If you were looking for the article about the character, then see Pressure (character).

"Pressure" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season two. In this episode, SpongeBob and Sandy compete to see who's better.



One day, Sandy and SpongeBob are peacefully watching the clouds. SpongeBob spies one cloud that looks like a flower, but Sandy points out they all look like flowers all the time. Even the allure of a mountain-climbing contest cannot break their relaxation. That is, until they each casually mention that they would obviously win anyway, due to their respective land- and sea-based abilities. This prompts the race to begin after Sandy takes a head start. Despite his efforts to catch up, SpongeBob loses, and so challenges Sandy to another race to the Krusty Krab, taking the same head start as Sandy.

Upset at SpongeBob's cheap victory, Sandy boasts of the superiority of land creatures to sea creatures, listing the many skills and abilities that sea creatures lack. SpongeBob, joined by Patrick, Squidward and Mr. Krabs, stubbornly reject these allegations and point out things that Sandy cannot do, such as breathe underwater. She is quickly incensed and tears off her suit and helmet. Soon enough, the strain proves too much and Sandy is forced to use a pickle jar as a makeshift air helmet. 

To settle the issue, Sandy challenges the group to the reverse: going up on dry land for one minute, which they brashly declare an easy feat. Once at the shore of the local island, however, their sudden trepidation threatens to make them forfeit. Unwilling to let her win, they charge up to the surface and find it to not only be easy to survive, but quite enjoyable. They even take the time to chat up a pair of native seagulls.

032a - Pressure (484)

After the minute passes, Sandy lets go of her pride and heads up herself to congratulate the group. To her horror, she discovers her friends being chased and devoured by the seagulls, and so attacks the birds to save them. Back on the ocean floor, the two sides come to the realization that everyone, sea and land creature alike, is good at something, even if no one is good at everything. SpongeBob and Sandy apologize to each other, and the group gives a cheer in honor of feeling sorry for themselves. The seagulls, in a sorry state of their own (having been beaten up and lost their feathers), halfheartedly join in.



 ) Associated production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music
  Cha Cha Nova - Gerhard Narholz [title card]

  Holiday Dream - Max Mahlmann [SpongeBob and Sandy relaxing]
  Banzai Rider - The Surfdusters [climbing Coral Cliffs/SpongeBob and Sandy running to the Krusty Krab]
  Tomfoolery - David Snell [Sandy thinks land creatures are best/"Give me that. They don't call me Cheeks for nothing."/"Admit it, Sandy, you can't do anything us sea creatures can do."]
  Danger Zone - Mike Sunderland [Sandy takes off her suit]
  Stepping into Danger - Mike Sunderland [everyone teasing Sandy]
  Tomfoolery - David Snell [Sandy challenges them to go above water]
  Hawaiian Link (a) - Richard Myhill ["Well, so are you going or not?"]
  Pomp and Circumstance No.4 A - Edward Elgar, John Fox ["We're sea creatures!"]
  Increase A - Dick de Benedictis ["Make it last."]
  Increase B - Dick de Benedictis [SpongeBob goes above water]
  Sunny Samoa - Jan Rap [everyone else goes above water]
  Cha Cha Nova - Gerhard Narholz ["This is pretty easy!"]
  Waikiki Queen - Hans Haider [ending]



  • As of September 9, 2018, The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) gives this episode a rating of 8.7/10 based on 381 ratings by users.[1] users give this episode a rating of 8.8/10 based on 151 votes.[2]
  • "Pressure" was ranked #49 during the Best Day Ever event on November 9–10, 2006.




  • In the PS1 version of the SpongeBob SquarePants video game titled SuperSponge, four scenes from this episode are used in the intro.
  • This is the last episode to be written by David Fain, and also the only second season episode written by Fain.
  • Although this episode aired on March 8, 2001, it was made in 2000 according to the credits.
  • This episode premiered in Canada on June 22, 2001.
  • This is the first time where Sandy takes off her air helmet while underwater. The second being "Bubble Troubles."
  • This is the first time where Sandy uses something other than her space helmet to breathe underwater. The second time is in "Someone's in the Kitchen with Sandy."
  • The title card for this episode is similar to the one used for "Bubble Buddy" and "The Krusty Plate."
  • On the island, SpongeBob is a kitchen sponge, Patrick is a real starfish, Mr. Krabs is a toy crab made to look like a real crab, Squidward is a puppet of an octopus with a big nose and his own eyes, and Sandy is a Ty Beanie Baby Plush Squirrel Toy with a small plastic dome on her head.
  • On land, Squidward appears his regular teal/turquoise color above water. In "Reef Blower," Squidward appears purple/maroon when SpongeBob's reef blower sucks up all the water.
  • In this episode, Patrick seems to realize that Sandy is a girl, even though he referred to Sandy as 'she' when talking to Squidward and both 'she' again and 'her' in previous episodes.
    • It might be because he is dumb enough to not know the difference between male and female, or he was joking around.
  • Sandy dares SpongeBob, Patrick, Squidward, and Mr. Krabs to go on the island of Bikini Atoll, which was an island that was destroyed by the first Hydrogen Bomb test by the United States, that is infamous for showering a Japanese fishing boat with radiation. The fact that Bikini Bottom is implied to be directly underneath where Bikini Atoll was located (or possibly the remains of it) would give a good explanation to the show's setting and anthropomorphic characters.
  • This is the first time Mr. Krabs appears as a normal crab.
  • The concept of the characters on land is later used again in The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water.
  • In the Polish dub, the episode's title is "Kto jest lepszy", which, in English, translates to "Who is Better."
  • The part where SpongeBob gasps and says "Take that back!" was used in a 2001 promo for the Nick Jr. show Oswald.[3]
  • When Sandy mentions all the things that land creatures do, a few of them are based on western culture.

Cultural references

  • When SpongeBob floats with his umbrella up to the top of the cliff, the flying umbrella is a reference to Disney's 1964 film, Mary Poppins.
  • The Deluxe Krabby Patty is similar to the McDonald's Big Mac.
  • When Sandy says "That's the way the coral crumbles," it's a parody of the idiom "That's the way the cookie crumbles."


  • Dish Network accidentally labeled this episode as "#45" along with "The Smoking Peanut."
  • When SpongeBob is dressed like an old man, he has one tooth, but when SpongeBob pulls off the disguise, he has two teeth again. It may have been a fake one or he may have detached it like he did in "Walking Small."
  • The Krusty Krab is drawn differently when Sandy first runs in there.
  • The anchor on Mr. Krabs' office door is blue, but in the next scene, it is red like in the other doors.
  • In this episode, Sandy's lungs shrivel up and the right falls off. However if a lung is lost, then breathing would be difficult to do. Despite this, Sandy had no problems with breathing for the remainder of the episode and she doesn't show this problem in episodes following this one.
    • This could be for dramatic effect.
  • In "Big Pink Loser," Patrick loses his breath above water after two seconds, but he never loses his breath again in this episode.
  • When SpongeBob arrived at the Krusty Krab, a set of tables is shown. After the next scene, they're all gone.
  • When Sandy tries to hold her breath underwater, she tears her suit off. However, she has it back on in the next scene.
    • It's possible she had time to get another suit.
  • When Sandy and SpongeBob race each other the second time to the Krusty Krab, the restaurant is facing the side, where the front door is to Sandy's right when she entered. However, when she goes in, the Krusty Krab goes back to facing the right way inside, and it makes it look like Sandy is coming in from the left, where there is no door.
  • Mr. Krabs says everyone in his family could stick their eyes into their heads, but it's impossible for his daughter Pearl Krabs to do so because she's a whale.
    • If Pearl was adopted, however, it could be possible that Mr. Krabs was referring to his biological family, therefore, not including Pearl.
    • If Pearl wasn't adopted, rather born from Mrs. Krabs who is probably a whale, Mr. Krabs could have been referring to his side of the family rather.
  • When Sandy struggles to breathe, she pours the pickles out of the pickle jar and puts it on her head in order for her to breath. However, the water would have filled up the jar so when she put it on her head it wouldn't have made a difference.

    Chum bucket is missing

  • When SpongeBob says "First one to the Krusty Krab is the winner," the Chum Bucket is missing.
  • When Sandy says, "Yeah, well this is an accident," the rocks change color as Sandy pushes them down. This is actually a common occurrence in animation to make it easier for the animators. Backgrounds and panning shots consisting of non-moving objects are physically drawn and colored using more traditional techniques only once, usually giving it a more textured appearance (the sky and cliff in this case) while characters or moving objects are drawn as an outline, moving parts redrawn almost every time and colored electronically giving it a smoother look (SpongeBob, Sandy and the moving rocks in this case) and making them look different.
  • Realistically, Mr. Krabs would have no trouble being out of water, as crabs are amphibious.

Running gags

  • Patrick makes a statement, but something happens that goes against his statement:
    • Patrick laughs at the term "airhead" said by Mr. Krabs, then his head deflates.
    • Patrick says that he isn't chicken, then drops his popcorn and proceeds to peck kernels with his mouth like a chicken.
    • Patrick, Mr. Krabs and Squidward say that they're not afraid to go on land, then hide behind SpongeBob in fear.


SpongeBob SquarePants - Land vs

SpongeBob SquarePants - Land vs. Sea Nickelodeon



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