The day starts off with Squidward about to practice his clarinet when SpongeBob's alarm clock (facing out the window) knocks the clarinet inside Squidward's mouth, and SpongeBob asks Squidward if he wants to go jellyfishing. Squidward tries to reply, but because his clarinet is in his mouth, anything he says is incomprehensible, and SpongeBob thinks he said "yes". After Squidward takes his clarinet out of his mouth, he is constantly bothered in his house by SpongeBob and Patrick, who want to go jellyfishing with him. Squidward, in an attempt to stop SpongeBob and Patrick bothering him, tells SpongeBob that he should be at work, but SpongeBob tells him that it's a Sunday, and the Krusty Krab is closed on Sundays. Squidward tells SpongeBob and Patrick to stay where they are, and goes out the back door of his house and goes into the Krusty Krab. He soon sees SpongeBob and Patrick looking for him, though, and hides in the freezer. After SpongeBob and Patrick leave, Squidward finds the handle is jammed, leaving him stuck inside the freezer. He assures himself that someone will find him, but this unfortunately proves to be untrue.
2000 years later, the door falls down and a frozen Squidward is defrosted by SpongeTron, a descendant of SpongeBob. Squidward finds out that everything in the future (except for people) is made entirely of chrome, and all organic life forms that aren't people (such as seaweed or kelp) are simply spray-painted chrome. SpongeTron introduces Squidward to his clones; X, Y, and Z. SpongeTron informs Squidward that there are 486 SpongeTrons in response to the question asked by Squidward "Are the other letters of the alphabet involved, here?" (indicating that the English alphabet has been expanded, merged with another character set, or (most likely) it was hyperbole by the writers to make the future more complex). Squidward decides that he hates the future, so SpongeTron directs him to a time machine, which is actually a small room with a control panel. Shortly after meeting Patron, a two-headed descendant of Patrick, Squidward goes into the can opener, and then goes into the time machine to travel to the past, ripping the entire room out of the building in the process.
Squidward ends up going all the way back to prehistoric times, where he meets SpongeBob and Patrick's caveman ancestors. Squidward tells them about jellyfishing because they keep on torturing themselves with jellyfish. They seem to be interested, but are then driven crazy by Squidward's clarinet, and chase after him.
Squidward goes back into the time machine, but it malfunctions, and he ends up in a very strange place with abstract shapes and no characters or setting (it is possibly an alternate universe, another dimension, a time warp, or The Void but Squidward calls it 'nowhere'). He at first thinks he can finally be alone, but soon feels lonely and starts scrambling about trying to find the time machine. When he does (by falling through its ceiling), he begs it to return him to the present, saying he misses his present-day life and even SpongeBob. It promptly does, bringing him back in front of SpongeBob and Patrick, who he's actually pretty happy to see... until they again ask him to go jellyfishing with them. Squidward refuses, asking who invented jellyfishing in the first place, to which SpongeBob and Patrick reply, "You are, Squidward!"
Home video releases
- SpongeBob SquarePants: Nautical Nonsense
- SpongeBob SquarePants: Undersea Antics Volume 1
- SpongeBob SquarePants: Nautical Nonsense and Sponge Buddies
- SpongeBob SquarePants: The Complete 1st Season
- SpongeBob SquarePants: The First 100 Episodes
- SpongeBob SquarePants: It's a SpongeBob Christmas!
- The episode, which arises from Squidward time-traveling and inventing the game of jellyfishing while seeking to avoid SpongeBob and Patrick as they want him to go jellyfishing with them, is an example of a time paradox known as a casual loop. Thus, a person is inspired or driven by an event to time travel and, whether or not intentionally, causes the event which will facilitate their initial time traveling trip.
- The Nautical Nonsense and Sponge Buddies DVD, which includes this episode, also includes a recording session of Tom Kenny and Bill Fagerbakke recording as SpongeGar and Patar.
- A calendar in the future Krusty Krab is dated Friday, March 6, 4017.
- The words "past" and "future" switch places from when Squidward first enters the time machine and when he goes in from the past. Additionally, nothing is written on the lever when Squidward "falls" into the time machine towards the end.
- When Squidward first arrives in the "Nowhere" zone, he has his clarinet. But when he begins running frantically, the clarinet disappears. When he stomps on a floor and then falls through the roof of the time machine, the clarinet is back in his hand.
- Before SpongeBob's alarm clock goes off during the start of the episode, it is facing the bed. However, when the alarm goes off, it is facing Squidward's window.
- In the PC version of The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie game, SpongeBob can look into his future with the Pool of Perception. The third time he looks in, he sees the 41st century, which resembles the future area in this episode.
- This is the first SpongeBob episode to involve time travel.
- When Squidward enters the time machine, the door knob changes sides.
- This episode parodies 2001: A Space Odyssey, Woody Allen's Sleeper, and H.G. Well's Wikipedia:time travel.
- This also derives heavily from the plot of the animated cult sitcom Futurama (no relation), whereas pizza delivery boy Fry gets frozen at the turn of the century and wakes up hours before the year 3000. Interestingly, this episode aired on December 31, 1999, the setting at the beginning of Futurama's premiere episode, "Space Pilot 3000".
- When Squidward touches one of the square colored palettes, it floats off while echoing "Ki ki ki". This could be a reference to the movie series Friday the 13th.
- Squidward says his house is an Easter Island head.
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