"A SquarePants Family Vacation" (originally titled "Runaway Roadtrip" and promoted with that title in Ireland and the UK) is the 159th episode of SpongeBob SquarePants. It was released on DVD on September 20, 2011, before airing on television on November 11th of the same year. It was the first a mini-series of five different vacation-themed SpongeBob episodes, and also the only half-hour episode in that mini-series.
Everybody got invitations from SpongeBob. They go to his house to be surprised that they are going to see vacation slides (which they don't care about). The adventure starts with Patrick squirting liquid cheese fizz on the camera. SpongeBob's parents pull up and get SpongeBob and Patrick in. SpongeBob looks at a brochure and Patrick suggests a game- Hide and Seek. Patrick gets on the windshield of the car and Harold yells "Egad!!!"' and loses control. They slide and burst into The Oustskirts Outlet Mega-Mall, and Basscar Racing Stadium. Then they fling off the stadium and heads straight into space where a floating cow gets hit by them and lands on the moon. Then they fall back down to the Earth and slide down a rocky cliff onto the road. SpongeBob then suggests they sing a road song. Everyone sings the road song and at the end of the song the engine blows up. They move the car to a local service station. They wait in an outhouse. Margret sees a playground and offers SpongeBob and Patrick to play on it. They do, but they slide down a sewer pipe and onto a small puddle.
When they get up, they try to get back up, but they can't. They enter a mysterious red kelp forest with many mushrooms. They hear a hollering noise and run. It turns out its a small creature. They jump over a cliff and onto an anemone and onto a mushroom. Behind Patrick is a giant fruit fly. They run away and behind a rock. They hear a noise. It came from a gift shop. SpongeBob wastes his money on useless knickknacks. They sing the road song wearily. Then SpongeBob decides to play the road song on a flute he bought at the gift shop. They walk along past Harold and Margret and into the forest again. Animals follow them. The animals suddenly run away because the giant fruit fly is behind them. SpongeBob stops playing. When they turn around they see the fruit fly wants to give them a lift. They then sing the above the road song. He drops SpongeBob and Patrick off. SpongeBob's parents call them over but SpongeBob and Patrick just fell asleep. Margaret says "Do something Harold!" while Harold says "He's your son, Margaret, he's your son..."
Home video releases
- SpongeBob SquarePants: SpongeBob's Runaway Roadtrip
- SpongeBob SquarePants: The Complete Eighth Season
- When SpongeBob and Patrick jump off the cliff, it is similar to what they did in The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie.
- Patrick getting the cheese-fizz in his eye was similar to how SpongeBob got chum in his eyes in "Chum Caverns".
- SpongeBob playing the flute and causing weird animals to follow him may be a reference to the 'Pied Piper of Hamelin'. This is the second episode where Patrick is mistaken as luggage. The first was in "The Great Patty Caper".
- This is the second time Baytona is mentioned. The first is The Hot Shot.
- SpongeBob's mother's first name is revealed to be Margaret.
- This was the second SpongeBob episode to be a long flashback sequence, the first being "Missing Identity". Unlike that episode, though, the framing device is not shown again at the end of the episode. This goes the same for the rest of the vacation mini-series.
- This episode was rated PG in Canada.
- When the car is sent flying into space, there is a cow jumping over the moon, which is an allusion to the nursery rhyme "The Cat and the Fiddle".
- This episode could be an allusion to 1987 film Planes, Trains and Automobiles, the 2005 film Are We There Yet?, or the 1994 film Dumb and Dumber.
- Baytona and Basscar are references to Daytona and NASCAR.
- The Road Song is a parody to the "Holiday Road" song from the movie National Lampoon's Vacation.
- When SpongeBob says "Patrick, where'd you get that kelp cake" the captions say "cupcake".
- When SpongeBob says "I'm so glad you all could make it..." Mr. Krabs has no legs.
- When Squidward reads the invitation letter, SpongeBob's house is gone.
- When Patrick seat belt is on while seeing the map then tries to get out then the next scene Patrick's seat belt disappears.