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Recap / Sponge Bob Square Pants S 1 E 7 Hall Monitor Jellyfish Jam

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United States airdate: August 28, 1999

Canada airdate: May 27, 2000

It's finally SpongeBob's turn to be hall monitor! But, what will happen when he begins abusing his power?

Hall Monitor provides examples of:

  • Accidental Ventriloquism: Patrick is eating ice-cream when SpongeBob calls him, and Patrick thinks the ice-cream is talking.
  • All Crimes Are Equal: SpongeBob tries to arrest Patrick for littering by dripping ice-cream on the ground.
  • An Aesop:
    • Even if you're awarded for being outstanding (or given an award that everyone gets, like a participant award), it doesn't mean you're good at everything else. Know your limits.
    • Leave the jobs like policing to the authorities.
  • The Calls Are Coming from Inside the House: "The maniac's in the MAILBOX!!!"
  • Comes Great Responsibility: SpongeBob learns this near the end of the episode.
  • The Ditz: Patrick doesn't realize that SpongeBob is the maniac until near the very end, even when he is in point-blank range. What's more, he thinks the police sketch of the Maniac is the Maniac, even when told by the cops that it's not. They have a bit of fun watching him scream every time they show him the sketch.
  • Downer Ending: The very first episode to have one: SpongeBob realizes he's the maniac, is punished by Mrs. Puff who gets arrested for this, and in the end she demands his presence...six months from now.
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  • Dramatic Irony: Crossed with Tomato in the Mirror. The audience knows SpongeBob is the maniac, but he and Patrick don't.
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: After Mrs. Puff scolds SpongeBob when his antics destroy half the city:
    Policeman: You know this guy?
    Mrs. Puff: Of course I do. I'm the one who gave him the uniform in the first place. He's my responsibility! (the cops glare at her) Uh-oh.
  • Extra! Extra! Read All About It!: A paper boy gives SpongeBob a paper telling him about the Maniac.
    (deep voice) Take it, friends. Arm yourselves with knowledge.
  • Facial Composite Failure: The police sketch of the Maniac is just a stick figure SpongeBob.
  • Faux Horrific: Patrick is horrified by the composite sketch of the maniac, even though it's clearly a picture of SpongeBob, and not a particularly scary one at that.
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  • Foreshadowing: Mrs. Puff after she allows SpongeBob to wear the Hall Monitor attire until the following morning.
    Mrs. Puff: What are the consequences of what I've just done?...
  • Hired to Hunt Yourself: SpongeBob takes it on himself to catch the Maniac, not knowing that it's him.
  • Idiot Houdini: SpongeBob spends the whole episode causing chaos and vandalism, but in the end, it's Mrs. Puff who gets arrested for giving him the title to begin with.
  • "I Know What We Can Do" Cut: Done twice in succession when SpongeBob and Patrick try to figure out what the Maniac might do next.
    SpongeBob: You were a criminal once. What would you do?
    Patrick: Hmmm... I'd get an ice-cream. [cut to them leaving an ice-cream parlor]
    SpongeBob: Okay, now what?
    Patrick: Hmmm... [cut to them leaving the same ice-cream parlor]
    SpongeBob: This isn't working.
  • Lawful Stupid:
    • SpongeBob. His attempts at maintaining law and order cause more problems than they solve.
    • The actual police aren't much better, misinterpreting Mrs. Puff's explanation for SpongeBob's actions as a confession.
  • Lord Error-Prone: SpongeBob has no idea that his attempts at helping just cause more chaos.
  • Nap-Inducing Speak: Except for SpongeBob, all the other students are being put to sleep by Mrs. Puff's lecture.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: SpongeBob's incompetent road traffic control and Open Window Maniac gag both caused him to become wanted by the town.
  • No Badge? No Problem!: SpongeBob assumes being hall monitor is the same as being a policeman. He even goes so far as to deputize Patrick.
  • Oblivious to His Own Description: Spongebob gets worried when he hears the news of a maniac terrorizing the citizens and causing traffic accidents, not realizing that that's exactly what he has been doing as hall monitor.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • SpongeBob when he finally realizes he’s the maniac.
    • Mrs. Puff realizes she’s in big trouble once she tells the police that it was her idea to give SpongeBob the hall monitor outfit.
  • Reality Ensues: SpongeBob causes several car wrecks by leading traffic ineptly, and he breaks into a couple's home pretending to be a maniac just to teach them a lesson. Both instances cause him to be wanted by the police.
  • Scare 'Em Straight: SpongeBob's tactic to teach a couple not to leave their window open is to jump inside as the Open Window Maniac, scaring the bejesus out of them.
  • Serious Business: SpongeBob takes being hall monitor way too seriously, which is why Mrs. Puff is so reluctant to give him the job.
  • Suddenly SHOUTING!: "He's just standing there.... MENACINGLY!!"
    • Just before that, Patrick's timid "Wee-woo... wee-woo..." siren turns into a panicked "WEE-WOO-WEE-WOO" the second he sees the Maniac.
  • Tears of Fear: SpongeBob when he starts running around in panic that he's in the vicinity of the Maniac.
  • Tomato in the Mirror: Beyond this episode providing the page image, this trope is also played with. Namely, it takes SpongeBob the whole episode to realize he's the Maniac, while the audience already knows it. The episode derives much of his humour from this.
  • Vocal Dissonance:
    • The newspaper fish has a high voice when he is far away, but when he talks normal, it is rough and gritty.
    • SpongeBob affects a deeper, more heroic voice whenever he calls himself "The Hall Monitor!"
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Mrs. Puff gives one to SpongeBob for the trouble he's caused in the city as the Hall Monitor. Unfortunately, she was arrested by the police after admitting them that she's responsible for giving him the uniform.
  • Windbag Politician: Upon being named hall monitor, SpongeBob gives an incredibly long, boring acceptance speech (which includes a quote from an equally long speech from a famous hall monitor). By the time he's finished, class is over without him actually performing his actual duties. His remark to Mrs. Puff afterwards - "I overdid the speech again, didn't I?" - implies this isn't the first time he's done this.
  • Yellow Sash of Power: Comes with the uniform.

United States airdate: August 28, 1999

Canada airdate: May 27, 2000

SpongeBob takes in a jellyfish that won't leave him alone. Unfortunately, the jellyfish throws a big party in SpongeBob's house, and he needs to get them out!

Jellyfish Jam provides examples of:

  • 2D Visuals, 3D Effects: The shot that pans from SpongeBob's house to Squidward's house the next morning is the very first use of CGI in the series.
  • An Aesop: Lampshaded by the Narrator: never bring a wild animal home and make a pet out of it. They're better off staying in the wild.
  • Answer Cut: Squidward asks "How can you possibly have fun with a jellyfish?" Cue SpongeBob and the jellyfish dancing for 12 hours straight.
  • Brief Accent Imitation: SpongeBob briefly affects a French accent when eating jellyfish jelly on bread, which sounds not too dissimilar to Tom Kenny's French narrator voice.
  • Brown Note: Squidward's bad clarinet-playing has this effect on the jellyfish, causing them to go berserk. Notably, this is possibly the only occasion in the entire series in which Squidward not only acknowledges, but embraces his lack of skill, weaponising it to piss the jellyfish off further.
  • Bullying a Dragon: SpongeBob warns Squidward that the jellyfish don't like his music. Squidward, who by this point is too furious to listen to reason, decides to antagonise them further by blaring his awful clarinet-playing through loudspeakers. This does not end well for him.
  • Call-Forward: This isn't the last time SpongeBob brings a wild animal home; he would later bring a wild worm home in "Pet or Pests".
  • Disney Acid Sequence: SpongeBob and the jellyfish dancing to pounding house music, accompanied by trippy visuals.
  • Epileptic Flashing Lights: It's probably not wise to see the dance sequence if you have epilepsy.
  • Everything Is an Instrument: Gary tapping his eyeballs creates a rhythm that calms the jellyfish down. Later the jellies play their tentacles like guitar strings while bubbles, burping treasure chests, chains, dolphins, and clams provide ambience.
  • The Farmer and the Viper: Spongebob offers to take in a jellyfish that seems to have bonded with him. Said jellyfish then invites its kin to party in Spongebob's house, responding violently whenever he or someone else protests.
  • I'm Taking Him Home With Me!: The jellyfish follows SpongeBob home, and SpongeBob at first doesn't want to take him home, but he relents easily.
  • Incessant Music Madness: SpongeBob and a jellyfish keep Squidward up all night playing loud music. When more jellyfish show up and play the music even louder, Squidward has had enough and counterattacks by playing his clarinet. This angers the jellyfish, and when SpongeBob's pleas to stop result in Squidward playing even louder, the jellyfish goes over to Squidward's and stings him.
  • Instant Gravestone: When the jellyfish plays dead, it appears buried under a gravestone.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Squidward is right when he tells SpongeBob that a jellyfish is a wild animal and not a pet. He gets proven right at the climax of the episode.
  • Loud of War: After being kept up all night by the music, Squidward decides to fight fire with fire and starts playing his clarinet. This only aggravates the jellyfish, and when SpongeBob tries to warn Squidward, he just plays louder. This leads the jellyfish to attack him.
  • Minimalist Cast: The only main characters present are SpongeBob, Squidward and Gary.
  • Mobile Shrubbery: To get close to the jellyfish at the beginning, SpongeBob disguises himself as a piece of coral.
  • Music Soothes the Savage Beast: The jellyfish calm down thanks to the funky beat of Gary's eyes clacking. Inverted by Squidward's clarinet-playing, which just drives them berserk.
  • Oh, Crap!: When the jellyfish attack Squidward for playing his clarinet and when SpongeBob breaks the music player.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: SpongeBob's patience is brought to its absolute limit when the jellyfish invade his house, vandalize the place, and attack Squidward. When they burn Squidward's clarinet in a bonfire, he explodes.
    SpongeBob: [blows bubbles out his pore holes with a loud foghorn sound] OKAY! THAT IS IT! EVERYBODY OUT!
  • Reaching Between the Lines: When Squidward calls to complain about the noise, a jellyfish answers and squirts strawberry jelly through the phone.
  • Spoof Aesop: "SpongeBob has learned one of the sea's harshest lessons: wild animals can throw really wild parties."
    Squidward: [bathing from all the jellyfish stings] Ahhhh....
    Narrator: Ooh, I felt that.
  • Suddenly SHOUTING!: "SpongeBob is the only guy I know that can have fun with a jellyfish... FOR TWELVE HOURS!"
  • Synchronized Swarming: The jellyfish form, among other things, a hand to pick up SpongeBob, a conveyor belt, and a smiley face (which turns into an angry face when Squidward plays his clarinet).
  • The Thing That Would Not Leave: The jellyfish (plural, not just the first one) become this to SpongeBob.
  • Wild Teen Party: The jellyfish invites others to a late-night party at SpongeBob's, which lasts for 18 hours.

Squidward: [sighs] SpongeBob is the only guy I know that can browse TV Tropes Wiki...FOR 12 HOURS!!
French Narrator: 6 Hours Later
Squidward: [really angry] RRRRRRRR!!! 18 HOURS!


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