Original air date: 9/6/2002note (produced in 2001)
Mr. Krabs declares the Krusty Krab open 24 hours a day, much to Squidward's chagrin and SpongeBob's delight. When it's revealed SpongeBob isn't as thrilled as he made himself out to be when it comes to the darkness outside, Squidward takes the opportunity to tell him a ghost story in order to shut him up, but things take a turn for the worse when things from Squidward's story starts coming true...
Graveyard Shift provides examples of...
- Accidental Truth: As the episode continues, it seems as if Squidward's story had more truth to it than even he realized... But then it turns out it was all just coincidental: the seemingly menacing figure was actually a job seeker who'd earlier called but immediately hung up out of nervousness, and the lights were being flickered by Nosferatu.
- Adaptational Nice Guy: If SpongeBob, Squidward and the job seeker's reactions are anything to go by, Graf Orlok AKA Nosferatu is shown here to be a harmless, good-natured prankster instead of the feral, sadistic monster he was in his debut movie.
- Afterlife Express: The Hash-Slinging Slasher is supposed to arrive on the ghost of the bus that ran him over.
- All There in the Script: According to the credits, the wannabe fry cook is named Richard.
- An Aesop:
- Don't overreact to scary stories.
- Be sensitive when telling ghost stories. Some people may take them as reality.
- Don't blindly believe in urban legends.
- An Arm and a Leg: According to Squidward, the Hash-Slinging Slasher cut off his own hand by mistake while slicing patties, and so had to replace it with a rusty spatula.
- Answer Cut:Squidward: "Open 24 hours a day", what a stupid idea! Who wants a Krabby Patty at three in the morning?(Cut to Patrick's house as his alarm clock goes off)Patrick: Oh boy, 3 AM! (pulls a Krabby Patty out from under his blanket and starts eating it)
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: According to Squidward's story, the Hash-Slinging Slasher cut off his hand, replaced it with a rusty spatula, got hit by a bus, and got fired at his funeral.
- Artificial Limbs: The Hash-Slinging Slasher had to replace his amputated hand with a spatula.
- Bait-and-Switch Silhouette: A dark figure enters the Krusty Krab who bears a strong resemblance to the Hash-Slinging Slasher, the character from the horror story Squidward had told SpongeBob. SpongeBob and Squidward are scared, but when the figure moves into the light, he is revealed to be a young kid looking for a job at the restaurant.
- Bottle Episode: The entire episode is set at the Krusty Krab.
- Can't You Read the Sign?: A customer arrives just as Squidward is closing the Krusty Krab. Squidward points to the "closed" sign, but the customer reads the menu's sign and insists on asking for a Krabby Patty anyway, then actually has the nerve to be upset when they won't take his order.
- Cowardly Lion: SpongeBob makes his way outside in the dark to take out the trash while frantically screaming at the top of his lungs while running to the Dumpster to take out the trash and dashing back inside the restaurant.
- Electromagnetic Ghosts: One of the signs that the Hash-Slinging Slasher is coming is that the lights will flicker on and off.
- Evil Cripple: The Hash Slinging Slasher appears to be a hunchback with a turtle-like head, but it turns out to be a potential fry cook with a large head and a bulbous nose.
- Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: It doesn't dawn on SpongeBob that Squidward isn't pretending to be the Hash Slinging Slasher until the latter points out to him that they can't be at two places at once. Then, he freaks out.
- Fantastically Indifferent: SpongeBob, Squidward and the potential fry cook's reaction to finding out that Nosferatu was flickering the lights is to playfully scold him.
- Finger Wag: At the end, SpongeBob admonishingly wags his finger at Nosferatu for messing with the lights.
- Gainax Ending: The one responsible for the flickering lights? Just that old prankster Nosferatu (aka Count Orlok).
- Ghost Story: The Story of the Hash-Slinging Slasher.
- I Am Not Shazam: SpongeBob, Squidward and that other guy all call the vampire Nosferatu when really his actual name is Count Orlok.
- Insane Troll Logic: SpongeBob's way of dismissing the Hash-Slinging Slasher as a myth when the signs are there that he's real. Squidward even lampshades this.Squidward: (as SpongeBob starts to cry) At last, you understand! We're doomed!
SpongeBob: No, that's not it. ...I am just so touched that you would go to the trouble to dress up as a ghostly frycook and stand on the other side of the street, just to entertain me! You must really like me!
Squidward: SpongeBob, there are two problems with your theory. One, I hate you. And two, how can that be me... when I'm standing right here?!
- Ironic Echo: SpongeBob gets the Hash-Slinging Slasher's name wrong when trying to repeat The Hash-Slinging Slasher as Squidward tells him the story. Later, when the Hash-Slinging Slasher apparently shows up for real, a terrified Squidward gets his name wrong as he tries to say "The Hash-Slinging Slasher".
- Earlier in the episode, Squidward says, "I can't hang out here all night! I've got a life." This line is later repeated by Mr. Krabs after he leaves the restaurant.
- Ironic Echo Cut: Squidward complains he doesn't know anybody who would want to eat a Krabby Patty at 3:00 AM, we cut to Patrick, who has set his alarm to that exact time to eat a Krabby Patty.
- It's All About Me: Jerkass Tom tries to force Squidward to serve him after business hours and even has the nerve to get mad at Squidward for refusing him service.
- Killed Mid-Sentence: In Squidward's story about the Hash-Slinging Slasher.Squidward: Most people just call him the Ha—*GASP*, because that's all they have time to say before he gets them!
- Last Disrespects: The Hash-Slinging Slasher was apparently fired at his own funeral.
- Mean Boss: Mr. Krabs for making his employees work 24/7 and not paying them overtime.
- Medium-Shift Gag: The appearance of Nosferatu at the end.
- Mood Whiplash: While Squidward tells the signs of the Hash-Slinging Slasher's arrival, a customer randomly appears asking for some ketchup packs, interrupting the mood of the story. After Squidward fulfills the customer's request, he resumes the story and we're back at the same mood once more. Then later he interrupts the story himself to ask SpongeBob what day it is right when he was getting into when the Slasher reappears, and immediately resumes saying the Slash reappears on Tuesday nights when SpongeBob tells him it's Tuesday.
- Never Say "Die": Squidward never says the Hash-Slinging Slasher kills people, only that he "gets" them.
- No Antagonist: Though we were led to believe the episode did have one.
- Nothing Is Scarier: Humorously subverted; around 3:00 AM Squidward starts hearing strange suction noises and we the audience are as unnerved as he is. That is until the camera pans up and we see it's just SpongeBob using plunger heads to help him walk on the ceiling in order to cleanse it. He still manages to give Squidward a jump scare before coming down.
- Not-So-Final Confession: As the Hash-Slinging Hasher approaches...Squidward: SpongeBob, no matter what I've said, I've always sorta liked you!
SpongeBob: Squidward, I used your clarinet to unclog my toilet!
- Oh, Crap!: Squidward thrice. First when he hears SpongeBob walking on the ceiling with plunger heads and can't find the source of the noise (until SpongeBob reveals himself) and second when he realizes that it's not SpongeBob causing the lights to flicker. The third is when he sees the Hash Slinging Slasher appear across from the restaurant and soon inspires one in SpongeBob himself after the former makes it clear that the being outside isn't a hoax.
- "Oh, Crap!" Smile: SpongeBob does this after he confesses to having unclogged his toilet with Squidward's clarinet.
- Ominous Fog: Heralds the arrival of the ghostly bus that brings the Hash-Slinging Slasher.
- Overly Long Gag: SpongeBob screaming repeatedly in response of Squidward's Hash-Slinging Slasher story, which turns into laughter after he says he was joking.
- Public Domain Character: Nosferatu originates from a movie produced in 1922 that has long since entered the public domain.
- Rapid-Fire Nail Biting: SpongeBob goes from biting his nails to eating his own arms (which grow back) to eating arms out of a bucket.
- Real After All: After making up the story of the Hash-Slinging Slasher, Squidward suddenly finds that the events he described are happening, and a mysterious figure enters the Krusty Krab. Subverted when the "slasher" turns out to be the new nighttime fry cook.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: The Slasher has glowing red eyes, which turn out to be the nostrils of the goofy looking fry cook.
- Rewatch Bonus: Knowing the signs of the Hash-Slinging Slasher. More specifically, that it's just someone messing with the lights and a nervous job applicant. Squidward says that the lights will flicker on and off, but you can hear an actual light switch rather than them fizzling in and out. The phone will ring and there will be no one there, but the call they got did have someone there, they just hung up without saying anything.
- Rule of Three: There are three signs of the arrival of the Hash-Slinging Slasher.
- Sickly Green Glow: Throughout the episode, the night sky has an ominous green tint to it. The fog that surrounds what appears to be the Hash Slinging Slasher's bus is also a faint green.
- So Long, Suckers!: Squidward says this as he prepares to exit the Krusty Krab.
- Status Quo Is God: The nighttime frycook never shows up again, and there's no mention of the Krusty Krab's 24 hour shift in later episodes. In "Fear of a Krabby Patty", the Krusty Krab being open 24 hours is treated like a new idea.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Squidward at first is alarmed that there is green slime oozing from the walls, then he remembers that they always do that. Likewise, when Nosferatu is revealed to be the one who turned the lights on and off, the others react as if he were just a prankster.
- Wingding Eyes: When SpongeBob is repeatedly screaming in reaction to the Hash-Slinging Slasher, his pupils briefly become screaming mouths.
- Who Would Be Stupid Enough?: Who wants a Krabby Patty at 3 in the morning?
- Patrick. ("Oh boy, 3 AM!")
Mr. Krabs begins dating Mrs. Puff with SpongeBob acting as his "financial adviser". Things seem to go smoothly until Mr. Krabs starts forcing SpongeBob to buy various gifts for Mrs. Puff.
Krusty Love provides examples of...
- An Aesop:
- Don't break your back to help other people's problems, especially if they aren't thankful for it and/or complain about how you do it because it isn't exactly how they want it to be.
- Love is sacrifice. You will have to give up doing what you love for something else if it comes up.
- Don't spend a ton of unnecessary money to impress a woman you like. If she's really interested, she'll like you for you, not what you can buy her.
- Always keep your budget balanced.
- Angrish: SpongeBob when he snaps at Mr. Krabs especially when he starts spouting gibberish which is apparently a bunch of swear words.
- Up to Eleven in the Dutch dub, where actual bleeps are interspersed between his gibberish.
- Answer Cut: Mr. Krabs asks, "What happened to Mr. Puff?" Cut to live-action footage of a pufferfish used as a lampshade.SpongeBob: She doesn't like to talk about it.
- Astonishingly Appropriate Interruption: A rare instance where Mr. Krabs provides a fitting interruption for himself.Mr. Krabs: Oh, nothing in all the seven seas could matter more! Not even that- (sees Mrs. Puff) scrumptious, curvy cutie...
- Beware the Nice Ones: SpongeBob absolutely loses it after Mr. Krabs keeps getting furious and chewing him out for spending his money on gifts for Mrs. Puff that Mr. Krabs himself requested, giving his boss one heck of a verbal beatdown.
- Calling the Old Man Out: SpongeBob calls Mr. Krabs out for spending all his money when he wasn't supposed to in the first place.
- Gibberish of Love: When trying to ask Mrs. Puff on a date for the first time, Mr. Krabs is so nervous that he can't speak clearly and SpongeBob has to translate for him.
- Glass-Shattering Sound: When Mr. Krabs realizes how much money he's spent, he screams so loudly that the giant glass bottle surrounding the restaurant shatters.
- Gross-Up Close-Up: Mr. Krabs' dirty clothes before SpongeBob takes him to meet Mrs. Puff.
- Hypocrite: SpongeBob is asked to be Mr. Krabs' financial adviser after a date that landed him in a HUGE amount of debt after Mr. Krabs spends $100,000 on the very first date due to being blinded by love, thus Mr. Krabs would not be able to impulse-buy for Mrs. Puff. While that idea sounded good on paper, it doesn't last too long and Krabs proceeds to do exactly that. Out of loyalty to his boss, SpongeBob obeys... but the minute that SpongeBob returns with the requested item, Mr. Krabs proceeds to lash out at him when it was Mr. Krabs who asked him to buy said gifts in the first place. And while he attempted to own up to it, Mr. Krabs contradicts himself a few moments after apologizing and again, has SpongeBob shopping for things Mrs. Puff didn't even need... all the while blaming SpongeBob for spending his money.
- Ignored Epiphany: Mr. Krabs actually does acknowledge at one point that he isn't thinking clearly and that it isn't fair for him to be putting so much pressure on SpongeBob to buy things for Mrs. Puff, only to blow up at him a few seconds later for just doing as he asks... right before launching into a montage that ends with Mrs. Puff's front yard absolutely flooded with gifts.
- Interspecies Romance: Mr. Krabs (crab) and Mrs. Puff (pufferfish), obviously.
- Jaw Drop: Mr. Krabs has a hilarious one after SpongeBob gives him a profane rant.
- Jerkass Has a Point: Despite his unpleasant behavior, Mr. Krabs does have leg to stand on in that he explicitly asked SpongeBob not to let him spend any money, no matter what he might say or do to convince him otherwise. The problem is, SpongeBob's Undying Loyalty, and his tendencies to be something of an Extreme Doormat really don't leave him equipped for a task like that. And Mr. Krabs tells him that he can't help it if SpongeBob keeps spending people's money.
- Love Makes You Dumb: Mr. Krabs' M.O. for the episode, constantly impulse-buying in an effort to please her.
- Medium-Shift Gag: When Mr. Krabs asks what happened to Mr. Puff, the camera cuts to a live-action puffer fish lamp, then back to SpongeBob saying "She doesn't like to talk about it." Also, the "imported music" played during Krabs' and Puff's date is played by a live actor playing the piano while wearing scuba gear.
- Mondegreen Gag: While deciphering Mr. Krabs' Gibberish of Love for Mrs. Puff, SpongeBob manages to mishear "take you on a date" as "hit you with a rake" and "try to guess your weight" before figuring out what he's actually saying.
- Never My Fault: What eventually pushes SpongeBob to his Rage-Breaking Point.Mr. Krabs: Lad, I can't help it if you're loose with other people's money.
- No Matter How Much I Beg: Mr. Krabs gives SpongeBob his wallet to keep him from spending any money on Mrs. Puff. The date doesn't last one minute before Krabs starts begging SpongeBob to buy something.
- Noodle Incident: The fate of Mr. Puff. All we know is that he's a lamp now and Mrs. Puff "doesn't like to talk about it".
- Oh, Crap!: Mr. Krabs is outraged when he sees that his restaurant bill is one hundred dollars, and the waiter realizes he handed him the wrong bill. Mr. Krabs is relieved...until he sees his bill is one hundred thousand dollars.
- OOC Is Serious Business: After Mr. Krabs asks him to buy gifts for Mrs. Puff only to get mad at him for spending money one too many times, SpongeBob absolutely snaps and launches a furious tirade at Mr. Krabs before storming off in anger, leaving Mr. Krabs in a shocked stupor and Mrs. Puff commenting that she didn't know SpongeBob "had such a colorful vocabulary".
- Rage-Breaking Point: SpongeBob loses it after he has to zigzag back and forth buying stuff for Mr. Krabs to give Mrs. Puff, then being berated for buying said gifts.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech:
- A small but satisfying one, from SpongeBob to Mr. Krabs.Mr. Krabs: SPONGEBOB! I'm glad I've caught ya! I need you to get Mrs. Puff—
SpongeBob: WAIT! DON'T TELL ME! You want me to run down to the store and buy Mrs. Puff something she doesn't need! Then you want me to run back here so you can say, (imitates Mr. Krabs) "Argh, SpongeBob, you're spendin' all me money!" And then I'll say, "But Mr. Krabs, I'm only doing WHAT YOU SAID!" Then you'll say, "We're not talking about this (draws a triangle) or this (draws a square), we're talkin' about THISSSSS! (draws a ton of directionless squiggly lines).
- And when Mr. Krabs yells at SpongeBob for buying Mrs. Puff a washing machine, then asks if she'd want a dryer to go with it, SpongeBob launches into a... "colorful" response.
- A small but satisfying one, from SpongeBob to Mr. Krabs.
- Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: After being run ragged by Mr. Krabs and delivering one hell of a verbal beatdown to his boss for trying to blame him for wasting all his money, SpongeBob storms off in a huff, cursing Mr. Krabs under his breath.
- Serious Business: Mr. Krabs being a penny short!
- Sexy Figure Gesture: Parodied. Mr. Krabs traces the figure of Mrs. Puff in the air...but since she's a pufferfish, he traces a perfect circle.
- Shockingly Expensive Bill: When Krabs gets the $100 bill for his dinner, he insists that it must be a mistake. The waiter realizes that it is and gives him the real bill... which is apparently $100,000.
- Stating the Simple Solution: After SpongeBob storms off, Mrs. Puff calmly shares her own feelings on Krabs' impulse-buying and offers to go Dutch, which he accepts.
- Tranquil Fury: "Well, Mr. Krabs. Do you wanna know what I think?" Said calmly and stoically by SpongeBob moments before exploding at Mr. Krabs out of frustration.
- Trauma Button: Just hearing SpongeBob's voice at the Krusty Krab is enough to send Mrs. Puff into a traumatic flashback to one of their disastrous boating lessons.
- Wingding Eyes: Mr. Krabs has little hearts in his eyes when he gives Mrs. Puff flowers and chocolates.