Encyclopedia SpongeBobia
Encyclopedia SpongeBobia
If you were looking for the article about the DVD, then see SpongeBob's To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants.

"To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season 6. In this episode, SpongeBob searches for a new pair of pants after his old ones shrink in the dryer, but they make him unrecognizable.



The episode starts with the narrator talking about a horrible tragedy, while showing an over-water hurricane, followed by footage of the 1940 collapse of Tacoma Narrows Bridge (Galloping Gertie), with a man running from the bridge before its collapse, and a woman screaming in terror. After that, the scene cuts to a rainy day at SpongeBob's pineapple, where inside, SpongeBob is looking at the calendar. The narrator says that the tragedy happened three days before, as the calendar flips back to January 7.

It was laundry day, and SpongeBob is seen doing chores, including laundry, with his pants and Gary's shell. Patrick then calls SpongeBob to show that he can make funny sounds with his tongue for a very long time; SpongeBob asks Patrick if it can wait, but Patrick refuses, so he continues on, making SpongeBob bored by sitting on the chair for so long.

Round pants.

Meanwhile, Gary gets his shell out of the laundry. By the time SpongeBob gets to the laundry machine, his pants had shrunk. He goes to the store to buy new ones, but Patty Rechid declares that there will not be any square pants for months. He then looks through the pants and tries many pairs, but is not interested. He then finds a pair of round pants with the same design as his normal pants.

While walking with his round pants, SpongeBob bumps into Patrick, but Patrick does not recognize him because he was wearing round pants and the real SpongeBob wears square ones. He bumps into Sandy, who pretends that she does not know SpongeBob, saying that they must call him SpongeBob FancyPants. Then, SpongeBob passes Squidward's house, and Squidward pretends not to recognize SpongeBob in order to get him to leave him alone. Being gullible, SpongeBob really thinks that Patrick, Sandy, and Squidward do not know him, so he starts making himself over, naming himself, SpongeBob RoundPants.

To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants 130.png

SpongeBob gets a job at the Krusty Krab with his new look and looks to Squidward for pointers. Squidward teaches SpongeBob about his bad routine as a Krusty Krab employee, including not throwing the trash in the dumpster, being rude to the customers, nasally laughing like Squidward, burning Krabby Patties, taking too long in the bathroom, and even sleeping on the job. Mr. Krabs realizes what is going on, and he does not joke around when he sees SpongeBob, immediately recognizing him despite his round pants. SpongeBob then tells Mr. Krabs that he cannot be SpongeBob SquarePants again, as he has round pants. Mr. Krabs asks him who told him this and SpongeBob states it was Patrick, who stops eating a Krabby Patty when he realizes his error of not recognizing SpongeBob in the first place. Mr. Krabs then suggests that he just remove them if that is the case. Then, SpongeBob takes off the round pants leaving his underwear, while Sandy calls him "SpongeBob UnderPants," and the episode ends with SpongeBob looking at his underwear and screaming with embarrassment.



Model Sheets


 ) Production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  Hawaiian Train - Victor Cavini [title card]
  Hawaiian Flower - Jon Jelmer [opening]
  Twilight Zone - Harry Bluestone, Emil Cadkin [stock footage of storm]
  Marching to Honolulu - Kapono Beamer [Calendar goes back three days/laundry day]
  Goofy Conversation Continued - Nicolas Carr, Barry Anthony [Phone call from Patrick/Much much later...]
  Steel Licks 7 - Jeremy Wakefield ["Yeah, Patrick."]
  Dramatic Impact (3) - Ivor Slaney [all of SpongeBob's pants shrunk]
  Steel Licks 10 - Jeremy Wakefield ["I'm gonna need to get new pants."]
  Ballet Shoes [#60.03] - Harry Bluestone, Emil Cadkin [mall exterior]
  Steel Licks 3 - Jeremy Wakefield [they're out of square pants]
  Vibe Q Sting - Nicolas Carr [SpongeBob puts on long pants]
  ? [SpongeBob puts on another pair of pants]
  Sitar Transition - Nicolas Carr [Hippy pants]
  Wig Struck - Nicolas Carr [rock guitar sting]
  Great Idea Patrick - Nicolas Carr [SpongeBob notices round pants]
  Parting of the Clouds - Nicolas Carr [round pants]
  What's This - Nicolas Carr [SpongeBob tries them on]
  Skipping to School - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [Patrick does not recognize SpongeBob]
  Hello Blues - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield ["Patrick's so full of tartar sauce."]
  ? [banjo music]
  Hello Blues - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield ["But I know my best buddy Squidward will recognize me."]
  Comedic Conversation - Nicolas Carr, Steve Marston [Squidward ignoring SpongeBob]
  Harp! - Nicolas Carr [SpongeBob gets an idea]
  Comedic Conversation - Nicolas Carr, Steve Marston [SpongeBob shows pictures to Squidward]
  Steel Licks 1 - Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob walks away]
  Gator - Steve Belfer ["Hello, can I help you?"]
  Hawaiian Cocktail - Richard Myhill ["I guess I'm not SpongeBob SquarePants anymore."]
  The Tip Top Polka/The Cliff Polka - Chelmsford Folk Band ["Hello, sir, I'd like an application please."]
  Captain Lenoe's - The Folk Players [Squidward punches himself]
  Lap Steel - Nicolas Carr ["Here are the applications."]
  Happy Sack Shanty - Michael Bolger, Nicolas Carr [SpongeBob filling out the application]
  The Krusty Krab Jig - Michael Bolger, Nicolas Carr [Squidward showing SpongeBob the ropes]
  Slide Whistle Stooges 2 - Nicolas Carr, Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob copying everything Squidward does]
  Drunken Sailor - Nicolas Carr ["What are you two doing?"]
  Goofy Conversation 2 - Nicolas Carr, Barry Anthony ["I mean, do these pants look square to you?"]
  Steel Licks 4 - Jeremy Wakefield [Patrick sitting at a table]
  SpongeBob Theme II - Nicolas Carr, Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [ending]



  • "To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants" was ranked #54 during the SpongeBob's Top 100 event in the UK and Ireland from June 4-8, 2012.



Title card on Amazon and in several countries.

  • This episode was the first to premiere in The Ultimate SpongeBob SpongeBash.
  • This episode's title is sometimes shortened by a word. This is because:
    • On the To SquarePants or Not to SquarePants DVD-credits, this episode is listed as "To SquarePants or Not to."
    • In Southeast Asia (including Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao), Turkey, Poland, and Central and Eastern Europe, this title card only says "To SquarePants or Not to" because the original title is considered too long. This also happens on the Amazon Prime Video and Netflix versions.
  • During the live-action intro in this episode, footage of the 1940 Tacoma Narrows Bridge collapse is used.
    • This footage is royalty-free and owned by Petrified Films. It can be found on Getty Images.[2]
    • This footage was also used in "Two Thumbs Down" as part of the segment when SpongeBob breaks his thumbs.
  • In this episode, the French Narrator says "SpongeBob SquarePants changed his pants!" like it was a surprise, but SpongeBob has changed his pants many times when he wakes up. He is even shown in this episode pulling multiple pairs of pants out of his washing machine. However, the "changed" refers to SpongeBob literally changing to round pants and becoming unrecognizable, which was why the narrator was shocked.
  • Irony: SpongeBob could have just hung up the phone with Patrick and checked on his pants in the washer.
  • Gary has buttocks under his shell in this episode and in "Welcome to the Bikini Bottom Triangle," but in "Shell Shocked," he only has organs and a slug body.
  • The round pants SpongeBob wears in this episode are quite similar in appearance to his pants in "The Sponge Who Could Fly" after being inflated, though they are much smaller and obviously not inflated.
  • SpongeBob saying what goes on a squirrel's head is similar to "Squirrel Jokes."
  • When SpongeBob talks about what goes on inside a squirrel's head, an image of a chattering squirrel is shown and SpongeBob cringes afterward. This scene has become a fad on YouTube, with random scenes replacing the squirrel image.
  • SpongeBob went to the store even though he was not wearing pants. They probably allowed him to come in the store because he was shopping for pants.
  • The picture shown by SpongeBob when he forgot where the last picture took place actually took place in "Choir Boys" when Squidward was singing in the shower at the very beginning of the episode. However, SpongeBob was not seen in front of the shower in "Choir Boys" for some reason.
  • When SpongeBob takes out the first pair of pants when he is in the store, and when Mr. Krabs walks out of his office, the man in the front of the order line has the same pants as the first pair SpongeBob took out in the store.
  • This is the first episode in which Squidward is seen reading the House Fancy magazine.
  • Sandy calls SpongeBob "SpongeBob FancyPants" just like Patrick in "Tea at the Treedome."
    • Ironically, that episode was Sandy's debut.
  • This is the second appearance of SpongeBob's laundry room. The first was in "Dumped." Although, it looks different in this episode than it did in that episode.
  • There are two books based on this episode, titled SpongeBob RoundPants and Mr. FancyPants!, respectively.
  • In the Croatian dub, the episode name is "Skockani ili Ne," which translates to "SquarePants or Not."
    • In the Greek dub, the episode name is "Τετραγωνοπαντελονής ή Όχι," which also means "SquarePants or Not."
  • The time card "Much, Much Later" is similar to the title card of "The Algae's Always Greener."
  • This episode aired on David Hasselhoff's 57th birthday.

Cultural references

  • The title is a play on the quote from Shakespeare's Hamlet "To Be or Not to Be?"


Yellow eyes.

  • When SpongeBob walks away from the dryer, his eyes are yellow for a frame.
  • When Squidward pretends he does not know SpongeBob, he pulls out photos to jog Squidward's memory, but it is unknown how those pictures were inside those pants if they were new and the original ones shrunk.
  • The first time Sandy pretends not to recognize SpongeBob, he just shrugs and says "Course it was just Sandy, and Neptune knows what goes on inside a squirrel's head." The second time she pretends not to recognize him, however, SpongeBob does not take the situation lightly.
  • After SpongeBob says "I'll have to start all over again!" he just fills out an application and gets the job. In the pilot episode, "Help Wanted," however, he did not ask for an application; he had to complete a challenge first.

The black ring on the Krusty Krab employee hat turns blue.

White spacing between Krabs' eyes.

  • When Mr. Krabs says, "I'm used to Squidward sleeping on the job, but I expect more from you, Mr. SquarePants," there is a white spacing between his eyes for a frame.

SpongeBob with green eyes.

  • When SpongeBob is talking to Mr. Krabs and says, "They're round," his eyes turn green for a split-second.
  • On January 7, SpongeBob shrinks his pants, and at the mall, the employee tells him that he cannot get new ones for months, but at the beginning of the episode, on January 10, SpongeBob can be seen wearing his normal pants again.