The Krusty Krab opens at a seemingly average morning and SpongeBob is extremely happy. He gets the Krabby Patties ready and soon gets an order of two Krabby Patties plus an insult from Squidward, which is to no effect. His excitement eventually causes him to accidentally throw his spatula into the ceiling and when trying to get it out, he falls, nearly being injured by scissors and swords. Upon landing, all is well but he trips on tartar sauce. His thumb drags across the wooden floor and rams into a small slab that breaks in half, giving him a splinter that immediately makes his thumb red and swollen. His weak arms keep him from getting it out and even biting it doesn't work. The customer that ordered earlier is turning impatient and the splinter keeps SpongeBob from holding the spatula needed to serve him. He decides to tie it on his nose and Squidward soon finds out about it. Squidward then convinces SpongeBob that he will get sent home by Mr. Krabs if he sees the splinter and flushes his hat and spatula down the toilet. SpongeBob begs Squidward not to get him sent home, but is unsuccessful. Squidward also hints that he'll tell Mr. Krabs about the splinter. After Squidward gets his full enjoyment about the situation, Mr. Krabs drives a customer away with his cheap behavior. SpongeBob calls Patrick to get treated for it, but the treatment only ends up with his splinter further into his thumb, making it swell more and even infecting it. SpongeBob soon runs into Mr. Krabs and Squidward. Mr. Krabs soon sees the splinter and takes it out, curing him and causing an eruption of pus to impact Mr. Krabs. Squidward discovers that he could get sent home early and still get paid by getting injured, called worker's compensation, so he tries to injure himself, only to find out his shift had ended two minutes ago.
( ‣ ) Associated production music
( • ) Original music
( ◦ ) SpongeBob music
•SpongeBob Theme - Jeremy Wakefield, Sage Guyton [title card] ‣ ? ["Open for business!"] ‣Tripping Upstairs - Brian Peters [SpongeBob enters the kitchen] • ? - Nicolas Carr ["Hmm..."] •Comic Walk - Nicolas Carr [SpongeBob trying to pull the spatula off the ceiling] ‣ ? [swords] ‣Drama Link (g) - Hubert Clifford [SpongeBob falls] ‣Comic Capers B - Charlie Brissette, Norman Mamey ["I guess this is it."] • ? - Nicolas Carr [SpongeBob stops falling] ‣Terror by Night - Hubert Clifford [SpongeBob gets a splinter in his thumb] ‣Rasping Brass - Harry Bluestone, Emil Cadkin ["Hey, a splinter."] •Steel Sting - Jeremy Wakefield ["You have got to go... now."] ‣Drama Link (d) - Hubert Clifford [SpongeBob trying to remove the splinter] ‣ ? [SpongeBob bites the splinter] •Steel Licks - Jeremy Wakefield ["Okay, fine, stay."] ‣The Tip Top Polka/The Cliff Polka - Chelmsford Folk Band [SpongeBob ties the spatula to his nose] ‣Cockney Capers - Ray Davies* ["Can I ask you something?"] • ? - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [SpongeBob explains how he got the splinter] •Vibe Sting - Nicolas Carr [Squidward gets an idea] ‣Monocle and Pocket-Watch - Brian Douglas Gulland [Squidward tells SpongeBob he'll get sent home early] ‣Hawaiian Cocktail - Richard Myhill [SpongeBob cries] ‣Monocle and Pocket-Watch - Brian Douglas Gulland ["No, no, no, no, no, no..."] ‣Dramatic Impact 2 - Ivor Slaney ["Well, maybe."] ‣Monocle and Pocket-Watch - Brian Douglas Gulland ["...because he already knows."] ‣House of Horror - W. Merrick Farran [SpongeBob screams] ‣Unease - Dick Stephen Walter ["It's almost as if... he can smell it."] ‣The Dreadnought Tea Clipper (b) - Tim Laycock, Robert Alexander White [Krabs sniffing around] •Seaweed - Steve Belfer [SpongeBob calls Patrick] ‣Murder Scene 2 - Harry Bluestone, Emil Cadkin ["We're gonna make it go away."] ‣Menace - Harry Bluestone, Emil Cadkin [Patrick pounds the splinter in further] ‣Dramatic Cue (e) - Ronald Hanmer [SpongeBob's thumb swells up] • ? - Jeremy Wakefield [Patrick smears garbage on it] ‣Dramatic Cue (e) - Ronald Hanmer [SpongeBob's thumb gets infected] •Vibe Sting - Nicolas Carr [Patrick's watch beeps] •Steel Licks - Jeremy Wakefield ["Call me in the morning, if you can still dial the phone."] ‣Dramatic Impact 6 - Ivor Slaney [SpongeBob gasps] ‣Drama Link (c) - Hubert Clifford [SpongeBob's hat covering his thumb] ‣Voodoo Victim - Gilbert Vinter ["Have you always had three legs?"] ‣Drama Link (b) - Hubert Clifford [swollen thumb revealed] ‣Drama Link (f) - Hubert Clifford [Squidward faints] ‣ ? [Krabs pulls out the splinter] ‣ ? [choir] ‣The Tip Top Polka/The Cliff Polka - Chelmsford Folk Band ["I thought I was gonna have to pay you workman's compersation."] ‣Tympup A - Sammy Burdson, John Charles Fiddy [Squidward's eyes open] • ? - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [ending]
*removed from APM site
This episode is regarded by fans as one of the worst in the series, mainly because the splinter scenes were regarded as being too gruesome or disgusting for a child-friendly cartoon. In fact, some of the more gruesome scenes, such as the closeups of the infected thumb, are quite reminiscent of Ren and Stimpy.
Mr. Krabs must have known how to fix splinters which can be evidence of him being a doctor and whether his doctor commercial in Truth or Square is a hoax or not. However, it could be Patrick's garbage treatment actually worked, loosening the splinter.
When Patrick puts SpongeBob's foot in his mouth, you can see his shoe and sock is removed. When the scene cuts back to SpongeBob and Patrick, the sock is still on his foot, and when Patrick removes the foot from his mouth, the shoe is also on.
This is the second time SpongeBob has something stuck in the kitchen, the first time was in Employee of the Month. Ironically, both started at the grill and became stuck on the ceiling.
This is the second time Patrick impersonates a doctor. This first was Suds. Both times he is confident on how to do his job. Though Patrick should be arrested for impersonating a doctor (for being a quack doctor), as Sandy says in Suds.
In Suction Cup Symphony, SpongeBob would be the doctor instead and Patrick doesn't know this during The Splinter.
If one would look closely when the spatula is in the freezer getting the Krabby Patties, there is a frozen caveman.
When Squidward finds out that SpongeBob got injured on the job, he flushes SpongeBob's hat and spatula down the toliet. After getting an "appointment" with Patrick, SpongeBob hears Mr. Krabs coming. When Squidward and Mr. Krabs enter in the kitchen, SpongeBob hid his right hand in his hat, so SpongeBob must have had a spare hat.
This is one of the few episodes where SpongeBob's skeleton is shown despite being an invertebrate (Squid on Strike is another example, where this happes twice in that episode).
In real life, it's impossible for splinters to grow as big as SpongeBob's in this episode. They can't heal as fast if they were infected either.
When Patrick put the garbage compress on SpongeBob's thumb, it turned dark purple and green pus came out of it. However, when SpongeBob later showed Mr. Krabs and Squidward his thumb, it was red in color.
SpongeBob says he's ambidextrous, but when he gets a splinter he ties his spatula to his nose so he can still work.
When SpongeBob opens the box he took out from his pants, it was halfly in the table, but there clearly wasn't a hole there before he put the box down.
The kitchen seemed suddenly turned much higher when SpongeBob realizes his spatula was stuck in the ceiling.