"The Thing" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season four. In this episode, SpongeBob and Patrick think Squidward is an animal, and call him Smelly.



Squidward notices that the neighborhood is unusually quiet, and assumes that SpongeBob is gone for the evening. Back in his house, Squidward tries to relax and watch some smooth jazz on public television, only to be distracted by SpongeBob and Patrick, who emphasize that they are trying to "enhance'" Squidward's evening. Eventually, Squidward lets SpongeBob and Patrick watch with him, only to be bombarded with questions. At last, Squidward is fed up and leaves Patrick and SpongeBob watching his television.

Departing the neighborhood on his bicycle, Squidward is hit by a truck of cement and flies off into Jellyfish Fields, where he stays for five days. SpongeBob and Patrick are jellyfishing where they spot him, and decide to adopt Squidward, who they consider a wild animal and refer to as "Smelly."

Back at SpongeBob's pineapple house, Gary attacks Squidward and SpongeBob determines that it is dangerous for Smelly to remain in his household. Patrick decides to take Squidward under his wing, and plays a game of catch with him at his rock, but ends up calling Animal Control, who come and take Smelly to the zoo. There, SpongeBob is horrified that everyone is treating Smelly so cruelly, so that night, SpongeBob and Patrick break into the zoo and plan to free Squidward. However, they are caught by Animal Control and SpongeBob and Patrick only manage to lose them by going underground.
Giant Clam in The Thing

After a while, Patrick sees the light and the gang find themselves in a jungle-like landscape. SpongeBob remarks that the creatures around them look just like Smelly, so they leave Smelly with his real family and return home. The creatures accept Squidward as one of their kind, and as Kelpy G starts playing his clarinet, Squidward's cement cracks open and he simply says to the creatures, "Um...hi."



 ) Associated production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  Clownfish Capers - Sage Guyton, Jeremy Wakefield [Title card]
  Footsteps of Horror - W. Merrick Farran ["It's too quiet."]
  Dingles Regatta - Brian Peters ["Could it be?"]
  SpongeBob Closing Theme - Steve Belfer, Nicolas Carr [Squidward yells at SpongeBob and Patrick.]
  Squiddy G - Nicolas Carr, Barry Anthony [Smooth jazz]
  Seaweed - Steve Belfer [SpongeBob and Patrick are at Squidward's door.]
  Squiddy G - Nicolas Carr, Barry Anthony [Smooth jazz]
  Drama Link (b) - Hubert Clifford [Squidward screams.]
  Baby Elephant - Dick Stephen Walter ["All I wanted to do was watch some smooth jazz on public television."]
  The Bachelor Life (c) - Laurie Johnson ["I think I've seen this before."]
  Comic Walk - Sidney Torch [Squidward rides his bike.]
  Drama Link (d) - Hubert Clifford [Squidward gets covered with cement.]
  Cartoon Capers (c) - Dick Stephen Walter [Squidward falls through a sewage pipe.]
  Cartoon Capers (r) - Dick Stephen Walter [Squidward falls through a sewage pipe.]
  House of Horror - W. Merrick Farran [Squidward gets stung by a jellyfish.]
  Steel Licks (b) - Jeremy Wakefield [The cement dries.]
  Hawaiian Cocktail - Richard Myhill ["Day five, I think."]
  Vibe Sting - Nicolas Carr ["What is that thing, Patrick?"]
  Lonely Heart's Club (a) - David Bell, Otto Sieben ["Hi, stranger. I am SpongeBob."]
  Drama Link (d) - Hubert Clifford [SpongeBob and Patrick scream.]
  Lonely Heart's Club (a) - David Bell, Otto Sieben ["Wait a minute, maybe he's not a monster."]
  Happy Holiday - Anthony Spurgin [Back at home]
  Wooden Bear - Gil Flat, Tony Tape, Florian Voelxen [Playing catch]
  Dramatic Cue (c) - Ronald Hanmer [Patrick calls Animal Control.]
  Toys for Boys - Boris Schoska ["Sure, I'll hold."]
  Dramatic Cue (b) - Ronald Hanmer [Squidward tries to go home.]
  Towerstreet 17 [#10] - Gerhard Narholz [The SWAT team arrives.]
  Dramatic Cue (e) - Ronald Hanmer [Squidward is taken to the zoo.]
  Steel Licks (a) - Jeremy Wakefield ["Mommy, what is that thing?"]
  Steel Licks - Jeremy Wakefield [Everyone laughs.]
  Drowsy Reef - Jeremy Wakefield, Sage Guyton ["This isn't good."]
  Mission Improbable - Nicolas Carr, Barry Anthony [SpongeBob and Patrick try to break Squidward out.]
  West Side Rumble - Sam Spence [The SWAT team chases them.]
  Comic Walk - Sidney Torch ["Let's see where this dark sewer tunnel leads."]
  Mysterious Things - Nicolas Carr [Jungle]
  Hawaiian Link (b) - Richard Myhill ["I'm gonna miss him, SpongeBob."]
  Squiddy G - Nicolas Carr, Barry Anthony [The ending]



  • As of August 12, 2016, The Internet Movie Database (IMDB) gives this episode a rating of 7.7/10 based on 148 ratings by users.[1] users give this episode a rating of 8/10 based on 135 votes.[2]


  • This episode is similar to "Jellyfishing," where in both episodes, Squidward rides his bicycle to get away from SpongeBob and Patrick, but ends up getting injured and unable to talk. Thus, revealing himself at the end by his uniform cracking open.
  • The squid on TV looks similar to Dream Squidward from a dream in "SquidBob TentaclePants."
  • When SpongeBob and Patrick are watching TV, the show plays the same music heard while Patrick watches TV in "Rock-a-Bye Bivalve" and Patrick saye, "Oh wait! I think I've seen this before. This part's funny." It is likely the same show Patrick watched in that episode.
  • Patrick says that Squidward hates pets. However, in "The Great Snail Race," Squidward shows great care for his pet snail.
  • This is the first appearance of Kelpy G.
  • This is the second episode in which Squidward has an accident while riding a bicycle in an attempt to get away from SpongeBob and Patrick. The first is "Jellyfishing."
  • This is the third of four episodes transcribed as a comic into the SpongeBob SquarePants/Tokyopop book Mistaken Identity. The other three were "Once Bitten," "That's No Lady," and "Rule of Dumb."
    • Coincidentally, all are season 4 episodes.
  • The smooth jazz song is heard once again in "A Flea in Her Dome" and "Enchanted Tiki Dreams."
  • In this episode, Kelpy G's name is not mentioned. However, in "Smoothe Jazz at Bikini Bottom," it is.
    • However, his name is revealed in the closing credits to this episode.
  • This was the first episode to premiere in 2007.
  • This episode premiered on Andrea Martin's 60th birthday and five years after SuperSponge was released in Australia.
  • This episode was released on the Season 4 Volume 2 DVD box set a few days before it aired on TV in the USA.
  • This episode was paired up with "Squilliam Returns" during the Massive Monster Mayhem Marathon.

Cultural references


  • At the beginning of the episode, the path to Patrick's rock is missing.
  • Squidward's grape juice box background is yellow and Patrick's is purple, but later they are both purple.
  • Squidward asks no one in particular if a hard-working squid could get a break. However, Squidward is an octopus, not a squid, and he does not even care about his job at the Krusty Krab.
  • Patrick never says where his house is, but somehow, the cops showed up right where they needed to.
  • Kelpy G's clarinet in his song sounds more like a saxophone.
  • The TV description for this episode says that Squidward gets in a bicycling accident and gets covered in mud and leaves. However he actually gets covered in cement.