SpongeBob SquarePants is an American animated television series created by marine biologist and animator Stephen Hillenburg for Nickelodeon.
The series chronicles the adventures and endeavours of the title character and his various friends in the fictional underwater city of Bikini Bottom. Many of the ideas for the show originated from Hillenburg’s childhood experiences growing up in Southern California. He also drew inspiration from comics, including Pogo, Archie Comics and Mad Magazine.
The show premiered on May 1, 1999, and has since aired over 200 episodes. The series has received critical acclaim for its humour, creativity, voice acting, plot development, visual style, and musical score. SpongeBob SquarePants has been nominated for 15 Annie Awards (winning seven), 12 Golden Reel Awards (winning six), eight Emmy Awards (winning one), three British Academy Children’s Film & Television Awards (winning two), two Critics’ Choice Television Awards (winning both), a Daytime Emmy Award (which it won in 2016) and a Kids’ Choice Award during its run; while its first film adaptation Sponge Out of Water won an Annie Award for Best Animated Feature Film as well as a Critics’ Choice Movie Award for Best Animated Feature.
In 2015, TV Guide ranked SpongeBob SquarePants No. 9 on their list of 60 greatest cartoon characters of all time; while Common Sense Media placed him as No 10 on their list of 50 best TV characters in 2013. Despite this widespread acclaim however some critics have described Spongebob as “annoying” or “insufferable”, with others going so far to say that he is “the worst thing to happen to children’s television”. Nevertheless at the 2017 MTV Movie & TV Awards Spongebob was awarded ‘Best Musical Moment’.
Here are ten fun facts about Spongebob:
1. His full name is actually Spongebob Tidalwave Patrick Starfishman Squarenuts!
2. The show was originally going to be called “SpongeBoy Ahoy!”, but the name was already trademarked.
3. SpongeBob’s favourite food is Kraut Dongers, a play on the German dish sauerkraut.
4. His birthday is on July 14th – which just happens to be National Nude Day!
5. Stephen Hillenburg, creator of the SpongeBob SquarePants series and its characters, studied as a marine science major with a minor in art, he also had first-hand experience of working as a fry cook.
6. Bikini Bottom, the undersea city where SpongeBob lives, is a fictitious place that takes inspiration from a real-life location “Bikini Atoll“, a coral reef in the Pacific Ocean. Formerly a nuclear test site, the location inspired fan theories that the characters of the show are the result of nuclear testing.
7. Patrick was originally intended to be an angry bar owner.
8. In 2009 scientists named a newly discovered species of bacteria “Spongiforma squarepantsii” after him.
9. In 2012 he became the first ever cartoon character to appear on a US postage stamp.
10. The Krabby Patty is vegetarian and does not use any form of meat.