- Gary the Snail
- SpongeBob SquarePants
- Squidward Tentacles
- Eugene H. Krabs
- Miss Shell
- Nat Peterson
- Bubble Bass (purple; cameo)
- SpongeBob's fan
- Old Man Jenkins
- Unnamed olive fish
- Unnamed light olive fish
- Other Krusty Krab customers
- Sea urchins
- Patrick Star
- Mrs. Tentacles (debut; cameo)
- Norma Rechid
- Sandy Cheeks (cameo)
- Nathiel Waters
- Harold "Bill" Reginald
SynopsisThe episode begins with SpongeBob waking up, and realizes that it's April Fool's Day. He then begins the day pranking Gary by saying they were going to be peasants and that they were going to have to move. He then pranks himself by saying that he was going to drink several glasses of lemonade, then goes to work. Squidward sees him and wonders what SpongeBob is happy about until he looks at the calendar, and realizes that it's April Fools' Day, which he says is SpongeBob's favorite holiday. Fearing the worst has to come (or so he thinks), Squidward calls Mr. Krabs saying he's sick and that he would not be able to make it to work. Mr. Krabs says that there is an art collector in his office who wants to buy Squidward's art and name him artist of the month. Squidward immediately rushes to the Krusty Krab, only to find that it was a silly prank by SpongeBob and Mr. Krabs. Squidward attempts to resign from his job, but SpongeBob persuades him to stay, promising not to pull any further pranks on him. However, SpongeBob continues to prank the customers inside the Krusty Krab while hiding them from Squidward even though Squidward knows he is doing that. The customers seem to take SpongeBob's pranks lightly, because the pranks are considered funny and harmlessly playful. Although Squidward does not receive any more pranks as SpongeBob promised, Squidward gets annoyed over SpongeBob and the customers' laughter. He decides to get revenge on SpongeBob by showing him what he feels is a "real" prank, and sets a rope trap with a blob of mustard in the middle.
SpongeBob goes to clean it up, and he gets his leg caught in the lasso. Squidward cuts a nearby rope, triggering a chain reaction which sends SpongeBob flying around the restaurant, colliding into several objects and areas, ending with him into landing in a garbage can. Squidward laughs hysterically at him and celebrates his victory, but physically (as well as emotionally) hurt SpongeBob runs out of the restaurant in tears. Bewildered by SpongeBob's reaction, Squidward calls out to him, saying that he was just kidding, even turning to the customers for confirmation. But the customers too are appalled by Squidward's prank, declaring that it was far too harsh and nasty to truly be considered "funny." They all feel sorry for SpongeBob and they leave the restaurant in disgust, with one of them angrily saying to him "April Fools, jerk" and another one yelling, "You stink!" Squidward insists that it was only a joke, but as he looks around at the damage to the restaurant that his prank caused, and conversely realizes how SpongeBob was hurt during each part, it slowly dawns on him that SpongeBob's pranks were actually funny and meant to make people laugh, while his prank was cruel and meant to hurt and humiliate SpongeBob. Overcome with guilt, and realizing that the customers were right in that the prank was too harsh, he realizes that he has to apologize to SpongeBob for what he did.
Squidward goes to SpongeBob's house and sees SpongeBob's hat behind a rock. Assuming it's SpongeBob, he goes over to apologize, but then sees that it's just Patrick wearing the hat while digging. Squidward asks why he is wearing the hat and where SpongeBob is and Patrick tells Squidward that SpongeBob is in the house "impressed" (instead of depressed) and was crying a lot. Squidward feels even worse and attempts to apologize when SpongeBob answers the door, but since apologizing to others isn't something Squidward normally does, he initially finds himself to be physically incapable of saying something as simple as "I'm sorry."
Eventually, he is able to say it by putting a bubble over his head, so that SpongeBob does not actually hear his apology. Squidward walks away, saying that his conscience is clear, but is confronted by memories of what he did, feels guilty again, attempts to apologize to SpongeBob several unsuccessful times, and eventually goes back and genuinely apologizes to SpongeBob, but tells SpongeBob not to tell anyone. SpongeBob promises not to tell and forgives him, but then fully opens his front door, revealing that everyone else is inside behind him, and witnessed Squidward's apology.
They all say "April Fools!" to Squidward, who is flabbergasted by this. Squidward states that he was fooling them as well before running away to his house, while laughing maniacally. The episode ends with SpongeBob saying, "What would we do without Squidward?"
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|( ‣ ) Associated production music|
|( • ) Original music|
|( ◦ ) SpongeBob music|
‣ Aloha - Dick Stephen Walter [opening]
‣ Courting Clarinets - Stefan Maciejewski ["We're gonna become peasants!"]
‣ Me for You - George Callert [huge pitcher of lemonade/SpongeBob laughing]
‣ Dramatic Impact 3 - Ivor Slaney [shot of calendar]
‣ Captain Lenoe's - Michael Arthur, Colin Cater, Mick Graves, The Folk Players, Sarah Graves, Simon Ritchie [Squidward calls Mr. Krabs]
‣ Airs and Graces (b) - Paddy Kingsland ["I have arrived."]
‣ The Tip Top Polka/The Cliff Polka - Chelmsford Folk Band [SpongeBob and Krabs laughing]
‣ Blue Blood F - Gregor F. Narholz ["Squidward, wait!"]
‣ Twelfth Street Rag - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob playing pranks on people]
‣ Heavy Footsteps (a) - Paddy Kingsland [Squidward setting a trap]
‣ Shock (u) - Dave Hewson [anchor falls]
‣ On with the Race - Dennis Farnon [rope sends SpongeBob flying everywhere]
‣ Pua Paoakalani B - Kapono Beamer, Queen Lili'uokalani [SpongeBob runs out crying]
‣ Royal Hawaiian Hula - Kapono Beamer [Patrick digging]
‣ Fates [#62.02] - Gregor F. Narholz ["SpongeBob, let me in there!"]
‣ Hawaiian Cocktail - Richard Myhill [Squidward trying to apologize]
‣ Gator - Steve Belfer [message in a bottle]
‣ Killer Birds - Gregor F. Narholz [Squidward remembering what others said]
‣ Paradise Isle - Jan Rap [Squidward apologizes]
‣ Nostalgic Hawaii - Jan Rap [ending]
- As of December 16, 2018, The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) gives this episode a rating of 8.6/10 based on 458 ratings by users. TV.com users give this episode a rating of 8.9/10 based on 185 votes.
- "Fools in April" was ranked #84 during the Best Day Ever event on November 9–10, 2006.
- Even though Squidward said April Fool's Day was SpongeBob's favorite holiday, it is mentioned by SpongeBob that his favorite holiday is Christmas at the start of "It's a SpongeBob Christmas!"
- This is Bubble Bass' final appearance in the series until the episode "Plankton's Good Eye" 11 years later.
- Although, his skin tone in this episode is mauve rather than olive green.
- This episode premiered in Canada on April 1, 2001, exactly one year after it premiered in the United States.
- The various pranks pulled by SpongeBob include:
- Telling Gary they were going to become peasants, and to eat salted shells instead of snail food.
- Telling himself he would drink dozens of glasses of lemonade for breakfast.
- Having Mr. Krabs call Squidward on the phone to inform him that an art collector from The Barnacle Bay Art Museum is at the Krusty Krab and wants to make Squidward artist of the month.
- Putting a whoopie cushion on Mr. Krabs' chair.
- Directing an old lady who asked him for a fork to the spoon container.
- Drawing a face on the back of his head and tricking a customer into thinking he was two different people.
- Giving a customer one ice cube in his drink when he asked for a couple of them.
- Telling his tongue that its shoes were untied.
- Tricking Squidward into apologizing to him secretly in a room full of people, including those who witnessed the prank at the Krusty Krab.
- The line "You stink!" is recycled from "Pickles."
- Squidward's mother looks different than she does in "Krusty Towers."
- When Squidward tries to apologize to SpongeBob for the first time, he says "I'm trying to say I'm..." and his head turns into a donkey and starts braying. A similar subliminal message also occurs in "Christmas Who?"
- This is the second time Patrick is shown wearing a Krusty Krab hat. The first time was in "Arrgh!"
- This episode and "Neptune's Spatula" only tend to air on April Fools' Day, as "Neptune's Spatula" is "Fools in April"'s sister episode. However, recently, airtime of these episodes became a bit more common.
- This is the second appearance of Squidward's hot water bottle. The first time was "Sandy's Rocket."
- In Indonesia, after saying "This is an extreme thirst!," the scene usually goes straight to the scene where Tom wants a couple of ice cubes.
- In the Polish dub, the episode's title is "Prima Aprilis" (April Fools).
- On the old Nickelodeon website, this episode is alternatively known as "April Fools."
- When this episode aired on April 1, 2017, it was paired with "Yeti Krabs."
- The scene where the voices talk to Squidward is based on the 1990 hit film Home Alone.
- When Squidward looks at the calendar, his mouth does not sync to what he is saying.
- After being pranked the first time, Squidward places his hat on Mr. Krabs' desk, but he has it in his hand when he leaves Mr. Krabs' room.
- Even after SpongeBob reveals to the old lady his prank of giving her a spoon rather than a fork, she still walks away with the spoon.
- When the customers leave the Krusty Krab after Squidward's prank, they are all blue and brown finger shaped ovals.
- When Squidward's head explodes while apologizing, neither his house or Patrick's house are there anymore.
- When Squidward gives SpongeBob a message in a bottle, he puts a cork on it. However, as it rolls towards SpongeBob, the cork is gone.
- When Squidward sees Patrick, the hat is down to Patrick's eyebrows. However, when Squidward says, "Why are you wearing that hat?!" the hat is farther up Patrick's forehead.
- Squidward finishes saying sorry before he stuck his tongue out.
- When SpongeBob and the others say "April Fools!" to Squidward, SpongeBob's mouth does not move.
- Squidward's April Fools prank propels SpongeBob with an anchor. However, when the anchor dropped, SpongeBob flies like usual, but the anchor is gone completely.
- When SpongeBob tells Gary that they're moving, Gary has an eyelash that vanishes in the next shot.
- The first time Squidward tries to apologize to SpongeBob, when he blinks his eyelids turn to the teal color they would become in Season 2 rather than the seafoam they are for this season.
- When Squidward was thinking of the fish who said “April Fools, jerk.”, he was thinking of Tom. However, Tom was not the fish who told him this.
- Fools in April at the Internet Movie Database
|Awards and nominations for SpongeBob SquarePants (V • E)
Golden Reel Awards