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NOTEː This page and the other SpongeBob SquarePants pages are dedicated to the late creator Stephen Hillenburg (1961-2018) who passed away due to ALS. He will always be our ocean man.
NOTE 2ː Happy 24th Anniversary, SpongeBob SquarePantsǃ
“I guess you're right, Plankton. I am just a kid. And you know, I've been through a lot in the past six days, five minutes, twenty-seven-and-a-half seconds. And if I've learned anything during that time, It's that you are, who you are. And no amount of mermaid magic, or managerial promotion, or some other third thing... can make me anything more than what I really am inside: A kid. But that's okay! Because I did what everyone said a kid couldn't do! I made it to Shell City, and I beat the Cyclops, and I rode the Hasselhoff, and I brought the crown back! So yeah, I'm a kid. And I'm also a goofball. And a wing nut. And a Knucklehead McSpazatron! But most of all, I'm... I'm... I'm… I’M A GOOFY GOOBER!”
― SpongeBob SquarePants, The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie
"Listen you crustaceous cheapskate! Squidward's been living in my house driving me crazy! And you're not gonna hire him back all because of a stupid dime?!"— SpongeBob SquarePants, "Can You Spare a Dime"
Robert SquarePants (more famously known as SpongeBob SquarePants, or just SpongeBob, born July 14, 1986) is the titular main protagonist of the beloved Nickelodeon animated series through his nickname and Kamp Koral: SpongeBob's Under Years, as well as the 3 movies: The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie, The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water and The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge On the Run one of the main characters in The Patrick Star Show, and the deuteragonist of the upcoming spin-off movie Saving Bikini Bottom: The Sandy Cheeks Movie. He was designed by the former marine biologist, Stephen Hillenburg. Stephen Hillenburg based SpongeBob on Bob the Sponge, a character he had created for his educational book "The Intertidal Zone" in the late 1980s. He is voiced by Tom Kenny.
SpongeBob is a childish and joyful sea sponge who lives in a pineapple with his pet snail Gary in the underwater city of Bikini Bottom, working as a fry cook at the Krusty Krab, a job which he is exceptionally skilled at and enjoys thoroughly. He attends Mrs. Puff's Boating School, and his greatest dream in life is to receive his boating license.
Why He's Employee of the Month
- His optimistic outlook on life can be very inspiring, always trying his best to enjoy everything in life and spread that joy to others no matter what, contrasting the cranky and depressing nature of Squidward. But although he may act like a child, he's not some one-note happy-go-lucky character, as he's still a competent and reasonable person who's capable of being perceptive and skeptical. He's conscientious and is extremely committed to his responsibilities. He may drive Squidward and Mrs. Puff crazy, but he himself has his limits and can get mad at others (easily, the most famous example of this, would be in "Can You Spare a Dime?").
- While some people can sympathize with Squidward and find SpongeBob irritating, he's not some braindead moron who can't take a hint. He's completely aware that Squidward is cranky, grouchy, doesn't think highly of him or his friends, but SpongeBob constantly tries to cheer him up anyways because he genuinely cares about him, and believes that he deserves to be happy. Some of the best episodes of the series are centered around their dynamic, such as "Pizza Delivery", "Fools in April", "Dying for Pie", and "Christmas Who?".
- He has a clever, iconic, and adorable character design. Normally, squares are associated with being dull and boring, but SpongeBob subverts this by being nautically nonsensical, which is reflected by his buck teeth, long nose, rosy cheeks, and them big 'ol eyes. He is also very expressive, spawning countless memes, although that could also be attributed to the show's humor in general.
- They absolutely could not have found a better and more fitting voice for the character, than Tom Kenny's. His performance perfectly encapsulates the personality and energy of the character, becoming extremely iconic, and many SpongeBob's most beloved moments in the would not have been as hilarious if it weren't for Kenny's delivery.
- SpongeBob has also sung many great and memorable songs across the show's history, such as "Ripped Pants", the "F.U.N. Song", "This Grill is Not a Home", and "The C-A-M-P-F-I-R-E S-O-N-G Song". He even starred in his own stage musical, SpongeBob SquarePants: The Broadway Musical, which is also great and a really well-made love letter to the series, with Ethan Slater doing a great job with his own take on the character.
- The "secret formula" to what makes SpongeBob's character tick is in Stephen Hillenburg's pitch bible for the character (or "Sponge Boy", as he was at the time), as that was the original vision for the character:
- Who is Sponge Boy?: Sponge Boy is our hero! He's a single male sponge who resides in a fully furnished, two bedroom... pineapple. He has an abnormal love for his job at "The Crusty Crab," a fast food restaurant. In fact, he's so proud of his Crusty Crab uniform that he never takes it off - not even when he showers. His big dream is to capture the not-so-coveted "Employee of the month" award, but, because of his overzealous nature and havoc it creates, this goal constantly eludes him. But Sponge Boy's life is much richer than just Pineapple to "Crusty Crab" and home again. He has a wide circle of friends and people who he thinks are his friends, but who would never admit it. He has a variety of interests which keep him occupied― rust, friction, bubble art, odors, and why hamburgers and French fries taste different. Sponge Boy is incurably optimistic, innocent, earnest, and well-meaning. He is a free spirit, fascinated by the obvious, and creative enough to see almost anything in a new light. His good humor and good intentions often irritate others, but his refreshing attitude makes him a likable underdog. By day he embraces each moment with enthusiasm. By night he often lays awake so as to not miss anything then either. The star of Sponge Boy is also comic obsessive, especially when it comes to details. If he buys a toothbrush, he might test several of them before he makes his purchase. If he sharpens a pencil he might get down to the stub before he's satisfied with the point. Despite all of Sponge Boy's positive character traits, he can't seem to avoid creating problems for himself. Sponge Boy zeal usually means Sponge Boy disaster. While trying too hard, he tends to do things wrong, really wrong. In almost any situation, from jump starting his outboard boat-mobile to just picking flowers for someone in the hospital (who's probably there thanks to him), the potential for disaster looms large. Oh yeah. Sponge Boy plays the Ukulele.
- What Does Sponge Boy Want?: Sponge Boy would like to fit in. His ideal is to be like everyone else. He wants to buy into that dream of "service with a smile," and be that team player, that company man with the positive mental attitude. But he never quite attains this goal, and, more importantly, he will never recognize this fact. Here we discover the tragic side of Sponge Boy. Don't get nervous! He is tragic to some extent. It's extremely important for this character to have pathos, especially if he is to be a comic character. (Chaplain and Keaton understood this idea and exploited it to great effect.) We see Sponge Boy as built from within, observing that this creates sympathies and qualities which resonate. His desire to fit in, combined with his innocence about his inability to do so, create conflict. This conflict informs the character and his actions: What does he want? He wants to fit in, but like a square peg in a round hole, he can't.
- EXAMPLE: Sponge Boy goes to muscle beach, a popular Bikini Bottom recreation spot. He attempts all of the things that everyone else is doing--surfing, sunbathing, weight lifting, sand castle building--but does them in his own inimitable style: When Sponge Boy can't pull his surf board out of the sand, he invents a better kind of surfing: He repeatedly launches himself at the board which bends backwards and slings him far away. Sponge Boy's weight lifting set is a stick with two stuffed animals stuck on either side, instead of weights. His sand castle looks like a treasure chest. When he opens it up there's enough doubloons inside to buy everyone sodas at the Krusty Krab.
- What is Sponge Boy's Attitude?: Much of what we've observed has shown that Sponge Boy is optimistic. This trait is not to be taken lightly. There is a plethora of wise-cracking, cynical, glib cartoon characters out there hitting each other on the head and pushing each other into wheat shredders. Sponge Boy is not one of them. He is truly an optimist, a guy who can't help but look on the bright side, who's positive energy transforms the way we look at things, helping us find the irony in even the dullest of life's details.
- EXAMPLE: Mr. Crabs dupes Sponge Boy into accepting a pair of rubber boots instead of his weekly pay check. Sponge Boy and the boots become inseparable. Crabs can't believe his good fortune in having such a stooge for an employee. But then Sponge Boy starts to use them creatively: They make a squeaky sound which he can manipulate like a musical instrument when he shuffles his feet. In fact he amazes people with his musical boots. The squeaking sound drives Mr. Crabs crazy (to the point where everything he hears sounds like a series of squeaks), like the telltale heart, and he is forced to buy to boots back from Sponge Boy at an absorbent price.
- How do these traits play out?: An obstacle stands in our path. Most of us take a certain, logical approach to getting around the object. Sponge Boy takes a wayward, unconventional, and ultimately funny approach, though still getting around the obstacle. This is essential Sponge Boy logic. It is internal logic, and underscores his original thinking. This also means that he is not a loser. He always wins, even if it's only a personal win. He will get to where he's going, but the getting there is what makes him likable, interesting and significant. Sponge Boy tries to fit in, fiercely embracing the normal and the mundane, but in doing so he turns upside down the very ideal he was striving for.
- EXAMPLE: Sponge Boy, a proud pineapple home owner, decides to clean up his yard with a reef blower one Sunday morning. But in his hands the reef blower becomes a destructive force which he can't control. Patrick comes out of his rock with his own reef blower, and, thinking that this is how it's done, imitates Sponge Boy being thrashed about. Together, the two reef-blowing neighbors erode the foundation of Squidward's Easter Island head. The house totters and falls over with Squidward in it.
- What makes Sponge Boy different?: Sponge Boy is an ultra-creative character living among others that do not share his gift, especially the Squidwards and Mr. Crabs of the undersea world. Creative, original thought is rare indeed--it is the stuff of genius. (And what genius was every fully appreciated in his own time?) The creative thinker always lives in contrast to his fellow sea creatures--he is an underdog. Sometimes he is scorned, or ostracized, or misunderstood. But no matter what the reaction, the spirit of the creative thinker remains undaunted; it is always mutating and reinventing itself. And this is how we see Sponge Boy. Unaware of his talents, he cheerily strives to assimilate in a world where unbridled creative thought is a catalyst for conflict. Luckily, his failure to fit in is mitigated by his optimism and his ability to turn a loss into a win for himself.
- Even with his abysmal flanderization in seasons 6b and 7 (see BQ#1), he can still be likeable and even have his original personality on the odd occasion.
- Despite still having some flaws in said seasons, SpongeBob has gone back to his original personality since Season 8 and Tom Kenny returned the sponge back to his original pitch in his voice.
- With all of the above, he has certainty earned his role as one of the most popular and iconic cartoon characters of all time, alongside Mickey Mouse, Homer Simpson, and Bugs Bunny. One could even argue he and his cartoon has become even more beloved than all of them combined.
- He was hit excessively hard with flanderization in seasons 6b and 7 as he became a very annoying & idiotic pest. However, he redeemed himself in the newer seasons as he goes back to his original personality since Season 8 (as mentioned above).
- While still likable for the most part, he was slightly flanderized in seasons 5, 6a and 8 as there were more episodes where he would become a big cry baby, stalker, or do something by pure idioticy such as: "To Love a Patty", "Breathe of Fresh Squidward", "Waiting", "Plankton's Regular", "Giant Squidward", "Demolition Doofus", "Sentimental Sponge", "Face Freeze", and "Squiditis".
- He was also slightly flanderized in SpongeBob: Patty Pursuit, although he's still likable and is still fun to play as.
- He still does have some mean-spirited moments before Season 6B & 7 such as:
- In terms of pre-moive era, he was at his absolute worst in "The Great Snail Race", as he pushes Gary into training, even if Gary doesn’t want to, and overworks his snail to his limit.
- In "To Love a Patty", he gruesomely murdered a bunch of scallops only because the scallops were trying to eat the Krabby Patty he loved despite the fact that he himself raised Junior in "Rock-A-Bye Bivalve" and the fact he has a pet scallop named Shelley in a few episodes, making this hypocritical (however that is not really sure as most of the characters of the show are sometimes unkillable thanks to the show's extreme comedic standards).
- In "House Fancy", he brutally tore off Squidward's toenail when he and Squidward try to move a sofa and although it was an accident, it is still way too much for such show.
- In "Married to Money", despite not being bad as Mr. Krabs and Plankton, he comes across as bland and he, along with Patrick and Squidward, decorates the Krusty Krab for an unnecessary wedding.
- Likewise, it varies whether he was in character or not in seasons 5 & 6A. Though he isn't as bad as he is in seasons 6B-7, an to a lesser extent, 8 (but at least in season 8 he was decent).
- His voice and overly optimistic attitude may come off as irritating to some.
- Like Tommy Pickles and Usagi Tsukino, he has a BAD habit of crying so much (although not as much in seasons 6B & 7, and to a lesser extent, Seasons 5, 6A & 8), this is an example.
Mermaid Pants and Barnacle Star!
- This is currently the 7h largest page on this wiki, as well as the largest page for any character overall.
- On top of that, SpongeBob is the only protagonist to have a long page as the other top 5 are either antagonists or anti-heroes.
- As stated above, he was born on July 14, 1986 making him a Cancer.
- A lot like his best friend Patrick Star, he was responsible for creating such memetic material with some expressions he's made from the series to the 2004 movie and such memeable scenes his existence has made with many worldwide. And also had tons of timeless, hilarious scenes.
- In a theory based on SpongeBob and his friends representing "The 7 Deadly Sins", SpongeBob is considered to be the "Lust" as several examples were shown in many episodes that he loves his Krabby Patties.
- As mentioned on the Cultural Impact section, Stephen Hillenburg said that SpongeBob is "almost asexual," meaning he has no sexual desire, though he is capable of falling in love.
- On the topic of sexuality, Nickelodeon included SpongeBob as a member of the LGBT+ community as seen in this Twitter post they made on Pride Month.
- In early episodes, such as "Help Wanted," "F.U.N.," and "Christmas Who?," he did a dance where his arms and legs were curly. He doesn't seem to do the dance anymore.
- On occasion, to express shock, SpongeBob's pupil would shrink, and his eyes would turn into circles, with his irises briefly disappearing. Sometimes, this is reversed, as his pupils would disappear and his irises become shrunken.
- He made a cameo when Gil dresses him as a costume in the Bubble Guppies episode "Trick or Treat Mr. Grumpfish." In fact, Molly even says "Or somebody from TV."
- In the episode "Mrs. Puff, You're Fired," it is revealed that SpongeBob has failed the driving test 1,258,056 times.
- SpongeBob's teeth were based on Stephen Hillenburg when he was a kid.
- SpongeBob has appeared on a few pictures on iCarly.com.
- In "I Was a Teenage Gary," SpongeBob is left-handed, but in later episodes, he is ambidextrous, revealed in "The Splinter" and "You Don't Know Sponge."
- SpongeBob is said to be right-handed, but in "Neptune's Spatula," he approves that he has two left hands.
- Even though Mr. Krabs is the creator of the Krabby Patty, in "Are You Happy Now?," the narrator says that SpongeBob is the creator.
- SpongeBob's prototype name, "SpongeBoy," is referenced by Mr. Krabs in the episode "Squeaky Boots," with the quote "SpongeBoy, me Bob!"
- SpongeBob's head has gotten bigger in each season and his waist has gotten wider. In some early season 2 episodes, such as "Big Pink Loser," he has a narrow waist.
- Beginning in "My Pretty Seahorse" and heavily used in post-season 5 episodes, SpongeBob's nose usually droops down when he is sad, much like Squidward's nose is normally.
- SpongeBob has about 40 holes.
- Twelve front holes (five normally covered by his clothing)
- Nine back holes
- Five holes on his left
- Five holes on his right
- Five holes on top
- His birthmark and 3 moles.
- Four holes on the bottom
- In "Help Wanted," he is shown with fewer holes.
- In "Truth or Square," SpongeBob is revealed to have three moles and a birthmark on his back.
- A cut origin story was originally planned for SpongeBob. It was meant to explain his square shape as SpongeBob began life as a natural yellow Sponge that cyclops harvested and cut into squares in a factory on land.
- During the talk screens in the DS version of Creature from the Krusty Krab, SpongeBob has green eyes instead of blue.
- In 2002, SpongeBob was ranked #9 in TV Guide's Top 50 Greatest Cartoon characters list (which also included Angelica Pickles at #7 and Ren and Stimpy at #31). He was notably the most recently-created character to be featured on the list at the time of its publication.
- SpongeBob is one of the only two characters who is playable in every installment of the Nicktoons Unite! video games (the other being Danny Fenton).
- In The Patrick Star Show, despite being mainly focused on his best friend, he is absent in a lot of episodes and segments to the point where he barely appears.
- In The SpongeBob Musical, SpongeBob's exact species of sea sponge is identified: Aplysina fistularis, a yellow sea sponge who's commonly found in open waters.
- SpongeBob or some other form of him appears or is mentioned in every episode of the series, beginning with the series' pilot episode "Help Wanted."
- His voice actor Tom Kenny is married to Karen's voice actress, Jill Talley.
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