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Does THIS look like Nightmare Retardant to you?![1]

SpongeBob SquarePants is one of Nick's best and most hilarious shows since the fall of Rugrats. Some people think it's past its prime, others think think it's gotten too sweet, but most of them agree that these moments were downright nightmarish.

Remember, this page is for describing general sources of Nightmare Fuel.


General

  • The terrifying-ness of SpongeBob SquarePants is lampshaded in 30 Rock, where after Kenneth gets cable TV for the first time, he remarks "Is SpongeBob SquarePants SUPPOSED to be so terrifying?"
  • There's plenty of Nightmare Fuel in the SpongeBob SquarePants Movie, such as the ice cream vendor monster, and her "cat".
    • For such a light-hearted series, Dennis (the Bounty Hunter that chases SpongeBob and Patrick throughout the film) is a surprisingly threatening and vicious villain.
      • The diver probably gave more than a few kids nightmares when he showed up.
  • Another example is in the video games Battle for Bikini Bottom, and SpongeBob's Truth or Square in Rock Bottom. The music there is HORRIFYING. Its also not helped by the fact, that those Sleepy Robots are both REALLY ANNOYING AND IN THE WAY but also VERY HARD TO KILL!! And it will hurt you very easily. Especially with Sandy. Rock Bottom in BFBB is also one of the most complicated places in the game.
    • I always found the Kelp Caves disturbing. The music is a sluggish, lower version of the regular Kelp Forest music, with added background noises like the noises of cave-dwelling animals. Its combination of eerie setting, disturbing music, and cramped space has always given me the chills. Not helping is the fact that I was stuck in the cave for literally years before figuring out the solution... I also found the Sleepytime robots scary, mainly because of the fact that it makes a loud noise when striking and I wasn't expecting it when it first happened to me. For some reason, I also found the Monsoon robots scary; they prevented me from clearing the Rock Bottom Museum, perhaps the least disturbing area of Rock Bottom, for years. Not helping is the fact that one of each can be found in the Kelp Caves...
  • The Chum Bucket. When you take into account what chum is, actually made of you start to realize why nobody eats there... chum is GROUND UP FISH used to attract sharks.
    • One newspaper article ran Plankton out of business: "Plankton's chum made of your chums? The Chum Bucket serves your friends in more ways than one?"
  • ALL HAIL PLANKTON!
  • A lot of episodes feature SpongeBob's brain for some reason, and all of them are extremely creepy. For example: see Plankton, Scaredy Pants, Welcome to the Chum Bucket, Penny Foolish, Bucket Sweet Bucket, and The Inside Job.
  • The scarily realistic close-ups of only horrifying things.
  • Many of the cast, especially Spongebob, display creepy moments of Sanity Slippage.


Pre-Movie Seasons

Season 1

  • There's "Tea At The Treedome", which revolves around SpongeBob slowly dehydrating in Sandy's tree dome. The fact that Patrick gets trapped in the treedome towards the end as well doesn't help.
    • And all the while, he's convincing Sandy that he's fine, and also kinda giving into Patrick's peer pressure, until he can't stand it anymore.
      • SpongeBob's Madness Mantra of "I don't need it" before he finally snaps.
  • Squeaky Boots, which is a parody of The Telltale Heart. Mr. Krabs becomes annoyed by the squeaky sound of these new boots he gave SpongeBob, so he steals them and hides them under the floorboard of the Krusty Krab. Back at the Krusty Krab, he has a disturbing hallucination sequence as a result of his guilt, in which he hears the squeaking everywhere and goes mad from it.
  • Patrick going crazy in the episode "Nature Pants" when he started to miss SpongeBob, who had decided to give up his old life and live among the jellyfish. Especially the scene where he takes a swing at SpongeBob with a jellyfish net, and as an Ominous Music Box Tune is heard in the background, Patrick tearfully but angrily says "If I can't have you as a friend, I'm gonna make you a trophy!" He then shows SpongeBob a jar with SpongeBob's name on it and tells him "I even picked out this nice jar for you!" Oh my god.
    • "FRIENDS FOREVER, SPONGEBOB!!!!"
  • All the chaos caused by the fish trying to 'do the sponge' in "The Chaperone" was really funny, but also kind of disturbing, such as breaking their own legs clean off, getting their bodies and heads swapped with each other, getting chased (for some reason) by a giant apple, and just straight up dying with paramedics catching them on a stretcher!
  • When SpongeBob wanted to dress as the Flying Dutchman for Halloween, but his square body didn't allow this. Patrick decided to give him a "haircut" for it to fit. It's not until after a botched attempt at a prank that the real Flying Dutchman tells him to take off the sheet, and flies off screaming. The camera then cut to SpongeBob, where it turns out Patrick didn't just cut off his edges, he cut him down to his brain! Everyone else then ran away from them. Patrick doesn't realize why they all ran off at first, but shortly after SpongeBob explains about his brain, Patrick suddenly runs away too. Despite all this, as was pointed out, "Don't worry-- it grows back".
  • In "I Was A Teenage Gary" SpongeBob turns into a snail after being injected by snail plasma. Naturally, it was quite a Painful Transformation, and left him unable to talk.
    • ...and the music that plays shortly afterward is absolutely horrifying.
    • For a long time people believed there was a deleted scene on the DVD with this episode on it with Squidward transforming into a snail as well. It was eventually debunked by Vincent Waller, who claimed no such scene was in the storyboard.
  • In "SB-129", Squidward travels through time and ends up in a blank white void. He remarks to himself that he can finally be alone... which is when the word manifests itself as a colorful caption. Then a series of disembodied voices start saying the word "alone", accompanied by more colorful representations of the word, until Squidward finally snaps and tries to get out.
    • If you've played EarthBound, it gets even worse once you remember The Place.
    • What made that scene particularly nightmarish for some wasn't so much the surrealism of garishly-colored words appearing out of nowhere, but the Fridge Logic of being trapped alone, in a blank white void for all eternity.
      • There's also a major Fridge Horror factor to that. Were those voices coming from other people who had been trapped in the same void?
    • "SB-129" also has a mega case of Fridge Horror. Squidward is in the freezer for 2000 years, and then he gets sent back to the past, and eventually to his own time. Fair enough, right? But then you realize that there are now two Squidwards: the one that returned to the present, and the other which is still STUCK INSIDE THE KRUSTY KRAB'S FREEZER. Presumably it never gets discovered, hence why Squidward isn't freed for 2000 years, which essentially means that after that episode, there's a frozen replica of Squidward inside the freezer. Just as well none of the customers know that... Talk about your Timey-Wimey Ball.
      • It kind of gets worse when you realize that in another episode SpongeBob says he checked every freezer in the Krusty Krab. Considering how stupid SpongeBob has been lately, it wouldn't be a shock if he saw the frozen Squidward and did nothing about it.
      • There is at least one other episode, "Nasty Patty," where the Krusty Krab freezer is seen again, completely empty. But it's funny, in that episode, they were trying to hide a body in there from the police (yeah...); but supposedly at least one body was already inside...
  • The talking drop of hot sauce in "Karate Choppers". The fact that it's voiced by and has the face of Tom Kenny is only a small amount of Nightmare Retardant. It just comes out of nowhere and is never mentioned again. It was supposed to be Played for Laughs, but still...
  • In "Suds," SpongeBob gets sick and Patrick, pretending to be a doctor, abuses him and makes him get worse. This results in SpongeBob sneezing so loudly and painfully, that it destroys the Krusty Krab.
  • The episode where SpongeBob is trapped overnight in Rock Bottom definitely plays to childhood -- and adult -- fears.
    • The things that come out of the bathroom. What makes it scarier is that all of those beings are based on real animals.
  • The April Fools episode. After one too many a prank by SpongeBob, Squidward sets him up a prank that crosses the line, sending SpongeBob home crying. But that wasn't it. Earlier in the episode, SpongeBob, as part of one of his pranks, pretends to lose his tongue, which turns out to be a fake. But the part that gets scary is that the tongue is alive, laughing cheerfully and innocently with SpongeBob. It's never explained what it/he/whatever is exactly, which makes it a bit creepy.
  • In "Hooky", while Patrick and SpongeBob walk towards the hook infested area, Patrick mentions there was a kid who came by earlier, and then cue the scene of a pair of children's shoes laying beside a rock.
  • SpongeBob once KILLED the Dirty Bubble (by popping him trying to get an autograph, no less.) Thank you Negative Continuity. (Although This Troper finds his cries of "WATCH THE POINT!" completely hilarious.)
    • Actually it's probably not Negative Continuity because the Post-Movie episode "Back To The Past" shows there as being a Dirty Bubble Wand which is used to make the Dirty Bubble which justifies this. Man Ray probably just had the Dirty Bubble Wand and revived him by using it.
    • SpongeBob laying on the floor, almost dead, and moaning. Nightmare Retardant when he just wanted help with opening a can of mayonnaise. But, dude! All that for MAYONNAISE?!

Season 2

  • "Squid's Day Off" where SpongeBob is left in charge of the Krusty Krab while Squidward goes out to do some "errands". After running back and forth Squidward finally barricades himself in his house. "I'm not going to think about you know who, at the who know what, doing I don't care." Cut to creepy laugh and a psycho looking Squidward with his eyes bloodshot and wide eyed.
    • He looks more like a realistic squid here (walking on all fours like one) and his EYES... jesus christ!
    • He gets progressively MORE psycho-looking until he ends up running back to the Krusty Krab with the most horrifying, off-model expression ever seen in SpongeBob.
  • In the episode "Bubble Buddy", a man asks SpongeBob to bury him in the sand. He does and then asks Bubble Buddy to dig him out and walks away. The tide comes in and we later see him as an angel/ghost. Nightmare Retardant because Scooter (that's his name) seems to be happy with it.
    • So... he wanted to die?
    • Also, Bubble Buddy is shown to be fully sentient at the end of the episode, after making the fish experience high tide. So he was sentient the whole time and could have helped the fish, but he just watched the fish drown.
  • In "Dying For Pie" when Squidward is doing all of the things SpongeBob wanted to do with him, there's a part where SpongeBob is doing surgery on Squidward and poking Squidward's heart while Squidward is still conscious. A few moments later, BLOOD STARTS SQUIRTING OUT.
    • Even worse, it was on SpongeBob's list, it wasn't just a weird joke the writers threw in. SpongeBob is a sicko if he wants to do open heart surgery with his best friend.
    • The entire premise of that episode is nightmare fuel. The concept of a bomb being hidden in food so there is no way to see it or defuse it? Ugh.
  • Wormy. That must've made some kids develop mottephobia.
    • Oh god, those live-action bug close-ups were horrible.
    • It's not the horsefly that gets some (yes, that's what it is), but the loud buzzing that drones when it pops up.
    • Knowledge that real life people fear it make it less Idiot Ball-like that the residents of Bikini Bottom think it's a monster.
    • Your Mileage May Vary, though, as some people think it's funny. (My Internet friend thought it was funny.)
  • In "Survival of the Idiots", the vision of hibernating Sandy is horrifying. And many would fear the inevitable moment when Sandy is going to wake up...
    • Patrick demonstrating "disturbing." He produces a talking Nightmare Face from his back and has it declare that it's "Pat-BACK!" Lampshaded by SpongeBob: "Ha, that really is disturbing!"
  • One episode has a dorky Jellyfish catcher's scalp ripped off and worn as a hat. BTW, sea cucumber's crowns (here represented by a literal one for more reasons than one) correspond to their anuses, something Stephen Hillenburg (a marine biologist) knew. Takes the word "asshat" to a whole new meaning.
  • In one episode, Sandy gets into an argument with the other main characters about which is better: Land animals or sea animals. They taunt her until she tries to prove her superiority by taking off her helmet and smashing it. The scene is frightening because her smashed helmet releases an air bubble which quickly floats away, and you can't help but think, "That was her only air!" The worst part is that her friends laugh at her as she begins drowning. Once she realizes she's about to die, she quickly finds a pickle jar which inexplicably has air in it and sticks her head into it.
    • Her lungs shriveling up and breaking off of her airways. In an x-ray. (What's more that I used to love that scene as a kid.)
    • In the same episode, SpongeBob demonstrates his "sponginess" by budding off several new heads.
  • "The Smoking Peanut". The moment when the clam starts crying is a bit of a shock, but the worst part is when Patrick tracks SpongeBob down and LICKS HIM! (He doesn't really, but the moment is horrible)
  • "Shanghaied" features Squidward being thrown by the Flying Dutchman into the "Fly of Despair," an apparently endless abyss filled with terrifying imagery and sounds.
    • Look closely at some of the things in the tunnel as Squidward falls. Some of the things (including a skull-snake with wings) are downright horrifying and can only be described as "what is that thing?"
    • Though it'd make a good death metal album cover.
    • It actually does have an end, actually. Marked by spaghetti and meatballs within the rift.
    • According to the Other Wiki, the episode was banned in Australia and Britain for its dark tone and disturbing scenes. The episode it was paired with ("Gary Takes A Bath") was also banned for the popular "subliminal messages" part (its punchline being a picture of a Creepy Child.)
  • The episode where Plankton has SpongeBob working for him, and SpongeBob says he'll cook Krabby Patties -- or whatever it was -- later. That's not the scary part. The scene that's scary is when Plankton took SpongeBob's brain and made a robot version of SpongeBob.
    • In that same episode SpongeBob was trying to cook in the Chum Bucket kitchen and opened the oven (or whatever it was) to reveal a mutated burger. The meat part of it actually formed into a hand which it used to pull itself forward in an attempt to get at SpongeBob all the while muttering something incoherently (and creepily).
    • SpongeBob, at the end of that episode, is shown looking lobotomized, implying that Plankton didn't put his brain in correctly.
  • "Frankendoodle." For some, it's not scary at all, but for others, that babbling, raving voice, its violent intentions, and the way it's drawn are deeply disturbing.
  • Patrick's laugh at the end of "The Secret Box."
  • The episode Graveyard Shift ended with all the scary things being explained rationally... but it turns out the lights had been going on and off because the vampire from Nosferatu had been flipping the light-switch. He's not even animated!
    • Don't forget Nosferatu's smile at the end. Brrr...
    • The way Squidward and SpongeBob's eyebrows reacted to the visitor in that episode was creepy.
  • In "Procrastination", SpongeBob dreams that his house catches on fire as a result of SpongeBob putting off doing a report, and it suddenly becomes sentient, using its door for a mouth and port-hole window for an eye, and screams in agony as it burns. There's also the snail clock coming to life and saying in a sinister deep voice "Time's up, SpongeBob!"
    • The moment that got some was when the power goes out in SpongeBob's house. He lights a candle and hears someone cooing out his name. He turns around and sees his chair has gained a horrific-looking mouth and eyes and is coaxing him to "put his feet up" in a obscenely creepy voice.
    • The candle flame coming to life and burning the report, thus setting the house on fire. Oh, and the voice of it is NOT a female.
  • The episode "Jellyfish Hunter", in addition to siccing the nightmarish "Moar Krabs" upon us, contains a genuinely disturbing scene in which SpongeBob is being stalked by a jellyfish, including an infamous "heavy breathing" phone call.
    • Oh, and then it puts SpongeBob in a jar.
    • It Got Worse when No Name, the jellyfish who was stalking SpongeBob, takes him to Mr. Krabs' factory where we see the jellyfish SpongeBob had caught for Mr. Krabs are inside tubes, and being forcibly drained of their jelly like they were oranges, by a robot who tells them "coochie coochie coo." The dried out/dead ones are even put into trash cans.
  • In the "strike" episode, SpongeBob is stuck to a window. When Squidward tries to pull him away, HE TEARS HIS ENTIRE FACE OFF AND YOU CAN SEE HIS INTERNAL ORGANS.
    • The end. Mr. Krabs puts Squidward and SpongeBob to work for him "forever." "One Eternity Later," and they're skeletons, still working. The fact that cobwebs are everywhere will set off araneophobics.

Season 3

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 SpongeBob: But it's good for you!

Squidward: Good for you? That thing is a heart attack on a bun!

SpongeBob: No, Squidward... I meant, good for your soul...

(angelic background and singing)

Squidward: Oh, puh-leeze... I have no soul!

(hellish background and evil music)

Demonic Voice: Bwahahahahahaaa!

(Squidward's eyes widen, music stops short and he walks away)

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    • The Demonic Voice becomes Nightmare Retardant, though, if you remember one thing...
    • The creepily insane look on Squidward's face after he eats the patty he buried underground and runs back to the Krusty Krab.
    • The deleted scene is also frankly disturbing. See, Squidward first checks if the Krusty Krab has security measures for the Patty Vault. He realizes that it's just a bucket of water placed on top of the door. He laughs about it, opens the door, and the bucket spills over the floor. He steps on the puddle and comments that it's too easy. He then sniffs the liquid and realizes that the 'water' is really gas. A robotic arm then appears and drops a lit match into the gas, resulting in a huge explosion. Squidward then opens the kitchen door, setting off another burglar alarm. The kitchen bursts into flames for a few seconds.
  • The health inspector episode. SpongeBob and Mr. Krabs believe the health inspector at the Krusty Krab to be a phony who's faking it for free food, so they serve him the a disgusting, moldy Krabby Patty which apparently kills him. The rest of the episode is creepily monochromatic, and about them hiding the battered body from the police.
  • The episode with the "small ray" takes Body Horror to a new level; when trying to reverse the ray, SpongeBob puts Squidward through an increasingly painful series of agonizing morphs -- catching fire, being cut in half by scissors, having no skin... the worst transformations happened offscreen, with hideous gurgling sound effects that left the true horror to the viewer's imagination, which only made it worse.
    • Then the shrunken citizens attack SpongeBob from the inside, and we see inside. Squidward saws a vein!
  • The episode in which Ms. Puff is blamed for SpongeBob's inept driving and winds up in jail, which to her is a respite from the hell of her normal life. SpongeBob and Patrick, failing to understand, repeatedly try to rescue her, but instead make the guards think she's insane and throw her in an isolation cell. In the cell, she goes insane for real and starts hallucinating that the padded walls are made of sponge, and that each has SpongeBob's laughing face on it. Then she starts hallucinating the beginning of the episode over and over, each time a little different and a little weirder. The episode ends with her giving up on deciding what's real and what's not and resigning herself to insanity. Good thing for Negative Continuity.
    • It is actually implied that the entire jail episode was just a hallucination Mrs. Puff had while still falling off the cliff, which makes it all the more disturbing. After the solitary confinement scene and Mrs. Puff is shown falling off the cliff again, she has two more hallucinations, and the episode ends with her still falling off the cliff, her fate left ambiguous. Ten times more disturbing in that context. Good thing for Negative Continuity indeed.
  • "We're like brothers-- only closer."
  • The episode with the Salty Spittoon. A tough-looking fish describes how tough you have to be to get in;
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 Fish: You need to have muscles. (flexes) You need to have muscles on your muscles. (flexes again). You need to have muscles on your eyeballs! (HIS EYES FLEX)

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  • The "appetizer" Mr. Krabs serves as food in "Squilliam Returns". Squidward, and later everyone else, was freaked out by it.
  • There was a scene in the episode "Wet Painters" where SpongeBob sees a microscopic drop of paint on Mr. Krabs' first dollar and his eyes crack open, causing his irises to ooze out.
  • The scene in Krab Borg where Mr. Krabs accidentally gets salt in his eyes is rather disturbing. His red eyes and him screaming in pain.
  • That shriveled up old lady in "Chocolate with Nuts". It was supposed to be funny, but it was a little jarring...
  • The episode where Barnacle Boy becomes evil and forms a league of supervillains after feeling underappreciated. To stop the league of supervillains, Mermaid Man loans the costumes of retired superheroes to SpongeBob, Sandy, Patrick, and Squidward. Each costume gives them the superpowers of the hero that wore it. During the fight with Barnacle Boy and the other villains, everyone's superpower backfires in horrible ways (Squidward, thanks to a mis-aimed water-ball shot by Mermaid Man, ending up burning him to cinders, and SpongeBob, as The Quickster, getting caught running in a circle with his super-speed and DISINTEGRATING are two of the most jarring). In the end it is revealed that everyone is still alive, albeit injured.
  • The episode with the snail races. The part where SpongeBob overworks Gary, causing the latter's shell and eye stalks to burst in the middle of the race. And the part where Gary crashes in a giant fireball against a wall of tires.
  • The live-action gorilla, emerging from his animated Patrick suit in I Had An Accident. Stuff like that should belong in The Amazing World of Gumball.
  • Though this was more like That's Gotta Hurt, the scene in the tattletale strangler episode where SpongeBob gets really pointy cleats to jump on the Strangler's shoulders to go to a window, but misses and lands into the strangler's eyes.
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SpongeBob: I'm trying, but my cleats are stuck in your corneas!

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  • In Clams after Mr. Krabs looses his millionth dollar we see him slowly go completely insane. The cut back to Mr. Krabs, who begins giggling maniacally and tears his two eyes out, using them as a jumprope is genuinely disturbing.
    • Also in Clams, RIGHT after Mr. Krabs lost his 1,000,000th dollar to that clam (and before he begins to cry about it), the camera cuts from the clam swimming away with Mr. Krabs' dollar to Mr. Krabs' eyes! It is creepy how they drew them so realistically, and made them look STRAIGHT AT YOU!!! I don't know about you, but it definitely scared me as a child (it still kinda scares me now.)
    • Squid's scream when SpongeBob rips his nose off with the fishing rod sounds incredibly painful.

Post-Movie Seasons

  • Recent SpongeBob episodes are very violent with characters getting skinned, melting flesh, and ripped in half. They also make use of the Uncanny Valley trope.
    • Maybe the creators have been "researching" this site.

Season 4

  • The "Have You Seen This Snail?" episode. Seeing those empty shells in grandma's closet...
    • "Grandma knows just how hungry you are, Miss Tuffsie."
    • All those spiders crawling out of that darn crumb.
    • Gary's stomach growing a face and moaning!
  • Carl from "Selling Out" is rather creepy, especially considering how happy he is during his every line.
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Carl: The less you know, Eugene, the better.

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  • "Mermaid Man & Barnacle Boy VI: The Motion Picture." After a scene in the movie (specifically, Pearl falling off the cliff) destroys the whole set, SpongeBob is disappointed but still relieved that they got the footage. Patrick agrees, but then SpongeBob notices something blocking the lens. Patrick then reveals that it's a lens cap, and he put it on right before they started filming, rendering the whole movie meaningless. SpongeBob then goes insane by breaking off a big chunk of the pavement and slurping the worms under it!! Even the characters were shocked. Granted, he gets better, but still...
    • People in Bikini Bottom keep worms as pets, and the worms even act like dogs. Think about it...
    • "And they're using... actors." Yuck.
    • Let's not forget Squidward's makeup for Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy...
  • The episode "Squidbob Tentaclepants" features Squidward and SpongeBob becoming biologically fused due to one of Sandy's inventions. It's not so bad at first, but once everything seems to be resolved, Squidward wanted to be fused again, just so he could be a star... It ends with all the characters becoming trapped in a hideous flesh-colored blob with random moaning heads sticking out of it. Nightmare Retardant (or not) if you remember one thing: "TETSUOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!"
    • The way SquidBob comes out of the transporter, set to the creepy music. It even freaks out Sandy!
  • The episode in which the Flying Dutchman's ship breaks down, forcing him to take up residence in SpongeBob's pineapple. The Dutchman tried several mildly scary things in order to disturb SpongeBob, and, towards the climax of the episode, appeared as a huge snake with a huge, grotesque baby's head, which melted, turning into an effigy of SpongeBob, whose eyes elongated into hideous wiggling white worms and squiggled onto the floor while spiders crawled out of his eye sockets and mouth. Also among his forms are a clown's head on the same worm-like creature, and a giant, disturbingly realistic (for this show) insect. It was intended to be a parody of an over-the-top horror movie, but managed to be incredibly horrible.
    • In all fairness, the point is that the Dutchman has been in SpongeBob's house so long by that point, and pulling so many scary stunts each day, that SpongeBob has become immune to and blase about them.
      • While the momentary appearance on the creature of a Waldo "Bob" Dobbs head was just downright odd...
    • The Flying Dutchman also did the same thing to scare Squidward in the end because Squidward didn't believe in ghosts. He also manifested himself as a vision of Squid's mother moaning "Why haven't you called meeeee?" and then melting.
    • At one part, SpongeBob opens a fridge and a huge monster head suddenly pops out and screams.
  • In "All That Glitters", SpongeBob breaks his spatula in the beginning when trying to lift a massive glob of patty meat. As SpongeBob is screaming in terror, we get a lovely shot of the half of the spatula's body squirming around in pain under the meat, the Spatula supposedly 'dying'.
    • Fridge Horror kicks in with other times his spatula was damaged if you believe that the spatula has always been sentient.
  • In the episode "Once Bitten", Gary gets "Mad Snail Disease" and goes on a biting spree, turning everyone into zombies. Some "survivors" are barricaded in the Krusty Krab, and when SpongeBob arrives (followed by a hoard of zombies), the survivors refuse to let him in (although he manages to anyway.) But Gary appears out of nowhere and SpongeBob protects him when the survivors decide to kill him "for his own good." However, there was no disease in the first place, and Gary was acting strangely because of a "splinter" stuck in him.
  • In one scene in the episode "Bummer Vacation", SpongeBob's sitting in Patrick's house after being forced by Mr. Krabs to take a vacation and hiring Patrick as his temporary replacement. When Patrick finds him, SpongeBob looks (and acts) completely insane! You can see the clip here.
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SpongeBob: I'VE BEEN WAITING FOR YOU, PATRICK.

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      • Then, in the next scene, it's implied that SpongeBob killed Patrick and is wearing his skin. He's not, but just the thought that SpongeBob would prioritize his job over his best friend in the creepiest way imaginable...
  • The entirety of the episode where SpongeBob and Patrick go inside Squidward to get his clarinet reed out of his throat. During which they are screwing around with his bodily functions and at the end they end up GROWING inside of him... submarine and all.
  • In one episode, Patrick has given SpongeBob his prized possession: a house-sized collection of gum that he's had for years, which apparently has all sorts of stuff like pizza, clothing and OTHER PEOPLE (they were living in it though.) A good moment is when a pair of underpants comes out of the wad and it crawls to SpongeBob until it reaches his face. Then it F@#$ING TALKS TO HIM.
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Underpants: YOU'RE... NOT... PATRICK...!!

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Spongebob: (to Sandy in a weak voice) The more you touch it, the angrier it gets.

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Season 5

  • In the episode "Night Light", Mr. Krabs tells SpongeBob to go into the cooler and get some fresh patties, and SpongeBob points to the dark cooler and fearfully says, "Y-you want m-me to g-go in...THERE!?!" The camera zooms into the cooler's darkness, and a real-life head (Derek Iversen) pops out of the dark, holding a flashlight up to itself, and laughing diabolically while making an irritated expression, swirling around the frame of the cooler door. THAT WAS SO FREAKING HORRIFYING!!!
  • "Money Talks". Here's what happens: Mr. Krabs wishes he could talk to money, so the Flying Dutchman grants him that ability. However, the money want to be spent, and Mr. Krabs, having a Money Fetish, refuses to do so. During the night, the money moan, "Spend us, Speeeeeennnnnnd uuuuuuuuusssss!"
  • "The Ick". It's a virus that causes green ooze to grow all over the victim's body. It's contagious on both touch and ingestion. Somehow, Squidward doesn't realize he's scratching a Ick-y spot, and a restaurant full of diners don't notice they're eating it. The only other known symptom is itchiness, but you have to wonder why Krabs called the SWAT team. And why they called the HAZMAT squad.
    • Even worse, the itchiness is Fetish Fuel to some. (Particularly This Troper, who got their itching fetish from it)
    • Ick is a real fish disease. The best way to explain it is that it's the equivalent of a flea to dogs and cats. It reproduces like crazy and feeds on blood and dead skin cells. However, it doesn't manifest itself as green fuzz, rather, it looks like somebody sprinkled salt on the fish.
    • May be more Nausea Fuel, but there's the GREEN PUS that was SPEWING from SpongeBob!
  • In one episode, SpongeBob destroys a bunch of scallops trying to eat the Krabby Patty he falls in love with. This includes smashing them into pieces and RIPPING ONE IN HALF. This is pretty disturbing on its own, but couple in the fact that they spent an episode raising a baby scallop and it's just doubled.
    • How "pretty" Patty looks when she's not eaten. Even worse, SpongeBob has to eat all that!!
  • The episode when Sandy brings a flea back from Texas. There's only one flea at first, but then it multiplies... and multiplies... until there's a huge WAVE of fleas inside the tree dome.
    • The worst part was seeing the details of the flea. And the screech... sweet mother of God, the screech. (Nightmare Retardant if you know it was taken from a Godzilla movie.)
  • The episode where Plankton brainwashes Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy into hating the Krusty Krab. At one point, Plankton does what he did in his debut appearance and goes INSIDE OF MERMAID MAN'S HEAD THROUGH HIS EAR, STOPPING BEHIND HIS EYE!
  • "Eat... or be eaten..."
    • SpongeBob's crazed look as his sanity slips.
  • In one episode, SpongeBob and Patrick unearth a submarine apparently buried in SpongeBob's yard. Upon entering, SpongeBob shoves aside a human skeleton to flip the engine switch.
  • This... thing from WhoBob WhatPants. If you're too scared to click, it's a creepy, hyper-realistic rendering of SpongeBob. Fans have gave it the name "Spengebab".
  • Spongehenge. Most of that episode is pretty funny, but the ending -- where a bearded, crazed SpongeBob heads back to the Krusty Krab only to find it a derelict ruin, evoking the finales of both Planet of the Apes and the original ending of Army of Darkness -- is unsettling: and the final shot of the far-future aliens examining the now-abandoned, eerily-piping huge stone SpongeBobs even more so. It was all somehow reminiscent of the ending of the original The Wicker Man...
    • At the beginning, the sun and the moon with LIVE-ACTION FACES. It will bring back bad memories of the Baby Sun.
  • In the Two Faces of Squidward, an incident causes Squidward to become handsome, however, when Spongebob tries making him look back to normal in the end, but it makes him more handsome. OH MY GOD, WHAT IS THAT THING!?

Season 6

  • The episode where Krabs grows obsessed with getting a penny that he saw SpongeBob pick up. At one point, he picks up SpongeBob and shakes him down...KNOCKING HIS BRAIN OUT! SpongeBob acts normal even with it off, but to add even more creepiness, the brain GROWS LEGS AND SCURRIES AROUND LIKE A BUG! It even crawls over Squidward, who doesn't even react! And to make things even more sickening, the brain squirts juice (looking like water) at Krabs!
  • The episode when Squidward tried to get SpongeBob to be normal? Horrifying. Squidward gives SpongeBob a tape on "How To Be Normal". He gets "normal" and looks creepy and says things like "Wonderful weather we're having" in the most disturbing voice I've ever heard... and then Squidward turns "normal" too, and it's FRIGHTENING.
    • Lampshaded in that the sight of "normal" Squidward scares SpongeBob back to normal.
  • The episode where SpongeBob is the only person in Bikini Bottom and slowly goes insane from loneliness. Finding out that the others were out of town burning SpongeBob in effigy (including his friends) was somehow immensely comforting. Then everyone (including SpongeBob) leaves town to burn Patrick in effigy.
  • The episode where is SpongeBob gets a splinter in his thumb is horribly grotesque.
  • In "A Life In A Day," Patrick ends up pissing off some angry bikers and SpongeBob tries to talk them out of beating him up, saying that "he has been left a hollow shell of his former self." A cutaway is then shown of an Uncanny Valley-ish Patrick with big empty black holes where his eyes and mouth should be. (Warning that that video contains flashing, bright lights.)
  • There's a rather gruesome scene in "Plankton's Regular", where SpongeBob is lying in front of the Chum Bucket's door, and the regular customer opens the door over him, scraping off his face in the process. It doesn't get really disturbing until he sits up, and you can see all the (rather detailed) muscles of his face exposed.
  • In one post-movie episode, Gary is forced to go to a pet show and causes the pets to overrun the owners. Gary spontaneously grows pseudopod-like arms and rips his collar off. It's much scarier than it sounds.
  • Squid's Visit has a somewhat creepy premise, with SpongeBob making his entire house look EXACTLY like Squidward's down to every minor detail. But the real creepy parts are when SpongeBob is heavily breathing with a crazed look while staring at Squidward, and at the end when Squid's house burns down-he then gets a VERY weird looking expression, and then has a fantasy of him having tea with his vacuum. He says "Yes, I'd love another spot of tea, Mr. Vacuum Cleaner!" and "Care for some casserole?" in an eerie tone underscored by unsettling background music (same one used when Patrick goes insane in "Nature Pants"), and then he starts laughing insanely with his eye-twitching while the screen zooms in on his face.
  • One of the new episodes where Gary breaks his shell and needs a new one. SpongeBob goes to this discount snail shell dealer named "ANGRY JACK" and breaks all his shells. Afterward Jack asks SpongeBob to "pay him back" in terms of body parts. He takes his one of his arms, a leg, and his heart (which looks realistic). Why Angry Jack wants those aren't something to be thought about.
    • The close ups of Gary's exposed under-shell body.
  • The cave dwellers in the episodes Chum Caverns and another one are downright horrifying. You would think the scene where Plankton gains control over them, despite them being 50x his size, would be funny. But no, It Got Worse. Plankton whips them into submission, and they begin crying in fear, and obviously pain from the whip. So, you would think it's just the evil empire of the Chum Bucket that harnesses their power, but later on, The Krusty Krab also uses them. But not to fear, they're treated better. The cave dweller monsters get to use the whips.
  • "House Fancy" has the infamous toenail scene... lots of people's toes hurt after watching that. Plus, there's SpongeBob's idiocy because he keeps smashing the couch on Squidward's foot thinking his scream is the signal to move the couch. Then, Squidward slips on his bloody toenail and falls!

Season 7

  • A recent episode features Plankton stealing Sandy's fur and puppeteering it like some sort of grotesque flesh-robot. The act of obtaining the fur isn't so bad, as Sandy apparently wears it like a suit so she can just take it on and off, but the flesh-puppet that it becomes, with its Zombie Gait and nothing in its mouth and eye sockets...
  • The premise of "The Inside Job" is that Plankton has a new plan to get the secret recipe for Krabby Patties by going inside of Mr. Krabs, which ends up being SpongeBob due to a misfire, and taking over his senses. First, he takes over his sight, causing SpongeBob's eyes to go COMPLETELY BLACK, and for him to panic at being blind and make a patty out of soap, sponges, and a scouring pad. That doesn't work. Plankton takes over his hearing next, which doesn't lead to anything Nightmare Fuel-ish other than the idea of suddenly losing your hearing because somebody's stolen it. Plankton then decides to go into SpongeBob's brain, where there is a complete version of SpongeBob's house made out of brain, including Gary! The episode then turns into utterly terrifying Body Horror. Plankton plugs his sense-stealing device into SpongeBob's heart, and becomes a SpongeBob-looking thing, completely with a scary transformation sequence. He later becomes Patrick, which is played for laughs but doesn't excuse the second transformation sequence.
    • That Brain Gary was Lampshaded by Plankton saying,"That's disgusting!" Nice said, Plankton.
    • This episode just intensified what I already had of my endosomatophilia.
  • Greasy SpongeBob. In a Season 7 episode, The Krusty Krab has to clean up a lot of grease before they can reopen. So, they use SpongeBob. It's this saggy giant SpongeBob with all the holes swelled up and full of grease. Ughhh...
  • Nickelodeon is currently playing advertisements for an upcoming episode that shows Gary paired with a creature of similar size that opens its mouth and reveals tons of horrible-looking teeth.
    • It gets worse. After eating a fridge worth of food, it grows into a massive, disgusting, all too detailed Eldritch Abomination with multiple sarlacc-like tongues and tries to eat Gary and SpongeBob.
    • Even worse is SpongeBob's attitude throughout the entire episode. When he sees the pet about to eat Gary, he scolds Gary and tells him to put the pet down. What the FUCK? That's every pet owner's worst nightmare.
  • Squidward's nightmare sequence in "Squidward In Clarinet Land."
    • The disembodied Eagle head threatening him and laughing oh-so-creepily. Plus, it's Clancy Brown getting to use his Lex Luthor voice!
    • Major Fridge Horror. Mr. Krabs opening the locker and there being a skeleton inside. He makes a comment about "{Forgetting} that prank." Meaning he locked someone in the locker and they DIED!!! Mr. Krabs KILLED SOMEONE!
      • He may have meant that they put a skeleton in the locker to prank whoever was opening the door and then forgot to take it out.
      • Not really. Because SpongeBob asks Mr Krabs "Who is that?" and he responds "That appears to be Corporal Sterling. Forgot about that prank..."
    • The file cabinets in the safe getting bigger and more mazelike was scary, it was not helped by SpongeBob laughing and running around in there.
  • In "That Sinking Feeling", when Spongebob and Patrick are cornered while being chased by a pissed-off Squidward, we see from a first-person view of the duo as we cut back and forth from their fearful reactions to Squidward walking menacingly closer and closer.
  • To some extent, parts of "Earworm". One scene when SpongeBob ran back home like crazy while singing to the tune of "Musical Doodle," "The song that you ran from is back again. You wonder will the madness will ever end".
    • That whole scene. The Room Full of Crazy and SpongeBob's weird humming/babbling and whatever he was doing with his hands, "running" home on all fours looking utterly deranged, crawling up and down around the outside of his house and in through a window while creepy music plays...that whole sequence was just unsettling. The very premise of the episode: if a song gets stuck in your head, a parasite will take up residence in there and drive you completely insane.
    • "Round n' round, the record spins all day, listen again, it takes you FAR away..." feels like the song is telling you that you'll go mentally insane (which SpongeBob does) and wind up in a mental asylum if you listen to it repeatedly.
    • One scene that really crossed the line was when the earworm CRAWLED INTO SQUIDWARD'S HEAD THROUGH HIS EYE in his sleep. Then at the very end, Squidward screams.
  • The episode in which Bikini Bottom is invaded by giant sea whelks who eat everything in sight. As if the premise wasn't scary enough, there's a scene near the end where SpongeBob and Patrick lend their corneas to Sandy. They even blink.
  • The episode with the time capsule. It revolves around SpongeBob, Patrick, and Squidward getting stuck in a time capsule and Buried Alive.
  • "One Coarse Meal," where Mr. Krabs discovers Plankton is afraid of whales after he freaks out at the sight of Pearl. Krabs dresses as Pearl to try and scare Plankton, which leads to him trying to commit SUICIDE on a kids' show! And when Mr. Krabs is told, he LAUGHS! Plus, he gets away with this scot-free.
    • Plankton's Nightmare Sequence is hard to sit through. He dreams he's being chased by Pearl, who here has More Teeth Than the Osmond Family and wild, ragged hair, and eventually gets swallowed by her. Plankton tries banging on Pearl's (suddenly flat) teeth to be let out, but Pearl uses her tongue to knock Plankton down her esophagus into her stomach, in which he sees his relatives all charred up in the acid. His lower body is Stripped to the Bone. Then, we cut back to Pearl, who laughs evilly as Dramatic Thunder goes off in the background. The whole scene is hell for people with a phobia of Womb Levels to endure.
    • The episode's original title was "Plankton Got Served."
    • Not to mention, not only did Stephen Hillenburg hate the episode, there's a rumor going around that if you listen closely, you can hear the voice actors saying "just end."

Season 8

  • The snow-monster thing from "Frozen Face-off", the part at the end when it says "Jelybeans, nom nom" is probaly Nightmare Retardant.
  • In House-Sittin' for Sandy, SpongeBob suffocates once again by being inside Sandy's treedome sans helmet, but the newly redesigned way it's shown is beyond anything they've shown before.
  • In "Walking the Plankton", Plankton gets chopped in half by the boat's propeller blade.
  • In one episode Plankton decides to grow another eye resulting in many body horror scenes. Including one where eyes grow all over his body including inside his mouth. "I SEE EVERYTHING!!!"
  • "Demolition Doofus," where after SpongeBob fails his driving test yet again and sends Mrs. Puff to the hospital, Puff tries to kill SpongeBob by enrolling him in a demolition derby.
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Mrs. Puff: Why are you still ALIVE?!

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  • In "Squiditis," when Squidward fakes being sick and lists his symptoms, mentioning "itchy eyes," he scratches his eye!
    • Later, SpongeBob does it too!
  • Squidward being fried alive and almost eaten in "Restraining SpongeBob".
  • Karen preparing to cut open Plankton with a saw to remove a Krabby Patty from his stomach in "For Here Or To Go."
    • And then she didn't just analyze the Krabby Patty. She analyzed all his stomach contents.
  • "Are You Happy Now?" has TWO scenes where it looks like Squidward is going to kill himself for not having a happiest memory. Thankfully, he's just pulling up a birdcage or making brownies, but DUDE! More suicide jokes on a kids' show?
  • "Planet of the Jellyfish" where alien jellyfish invade Bikini Bottom. They replicate everyone, except for Spongebob and Snady, speaking in a robot-like tone and having soulless black eyes. The alien leader is keeping the real Bikini Bottom citizens in pods hanging from the ceiling in the freezer. It becomes slightly Nightmare Retardant when you find out the aliens Weaksauce Weakness is...mayonnaise.
  • "Face Freeze". Just... no. For those afraid to watch the episode, it involves SpongeBob and Patrick making "funny faces," which are more of body contortions. Just like the old wives' tale says, they eventually get stuck that way, and later on, Mr. Krabs and Squidward make faces too and get stuck with them. Squidward's face is especially the worst.
  • "Pet Sitter Pat", where Patrick neglects Gary, and then tries to BURN HIM ALIVE WITH A FLAMETHROWER. Because of the episode "The Card" (where Patrick basically says he is Obfuscating Stupidity), he knew what he was doing and was okay with it.
    • It gets worse: remember "Rule of Dumb," where it was revealed Patrick and Gary were related?

Post-Sequel Seasons

Season 9

  • Captain Frostymug being sucked into a blender in "License to Milkshake."
  • SpongeBob's Madness Mantra in "Bumper to Bumper" is pretty surreal.
  • "Squid Baby" is about Squidward reverting to a baby after receiving a concussion, and SpongeBob has to take care of him until he gets better. The doctor specifies that Squidward should not be hit on the head or bumped around at all. Guess what happens throughout the entire episode? (Thankfully, he gets better at the end.)
  • The Womb Level scene in "Salsa Imbecellus" where Plankton has to get Patrick's drool so he can make his idiot sauce. It's all too reminiscent of the mouth levels in the SNES The Ren and Stimpy Show game, or worse, Nightmare Ned.

Season 10

  • "Mimic Madness," where SpongeBob imitates his friends so much he forgets who he is! At the end, the "mocking mimicry madness" becomes contagious and SpongeBob's friends forget who they are because they were imitating him so much, and Squidward's consciousness begs to be let out of his body!
  • "Out of the Picture" has Mr. Krabs try to kill Squidward after finding out art sells better when the artist is dead! Krabs's brutal side from the dark age hasn't completely died yet, perhaps...
  • "Feral Friends" is a fairly unsettling premise, where a magical moon degenerates any who see it, but the results show Squidward and Pearl ravaging the town as predators! Heck, it turns out the land version is far more potent, able to revert creatures even further back...
  • "Sportz" has a scene where SpongeBob is bisected, showing a fair amount of organs and even some muscle tissue. There's also the shot of the pummeled bodies of SpongeBob and Patrick.

Season 11

  • The scene inside SpongeBob's mind in "The Legend of Boo-kini Bottom," full of Deranged Animation by none other than Sally Cruikshank (who animated the Cartoon Hell scene in The Twilight Zone: The Movie and is also known for her weird work on Sesame Street.) Not to mention the giant baby SpongeBob.
  • "Krabby Patty Creature Feature," revolving around a new type of Krabby Patty that turns everyone who eats it into zombies. They spread The Virus by offering bites of themselves to others. Just when you think everyone is back to normal and the episode is over, Patrick appears and offers a bite of himself to the viewers.
  • "Karen's Virus," while a Crowning Moment of Awesome to many, might creep some out with its Conspicuous CG and the design of the titular virus.
  • Mr. Krabs' hallucinations in "Plankton Paranoia" after banning people from the Krusty Krab believing they are Plankton. He first imagines Plankton is on the TV, which turns out to be a commercial for the Chum Bucket. Then he imagines a cup with a straw in it is Plankton. Then his hallucinations get really out of hand, and he sees a giant red, demonic Plankton laugh evilly in a distorted voice while holding the formula, all set to creepy music. Then, when you think it's over, he looks in the mirror and sees his eye stalks turn into Plankton.
  • "Ink Lemonade" is built around this, almost as if it were a Season 6-8 episode. It's about Patrick repeatedly abusing Squidward to get his ink to make his speciality lemonade, which he profits off. At the end, Patrick reveals the last ingredient is spiders, at which a bunch of spiders crawl out of Squidward!
  1. Uhhhhh, no?
  2. Remember the Nightmare Sequence in the episode "Part-Time Friends"?
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