“Spongebob Squarepants” – Scaredy Pants EPISODE REVIEW
Spongebob has gained a reputation for being easily scared, which has coined him the nickname “Spongebob Scaredypants”, but Spongebob wants to prove that he can be frightening this Halloween, and so he dresses as a ghost of the Flying Dutchman with Patrick’s help. However, Spongebob’s costume is so tacky, that it offends the Flying Dutchman himself, who threatens to steal the souls of everyone at Mr. Krabs’ Halloween party.
The Strength of the best Spongebob episodes, is their ability to take a simple setup in fun directions, by treating the premise as a spring board for lots of creative gags, and this Halloween special is no exception. We go from Spongebob feeling insecure about his skills as a trick or treater, to finding ways to make him scary, and all this sparks the attention of a supernatural entity.
The comedy comes from Spongebob assuming that he’s genuinely scary, when really, he’s just running away in a fit of giggles before seeing people’s reactions, with Patrick naively assuring him that he was spooky. I do like how much Patrick cares about Spongebob’s need to scare too, doing everything he can to support his friend, going as far as shaving his spongey flesh to make him rounder for a ghostly shape.
The episode does have a great Halloween theme too! There’s pumpkins everywhere, kids are trick or treating, Krabs is having a fun Halloween party with guests in fancy dress, and the episode is set entirely at night. The Flying Dutchman himself is also quite an imposing villain, being a misty green spirit towering over Bikini Bottom residents, with Brian Doyle Murray’s gravelly booming voice adding to his menace perfectly, but he’s got enough self aware charm to prevent him from being too horrifying for kids.
I’d have to say that the creepiest part of the episode, isn’t actually the Flying Dutchman, but what’s underneath Spongebob’s costume, because it’s revealed that Patrick shaved him down to his insides, it’s quite unsettling actually, and Spongebob’s nonchalant reaction makes it all the more disturbing haha. I remember being pretty grossed out by this episode’s ending, because it’s just really weird seeing Spongebob’s brain being exposed like this, and I still find it kind of repulsive to this day haha!
To conclude, Scaredy Pants is a terrific Halloween special cartoon, one of the best even, a basic setup that inspires a string of funny gags and entertaining child friendly horror. If you’re after a wholesome take on Halloween, with scares that don’t go too far (minus maybe Spongebob’s brain being exposed), then pick this episode of Spongebob, because you won’t be let down.
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