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Imitation Krabs

Imitation Krabs is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season two. In this episode, Plankton makes a robot of Mr. Krabs.


A robotic fish controlled by Plankton and designed to look like a salesman walks into the Krusty Krab. He tells SpongeBob that he will win $1,000,000 if he tells him the Krabby Patty secret formula. SpongeBob says that it can only be discussed with Mr. Krabs in private. Enraged, Plankton bursts out from the robot and threatens violence against SpongeBob if he doesn't reveal the secret formula, only to be tossed back to the Chum Bucket by Mr. Krabs.

Later, Plankton creates a robotic version of Mr. Krabs in order to make SpongeBob reveal the formula to him. He tells Squidward he can have the whole day off to get rid of him, and tries to make SpongeBob, who is working in the supply room, tell him the secret formula. However, the real Mr. Krabs keeps on coming into the room they are in, so he has to hide and he emerges again when the real Mr. Krabs leaves. Eventually, Plankton throws a penny out the window and the real Mr. Krabs runs after it, thus completely distracting him.

Afterwards, Plankton learns that for the secret recipe to be discussed, he must first do a ridiculously long and complicated ceremony that takes around seven hours to accomplish. SpongeBob is about to give him a bottle with the recipe inside when the real Mr. Krabs comes into the kitchen right after the penny Plankton threw earlier. SpongeBob gives them both a quiz about the Krusty Krab, threatening to blast one of them with tartar sauce. The imitation Krab gets all the answers to the quiz correctly (obvioulsy via its technology) and Mr. Krabs somehow gets them all wrong. (SpongeBob tells them: "I'm running this quiz show!" [an obvious parody of "Jeopardy!"]) SpongeBob squirts Mr. Krabs with tarter sauce and rolls him out the door.

SpongeBob presumes that the robotic Mr. Krabs is the real one, and gives him a penny that he "dropped". The penny goes into its coin-operated self-destruct mechanism, blowing Plankton into the sky right after he makes a frantic run for the Chum Bucket with the secret formula bottle still in his possession. With the secret formula bottle rolling down torwards SpongeBob, he then realizes that it was Plankton and that he threw out the real Mr. Krabs. He saves Mr. Krabs, who is being attacked by a live-action hand with a plastic fork, and rolls him back into the Krusty Krab. SpongeBob apologizes, and Mr. Krabs forgives him, but tells SpongeBob that the penny is coming out of his paycheck, with both of them laughing at the end, with SpongeBob asking if it's true.


Cast and Characters[]

  • SpongeBob SquarePants
  • Eugene H. Krabs
  • Sheldon J. Plankton
  • Squidward Tentacles
  • Hans
  • Krusty Krab Customers
  • Karen Plankton
  • Robot Krabs (debut)
  • Sally
  • Clay (cameo)
  • Harold "Bill" Reginald (cameo)
  • Nat Peterson (cameo)
  • Tom (cameo)
  • Nancy Suzy Fish (cameo)


  • The Twin Sisters - Title card.
  • Wondrous Pastures - The opening.
  • Night Butcher - Plankton is inside the robot.
  • Top Gameshow - "You've just won $1,000,000 dollars!"
  • Quiz Logo 1 - SpongeBob is about to answer the question.
  • Monster Bug (a) - Plankton gets angry and jumps out of the robot.
  • Facing the Challenge - "I WILL NOT LET YOU DOWN!!!"
  • Hawaiian Link (a) - "Uh, SpongeBob, could you let me down?"
  • West Side Rumble - "Code 12! Code 12! Your disguises can't fool me this time, Plankton!"
  • The Tip Top Polka/Cliff Polka - Mr. Krabs talks to SpongeBob about scaring away customers.
  • When Daylight Shines/Captain Lenoe's - Mr. Krabs tells Suidward to clean up the garbage room.
  • Footsteps of Horror (#10.01) - The robot Mr. Krabs is revealed.
  • Enter the Villain - "Oh, sweet domination. THIS IS IT!!!"
  • Dissonance - "Day... OOOFFFFFF?!?!?!?!"
  • Action Cut (a) - "Hey, Mr. Krabs, just taking out that garbage."
  • Frankenstein's Niece (d) - The robot Mr. Krabs vaporizes the garbage.
  • Vibe Link (a) - "I don't know, Mr. Krabs... I don't know."
  • Black Stockings - Mr. Krabs hears the pitter-patter of money.
  • Shock (d) - "Nothing stands between me and the secret formula now!"
  • Heavy Footsteps (a) - SpongeBob scrubs the floor.
  • The Rake Hornpipe - #1 - "Isn't that a microphone?"
  • Shock (g) - "But we did everything you said!"
  • House of Horror (#10.01) - "This is it, Plankton... gently now."
  • Shock Horror (a) - Mr. Krabs, SpongeBob, the Penny, and the Robo-Krab gasp.
  • Games Played in the Dark - "How could you do this, SpongeBob?! Givin' me secret formula to this... impostor!"
  • War of Nerves - SpongeBob sprays tartar sauce.
  • Cold Sweat - SpongeBob asks questions to Mr. Krabs and the robot Mr. Krabs.
  • Point of Departure (k) - "Wait, SpongeBob!"
  • Death Trap - Plankton in Robot Krabs laughs evilly.
  • Hawaiian Link (b) - "HELP!!!!"
  • The Rake Hornpipe - #2 - "Back you hungry hand!"


  • Squidward's mouth does not move when he says ¡Already!
  • When Plankton jumps on SpongeBob's nose, it's longer.
  • It's weird that Plankton builds a coin-operated self-destruct on his robot, then places it on the outside, rather than the inside, of the cockpit.
  • When Plankton goes into the Krusty Krab as the Mr. Krabs robot, for the few seconds the door is open, the Krusty Krab is dark.
  • When SpongeBob asks the question "If we're discussing the secret formula on the third Wednesday in January, and it's not raining outside, after we gargle with vanilla pudding, what do we do?", the word "vanilla" is excluded from the captions.
  • When Squidward is doing the inspection, there is a bag that says "Kelp Meal", but in a later scene, the bag says "Keep Meal".
  • When SpongeBob is about to take out the garbage, Plankton uses the robots heat to disintegrate it. However, later on, the garbage is still seen in the corner.
  • The weird part is went Plankton throw the penny to Mr. Krabs' office went the door was open. the fish had his mouth open, later Mr. Krabs' office door is closed when SpongeBob walked to his office.
  • the things Plankton said when we see him in the machine should have been said out loud.


  • When SpongeBob inserted the coin into Robot Krabs' self-destruct slot, the robot went straight to the Chum Bucket and explodes. Then, the Secret Formula Bottle rolls from the burned restaurant to SpongeBob at the Krusty Krab. In reality, this would've been impossible to happen, because if a building explodes so badly that it barely leaves anything unharmed, the bottle should've been explodes as well.
  • The title of the episode, "Imitation Krabs", is a play on imitation crab, fake crab meat, used in salads and California rolls.
  • In the scene after SpongeBob tells Mr. Krabs that he was going to ask a question, the clipper on SpongeBob's nose disappears.
  • In this episode, Mr. Krabs says that he doesn't know the meaning of "taking the day off". However, in the episode "Bubble Buddy", SpongeBob had the day off. Mr. Krabs even insists to let SpongeBob be excused from work until he can think straight again in "Pickles". Also, in Suds, SquidBob TentaclePants, and Not Normal, he let Spongebob (and Squidward in SquidBob Tentacle Pants) he gives employees the day off if they aren't working well. Also, the Krusty Krab is closed in certain episodes.
  • Running Gag: Every time Plankton's Robot Krabs says a lie, its engine backfires and smoke can be seen from the exhaust pipe. Also, Plankton says, "Ouch" throughout the episode.
  • With Closed Captions on, the episode captions are not in all caps, but when SpongeBob yells "Quiet!" to Plankton and Mr. Krabs when they are bickering, the word "QUIET!" is in all caps.
  • The prices of the Krabby Patty as mentioned in the question below are the same prices used at McDonald's: $2.99 for burger, 99¢ on Wednesday.
  • When Plankton sends the word "gasp". it sound it like the word "guess?". Also in Mexico on Nickelodeon in Spanish was "adivina?"
  • This is the second time in the series that the face on a coin actually moves. The first time was in Squid's Day Off, when the dime winks at Mr. Krabs. In this episode, the penny gasps as Mr. Krabs returns and sees SpongeBob giving the secret recipe to Plankton in Robot Krabs.
  • Mr. Krabs is again accused of being a robot imposter in "Krab Borg".
  • In "New Leaf", the Robot Krabs is seen again in a pile of Plankton's old experiments. Also, In "Spy Buddies", when Mr. Krabs and Plankton change positions, Plankton uses Robot Krabs again.
  • Mr. Krabs later gets eaten in Wishing You Well.
  • This episode was on the "Halloween" DVD.
  • 17th time Patrick doesn't appear.
  • Dying For Pie/Imitation Krabs is the first set of episodes where Patrick neither appears nor is mentioned.
  • Although "tartar sauce" is commonly used as a minced oath in the series, this is the first episode to actually show the sauce. Tartar sauce is a kind of sauce eaten with seafood.
  • The captions were extensively modified for when SpongeBob told about the disclaimer for the Krabby Patty secret formula.
  • In the SpongeBob comic, the time card said two and an half hours later, instead of six and a half in the TV series episode.
  • When the ten second countdown for self destruct sequence activates, Robot Krabs actually explodes after ten seconds. Also, in Indonesian version of the TV series, the narrator says, "2 1/2 Hours Later".
  • At the beginning of the episode SpongeBob's nose is slightly larger than usual.
  • The last episode to air in 2000 and the 20th century.
  • In the Hebrew version, the card saying "6 1/2 hours later" is writen in words instead of numbers, and moreover, the word "half" is misspelled "חציא" instead of "חצי", similar to writing "halfe" instead of "half".
  • Considering SpongeBob asked questions that Mr. Krabs was unable to answer, it's possible he knows more about the Krusty Krab (and probably the rules) than his employer. However, since Mr. Krabs was the one who created the Krusty Krab, it's also possible he was under pressure and forgot the rules.
    • However, it should be noted that Mr. Krabs did not necessarily answer the first two questions incorrectly, but rather Plankton simply answered them faster than he did.
  • This is the first time Robot Krabs appears.
  • Robot Krabs' transformation into a toaster may be a reference to the Transformers.
  • Among the things in Mr. Krabs' storage room was chum sauce.
  • When inside the Krusty Krab heading over to the cash register, in the backround Harold is seen holding the top bun of his Krabby Patty in one hand, holding the rest of the patty in the other hand, and licking the patty, for some strange reason.