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Recap / SpongeBob SquarePants S1E20 "Hooky" / "Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy II"

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United States airdate: April 8, 2000

Canada airdate: January 12, 2001

Mr. Krabs warns SpongeBob to stay away from "the hooks" (fishing hooks, that is), but they prove too alluring for SpongeBob, until he learns a lesson he'll never forget.

Hooky contains examples of:

  • An Aesop: Especially as a young child, listen to your parents/guardians when they tell you not to do something dangerous (e.g. don't play in the streets, don't play with fire, don't play with knives, etc.).
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  • Anger Born of Worry: Mr. Krabs gets upset when Spongebob and Patrick apparently die from getting hooked. When he discovers that they do survive, he gets angry and scolds them.
  • Body Horror: At one point, Patrick has a myriad of hooks stretching his mouth out.
  • Brick Joke: Mr. Krabs warns the boys that if they keep playing with the hooks they'll end up in a tuna can. At the end, that's exactly what happens to Patrick.
  • The Cameo: Jim Jarmusch and his friend John Lurie (who hosted Fishing with John, in which Jarmusch was a guest star) appear as fishermen.
  • Death of a Child: Patrick mentioned there was one kid playing with the hooks earlier and you can see a pair of juvenile shoes on the ground..
  • Double Meaning: The episode's title can mean 1) the hooks that humans laid out for sea creatures or 2) deliberately neglecting your job.
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  • Epic Fail: Squidward mixed up a boot with a batch of Krabby Patties, then served customers burnt Krabby Patties that came out tasting like that boot and of course one poor guy got a fried boot instead of a real sandwich.
  • Fan Disservice: An In-Universe example, as Squidward (Who had hooked SpongeBob on Mr. Krabs' orders) remarks that seeing SpongeBob in the buff was more than he needed to see.
  • Fate Worse than Death:
    • Mr. Krabs describes what happens when you get hooked.
    Mr. Krabs: Then they cook you, and then they eat you... or worse!
    SpongeBob: What could be worse than that?
    Mr. Krabs: Gift shops.
    • Later, Mr. Krabs mentions that there is a worse fate than even that: "You end up vacuum packed in a can of tuna, with nothing to look forward to but the smell of mayonnaise!" That very same thing happens to Patrick.
  • Fishing Episode: Played with in that it's not the main characters doing the fishing; they're the ones being fished.
  • Giving Them the Strip: To get off the hook, SpongeBob takes off his pants. Unfortunately, the hook is still caght in his briefs.
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  • G-Rated Drug: Fishing hooks.
  • Humiliation Conga: SpongeBob suffers one at the end getting stripped naked in front of Pearl and her friends and being tricked by Squidward into thinking he's being lured to death, hanging onto the Krusty Krab's title sign for dear life wailing for help.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Patrick when convincing SpongeBob to disobey Mr. Krabs and play on the hooks.
    Patrick: Look, SpongeBob, are you gonna listen to a big dummy or are you gonna listen to me?
    SpongeBob: Err...
  • Jerkass Ball: Patrick holds this, pressuring SpongeBob in playing with the hooks and insulting Mr. Krabs for telling them what to do. Unlike later on, however, he pays for the consequences.
  • Lethal Chef: Squidward, yet again. One of the customers' sandwich was a fried boot.
  • Loophole Abuse: "Don't say you're leaving work. Just say you're taking a break."
  • Lying Finger Cross: Patrick claimed that he had his fingers crossed when he made the sailor's promise. SpongeBob then points out that Patrick doesn't have fingers.
  • Malicious Misnaming: Mr. Krabs indirectly calls SpongeBob "SpongeBob LazyPants" when he finds out from Squidward that he took a break without his permission.
  • Medium-Shift Gag:
    • The fishermen who try to catch SpongeBob and Patrick are live-action. Also, there are photos of dried fish at a gift shop, a can of tuna and a jar of mayonnaise.
    • Sometime during 2001, Nickelodeon ran a promotional stunt for Jimmy Neutron that involved him interrupting various Nick shows and altering them in some way. For this episode in particular, he would interrupt the scene where SpongeBob and Patrick make a sailor's promise to Mr. Krabs and briefly turn the three characters into puppet versions of themselves. No footage of this moment could be found for over fifteen years, until someone uploaded a recording of the scene in 2017.
  • Naked People Trapped Outside: When SpongeBob is caught by a hook, he begs Mr. Krabs to let him in before he gets pulled up. Krabs instructs him to take off his pants, and he does. Unfortunately, the hook is caught in his underwear, which eventually tears away, leaving a naked SpongeBob to run back home.
  • Noodle Incident: "No one's taken a break at the Krusty Krab since the chum famine of '59."
  • Oblivious to His Own Description:
    Patrick: Well, that Mr. Krabs is just a big dummy!... Are you gonna listen to a big dummy, or are you gonna listen to me?
  • Rage Breaking Point: Squidward lets out an outburst after the customers complain to him:
    Squidward: Why do you wanna eat this stuff anyway?!
  • Repeat After Me:
    Mr. Krabs: I wanna hear a sailor's promise. Yo-ho, yo-ho! Near the hooks I'll never go!
    SpongeBob and Patrick: Yo-ho, yo-ho! Near the hooks I'll never go!
    Mr. Krabs: [a hook pokes him in the butt] YEOW! Mother of pearl! Fire on the poop deck! (rubs his butt)
    SpongeBob and Patrick: Yeow! Mother of pearl! Fire on the poop deck! (they rub their butts)
  • Scare 'em Straight: SpongeBob getting hooked in the end was actually planned by Mr. Krabs (Squidward was the one holding the line) to scare him out of playing with fishing hooks ever again.
  • Shaming the Mob: After stirring up an angry mob of customers that's ganged up on him for terribly burnt (and boot-flavored) Krabby Patties, Squidward rebuffs "WHY DO YOU WANT TO EAT THIS STUFF ANYWAY?!" Their response? Beat up Squidward!
  • Smoldering Shoes: When SpongeBob asks why there's no one at the "carnival", Patrick mentions seeing a kid there earlier. As he says this, a pair of sneakers is seen on the foreground.
  • Stealth Pun: Fishing hooks are depicted as a G-Rated Drug. You can "get hooked" on them.
  • Stripping Snag: SpongeBob's underwear is caught on a hook, eventually ripping off and leaving him naked.
  • Tastes Like Feet: When Squidward subs for SpongeBob, this exchanges happens.
    Customer #1: Pee-ew! You call this food?
    Customer #2: My sandwich tastes like a fried boot.
    Customer #3: My sandwich is a fried boot!
  • Toxic Friend Influence: Patrick encourages SpongeBob to play on the hooks despite his protests, and even when Mr. Krabs scolds the two for playing on them, Patrick still goads SpongeBob to play on them.
  • Very Special Episode: Or a parody of such. The episode plays the formula more-or-less straight, with only the vice in question (fishing hooks as a G-Rated Drug) being the truly ridiculous part.
  • You Have to Believe Me!: Mr. Krabs bursts into the Krusty Krab raving about "the hooks!", while the others ignore him.
  • You Need a Breath Mint:
    Mr. Krabs: (yelling in random guy's face) THE HOOKS! THE HOOKS!
    Random Guy: (grimaces from the smell and takes out mint) How 'bout a mint?

United States airdate: April 8, 2000

Canada airdate: January 12, 2001

SpongeBob wins the Conch Signal from The Adventures of Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy in a contest. Now he is able to summon his two favorite superheroes and hang out with them, but when he starts calling them for the most mundane tasks, they put their foot down.

Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy II

  • Accidental Misnaming: The Realistic Fish Head mispronounces SpongeBob's name as "Springboob Squirepin" right before being corrected. SpongeBob doesn't realize this mistake until afterwards.
  • Affectionate Parody Of A Parody: The Jingle Bells song is a take-off on an old schoolyard joke, "Jingle bells, Batman smells, Robin laid an egg..."
  • An Aesop: Authority figures such as the police are rolemodels to look up to, but don't call them when you're not in danger — it is important that they aren't distracted when something bad does happen.
  • Ash Face: Barnacle Boy after running afoul of the Atomic Flounder.
  • Astonishingly Appropriate Interruption: "Oh, Mermaid Man! I think I—" "Found it!"
  • Bat Signal: The Conch Signal is this to Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy.
  • Breath Weapon: The Atomic Flounder has radioactive breath, which he uses on Barnacle Boy.
  • Butt-Monkey: Barnacle Boy, as he suffers a lot of injuries (getting burnt, a door drops on him, falls off a building) and is made a personal servant to SpongeBob because of the Conch Signal.
  • Eye Beams: Barnacle Boy's "Sulfurvision", which doesn't work as well as it used to.
  • Heel–Face Turn: The Atomic Flounder was one of Mermaid Man's foes, but is now retired. Doesn't stop SpongeBob from trying to arrest him.
  • Impossible Pickle Jar: The first "emergency" SpongeBob calls Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy for is to open a mayonnaise jar for him.
  • Impossibly Compact Folding: The Origami Button on the Boatmobile folds it into a small paper crane.
  • Just Whistle: Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy are duty-bound to come when the Conch Signal sounds.
  • Kick the Son of a Bitch: Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy, after having a somewhat pleasant time with Spongebob and with Mermaid Man saying "for a pain in the neck, he's a pretty nice kid", decide to suddenly ditch him, and then immediately run into the Dirty Bubble right after leaving.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: Apparently, Mermaidman and Barnacle Boy weren't told that the Conch Signal was being given away in a contest.
  • Running Gag: Barnacle Boy getting his head charred. Lampshaded by the Dirty Bubble when he encounters them.
  • Scenery Censor: When Mermaidman shows up naked at SpongeBob‘s house, Gary’s shell is covering his crotch.
  • Shout-Out: A conch shell being used as a symbol of authority.
  • Taking Advantage of Generosity: SpongeBob uses the Conch Signal to have Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy do mundane errands for him (opening jars, fixing his sink, reading bedtime stories), until the two heroes are run ragged.
  • Villains Out Shopping: Mermaid Man shows SpongeBob retired supervillain The Atomic Flounder, wearing street clothes and waiting for the bus. SpongeBob attacks him when Mermaid Man jokes that he could turn back to crime just like that.
    Atomic Flounder: If I weren't retired, I'd, I'd... ROAAAAR!' [breathes radiation at Barnacle Boy's face, leaving it charred] ...do that. Outta my way, punk!
  • Weaksauce Weakness: SpongeBob accidentally defeats the Dirty Bubble by puncturing it with a sharp pencil when he asks for his autograph.

"Oh, jingle bells, Mermaid Man smells, Barnacle Boy laid an egg, the Dirty Bubble popped and Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy and SpongeBob got away! YAAAAAAAY!"note 
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