The episode starts at The Krusty Krab, where SpongeBob & Patrick see Mr. Krabs watching the classic crime movie. Mr. Krabs starts to talk about how bad thieves & stealing are, but then SpongeBob & Patrick remind him of all the things he has stole:
SpongeBob: A barrel from Salty Sea Farms
Patrick: A towel from the Sizzling Spring Sauna
SpongeBob: A Bikini Bell phone
Patrick: Sandy's hedge-clippers
SpongeBob: Plankton's lawn mower
SpongeBob: Mrs. Puff's hair curlers (Mr. Krabs stole it from her [After "Krusty Love.])
Mr. Krabs makes the excuse that he "borrowed" everything, and tells them that it's okay to borrow anything as long as you give it back before it's missed.
Later that day, SpongeBob and Patrick see a balloon stand. But since they don't have any money, they decide to "borrow" a balloon. They sneak away with it, and as they talk about all the fun things they plan to do with it, it suddenly pops. Realizing that they can't return the balloon, they conclude that they have stolen it.
Believing that this is a serious crime and that they are now wanted criminals, they leave Bikini Bottom.
That night, they camp in the middle of nowhere, and lament that they will never see any of their friends or do any of the fun things they used to do again. However, they then begin to look at the positives, such as not having to live by society's standards and not having to return anything they borrow, and realize that being criminals can be fun. Patrick says that they still don't have anything to eat, and SpongeBob reveals that he has two candy bars, saying that they will "only have to make them last the rest of their lives". However, Patrick immediately eats his in 2 bites, and then tries to take another bite of it, not realizing that it is gone. When he sees Spon
geBob's bar, he accuses him of stealing it, and although SpongeBob tries to explain to Patrick that he ate his, he refuses to believe him and decides to tell on him when SpongeBob eats the candy bar. SpongeBob then tells Patrick that he will tell on him first, when Patrick stomps on the campfire and said,"That's it!" and then burns his foot. They begin to go racing to the police station.
Once there, they both confess together, and the officers whisper to each other before they are locked up.
However, the police immediately release them, telling them that they stole the balloon on "National Free Balloon Day", much to the officers' amusement. SpongeBob & Patrick vow that they will never take anything without permission ever again, and the officers give them lollipops for the trip back home.
Patrick eats his in 1 bite, and accuses SpongeBob and the police of stealing it. They laugh a bit, but then Patrick says he means it.
The episode was originally called Partners in Crime.
When Krabs mentioned the phrase "forced to breathe air," it is a reference to the fact that sea creatures cannot survive without water.
In "Krusty Love," Mr. Krabs and Mrs. Puff meet for the 1st time, yet Mr. Krabs steals from her.
This episode was took place after that episode.
The original airing had SpongeBob saying "No more getting nailed," followed by Patrick hammering a nail into his head.
In reruns, SpongeBob's line was changed to "No more getting mail" due to sexual references.
The scene where a very fat Patrick says "You took my only food. Now I'm gonna starve!" is popular in YouTube Poops. It's been called Morbid Patrick.
SpongeBob & Patrick said "I don't know what do you wanna do today?" to each other several times consecutively. This mimics the Vultures' line "What we're gonna do?" from Disney's The Jungle Book.
When Mr. Krabs says "Eel in the kelp", this is a reference to "Snake in the grass."
At the part of the episode where SpongeBob says, "take one last look", while looking at the town at sunset, the view angle is similar to Konami's Castlevania and Tecmo's Ninja Gaiden serieses.
The plot was very similar to the Hey Arnold! episode, "On the Lam," where SpongeBob & Patrick thinking that they stole the balloon on free balloon day is a crime and trying to avoid trouble is similar to Harold, Stinky & Sid escaping the punishment after they thought they blew up the police station.
At 1 scene, the balloon is brown instead of red.
When Patrick first looks at the balloons, there is a brown one, but when Patrick looks again, the brown balloon disappears.
Because of the National Free Balloon Day, every balloon is gonna give away for free.
In 1 scene after the fire goes out, when Patrick says "You took my only food! Now I'm gonna starve!", he is lit like the fire is still burning.
In some scenes, the red line under SpongeBob's mouth disappears.
If you look closely, when SpongeBob says "We can loosen our ties" and plays with his tie, it turns pink at one point.