SpongeBob SquarePants

Shell of a Man

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Episode Information
Shell of a Man
Season №: 4
Episode №: 61b
Airdate: May 6, 2005
Sister episode(s): "Fear of a Krabby Patty"
Writer(s): Mike Bell
Paul Tibbitt
Storyboard Artist(s): Zeus Cervas
Brad Vandergrift
Supervising Producer: Paul Tibbitt
Storyboard: Mike Bell
Vincent Waller
Animation: Tom Yasumi
Technical: Vincent Waller
See all credits for this episode.
Previous: "Fear of a Krabby Patty"
Next: "The Lost Mattress"
List of episodes

"Shell of a Man" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season four. In this episode, Mr. Krabs molts and loses his shell just before meeting up with his Navy Buddies so SpongeBob takes his place.



At the Krusty Krab, SpongeBob is making a Krabby Patty, and when he is finished, he cries as he gives it to
File:New 032.png
Squidward so that he can give it to customer number five. The customer is revealed to be SpongeBob, who grabs the order, and eats it. Meanwhile, outside the Krusty Krab, Mr. Krabs calls SpongeBob into his "Hidey Hole" under the dumpster, where he keeps his belongings from when he was in the Navy in a treasure chest. They take it into Mr. Krabs's office, and Mr. Krabs tells SpongeBob about his old Navy buddies and his nickname "Armor Abs Krabs", and that his Navy Reunion is tonight. Krabs then tells SpongeBob to leave him to revel in his memories and get his work station in "shipshape", which he does with great enthusiasm. SpongeBob soon hears Mr. Krabs scream, and goes into his office, where he finds that Mr. Krabs has molted his shell, leaving him a flabby mess. He kicks his shell in frustration, causing it to fly into SpongeBob, who becomes stuck inside it. Mr. Krabs then tells SpongeBob to assume his identity at the reunion so that his Navy friends will not see him in this state.

At the reunion, SpongeBob initially puts on a convincing performance, but goes onstage to accept his "Trophy of Manly Toughness", he tells a story of him jellyfishing in Jellyfish Fields, and nearly reveals his true identity before Mr. Krabs tells him to get offstage. He attempts to leave, but Torpedo-belly insists that he body-slam him to test if he still has "armor abs". When he punches SpongeBob, he flies around the room, cracking the shell and revealing SpongeBob. They get angry, but the real Mr. Krabs emerges from the bush that he had been watching from and reveals himself. He begins to walk away in shame, until Muttonchop gives him back his trophy, saying that revealing his condition was the manliest thing anyone could ever do, and revealing that they have all been hiding something as well (Torpedo-Belly, for instance, had his torpedo removed). As Mr. Krabs walks away with SpongeBob, he says "Yeah, poor suckers. At least my shell will grow back!" and they both start laughing as the episode ends.



 ) Associated production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  Captain Lenoe's - Michael Arthur, Colin Cater, Mick Graves, The Folk Players, Sarah Graves, Simon Ritchie [title card]
  Ta-Ra A - Sammy Burdson, John Charles Fiddy ["Perfection!"]
  Lonely Violin - Dick Stephen Walter [SpongeBob cries]
  Steel Sting (a) - Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob eats the Krabby Patty]
  ? - Nicolas Carr ["Hello, what's this?"]
  Towerstreet 17 [#6] - Gerhard Narholz [Krabs' hidey-hole]
  Heavenly Voices (b) - David Farnon [choir]
  The Tip Top Polka/The Cliff Polka - Chelmsford Folk Band [Krabs' navy stuff]
  Captain Lenoe's - Michael Arthur, Colin Cater, Mick Graves, The Folk Players, Sarah Graves, Simon Ritchie ["I still got it."]
  Astronauts March - Sam Spence ["All right, let's get this place ship-shape!"]
  Danger Zone - Mike Sunderland [Krabs' empty shell]
  Against the Law (b) - Wilfred William Burns [Krabs hiding behind a barrel]
  Lonely Heart's Club (a) - David Bell, Otto Sieben ["It's true. I've molted."]
  Up She Rises - Sam Spence ["You're acting like there never was a man in that shell."]
  Lonely Heart's Club (a) - David Bell, Otto Sieben [Krabs kicks his shell]
  Drama Link (b) - Hubert Clifford [SpongeBob screams]
  Chase Cue 1 - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [shell lands on SpongeBob's head]
  ? ["SpongeBob, you're a genius!"]
  ? - Nicolas Carr ["I get to be a Navy Buddy?"]
  Brahms' Lullaby - Johannes Brahms, Curtis Frederick Schwartz [wallet in bed]
  Daylight Shines Captain Lenoe's - Michael Arthur, Colin Cater, Mick Graves, The Folk Players, Sarah Graves, Simon Ritchie [at the reunion]
  What Shall We Do with the Drunken Sailor - Okko Bekker* [trophy awarded to Krabs]
  Finders Creepers - Paddy Kingsland [SpongeBob's speech]
  Steel Sting - Jeremy Wakefield ["Huh?"]
  Towerstreet 17 [#24] - Gerhard Narholz ["Where do you think you're going?!"]
  ? ["Let's have at it."]
  Towerstreet 17 [#17] - Gerhard Narholz [body slam]
  ? - Jeremy Wakefield [Krabs' shell breaks apart, revealing SpongeBob]
  Dramatic Impact 3 - Ivor Slaney [everyone gasps]
  Fates - Gregor F. Narholz ["This is who I am."]
  The Dreadnought Tea Clipper (b) - Tim Laycock, Robert Alexander White ["I don't understand."]
  Tales from the Swamp (c) - Ron Goodwin [fake sideburns]
  Blow the Man Down - Brian Peters ["I had my torpedo removed long ago."]
  The Twin Sisters - Chelmsford Folk Band [ending]

*removed from APM site


This episode is available on DVD on The Complete 4th SeasonFear of a Krabby PattySeason 4 Volume 1, and The First 100 Episodes.


  • "Shell of a Man" was ranked #85 during the Best Day Ever event on November 9–10, 2006.


  • This was the last episode to credit storyboard artists on the title card.
  • A yellow version of Reg from "No Weenies Allowed" is at the Navy reunion.
  • This is the second episode to have crabs on the title card. The first one being "Krusty Love", the third will be "Nautical Novice", the fourth will be Suction Cup Symphony, and the fifth will be "Grandpappy the Pirate".
  • Mr. Krabs would again be seen without his shell in "Shell Shocked".
  • In June 2009, Time Warner Cable and Charter Communications labeled this episode along with Fear of a Krabby Patty as "SpongeBob Fun" which is supposed to be a shopping show, but as of April 2010, it has been corrected.
  • The title card music Captain's Lenoe's will be used as music Uncle Cap'n Blue SquarePants dances to in BlackJack.
  • At the beginning when SpongeBob and Squidward are talking in their usual work positions, the Krusty Krab through the window alternates from the outer walls and windows seen through the window to simple yellow, orange, and black paint. This happens in a few other episodes.
  • This episode had the Nickelodeon productions light orange blob.
  • The epilogue cast has one of the working titles, "Molting."

Cultural References

  • This episode was originally titled "Molting" and then it was changed to "Shell Game", a reference to a pricing game of the same name on The Price Is Right, before finally being changed to "Shell of a Man", an expression meaning a man who is extremely depressed or disturbed by something.
  • Old Iron Eye's name is a parody to a character from the "Transformers" TV and Film series, Ironhide.
  • In the background on the wall you can see the same flags that were on the Krusty Krab. This is possibly a referance to it and where the flags on it came from.


  • SpongeBob was lighter then the shell because he went flying when Old Iron Eye and Torpedo Belly hit him.
  • SpongeBob is nearly as tall as Mr. Krabs' shell, but when Iron Eye punches him in the gut, he bounces around inside, making him appear very small in comparison to the shell.
  • The captions when SpongeBob says "Set course for full flavor!" instead say "That calls for full flavor!"
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