The Krusty Krab, having gone without a customer for 36 days, is filled with dust, cobwebs, and even a skeleton. An emaciated fish crawls in, claiming that he hasn't had any sustenance in three days. After confirming the fellow can pay, Mr. Krabs has SpongeBob bring him a meal. However, the fish refuses, saying that there's no pizzazz in the Krusty Krab, and so resumes his search for food, water, and atmosphere. Mr. Krabs remains skeptical, but then overhears a conversation between Tom and Fred about a talking dog at the Shell Shack, and realizes that what he needs is a gimmick to attract customers. SpongeBob tries to share an idea, but Mr. Krabs decides instead to bury himself alive and which will easily draw in a crowd. When news of the talking dog starting to sing reaches them, though, they quickly disperse.
SpongeBob remains unnoticed by Mr. Krabs, who desperately racks his brain for an answer, until he appears from the heavens heralding to Mr. Krabs his idea. Finally having his attention, SpongeBob shows him a green patty. Mr. Krabs is disgusted thinking that the patty is spoiled and tries to incinerate it. SpongeBob then removes his fire-proof suit to reveal Pretty Patties, Krabby Patties painted in "six designer colors." Mr. Krabs and Squidward laugh at this notion, mocking SpongeBob with other ridiculous novelties such as Sequin Milkshakes and Bow-Tie French fries. Deeply hurt, SpongeBob vows to open his own restaurant and prove them wrong, making them laugh all the more.
With Patrick's help, SpongeBob sets up a stand in front of his house to sell his Pretty Patties, though it initially seems unsuccessful. He tries to give a passerby a Pretty Patty, who laughs at its green hue. SpongeBob is about to give up when the fish notices a Patty in purple, his favorite color, and proclaims Pretty Patties to be the best idea ever.
News of the skyrocketing sales of Pretty Patties reaches Mr. Krabs, who incredulously decides to take a look. There are thousands of customers surrounding the stand, clamoring for their turn. Mr. Krabs notes that he's never had a line before, much less the 46,853 customers that SpongeBob is currently waiting on. Finally making it through the crowd, he meekly congratulates SpongeBob on his success. While proud of what he's achieved, SpongeBob admits he misses his days at the Krusty Krab. Seeing an opportunity, Mr. Krabs persuades SpongeBob to give him the rights to his Pretty Patty stand in exchange for the key to the Krusty Krab. Utterly entranced with his fortune, SpongeBob starts rollicking inside and outside his new restaurant.
The next day, as Mr. Krabs prepares to rake in the dough, the customers all angrily arrive and complain that the Pretty Patties had an unfortunate side effect: whatever color was eaten is what color the customer became. A fish demonstrating a glow-in-the-dark tongue states that all 46,853 of them want their money back, but under the cover of darkness, Mr. Krabs has hightailed it. The customers form an angry, rainbow-colored mob and start to begin chasing Mr. Krabs. He runs to the Krusty Krab and attempts to unlock the door, but remembers that he gave his key to SpongeBob, who is currently preoccupied with the sound of his beloved squeaky pickles as the episode ends with Mr. Krabs still being chased.
Running Gag: Patrick activating his inflatable pants.
Pretty Patties come in a different variety of colors, such as:
Glow in the dark
There are eight Pretty Patties on the title card.
This episode, along with Wormy, were the first to air in 2001. However, the episode is copyrighted 2000.
When a customer comes to the Krusty Krab, SpongeBob still looks like the Krusty Krab (gross and filthy), and Mr. Krabs is bright red like he should be.
The Pretty Patties loosely resemble the popular French dessert known as Macarons.
When SpongeBob is cleaning the Krusty Krab near the end, the drive-through window also seen in "Driven to Tears" is shown.
Tom's and Fred's names are both revealed in this episode.
Various episodes show Bikini Bottom to have anywhere from no people to over 500 people living there. Many surrounding cities must have had to come to Bikini Bottom to obtain a pretty patty as there was over 46,852 customers.
On the Krusty Krab window, along with the picture of a Krabby Patty, there are also pictures of fries and a soda. In other episodes, there is only the Krabby Patty poster.
Like some fish food, especially goldfish food, Pretty Patties change the color of the fish that eat it.
The Comcast description of this episode refers to Pretty Patties as "colored crab cakes."
This episode has become a popular YouTube Poop.
The scene where Mr. Krabs uses a flamethrower to destroy a Pretty Patty also became popular on YouTube.
This episode's Japanese title is "Bāgā urikomi sakusen," which means "Burger Selling Strategy."
46,853 (forty-six thousand, eight hundred fifty-three) is a five-digit prime number.
Mr. Krabs should have a spare key to the Krusty Krab in case he lets someone else borrow it or it gets lost or stolen. It could be possible he's too cheap to make a spare key.
The color green seems to be pretty common in this episode as it was used as the main color for the background of the title card, SpongeBob had more green patties shown than any other patty, all of the money he and Patrick earned (and gave away), and the green glow-in-a-dark tongue of the customer.
The Bikini Bottomites didn't need to chase Mr. Krabs for their money back because they were able to collect it for free before. Knowing Mr. Krabs, he probably didn't give their money back and took it home with him.
Mr. Krabs burying himself alive is realistic as different species of crab do this all the time. Two examples are the Stone Crab and Hermit Crab.
There is a reference to this episode in "Krabby Patty Jingle," when Patrick eats a plaid Krabby Patty, and his tongue turns plaid, although there is no seen Plaid Pretty Patty.
This may be because, in "Little Yellow Book" SpongeBob clucks like a chicken when he sees plaid, and he did not want that to happen.
It's possible that SpongeBob did not know about the Frozen Krabby Patty song.
Mr. Krabs exclaims "No one goes to a restaurant for atmosphere. They go for food!," which seems like a reference to the cult classic, Office Space (1999). Also, 36 days could be a reference to the pieces of flair Brian wears (37).
Frank mentions that there are 46,853 customers who want their money back, but there should be more because that is the number of customers that SpongeBob had when Mr. Krabs arrived and because there were a lot more customers waiting.
Mrs. Puff was seen in this episode standing in the back of the crowd. She was very skinny, her hair was longer and she didn't have any lines or movement. Her dress changed from solid blue to red with a blue collar several times.
Before SpongeBob gets interviewed, on the aerial view of their stand, SpongeBob and Patrick are just heads without bodies, behind their stand. During the interview, however, they are in front of their stand, full body.
After Mr. Krabs comes to see SpongeBob, Patrick's stand is no longer seen and Patrick is not seen for the rest of the episode. It could be possible he left because SpongeBob is no longer the owner of the Pretty Patties.
When Mr. Krabs hands SpongeBob the key, the fish that are in the background aren't blinking or moving.
In Tom's first appearance in this episode, he is light green. But when Mr. Krabs is burying himself alive, Tom can be seen in the crowd in his normal, darker color.
Mr. Krabs says that he has never had a line before, though there is a line at the Krusty Krab (in front of where Squidward works).
If SpongeBob gave the anchovy a Pretty Patty after he asks who's #46,853, the "Now Serving" sign should've flipped to #46,854 but it does not, and even Frank says that 46,853 of them want their money back. It could be possible SpongeBob wasn't able to flip it because he noticed Mr. Krabs right after he served his 46,853rd customer.
When the fish gets the free money, he says that he is going back in line. However, he runs off in the other direction. He could have meant that he was going back in line to buy more Pretty Patties.
At the beginning of the episode with the fish that crawls into the Krusty Krab, he says he needs food and water. He would only need food because he is already underwater so he isn't dehydrated.