| Character Information
Squidward Quincy Tentacles is the tritagonist (sometimes an antagonist) on the Nicktoon SpongeBob SquarePants. A rude guy, he is the middle neighbor between SpongeBob and Patrick Star. Squidward is a cephalopod. His species is an octopus according the series' creators, despite his name containing "squid". Squidward lives in a house shaped like an Easter Island Head [Moai head]. He works as a Cashier at the Krusty Krab, a job he dislikes. SpongeBob works along with Squidward at the Krusty Krab. Squidward is a selfish individual and displays an unjustified air of superiority. He also has over 500 self-portraits and is delusional about his talents (such as playing the clarinet) though nobody around him considers him to be very good. The series' animators made Squidward with six tentacles, believing that giving him the eight tentacles of an octopus has made him look too burdened.
Even though his name is "Squid"ward Tentacles, he is an Octopus. This was stated in a "The Case of the SpongeBob" feature of The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie DVD with creator Stephen Hillenburg and a few voice actors. Stephen Hillenburg quotes the following:
- "This is Squidward the octopus." Later in the feature, he quotes, "It was easier for animation to draw him with six legs instead of eight."
Squidward's name is a portmanteau of the word "squid" and the name "Edward."
In Squidward's childhood, he had to sit near the garbage cans at lunch, as revealed in Boating Buddies. When he was an adult, he was part of the Krusty Krab along with Jim and later, after Jim quit, with a fry cook whose name is yet to be revealed. One day, he was planting a garden and a pineapple fell on him and destroyed his garden. A sponge named SpongeBob SquarePants moved into that pineapple and Squidward has been grumpy ever since. See his antagonistic side, leisure, and near-death experiences sections for more of his biography.
Squidward Tentacles personality is presented as that of a smart, cynical, and snobbish individual whose style is generally not appreciated by others. He has a sarcastic attitude and sees others as uncivilized morons, while failing to accept his own personal shortcomings. Squidward sees himself as misunderstood and unappreciated, blaming society for his failures. He is annoyingly pretentious in his pursuit of fame and is either unwilling or unable to spot talent and creativity, even belittling it. He lauds "cultivated taste" and accepted standards. In the episode "Artist Unknown", he insists that his pupil SpongeBob "show his method", even when it's painfully clear that SpongeBob has artistic genius. In the episode Bubblestand, he belittles SpongeBob's brilliant bubble-blowing.
Squidward is generally portrayed as an overall failure. His musical skills with the clarinet are generally portrayed as subpar, from mediocre to excruciatingly horrible. However, In Best Day Ever, he has a concert where he plays beautifully and receives thunderous applause from the audience. SpongeBob was on the VIP list for it. His overall artistic style is shown to be abstract and overly sophisticated, and his works are commonly panned by his audiences. His critical failure is shown to be more due to his bad taste rather than a genuine lack of talent. It is worth noting that the majority of his art centers around himself, apparently holding his very being to be an artistic wonder. In "One Krab's Trash", Squidward is shown bringing flowers to a gravestone reading "Here Lies Squidward's Hopes and Dreams." Despite his lack of success, Squidward is tireless in his pursuit of artistic achievement. In "Dunces and Dragons", Squidly, Squidward's medieval ancestor, vowed that if he couldn't learn to play the clarinet right, his seventh great-grandson would be cursed tenfold. In "Squilliam Returns", Squilliam Fancyson mentions that Squidward was voted "Most Likely to Suck Eggs" in high school.
Given how Squidward is depicted as a loser in most regards, it's likely that his 'narcissism' is actually a defense mechanism to make him feel as if he has some form of self-worth.
Outwardly, he in fact shows signs of modest success: he lives in a nice, well-tended house, with no signs of slothfulness, and finds plenty of time to lead an active, involved life.
Squidward is well-educated and knows his history. When at the Krusty Krab, he is a lazy, sloppy employee (as shown in the Krusty Krab Training Video) who has an intense dislike of the Krusty Krab and its management. He is considered "inattentive, impatient, a glazed look in the eye." However, given the management's treatment of the employees his attitude towards the company is more realistic than SpongeBob's. In the episode "Squid on Strike", he organizes a worker's strike at the Krusty Krab. He even causes the destruction of the Krusty Krab, although indirectly and accidentally.
In the episode "Squidville", he moves to a town filled with his own peers, other octopi who share his tastes and outlook on life. Here, he is forced to face how boring and oppressive his desired lifestyle really is, and he is able to ultimately break free of its bonds with a bit of inspired silliness.
In "Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy V", it is implied that Squidward at one point had a girlfriend when he remembered the good times he had at make-out reef.
In "SpongeBob's Last Stand" he knows about the environment, even when Jellyfish Fields became a wasteland
- In "Fools in April", Squidward gets annoyed with SpongeBob pulling playful and harmless pranks on people at the Krusty Krab, and pulls a very cruel and harmful prank on SpongeBob in retaliation. Things blow up in Squidward's face when SpongeBob runs out of the restaurant sobbing hysterically, and the Bikini Bottomites turn on him. Squidward tries to apologize, but he is physically unable to apologize until the very end of the episode, where SpongeBob has the last laugh: all his friends were standing behind him in his house and witnessed Squidward's apology. As a result, Squidward suffers a mental breakdown and runs off back to his house laughing maniacally after shouting that he had just fooled them as well.
- In "Can You Spare a Dime?", Squidward accepts SpongeBob's offer to live in his house until he finds a new job. However, he takes advantage of SpongeBob's hospitality by laying in bed all day and essentially making SpongeBob his domestic slave, staying so long that the Narrator quits, and not even attempting to find a job. This eventually proves too much for SpongeBob who for one of the few times in the series becomes angry with Squidward, who soon begins aggressively giving Squidward obvious hints to get a job, which Squidward either doesn't notice or chooses to ignore. Eventually, SpongeBob confronts Mr. Krabs in an attempt to force him to give Squidward his job back, and in the process accidentally reveals that Mr. Krab's first "dime" (a stone-age wheel) was in his pants the whole time, and that Squidward did not steal it.
- In "Squidward, the Unfriendly Ghost", when SpongeBob and Patrick believe they have killed Squidward and that he is now a ghost, he takes advantage of this by making them his slaves. Eventually, SpongeBob and Patrick, after reading a magazine about the Flying Dutchman's death, get the idea that Squidward is being mean and angry because he was never put to rest. SpongeBob and Patrick attempt to bury Squidward, which ultimately brings him to confess that he is actually alive. However, SpongeBob and Patrick still think that Squidward is a ghost in denial and send him to the "great beyond" by trapping him in a bubble, which floats up into the sky where the pelicans are.
- In "Grandma's Kisses" Squidward and the customers at the Krusty Krab ruthlessly tease SpongeBob for having a kiss on his forehead given by his grandma. At the end of the episode, it is shown that they have been spying on SpongeBob with his grandma through her house's window.
- In "Employee of the Month", SpongeBob and Squidward viciously compete with each other for the employee of the month award, both of them trapping each other in hopes of getting to work first.
- In "Funny Pants" SpongeBob's laughing annoyed him, so he told SpongeBob that he had a "laugh box" that would burn up if he laughed within 24 hours and could never laugh again. SpongeBob eventually thinks he lost his laugh and goes into "spiraling depression."
- In "The Splinter", Squidward tells SpongeBob that Mr. Krabs will have to kick him out for getting a splinter at work.
- In "Professor Squidward" Squidward says he is Squilliam but the fan finds a real Squilliam and then Squidward was arrested and sent to jail.
- In "I ♥ Dancing", Squidward gets jealous that SpongeBob has an audition in a musical, and "teaches" him how to dance in order to steal the spot for himself, training SpongeBob to the point of exhaustion. While he wins, he is going to star in Squilliam's musical, and is forced to train to perform a dance that SpongeBob had performed earlier, with Squilliam clearly planning to run him ragged just as Squidward had done to SpongeBob.
- In "Good Ol' Whatshisname", Squidward steals What Zit Tooya's wallet and ran a red light in front of a police officer and gets arrested and was sentenced to ten years in jail.
- In "The Lost Mattress", Squidward nearly threatened to murder SpongeBob, then he used him and Patrick as "worm bait".
- In Krusty Towers, he made several ridiculous requests with the purpose of driving Mr. Krabs crazy.
- In New Fish in Town, dragged Spongebob's, Patrick's, and Howard's homes down a trench.
- In Keep Bikini Bottom Beautiful Squidward was given a total of eight tickets to community service by the end of the episode. Even though it was never his fault, and instead was blamed.
- In Sentimental Sponge Spongebob becomes a hoarder off of the idea that random garbage holds valuable memories. He later throws it into Squidward's yard. This angers Squidward, and he ends up calling the police on Spongebob. They then condemn Spongebob's house for being unsanitary, and then Squidward's for being covered in his garbage. Even though none of it was Squidward's, nor was he a hoarder.
Squidward works as the cashier at the Krusty Krab restaurant, along with his co-worker, SpongeBob SquarePants. He not only hates his duties but the Krusty Krab itself, and he performs his job rather poorly and with a lack of enthusiasm. He also frequently behaves rudely to the customers. He has often expressed a desire to be fired or simply quit, but never makes good on it; he only seems to work there because he needs the money. In "Just One Bite", he reveals that he has never eaten a Krabby Patty and thinks them to be disgustingly unhealthy, although after having "just one bite", he falls in love with them. However, this fact is contradicted by an earlier episode in which SpongeBob forgets how to tie his shoe and, consequently, throws several Krabby Patties down Squidward's throat. (An explanation for this could be that since he didn't taste them with his tongue, he thought they were bad). In "The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie", Squidward is manager of the Krusty Krab 2 for six days, although due to Plankton's invasion of Bikini Bottom, the new restaurant is not in service during this time. Squidward's dream in "Sleepy Time" shows him playing clarinet for a king. In Selling Out, Squidward worked as the waiter for Krabby O' Mondays. He was forced to maintain a false state of happiness, or else face "Human Resources", a thug in the back of the building.