Backstage Pants Revealed

On the SpongeBob Squarepants DVD "Nautical Nonsense/Spongebuddies," there is a special feature called "Backstage Pants." When you turn it on and resume watching, a little SpongeBob icon appears in the lower right corner of your screen (30 times, as a matter of fact) at random intervals, at which time you may press Enter, and switch to a short clip featuring a cast or crew member talking about the show.

I thought it would be fun to make literal transcriptions of all the clips and present them to those interested readers who have neither the time nor the inclination to sit with rapt attention through each episode with remote in hand. Each numbered entry includes the featured cast/crew member's name(s) and the time the icon appears, and may be referenced below by episode or by name.

It should be noted that, when appearing together, Steve Hillenburg is wearing an eyepatch, beard, and captain's cap, and Derek Drymon has a pirate's hat on.


Cast and Crew Appearances

Steve Hillenburg
Creator/Executive Producer- 1 8 17 21 22 23 26 30
Derek Drymon
Creative Director- 2 17 22 26 30
Tom Kenny
Voice of SpongeBob- 3 4 5 6 11 12 14 15 18 20 25
Bill Fagerbakke
Voice of Patrick- 6 7 13 15 24 29
Carolyn Lawrence
Voice of Sandy Cheeks- 7 13 24 29
Rodger Bumpass
Voice of Squidward- 5 19
Jay Lender
Storyboard Director/Writer- 9 10
Mr. Lawrence
Writer/Voice of Plankton- 16 27
Sherm Cohen
Storyboard Supervisor- 28

Opening Credits

1. [0:03]  Steve Hillenburg

This is a guy known as Painty the Pirate. Those are my lips, but I don't sing the song; that's Pat Pinney.

2. [0:38]  Derek Drymon

Steve's idea was to try to make the most annoying song you can, to—so when Saturday morning, when kids turn the TV on and parents are are trying to sleep, you have this pirate screaming in the other room for the kids to jump on the floor.

Ripped Pants

3. [8:06]  Tom Kenny

I think one of my favorite episodes is uh, "Ripped Pants", the one where SpongeBob rips his pants by mistake and gets a laugh out of it, and then overplays his hand by doing it one too many times, and people get bored with it, and he realizes that jokes have a lifespan. And I think that's something that happened to me a lot as a kid, where you would accidentally hit on something that was really funny and you would just do it over and over and over again, and when people stopped laughing, it was kind of like a slap in the face, it kinda hurt, and then you had to go out and find something else stupid to uh, get attention and laughs from your fellow classmates.

4. [9:09]  Tom Kenny

People often ask if SpongeBob wears the exact same pair of underwear in each and every episode and I would have to say... mostly yes. Uhh, you know, he buys three a year—they come in a little cellophane-wrapped three-pack with the little cardboard card in the back, and uh, that's it! That's it for the year. First of every year he goes out and buys his three pairs of underwear for that year, and... that's it! He doesn't buy any new ones. In this world, you are either a boxer man or a tighty-whiteys man.


5. [1:38]  Rodger Bumpass and Tom Kenny

RB: (Holding a Squidward figurine) I don't hate SpongeBob ah, at all. You know, he—he complains, he grouses, but deep down he has a respect and a like for uh, for SpongeBob. Every so often he'll hurt SpongeBob's feelings and he goes, oh my goodness! I-I-I-I gotta go make uh, you know, amends to him, you know, so he—he's got a good heart; he just covers it with his, uh, curmudgeon shell.

TK: (In character, offstage) I knew it!

RB: (In character, pointing thumb across stage, sputtering) SpongeBob.

TK: You do care!

RB: No, I don't! I do not! That was just uh, a cover—I don't. (Silently): I do.

6. [8:51]  Tom Kenny and Bill Fagerbakke

TK and BF are performing the scene where the prehistoric SpongeBob and Patrick bellow and growl in response to Sqidward's clarinet playing.


7. [6:39]  Carolyn Lawrence and Bill Fagerbakke

CL: She's spunky. I think she rocks. She does everything. It's great to see, you know, a girl who's got it all goin' on.

BF: She's a squirrel to be reckoned with.

CL: She really is.

Graveyard Shift

8. [4:50]  Steve Hillenburg

This is what a natural dried up, uh, sponge looks like. So you can see it's a lot different than SpongeBob, uhh, but as far as sponges go, they are really bizarre and interesting. They, umm—one of the things that I had heard about while teaching was that they've done experiments where they put a sponge—a living sponge—in-in a blender and they blend it up, uhh, into a soup, and if you leave it overnight it will reform back into itself. Uhh, so they're very strange animals and uhh, in fact—they are animals, by the way—some people think they're plants, but they're not, uhh, and so just the idea of uh, the main character being about such a bizarre animal, uh, I thought it was funny.

9. [10:52]  Jay Lender

Once upon a time when SpongeBob was running around the restaurant trying out all of the different things he could do at night, we had a different gag, where he runs over to the floor—he rips up a section of the floorboard and says, "I'm delivering the mail to Floorboard Harry!..."- and there's a little guy under the floorboard, who reaches up and grabs the mail and pulls it in—'Thanks!'—at night!" And then he slams the board down and originally this was going to be the end of the show—umm, we used Nosferatu in the end, but once upon a time Floorboard Harry was going to be the guy who was flicking the lightswitch, but we found out uh, that Nosferatu was funny.

10. [11:12]  Jay Lender

Who—who is Nosferatu? Actually, Nosferatu is not even his name—I think it's Count Orlok, and he was in a very old movie—an early version of "Dracula," which was made a very long time ago and everyone who's ever seen the pictures from this movie remembers them; they're really, really scary. Then we figured we could use that but we can't call him "Count Orlok" because no one knows that's what his name is; they only know the name of the movie, which is "Nosferatu." Hence Nosferatu.

Something Smells

11. [0.15]  Tom Kenny

It's interesting—SpongeBob's bed is made up of three mattresses—uh- piled up one on top of the other, and people often ask if this is because he has a bad back, or a back problem. The answer of course is he has no back—he's an invertebrate; he's completely spineless. So I think it's just uh, just a personal choice that SpongeBob makes.

12. [1:14]  Tom Kenny

The great thing about having a snail for a pet: very low maintenance. Uhh, they don't require much. They uh, they don't chase cars or run outside in the street when you have the door open, because they can't. They just—they just don't have the ability. Uhh, you leave a bowl of food on the floor and your snail is good for two or three years.

13. [1:46]  Bill Fagerbakke and Carolyn Lawrence

BF: If you ever come across a little festering pond with different algaes and things breaking down and fermenting- that would be the base...

CL: Uh-huh.

BF: and then you'd have these little pockets of hideous odors exploding that would uh, just be uh—I think probably organic in nature but, but something to be avoided at, at all costs.


14. [3:09]  Tom Kenny

I would have to say that the closest thing that I've smelled to it is, uhh, when I was living in an apartment, uh, in San Francisco a few years ago and uh, we had some very strange neighbors and occasionally you would just get hit with—with this—smell. And uh, nobody ever did find out who they were or what they were doing. (Sotto voce): Maybe it was the hash-slinging slasher! (Screams).

15. [3:57]  Tom Kenny and Bill Fagerbakke

TK and BF perform the following scene fragment:

TK: (Cackles four times) Good one, Patrick.

BF: Well, maybe it's just because you're ugly.

TK: Ugly!? You gotta be kiddin' me!

BF: Better try the reflection test.

TK: Hiiiiiiii... Oh no! I can't be! I can't be ugly! I can't be ugly. I can't be ugly.

16. [7:54]  Mr. Lawrence

You couldn't describe accurately... the stench... How disgusting. I don't th—I mean—ahh, we'd have to talk later, so I can describe it to you. It's that bad.

17. [10:34]  Steve Hillenburg and Derek Drymon

DD: That smell was bad enought to rot away the walls, you know, so it's pretty corrosive. (Laughs) Even that wouldn't stop the smell. (Points to SH, who is wearing his eyepatch on his nose)

SH: Yeah, it was a pretty bad... smell. Y'know, undersea things uhh...

DD: Smell travels faster.

SH: ...have an acute—a lot of animals undersea are—have a very acute sense of smell, so I imagine it was especially bad for those guys.


18. [2:47]  Tom Kenny

SpongeBob definitely thinks that Squidward is—is his friend. SpongeBob thinks that next to Patrick, Squidward is his best friend. SpongeBob is so... positive and so up all the time that he has no idea, it would never even enter into his mind, that anyone could dislike anyone else, let alone that Squidward could dislike him—SpongeBob—y'know. SpongeBob—SpongeBob is unconscious of the fact that he drives Squidward insane, 'cause nothing drives SpongeBob insane.

19. [3:11]  Rodger Bumpass

His laugh is-is-is—kind of a signature thing, his nose always kinda just uh, accordians a little bit and he goes (laughing like Squidward): I just crack myself up!

20. [7:14]  Tom Kenny

When SpongeBob catches the uh, jellyfish, he—and this is something that you should never try with an actual jellyfish in an actual beach setting—he milks them of their jelly which he then spreads on bread and eats. Uh, this is all fact, and uh, based in truth. And science.

21. [7:24]  Steve Hillenburg

SH is looking at and playing with paper jellyfish mobiles.

I was thinking that SpongeBob needed a sport even though he's kind of a dork... and a nerd. He uh, probably needed some kind of activity that he really liked and I thought about—I guess uhh, how when I was a kid I liked collecting bugs, which isn't really much of a sport I suppose, but I thought umm, well what if he collected—uh, uh, jellyfish—kind of like bees—umm, they're—they sting, they uhh, they can inflict quite a welt you know, and they also—in the show they produce jelly so they're a lot like bees, in that bees produce honey.

Dying for Pie

22. [3:24]  Steve Hillenburg and Derek Drymon

DD: Anything Mr. Krabs can do to get people to work harder is "new age management," I guess, to him. And touchy-feely.

SH: I—yeah, I think—I think the joke in that case was that umm, you know, he was having them give gifts, and be brotherly, and you know Mr. Krabs is probably... uh, uninterested in that unless again, he can make—make money; make—make the employees work harder for less.

23. [11:06]  Steve Hillenburg

We don't take atomic explosions [indistinct] literally, uhh we don't take them lightly, but uhh, they are so severe that they—I think—I guess they're involved in satire here, that—the... Bikini Bottom is named after uh, or supposed to be associated with Bikini Atoll in the uh, South Pacific where, you know, they did extensive atomic testing, so ahh, I'm not sure, but I think there is a... it—is—there is a relationship there.


24. [0:35]  Carolyn Lawrence and Bill Fagerbakke

CL: Well, she's a scientist, and she's ahh, big on adventure so I think she just went down there to take a look around and, you know, find out all about the world that she didn't know.

BF: Kinda—kind of a biosphere... experiment? Yeah.

CL: Kinda. Yeah, yeah definitely she's a, you know, a rare woman... Squirrel!


25. [0.56]  Tom Kenny

What is in the Krabby Patty recipe. We get hundreds and thousands of cards and letters from would-be fast food entrepreneurs that would love to find out that secret. We, the actors, do know, 'cause in the course of our character research we do have to—have to actually make Krabby Patties, but when we took the job uh, Nickelodeon made us sign reams and reams of—of disclaimers and paperwork saying that if we ever revealed any of the herbs and spices, or any of the elements of the Krabby Patty formula... phssssht! (makes chopping motion) There—they will be holding open auditions for your character the following Monday.

26. [2:39]  Steve Hillenburg and Derek Drymon

Caption reads: What's in the Krabby Patty?

SH: Well, we can't tell you, otherwise it wouldn't be a secret, right?

DD: Exactly—well guarded.

SH: Yes, even we don't know. I think.

27. [4:15]  Mr. Lawrence

Plankton's computer is actually his uhh, computer wife, Karen.

28. [5:29]  Sherm Cohen

So, I'm not only the storyboard supervisor, but I wrote the uhh, song that we used in the "F.U.N." show. When ahh, we were writing the show—my friend Aaron and I—Steve gave us the idea to—to do a song, but he didn't give us very much guidance; he just told us to do something that had the word "fun" in it. So we started pickin' around with words, and he said for example, that OK, "F" is for "friends" and "U" is for "you and me" and that pretty much gave me the start, so we grabbed Steve's ukelele and uh, just started picking out notes, and a little while later it came out to be like this.

Plays ukelele and sings:

F is friends who do stuff together
U is for you and me
N is for anything and anytime at all
Down here in the deep blue sea.
F is for frolic through all the flowers
U is for ukelele
N is for nose-picking, sharing gum and sand-licking
Here with my best bud-ee.

Of course it didn't sound like that at the beginning, but after a few hours we wound it into a nice little song.

29. [10:00]  Carolyn Lawrence and Bill Fagerbakke

Caption reads: What's in the Krabby Patty?

CL: I don't know, I've been sworn to secrecy. I—I can't go there. I—I would just—I just wouldn't feel right about it.

BF: Well, all I know is that a lot of little seahorses have been disappearing lately.

CL: Yeah.

BF: That's all I can say about it.

CL: Yeah.

Club SpongeBob

30. [1:21]  Steve Hillenburg and Derek Drymon

SH: See, Squidward belongs to some of those music societies, right?

DD: Yeah, he probab—

SH: The clarinet—the undersea clarinet society.

DD: And uh, interpretive dance... club.

SH: Umm, and yeah he's into interpretive dance, and any kind of, you know...

DD: Health food.

SH: ...snobbery, incorporated... uh, he would be into it.

DD: (laughs) A fancy—he has a—he has a...

SH: Umm, fancy living, he rea—he uh, sub—subscribes to "Fancy Living Digest"... so anything that SpongeBob's not into, Squidward's probably into.