"Nautical Novice" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season six. In this episode, SpongeBob tries to impress Mrs. Puff by memorizing the history of boating.



At Mrs. Puff's Boating School, everyone is bored hoping for class to end while she is talking about steering and SpongeBob is taking notes in an excited personality. When class ends, Mrs. Puff reminds the class that they are going on a field trip to the Bikini Bottom Museum of Boating tomorrow and the bus will pick them up at 8:00 A.M. When SpongeBob realizes that this is finally his chance to impress Mrs. Puff and get his driver's license, he reads a 7,400 page book called The History of All Boating Ever.... When SpongeBob finishes the book at 7:59 A.M. on the next day, he ends up falling asleep when he realizes that tomorrow is today and he is going to be late for the bus.

SpongeBob looks terrible!

He races the bus once it leaves his house. Mrs. Puff, not wanting to deal with SpongeBob's misbehavior, tells Nat, the bus driver, to speed up. But SpongeBob suddenly comes in through the window. While SpongeBob begins talking to Mrs. Puff, she realizes SpongeBob's bad smell and gives him a bottle of Shower in a Can. SpongeBob then starts talking about the trivia of boating, which starts to give Mrs. Puff a headache. So, when the class finally arrives at the museum, SpongeBob is paying no attention as he is still talking about boating to Mrs. Puff and crashes into the front window and gets converted into a puddle outside the bus door, he then is back up again when he sees the museum in front of him.

Mrs. Puff explains it was the largest boat ever that is now converted into a museum and can no longer be operated unless it goes to its yearly check at port. Throughout the day, SpongeBob keeps interrupting Mrs. Puff to tell the students what she's about to say, much to her chagrin. Right when the class is about to leave, Mrs. Puff notices that SpongeBob has gone missing, it turns out that he was in the driving room of the boat! He turns on the air conditioners on very high without noticing, which accidentally starts the boat.

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SpongeBob driving the boat museum.

When Mrs. Puff finds SpongeBob as she came back into the museum, she tries to stop the boat when she noticed it has been started (SpongeBob thought it was a projection screen), but she's never driven any boat so advanced before! So when she notices that the boat is going to crash into Bikini Bottom after SpongeBob turns the boat on Turbo Speed, SpongeBob tries to stop the boat by battening down the hatches, lowering the anchor, uttering a hearty seaman's laugh, and doing the reverse 720 tailspin (which has never successfully been done before). And right when the boat is about to destroy Bikini Bottom, it stops, only tapping the first building. When Mrs. Puff and SpongeBob leave the boat, Mrs. Puff gives SpongeBob his driver's license due to her impression.

However, she is outraged when she finds out that the museum owner was simply taking the boat into Bikini Bottom for a checkup at port and that he was doing all of the driving. So she tears up SpongeBob's driver's license and SpongeBob becomes saddened. The museum owner then suggests that they should go get some ice cream to cheer SpongeBob up. When the three are about to go have ice cream, SpongeBob notices that the headlights of the boat are still on. So as the museum owner and Mrs. Puff tell SpongeBob not to touch anything. SpongeBob flips the boat on its opposite side as Mrs. Puff inflates once again and says to SpongeBob "Good thing you studied."




 ) Associated production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  The Drunken Sailor - Nicolas Carr [title card]
  The Achterhoek Dances - Jan Rap [opening at boating school/"Wait a minute, class"/SpongeBob leaves Mrs. Puff's class.]
  Steel Link (b) - Jeremy Wakefield [that night]
  Sea Battle [#48] - John Fox [The History Of All Boating Ever]
  Hello Blues - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob starts reading]
  Steel Licks (d) - Jeremy Wakefield [7:59 AM]
  Drama Link (b) - Hubert Clifford ["Hang on a minute, IT IS TOMORROW!"]
  Sponge Monger - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob runs after the bus]
  Hit and Run - Sam Spence ["Step on it!"]
  Hawaiian Cocktail - Richard Myhill [shower in a can]
  Captain Pugwash - Johnny Pearson [model of HMS Pinafore]
  On the Beach - Kapono Beamer [SpongeBob telling Mrs. Puff boating trivia]
  Nautical Discovery [#97] - Harry Bluestone [exterior of boating museum]
  Steel Sting (c) - Jeremy Wakefield ["No problemo, Mrs. P."]
  Nautical Fantacy - William Trytel [inside the museum]
  Fanfare (b) - Nicolas Carr ["I can now taste the sweet lamination of a fresh boating license."]
  The Jovial Buccaneers [#33] - John Fox [The Lady Scallion]
  The Navy Lark - James Moody, Tommy Reilly [museum montage]
  Vibe Sting - Nicolas Carr ["SpongeBob?"]
  Tension Bits - Nicolas Carr, Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob missing]
  Nautical Fantacy - William Trytel ["Oh, boy, here it is. The main controls."]
  Dramatic Sea Battle - Gerhard Trede [SpongeBob accidentally starts the boat]
  Fierce Fight - Gerhard Trede [alarm goes off]
  The Jovial Buccaneers [#32] - John Fox ["Chapter 1: Batten down the hatches."]
  Bucaneers 5 - Harry Bluestone, Emil Cadkin [reverse 720 tailspin]
  Horlepiep - Jan Rap [SpongeBob and Mrs. Puff leave the museum]
  Fanfare (a) - Mrs. Puff shows SpongeBob his license.
  Fanfare (b) - Nicolas Carr [SpongeBob's license]
  Epic of the South - Larry Hochman ["Oh, boy! At long last!"]
  Spanish Ladies (b) - Robin Jeffrey, Tim Laycock [the museum was being tugged into port]
  Drama Link (d) - Hubert Clifford ["Don't touch anything, you twit!"]
  Steel Licks (a) - Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob goes to turn off the headlights]
  Nude Sting - Nicolas Carr [ending]



  • As of August 14, 2016, The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) gives this episode a rating of 6.4/10 based on 107 ratings by users.[1] users give this episode a rating of 5.8/10 based on 161 votes.[2]


  • 7:59 AM
  • There are eight crabs on the title card.
  • The episode's title refers to the dialogue line in the SpongeBob SquarePants Theme Song "If nautical nonsense be something you wish." The words "Nautical Nonsense" are changed to "Nautical Novice."
  • Mrs. Puff actually throws away her chance to have SpongeBob out of her life.
  • This was the first episode to be written by Derek Iversen.
  • This marks the 200th episode segment of the series.
  • This episode first aired with "Spongicus," but was later paired up with "Penny Foolish."
  • The 7:59 AM time card is the same title card background used for "Wormy," but without the bubbles.
  • The Bikini Bottom Museum of Boating may be a reference to the USS Midway Museum in San Diego, CA, as both feature every display on a large ship.
  • Triple Screw is a fancy term for three propellers.
  • The license that Mrs. Puff gives SpongeBob says it expires on December 14, 2003. It is the same one from the episode, "Sleepy Time."
  • The license that Mrs. Puff gives to SpongeBob says that he has yellow hair. Even though SpongeBob does not have hair at all, but in "The Smoking Peanut," he tells Sandy that he needs to get a haircut. SpongeBob has one hair, as seen in "Krusty Krab Training Video." SpongeBob combs and dries his hair in "The Sponge Who Could Fly." He also has lots of brown hair in "SpongeHenge."
  • This episode premiered on Amy Sedaris' 47th birthday, six years after "Krab Borg" and "Rock-a-Bye Bivalve" premiered, and two years after "Dunces and Dragons" premiered in Asia.
  • In the German version of this episode, the episode is called "Das Bootskundemuseum," which means "The Boat Museum."
  • The title card for this episode looks similar to that of "Krusty Love," except it has a red background with black crabs on a gray net.
    • The title card for "Nautical Novice" also possesses more crabs on the net than "Krusty Love."

Cultural references

  • The music that plays during the boat museum montage is the theme song from the 1950s British radio sitcom The Navy Lark.
  • The beginning of The History of All Boating Ever..., "In the beginning, Neptune created the sail" is a parody of the beginning of the Holy Bible, "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth."
  • H.M.S. Pinafore is a play written by Gilbert Schwenk and Arthur Sullivan.


  • When Debbie Rechid runs past SpongeBob in the classroom, her shirt briefly disappears.
  • SpongeBob's teeth are clenched when he says "Whoa!" while falling down from the ladder.
  • When the camera shows a close-up of The History of All Boating Ever... book, SpongeBob's legs disappear from that shot.
  • When Mrs. Puff is spraying the Shower In a Can bottle, her fin resembles a human hand with an index finger and a thumb.

Evelyn suddenly has a belly button.

  • In one part, Evelyn mistakenly has a belly button.
  • SpongeBob read all that information in the book and still doesn't know that "a.c." stands for air conditioning.
  • It's impossible to turn a key with air conditioning, even with the highest setting. That's because keys are solid, and air isn't.
  • When Mrs. Puff says, "That's not a projection screen!," her lips are out of sync.
  • Before reaching Bikini Bottom, Mrs. Puff says "In a few minutes, we'll be flattening millions of innocent lives!" However, the Bikini Bottom population doesn't have that many fish people. It was most likely exaggerated to sound more serious.
  • The fish who was tugging the boat was in front of the boat. When the camera zoomed out, he wasn't there. One could not really tell if that was SpongeBob who made the museum flip onto him. In fact, it seemed like he was going to take the museum to port when it got to Bikini Bottom.
  • SpongeBob really was driving because the tugboat was never there before and the engines and everything else was on, and also everything started moving when SpongeBob was using the controls. The tugboat guy might be a part of the organization that makes sure SpongeBob stays out of boats altogether.
  • When SpongeBob stops the museum, it shows that the bow on the boat lightly taps the first building. But later, when it shows the tugboat guy, it shows in the background that he isn't even near the city, which wouldn't give him enough room to be there anyway.
  • When SpongeBob and Mrs. Puff see the tugboat guy, the headlights are off. When SpongeBob looks back at the boat, the headlights are suddenly on.