be wearing similar-looking bottoms in the episode “Sponge Who Can Fly,” which is actually a previous episode—part of Season 3, Ep 19.
SpongeBob Roundpants: A New and Strange Look, Unrecognizable?
To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants is one of the many episodes highlighting SpongeBob’s appearance change. It explores a subtle nod on how appearances can influence the way others react and act around you.
I find this episode frustrating and hilarious to watch; SpongeBob tries his best to tell his friends who he really is. He does everything to convince them that he only changed his pants but deep down, he still is SpongeBob SquarePants.
The best thing about this episode is Mr. Krab’s heart-felt statements—out of character. Mr. Krabs usually says the wrong words every time, but not this time. He convinced SpongeBob that he was SpongeBob SQUAREPANTS despite wearing the round pants.
Surprisingly, there’s an easy fix for everyone to recognize SpongeBob, which is to stop wearing round pants and wear his tidy whities instead!
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