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Help Wanted (SpongeBob SquarePants)

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Help Wanted (SpongeBob SquarePants)
Help Wanted title card.png
And the legend was born...
Series: SpongeBob SquarePants
Part of Season: 1
Episode Number: 1a
Air Date: 1997 (original pitch)
May 1, 1999
Writer: Stephen Hillenburg
Derek Drymon
Tim Hill
Director: Alan Smart
Next episode: Reef Blower

"Help Wanted" is the first segment of the very first episode overall and Season 1 of SpongeBob SquarePants.


SpongeBob prepares to fulfill a lifelong dream and to get a fry cook job at a restaurant, The Krusty Krab.

Why It Gave Us The Help We Wanted

  1. The idea of a young sponge beginning to go to work as a fry cook and feeding hundreds of anchovies within an entire day is very entertaining. This is the same concept that truly helped develop the popularity of SpongeBob.
  2. It is the very first episode of SpongeBob SquarePants and has a great story like other first episodes of other shows like Star Trek.
  3. The climax where SpongeBob saves Squidward and Mr. Krabs by making so many Krabby Patties fast for the hungry anchovy crowd is awesome and makes his hiring more deserved.
    • Likewise the ending where SpongeBob was finally hired to achieve his dream is heartwarming as it shows that his hard work paid off.
  4. While not made for the show, especially since it was released in 1968, Tiny Tim's cover of "Livin' in the Sunlight, Lovin' in the Moonlight" is a very entertaining and memorable song that fits well with the scene of SpongeBob feeding the anchovy mob.
  5. While not as good as the rest of the series (let alone the rest of season 1), the animation is still nice to look at.
  6. Great voice acting, especially for Tom Kenny who voices SpongeBob.
  7. Introduced the greatest background songs used from the APM Music Library in a cartoon, "Honolulu March" and "The Rake Hornpipe".
  8. The title card and its music are good.
  9. "Do you smell it? That smell... A kind of smelly smell... A smelly smell that smells... smelly... (eyes wide open) Anchovies...." "What?" "ANCHOVIES!!!!!"
  10. Nice animation for a pilot episode.

Bad Qualities

  1. The scenes where the crowded Bikini Bottom anchovies form a wave and try to get Squidward and Mr. Krabs can be quite stressful for claustrophobic people.
  2. The animation can be a little rough and uncanny when compared to the later episodes.



Upon its release, "Help Wanted" scored a 6.3 Nielsen rating, or 6.9 million total viewers, including 3.6 million children aged 2–11. The episode received generally favorable reviews from media critics and viewers. It also got an 8.7 on IMDb. A lot of fans like this episode. A lot of critics and non fans like this episode too.


  • It premiered after the 1999 Kids Choice Awards.
  • Gained the greatest amount of ratings: This episode gained 6.9 million views on it's original 1999 broadcast.
  • On the credits of the 1997 release, Patrick's name is misspelled "Partick, while his voice actor Bill Fagerbakke's last name is misspelled as "Fabberbakke. This was corrected in the 1999 release.
    • Also In the 1997 release, Tom Kenny isn't credited for voicing Gary.
  • The original 1997 intro with the fast-paced action music was supposed to place after Patrick falls off his rock, making the prior scenes a cold open.


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