"I Was a Teenage Gary" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season one. In this episode, SpongeBob accidentally transforms into a snail after being injected with snail plasma.



SpongeBob and Patrick are all set to leave for the jellyfishing convention in Ukulele Bottom that weekend. Realizing that he will not be able to take Gary, SpongeBob leaves Gary in Squidward's responsibility.

SpongeBob takes Squidward around his house, telling him that he will have to feed Gary for three days. There are very large cans of snail food with the words "morning," "afternoon" and "night" written on them so that Squidward will be able to keep track. Eager to get rid of both of them, Squidward lies and says that he will do it to get SpongeBob and Patrick to leave. They do, and Squidward runs out of SpongeBob's house and sits in a lounge chair for the whole weekend, thus ignoring Gary. He soaks up plenty of sun, but Gary is left in the house, looking longingly in the direction where SpongeBob left, horribly neglected.

When SpongeBob gets back, Squidward suddenly remembers that he was supposed to take care of Gary. However, when he goes to get Gary, he finds him very sick, due to lack of food, water, and attention. Squidward, thinking he will be able to help, tried to give Gary some food. However, Gary is so weak from waiting for SpongeBob to come home, he is limp in Squidward's arms and will not eat. Squidward puts Gary down as he hears SpongeBob and Patrick saying goodbye to each other, and tries to force feed Gary. When he hears SpongeBob coming in, Squidward gives up and puts all of Gary's food into his mouth. He greets SpongeBob awkwardly and explains that he was only checking on Gary.

I Was a Teenage Gary 160

The shell pokes Squidward.

Just as Squidward is about to leave, a smirk on his face, Gary slowly enters the room. SpongeBob realizes that something is wrong, and quickly calls the local veterinarian, Dr. Gill Gilliam. He comes over to SpongeBob's house and gives SpongeBob a syringe full of snail plasma. SpongeBob asks Squidward to give Gary the plasma, as he is squeamish. Squidward reluctantly agrees and, while trying to inject Gary, accidentally injects SpongeBob with snail plasma causing SpongeBob to worry about the consequences. Upon realizing that Gary only needed water, Squidward leaves telling SpongeBob not to worry because he's fine after SpongeBob tells Squidward what's gonna happen to him now that is injected with snail plasma. Some time later, SpongeBob starts acting slow and somewhat like a snail, as well as eating Gary's food himself after SpongeBob thinks that he's fine like Squidward had said. When he goes to the bathroom, his eyes stretch out of his body and grow, his body becomes flat to the ground, his arms and legs disappear into his body, his body reshapes itself, and he also loses the ability to talk. As a finished result, SpongeBob has turned into a snail, becoming SpongeSnail.

Afterwards, he goes over to Squidward's house to get help, but Squidward is terrified of the fact that SpongeBob turned into a snail because of his lousy aim and he throws the snail plasma away and he tries to reassure himself and realizing his mistake, but he hears SpongeSnail at the door and starts blocking the doors and windows and tries to run and hide from SpongeSnail as he realizes that he should've took care of Gary and none of this would ever happened. He chases him for help, but Squidward keeps running from his life, thinking he's under attack which ultimately makes a mess of his house. Amongst the chaos, Squidward accidentally injects himself with the plasma, turning him into a snail as well, becoming SquidSnail.

The ending has Gary, SpongeSnail, and SquidSnail meowing to the tune of "Blow the man down" on top of a fence. Patrick, who has been awakened and annoyed by this, yells at them to clam up and throws a boot at SquidSnail knocking him off the wall. Gary and SpongeSnail continue to meow, but SquidSnail tries to meow. The episode ends after fading to black.



 ) Associated production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  House of Horror - W. Merrick Farran [title card]
  Honolulu March - Hans Haider [opening]
  Aloha - Dick Stephen Walter [the next morning]
  The Achterhoek Dances - Jan Rap [Squidward at the door]
  Me for You - George Callert [Squidward not listening to SpongeBob]
  Cream Pie - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [bus arrives]
  On the Beach - Kapono Beamer [Squidward sunbathing]
  Grass Skirt Chase - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [Squidward tries to feed Gary]
  Funeral March - Frederic Chopin, Peter Lea-Cox [Gary's sick]
  Dramatic Impact 5 - Ivor Slaney [SpongeBob screams]
  Woe is Me! - Richard Myhill ["Squidward, something's wrong with Gary!"]
  On the Beach - Kapono Beamer [snail plasma]
  Cello Link (a) - Dick Stephen Walter [Gary coughs]
  Gator - Steve Belfer [Squidward tries to give Gary the plasma]
  Dream Sequence - Dave Hewson ["I don't know, I feel kind of funny."]
  Hawaiian Holiday - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield ["He just needed water?"]
  Twelfth Street Rag - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob eating snail food]
  Curse of Evil 1 - Gregor F. Narholz [SpongeBob transforming into a snail]
  Esta Noche (a) - Hans Ehrlinger [Squidward in bed]
  House of Horror - W. Merrick Farran [SnailBob at Squidward's door]
  Hawaiian Link (a) - Richard Myhill [The moon shines]
  SpongeBob ScaredyPants - The Ghastly Ones [closing credits]



  • As of April 14, 2017, The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) gives this episode a rating of 8.5/10 based on 346 ratings by users.[1] users give this episode a rating of 8.7/10 based on 200 votes.[2]
  • "I Was a Teenage Gary" was ranked #41 during the Best Day Ever event on November 9–10, 2006.


  • 3 Days Later...
  • There are 17 tikis on the title card.
  • This episode is known to scare younger viewers, because of SpongeBob's transformation.
  • In the Lights, Camera, Pants! video game, there is an art gallery with a painting that is based on this episode.
  • Squidward doesn't seem to know about Gary's existence in this episode, even though he has interacted with him in earlier episodes, most notably "Culture Shock" when he introduces Gary to the audience.
    • This episode likely takes place before that one.
  • This episode might be the reason why Gary hates Squidward, as he is the reason Gary almost dies.
  • SpongeBob says that he has all of the cans of Gary's snail food marked, but this wasn't mentioned in closed-captions.
    • It's possible they forgot to add this line to the subtitle transcript.
  • SpongeBob eats Gary's snail food in this episode. He does it again in "Missing Identity." The fact that he has stated to have never eaten snail food previously in "Missing Identity" indicates that this episode takes place after that episode.
  • When SpongeBob's arm falls off, he doesn't regenerate his arm like he does in "Graveyard Shift."
    • This is likely because SpongeBob was unintentionally transforming into a snail.
    • Also when SpongeBob screams, his eyeballs turn into snail eyes, but in the next scene when SpongeBob says, "Gary, I'm fine." his snail eyes have eyelids on them.
      • This may be an animation error.
  • When SpongeBob's arm falls off, he says "It's OK, I'm a lefty anyway" despite the fact that it is his left hand that falls off.
  • When Squidward gets in bed, he says he hopes that he never sees a snail again, but in later episodes, he seems fine with snails, like in "That Sinking Feeling" he greets Gary and in "The Great Snail Race," he adopts a snail named Snellie
    • This episode could take place after those episodes.
  • There was a rumor that in the original airings, there was a scene showing Squidward's transformation to a snail. Although, it has been proven to be fake.
    • As of June 12, 2016, the deleted scene has been confirmed to be false by a YouTube user named 90sGiveMeGoosebumps, who has a tape with the original airing of this episode.[3][4]In fact, as further proof, he also uploaded a clip of All That cast member Lori Beth Denberg introducing this episode as brand new.
    • The so-called deleted scene was never drawn in the storyboard of this episode.[5]
  • Oddly, Squidward throws the snail plasma earlier in the episode and it makes a breaking sound. However, it's perfectly fine at the end of the episode as he is injected with it.
  • The aftermath of the Snail SpongeBob chasing Squidward leaves Squidward's house a mess with the wreckage including a portrait of Squidward destroyed by the end of his clarinet.
    • Coincidentally, the Snail Plasma item is caught on Squidward's nose a few seconds afterward.
  • SpongeBob (as a snail) out of both Gary and Squidward is the only one without a shell but his pants on the lump on his snail back which used to be his bottom could be considered a shell, otherwise, he is considered a slug.
  • Patrick is the only character in this episode who doesn't turn into a snail, as he never got injected with snail plasma.
  • The song that Gary, SpongeBob, and Squidward meow is "Blow the Man Down," which is what the show's theme song is based on.
  • This is the first episode to have a time card to mark how long time has gone by. In this case, the time card reads "3 Days Later." However, the French narrator does not pronounce it. Curiously, in the Filipino dub, a narrator does pronounce the time card (in English).
  • This is the first episode in which Gary plays a prominent role.
    • This is also his only prominent role in season 1.
  • This was the first time SpongeBob is transformed into another animal rather than a shape.
  • This was Steve Fonti's last time working on SpongeBob SquarePants.
  • This was also Chris Mitchell's last episode until season 4 episode "Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy VI: The Motion Picture," and his last as a storyboard artist.
  • This episode and "Scaredy Pants" only tend to air in reruns in the United States on or around Halloween, making this episode extremely rare and difficult to watch on TV, since they both aired during the Halloween season, and are Halloween-themed episodes.
  • In the episode "Squid's Visit," Squidward says that he has never gone to SpongeBob's house, but in this episode, Squidward comes to SpongeBob's house to feed Gary. It is most likely that this episode takes place after "Squid's Visit."
  • In the Polish dub, the episode's title is "Ślimaczy weekend" translating to "The Snail Weekend."
  • In the Croatian dub, the episode name is "Kad sam bio Slavko" translating to "When I was Gary."

Cultural references

  • The title of this episode is a reference to the 1957 classic horror movie, I Was a Teenage Werewolf.
  • SpongeBob transforming into a snail is very similar to David Kessler transforming into a werewolf from the 1981 movie, An American Werewolf in London.
    • This is also a reference to the 1940 Disney film Pinocchio, in which the character Lampwick transforms into a donkey, which has been known to scare younger viewers.


  • When SpongeBob plays fetch with Gary, there is a watch on his arm, but when Gary returns the fetch toy back to SpongeBob, it is gone permanently for the rest of the episode.
  • When SpongeBob says, "What a great friend you are, Squidward," the closed-captions read, "You're a great friend, Squidward." This happens many times in SpongeBob episodes due to the fact that the dialogue in many episodes is mispronounced, the grammar is always fixed in closed-captioning.
  • When Squidward says "Eat! Eat! Eat! You've gotta finish this food!," Gary lip syncs to what Squidward was saying.
  • When SpongeBob says "That's okay, I'm a lefty anyway" when his arm disappears, the arm that disappears was his left arm.
    • However, in the Polish dub, SpongeBob says he's right-handed, correcting the error.
  • In this episode, the snails are seen sitting on a wooden fence. However, there are no fences near Conch Street.
  • SpongeBob, as a snail, is briefly seen slithering, but doesn't leave a slime trail behind him.
    • It could be because he is a sponge snail, so the sponge part could be absorbing the slime, or it may be an animation error.


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