Encyclopedia SpongeBobia


Encyclopedia SpongeBobia
Encyclopedia SpongeBobia
Séance Shméance 029
But I can certainly learn!

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If you were looking for the article about the Japanese DVD, then see Back to the Past (DVD).

"Back to the Past" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season 7. In this episode, SpongeBob and Patrick accidentally change past events with Mermaid Man's time machine.



Time Machine (device)

The time travel machine.

In the beginning of the episode, SpongeBob and Patrick are strolling through Bikini Bottom and see Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy in the invisible boatmobile, without gas. Offscreen, SpongeBob and Patrick push the boat over several hills. As a reward, Barnacle Boy invites them into their warehouse full of memorabilia from their T.V. show so long as they don't touch anything. Barnacle Boy shows them a time machine that they have never used and warns them not to use it because they could mess up the timeline.

Almost immediately Patrick mistakes it for a vending machine, and all of them are transported to 1954 when Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy were young. The heroes scold Patrick for his actions and travel the area, due to his stupidity. They see Man Ray tormenting old Bikini Bottom. Past Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy are unsuccessful at foiling Man Ray due to Patrick eating the tartar sauce they were originally going to trap him in.

SpongeBob and Patrick escape old Bikini Bottom, leaving their Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy behind. When SpongeBob and Patrick return to Bikini Bottom, it is no longer called Bikini Bottom, but Man Rayopolis. They go to the Krusty Krab which is now called "The Designated Area Where You Are Permitted by Man Ray, Your Ruler, to Obtain Sandwiches Using Man Ray Dollars."

Back to the Past 148

The superheroes from their time are now dead and buried inside the restaurant while the past superheroes now work there. Mermaid Man is the fry cook, SpongeBob's position, and Barnacle Boy is the cashier, Squidward's position. Realizing that they created an alternate timeline by preventing Man Ray's defeat, they go back to stop Patrick from eating the tartar sauce, but the heroes who were sent by accident believe they are impostors. The Mermaid Men fight which creates the perfect distraction for Man Ray. The young Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy attempt to foil Man Ray with the tartar sauce, but the two Patricks end up eating it. Another warehouse appears.

SpongeBob and Patrick from a different time period emerge from the warehouse screaming "Patrick, don't eat the tartar sauce!" Another warehouse appears above Man Ray and outfall SpongeBob and Patrick. Yet another one appears with SpongeBob saying to Patrick "I told you we had to go back further!"

Another one pops to Man Ray's left with Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy leaping out of it exclaiming, "Up, up and away!". They both fall headfirst into the ground. Another one appears above the previous warehouse with the superheroes. SpongeBob and Patrick appear and throw a batch of tartar sauce over the fallen superheroes from the previous warehouse.

Another one appears next to the pair of warehouses. Man Ray flies out of it, destroys it, says, "I took care of your blasted time machine!" and leaves. All of the warehouses appearing in random locations confuses Man Ray. Man Ray sits down on a log and thinks about what is happening, but gets arrested by the superheroes. Then all of a sudden, many warehouses appear all over the planet, all of them containing multiple copies of SpongeBob and Patrick revisiting the day that evil was defeated for good.


This episode was added to the US Copyright Office on December 30, 2009,[1] along with its sister episode "The Bad Guy Club for Villains."

Episode outline[]

  • Posted by and outline doodles by Vincent Waller on his "Incoherent-Thought" blog, outlined by Dani Micheli.[2]


Model sheets[]


 ) Production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  Happy Sponge Chase Vibes - Nicolas Carr [Title card]
  Kailua Jubilee - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [Opening]
  MM & BB Action Theme Dialog Mix - Michael Bolger, Nicolas Carr, Pat Irwin [SpongeBob sees Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy]
  Chief Taravana - Kapono Beamer [SpongeBob and Patrick pushing the Invisible Boatmobile]
  Proud to be a Fish - Nicolas Carr, Barry Anthony [Locker of memories]
  Alien Spacecraft A - Gregor F. Narholz [Barnacle Boy shows SpongeBob and Patrick the time machine]
  Entrapped - Nicolas Carr [Patrick mistakes it for a vending machine]
  Closing the Door Sting 2 - Nicolas Carr [Time machine disappears from the Mermalair]
  Time Machine Into The Past - Nicolas Carr, Marcin Pospieszalski [They go back in time]
  Moon Walk - John Fox ["Where are we?"]
  Stumbling Tumbleweeds - Nicolas Carr, Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield ["Everything looks so old-fashioned."]
  Down in Davie Jones Locker - Nicolas Carr [Storm clouds]
  Evil Empire - Ron Wasserman [Man Ray zaps the windmill]
  Mermaidman and Barnacle Boy Action Theme - Michael Bolger, Nicolas Carr, Pat Irwin [Young Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy introduced]
  MM & BB Action Theme Lean & Mean Mix - Michael Bolger, Nicolas Carr, Pat Irwin ["Wow, our bodies were so tight."]
  Steel Licks 22 - Jeremy Wakefield [Patrick ate all the tartar sauce]
  New Vibe Hits - Nicolas Carr ["Curious."]
  Graveyard @ Midnight 2 - Nicolas Carr, Ron Wasserman ["This is creeping me out!"]
  MM & BB Action Theme Lean & Mean Mix - Michael Bolger, Nicolas Carr, Pat Irwin ["Don't worry, Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy are always here to help the elderly."]
  Time Machine Into The Past - Nicolas Carr, Marcin Pospieszalski [SpongeBob and Patrick going forward in time]
  Lap Steel - Nicolas Carr ["That's more like it!"]
  Martial Crisis - Jack Shaindlin [Man Rayopolis]
  Search Party 1 [#48] - Harry Bluestone, Emil Cadkin [Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy work at the Krusty Krab]
  Drowsey Reef - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield ["I lost the desire and the physique to fight long ago, kid."]
  Dirgey - Nicolas Carr, Steve Marston ["I am so sorry for your loss of... yourself."]
  Accusation - Gerhard Trede ["The topping that destroyed life as we knew it!"]
  Dramatic Impact (6) - Ivor Slaney [Patrick ate all the tartar sauce]
  Steel Licks 45 - Jeremy Wakefield [Patrick burps]
  Danger Sign - Harry Bluestone, Emil Cadkin ["I knew I recognized you from somewhere!"/"I’m not teaming up with you to do jack diddly squat!"]
  Steel Licks 40 - Jeremy Wakefield [Mermaid Man's collar comes off]
  Variety Link (d) - Dick Stephen Walter ["Ta-da! You're free!"]
  Adventurers - Larry Hochman ["Can we coax you and Barnacle Boy out of retirement to save the known universe?"]
  Star Premiere - Sammy Burdson, John Charles Fiddy ["Let the lighthouse of justice shine on Ray Man!"]
  Time Machine Into The Past - Nicolas Carr, Marcin Pospieszalski [They go back in time]
  Creatures in the Closet - Cris Velasco [Man Ray zaps the windmill]
  Crime Squad - John Cameron ["Not so fast, Man Ray."]
  Mermaidman and Barnacle Boy Action Theme Lite - Michael Bolger, Nicolas Carr, Pat Irwin ["Keep your tongue out of our tartar sauce!"]
  Mermaidman Brass Hits - Nicolas Carr ["Whiff!"/"Droop!"]
  New Vibe Hits - Nicolas Carr ["What do you make of this, Barnacle Boy?"]
  Red Alert [#8] - Harry Bluestone, Emil Cadkin ["You old coots provided me the perfect distraction!"]
  Mermaidman and Barnacle Boy Action Theme - Michael Bolger, Nicolas Carr, Pat Irwin [Young Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy try to pour the bucket of tartar sauce over Man Ray]
  Mermaidman Brass Hits - Nicolas Carr [bucket is empty again]
  Steel Licks 51 - Jeremy Wakefield ["Wow, I've never eaten that much tartar sauce."]
  Warlord - Wolfgang Kafer [Man Ray laughs evilly]
  Battle March Link (a) - Keith Mansfield ["Patrick, don't eat the tartar sauce!"]
  Slide Whistle Stooges Theme - Nicolas Carr, Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [Several time machines appear]
  Lap Steel - Nicolas Carr [Man Ray confused]
  MM & BB Action Theme Dialog Mix - Michael Bolger, Nicolas Carr, Pat Irwin [Man Ray arrested]
  12th St Rag w Bass - Nicolas Carr, Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [Ending]




Episode references[]

  • The original past when Man Ray is brought to justice via tartar sauce is a reference to "Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy III," where Man Ray is shown to be entombed in frozen tartar sauce.

Dub facts[]

  • In the European Spanish dub, Squilliam is called Squidward (Calamardo) and also has the latter's voice actor.

Cultural references[]

  • The title of this episode is a reference to the 1985 film, Back to the Future.
    • Another reference to Back to the Future is that SpongeBob and Patrick time travel to 1954, while Marty McFly traveled to 1955.
  • The scene where SpongeBob and Patrick are walking pass by a poster of Man Ray that reads "I am watching you" is a reference to the phrase from George Orwell's 1949 dystopian novel, 1984, "Big Brother is watching you."


Back to the Past 122

The clocks are going backwards.

  • When SpongeBob and Patrick are traveling back to the present, the clocks are moving backwards instead of forwards.
  • Near the end, SpongeBob's body color is a lot darker than normal.