Spongebob Squarepants is a long-running popular kid’s show, and one thing that helped its continued longevity and popularity is the crossover appeal it has with older audiences. Part of what makes it such a draw for adults is its perpetual charm, the endearing quality of its characters, and the complete absurdity of almost anything that happens.
It doesn’t hurt that hidden among its wholesome and fun kid-friendly qualities is a level of subtle humor that on an undeniably another level, as far as sneaking in the adult-oriented jokes into cartoons goes - something very few other kid’s shows have managed to accomplish on the level that Spongebob Squarepants has. Here are 10 hilariously raunchy jokes hidden in Spongebob Squarepants that no one noticed until much later.
10 The Sexy Anemone
In “Your Shoe’s Untied” from season two, Spongebob learns he has never learned how to tie his shoes. That’s a pretty kid-friendly episode concept. The way the story starts, however, is pretty adult. The very first scene shows him in his living room, eyes widening as he watches a gyrating anemone on TV.
As unassuming as the anemone seem, it's revealed to be the in-universe equivalent of late night (ahem) adult entertainment. When Gary comes in the room and meows, Spongebob immediately changes over to the football game and acts embarrassed that Gary caught him watching the flowing tendrils.
9 Don't Drop The Soap, Gary!
Gary is a snail but he meows like a cat. Gary lives underwater, and like so many other things in the Spongebob Universe, even though it doesn’t make any sense that Gary has to take a bath. Since Gary hates baths, Spongebob tries a lot of things to get him in the tub, such as dressing like a pirate and claiming that there’s hidden treasure.
The “doubloons” are bars of soap, which a winking Spongebob tells him not to drop. Adults who've seen enough prison dramas and thrillers know what exactly dropping the soap means and why it should be avoided at all costs.
8 The Mystery Coin Slot
In “My Pretty Seahorse” from season three, Spongebob takes his pet seahorse Mystery to the Krusty Krab and ties her up outside. While poor Mystery is there alone and vulnerable, two fish come up. They assume she’s a new ride that’s been installed for customers at the restaurant.
They look for the coin slot to start the ride, and soon enough Mystery kicks one fish off into the distance. The location of the coin slot they found shouldn't be much of a mystery to adults, and it's rather fortunate that the confused fish finding the "coin slot" was depicted offscreen.
7 Patrick's Exposed Genius
In the season one episode “Texas”- which Spongebob pronounces suspiciously like Tex*ss - Sandy Cheeks gets incredibly homesick for the Lone Star State. Spongebob and Patrick find out just how much she misses it and decide that they have to help her out.
While Spongebob and Patrick are discussing how to brighten up Sandy's day, Patrick suggests bringing Texas to her. Spongebob says that his genius is showing, leading Patrick to immediately clap his hands over front of his shorts, look down, and exclaim “Where?!” Does this mean that Patrick nicknamed his family jewels "genius?"
6 Like, Like Like?
“20,000 Patties Under the Sea” from season five finds Spongebob and Patrick digging up a submarine they’ve discovered in Jellyfish Fields. When they arrive at the Krusty Krab in their new ride, it seems fate has aligned since Mr. Krabs and Squidward had just been talking about making the restaurant more mobile.
A scene later and Spongebob is bidding a fond aideau to his boss and neighbor, doubling back to give Squidward a distinctly flirtatious second goodbye. When Patrick points out he told the squid bye twice, Spongebob simply replies “I like Squidward.” It's obvious what this joke is going for but the bigger question is does Squidward feel the same way?
5 The French Tickler
In season four's "Karate Island," Sandy has to fight her way through a tower of karate masters to save Spongebob from what turns out to be a timeshare scam. On the very first floor, the master she must fight is the usual stereotypical Frenchman.
He’s got the beret, the striped shirt, the little red neckerchief. It loops into the adult-oriented territory when he reveals his name to be The Tickler. Simply put, he's a French Tickler. This, of course, is the name of a particular kind of condom. And speaking of condoms...
4 Are Those Really Balloons?
In “The Play’s the Thing" in season seven, the postman comes to the Krusty Krab looking for Squidward to make a delivery. Squidward doesn’t appear to be at his counter, so Spongebob quickly blows up some balloons to make a balloon sculpture of his missing friend so he can accept the package.
The "balloons," however, look suspiciously condom-like especially when fully inflated. It doesn’t help that Balloon-ward’s condom nose sadly deflates in the postman’s face in a very suggestive way. Why Spongebob had a bunch of condoms/balloons on standby in the Krusty Krab is another question for another time.
3 A Hairy Situation
In season two episode “The Smoking Peanut,” Bikini Bottom gets a Free Day at the local zoo. Spongebob chucks a peanut at Clamu, the giant clam he is hoping to see perform. Clamu wakes up, discovers her pearl is stolen and starts wreaking havoc. Spongebob blames himself and his peanut, not knowing the real reason she’s upset.
When Sandy expresses what she’ll do when she finds out who caused Clamu's distress, Spongebob gets nervous and claims he has to get a haircut. Sandy’s reply - along with her face - says it all: “Spongebob doesn’t have hair… or does he?” Where did she imagine Spongebob had hair? Does anyone really want to know?
2 Insert Joke Here
Spongebob has a problem standing up for himself, which was most evident in season one's episode “Walking Small." Here, Plankton decides to teach Spongebob how to be assertive after he has his metal detector and ice cream stolen without a fight.
Unfortunately, Spongebob confuses “assertive” for “insertive” when a large fish sits on him. After Spongebob informs the fish that he is sitting on his face, he starts to put his fingers in the fish's pockets rather suggestively. Apparently, Spongebob thought that Plankton told him to insert himself instead of assert.
1 Squilliam Sexypants
It’s no secret that at least part of the reason that Squidward is so grumpy is that he isn’t as cool or as popular as he wants to be. In season three's “Squilliam Returns," his bully from a long-ago band class, Squilliam, makes an appearance and harasses Squidward for being a failure.
Squidward, trying to defend himself, tells himself silently to just imagine Squilliam naked, since it’s a common trick for nervousness. Unfortunately, it doesn’t quite work out the way he plans since his imaginary Squilliam is a chiseled hunk who he confesses is still hot.
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