Fry cook at The Krusty Krab(1999 - present), has also been a cashier, waiter and manager Manager of The Krusty Krab 2[e] Creator and short term owner of the Pretty Patties (in Patty Hype) Store Owner of the Krusty Krab [e] Director of The Real Mermaid Man and Baracle Boy Movie Mayor of New Kelp City [e] Manager of Krusty Krab [e] Shiny Object Collector of The Krusty Krab (Battle for Bikini Bottom) Prison Guard (Jailbreak!) Driver's ed instructor at the Bikini Bottom Prison (Summer Job)
Hall Monitor[e] SpringBoob SquirePin in Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy II The Quickster [e] Short Order Boy [e] Idiot Boy [e] SpongeBob RoundPants/SpongeBob UnderPants [e] MuscleBob BuffPants [e] Spongy Gratingbob Shrillpants [e] Sponge-Hog[e] Spongebob ScaredyPants [e] Hans[e] Sponge-Brain [e] Little Bobby [e] The Yellow Avenger [e] The Bird Man of Bikini Bottom [e] CheeseHead BrownPants[e] Fry Boy[e] Knucklehead McSpazzatron [e] The Squish [e] SquareButt [e]
SpongeBob SquarePants (b. July 14, 1986) is the main protagonist, and the eponymous character, of the Nickelodeon animated comedy series of the same name. He was designed by marine biologist and animator Stephen Hillenburg, and is voiced by Tom Kenny. SpongeBob's a childish, joyful, eccentric sea sponge who lives in a pineapple in the underwater city of Bikini Bottom. He works as a fry cook at The Krusty Krab, a job that he is exceptionally skilled. SpongeBob lacks a lot of knowledge and is a constant annoyance to those around him (especially Squidward Tentacles), but he is very good natured. He appears in all of the episodes in the series, and he was soon to be Nickelodeon's main mascot.
SpongeBob SquarePants is a cute sea sponge, but he is drawn to resemble a kitchen sponge, being rectangular and bright yellow with a dark brown outline. In earlier episodes, he is wider near the top and gets skinnier going further down, but in more recent episodes, he is more of a regular square shape. SpongeBob has large blue eyes, a long, slightly curved nose, a large mouth with two prominent front buck teeth, and dimples with three freckles on each cheek. He typically wears a white shirt with a red tie, black leather shoes with shoelaces, and brown rectangular pants with a black belt[e] (the entire outfit is sometimes referred to as his "pants", hence his name). While working at the Krusty Krab, he wears a tall, white hat with a small blue anchor on it as a uniform. SpongeBob sometimes sleeps in his underwear, and at other times pajamas (beginning in Season 5). Though SpongeBob has always been voiced by Tom Kenny, his voice has changed over the course of the series; his voice is lower than normal in the pilot episode, [e] and after the movie, his voice gets slightly higher-pitched. And also, SpongeBob never passed Boating School.
SpongeBob is a very clueless, abnormal, immature, fun loving and hyperactive character with a happy-go-lucky personality. He is an extremely determined person, and will often stop at nothing to accomplish a task. He is also somewhat dramatic to the people who are kind to him, for example, to the mailfish. [e] He is also over-confident. Sometimes, though, he shows his devious side when trying to get Mr. Krabs and Plankton to work together. He sometimes tends to make mountains out of molehills, such as losing his name tag. [e]
SpongeBob is very kind-hearted and innocent, and very rarely acts openly mean to anyone, even his enemies. He is a very selfless and loyal person, especially towards those close to him. His selfless nature is most notably shown in "Best Day Ever," where he sacrifices his "perfect day" to help his friends. Despite his well-meaning intentions, SpongeBob's actions often annoy and cause trouble for those around him, most notably his next-door neighbor, Squidward Tentacles.
SpongeBob can become scared easily and usually panics when frightened. He is afraid of the dark (or what's in the dark) and clowns. Occasionally, SpongeBob is too ignorant to notice impending danger and his unworldly thinking may put himself or others in peril. He also can't detect lies or malice information as easy as the other characters, mainly due to his naive nature.
SpongeBob's innocence also makes him overly trusting and very gullible, and he is easily manipulated by people who intend to use and/or harm him, such as Squidward, Mr. Krabs and Plankton; most noticeably, he is always easily fooled by Plankton no matter how bizarre or obvious his disguises are. Even though he's generally good-natured and easygoing, when frustrated and angered, SpongeBob can be sarcastic, rude and 'foul-mouthed' to his friends, even Mr. Krabs, whom he treats as a father figure. Ironically, Squidward is the only character that SpongeBob never insults when he's angry, with the exception of the episodes Can You Spare a Dime? and Breath of Fresh Squidward.
Spongebob is intelligent and his antagonism does not excuse him at all, including annoyance.
In "Nasty Patty," He helped Mr. Krabs create a tainted patty to "kill" the health inspector. They both thought the health inspector was a fake one and even put the nastiest things on the patty.
In "Squirrel Jokes," He made fun of Sandy by calling her stupid. Even though he promised Sandy that he would say no more squirrel jokes, he broke the promise. He also told Sandy that people would be laughing ”with" her, but they would actually laugh at her. However, this stopped once Sandy started being dumb and injured SpongeBob.
In "Pizza Delivery," he and Squidward get lost in the desert while delivering a pizza. They both are on the verge of starvation, however, Spongebob repeatedly refuses to let Squidward eat the pizza even though they would both die of starvation without it.
In "Can You Spare a Dime?," He picked up Mr. Krabs tightly by the neck out of frustration and anger and yelled at him.
In "Pranks a Lot," He and Patrick trespassed and scared everyone, and attempted to burn Mr. Krabs' money.
In "Party Pooper Pants," Squidward went to his party when his cables were cut, obviously by SpongeBob.
In Employee of the Month he gets very worried that Squidward would win the Employee of the month award instead of him, hence he tries to sabotage Squidward (ironically making him try harder to get it as he didn't even care about it in the beginning). Finally, they both were exhausted and called a truce. However, once at work they destroyed the Krusty Krab from their "work". It then exploded from making too many krabby patties thus customers picked them up and ate them for free.
In Christmas Who? he cuts down Squidward's tree (which is actually illegal), and puts up decorations on Squidward's house even though Squidward said not to.
In "Squidward, the Unfriendly Ghost," He sent Squidward up in the sky even though Squidward said no more favors. But this was because he thought that Squidward was still dead, due to his naive nature.
In "Rodeo Daze," He kidnapped people, who wouldn't help him, to help him save Sandy from a rodeo. That is technically illegal because it counts as kidnapping.
In "Toy Store of Doom," He annoyed an employee by singing. He also hid in the store past open hours and someone could have thought he might have been robbing the store.
In "Just One Bite," He forced Squidward to eat a Krabby Patty by handcuffing himself to Squidward.
In "Ripped Pants," He tricked the life guard into thinking he was dying, but it was a prank just to say he ripped his pants.
In "Sailor Mouth,” He used foul language, along with Patrick. (Mostly sounding like aquatic animal noises)
In Pressure, him, along with Patrick, Krabs, and Squidward made fun of Sandy when she couldn't do things they could because she was a land creature.
In "The Thing," He and Patrick antagonized Squidward by asking so many questions. They also broke into the zoo and broke out Squidward.
In "Walking Small," He ruthlessly took what he wanted and accidentally drove everyone from the beach, but he was tricked by Plankton the whole time.
In "A Pal for Gary," he scolded Gary for "being mean" to Puffy Fluffy, when it is actually Puffy Fluffy who is being mean to Gary.
In "Stuck in the Wringer," SpongeBob scolded Patrick for getting SpongeBob stuck in the wringer, and for not helping him at all (and was also blinded by the fact that Patrick tried to help). Patrick runs off crying and all the Bikini Bottomites turn on SpongeBob, telling him that he deserved what he got, sending SpongeBob in deep depression.
In "The Other Patty," he created a new restaurant called The Flabby Patty which proves to better than the Krabby Patty. So, he forces Mr. Krabs and Plankton to work together (much to their dismay) to get the recipe that they finally do, only to find out it wasn't a real recipe. SpongeBob revealed it was he who created the Flabby Patty just to get them to work together, which got him, chased by an angry Mr. Krabs and Plankton.
In "Stanley S. SquarePants," after taking the blame for most of Stanley's mistakes, he finally exploded at both Mr. Krabs and Stanley when he saw that his spatula was broken by Stanley.
Nasty Patty - For burying a dead person and "poisoning" the health inspector.
Doing Time - Driving crazily into a delivery truck.
Driven to Tears - Claims that he threw out Patrick's license out of the window (litterbug).
In Karate Choppers Mr. Krabs tells Spongebob to stop karate for good, however, when he tells Sandy she doesn't believe him, and does karate around him. Krabs then fires Spongebob even though he wasn't doing the one doing karate. However, Sandy then explained that she didn't listen when he told her.
In The Bully, Flatts the Flounder repeatedly threatens to beat up Spongebob. However, he finally did only to find out that due to his "Sponginess" he was immune. Flatts tried for days until finally (at Boating School) he collapsed from exhaustion. Spongebob then gave a speech about it while making a fist gesture. Hence, Mrs. Puff thought he had beaten him up intentionally, thus screaming "I'M GOING TO KICK YOUR BUTT!"
In "New Student Starfish," Patrick came with SpongeBob to Boating school in which he wrote a letter calling Mrs. Puff a big fat Meany and handed it to SpongeBob. Mrs. Puff then took away one of SpongeBob's good noodle stars even though it was Patrick's fault. However, Mrs. Puff probably did find this out when Patrick said: "See you SpongeBob, see you Big Fat Meany."
In Party Pooper Pants, Spongebob is locked out of his house while throwing a party hence he tries to break in, but is caught by the police. He then explains that it is his house and that he got locked out while throwing a party. However, he is then arrested for not inviting the two cops even though that it isn't against the law to not invite the police to a party.
In "Stanley S. SquarePants," SpongeBob's cousin works with him at the Krusty Krab (as Squidward moved away); he broke many things which SpongeBob claimed were his fault. However, eventually SpongeBob couldn't take it anymore, and explained it was Stanley's fault.
In "Keep Bikini Bottom Beautiful," a piece of garbage fell off a statue of Squidward (made of garbage) so a cop gave him and Squidward a ticket for it even though it fell off on its own.
Like many other cartoon characters, SpongeBob has been shown to have numerous extraordinary abilities and attributes over the course of the series (even though physically weak).
Soft Pliable Body: Due to his soft, pliable frame, he is capable of shape shifting, has some degree of invulnerability, being able to absorb any type of physical impact, shown most notably in the episode, The Bully.
Regeneration: It is shown that he can quickly regenerate parts of his body that are injured or removed.
Boneless: SpongeBob is usually shown to be boneless (sea sponges being invertebrates) however in some episode like I Had an Accident, bones are shown on his X-rays.
Absorbent: Being a sponge, he is also absorbent, and can expand his body by absorbing liquids. When he cries, he often re-absorbs his tears. Like in The Bully when Flats the Flounder kept on hitting him, but Spongebob just absorbed all of his blows.
Singing and Nose Playing: SpongeBob is shown to possess a fantastic singing voice. He uses his nose as a flute, which he is very good. He was also the lead singer in Band Geeks. Later he uses his nose flute in Best Day Ever to drive away the Nematodes from the Krusty Krab.
Fry-Cooking: SpongeBob has a job cooking Krabby patties at the Krusty Krab.
Jellyfishing: SpongeBob and Patrick have jellyfished in several episodes, in Jellyfish Hunter; he caught every single jellyfish in the fields.
Survival Skills: In To Save a Squirrel, SpongeBob and Patrick almost ate each other to survive.
Bubble Blowing: SpongeBob can perform extraordinary moves with bubbles.
Driving: He drives perfectly in various episodes, but he drives recklessly on the episodes which had the appearances of Mrs. Puff.
Karate: He trains in Karate perfectly, but he rarely mixes them up.
Destruction: Although, he doesn't know it and thanks to his poor driving skills, SpongeBob is actually skilled at Demolition Derbies. This was shown in Demolition Doofus as SpongeBob (who was using the name Le Squish) managed to defeat five other competitors (also surviving against Mrs. Puff.
SpongeBob's life has most usually been in good luck at his Boating School driving tests, where he gets himself and others (usually Mrs. Puff) injured or almost injured from his reckless driving. He also gets injuries from extreme sports with Sandy and the Radicals, Patrick, or living like Larry. He also almost froze to death in Frozen Face-Off. He also almost didn't make it against the Big One in SpongeBob SquarePants vs. The Big One. One time he almost got eaten and starved to death in To Save a Squirrel. SpongeBob was not concentrating and cracked his butt, in which the doctor said he was one of the lucky ones to survive in I Had an Accident.
Creation and development
Stephen Hillenburg intended to create a series about an over-optimistic sponge that annoys other characters. Hillenburg compared the concept to Laurel and Hardy and Pee-wee Herman. As he drew the character, he decided that a "squeaky-clean square" (like a kitchen sponge) fit the concept.
The first concept sketch portrayed the character as wearing a red hat with a green base and a white business shirt with a tie. SpongeBob's look gradually progressed to brown pants that were used in the final design. SpongeBob was designed to be a kid-like character who was goofy and optimistic in a style similar to that made famous by Jerry Lewis.
Originally the character was to be named SpongeBoy, but this name was already in use. This was discovered after voice acting for the original seven-minute pilot was recorded in 1997. The Nickelodeon legal department discovered that the name was already in use for a mop product. Upon finding this out, Hillenburg decided that the character's given name still had to contain "Sponge" so viewers would not mistake the character for a "Cheese Man." Hillenburg decided to use the name "SpongeBob." He chose "SquarePants" as a family name as it referred to the character's square shape and it had a "nice ring to it". The "Cheese Man" mistake was used 3 times, CheeseHead (or CheeseBoy by the citizens of New Kelp City) was used as SpongeBob's fake first name in WhoBob WhatPants?, Nancy said "Oh, so now the talking cheese is going to preach to us" in Band Geeks, and Timmy Turner mistakenly called SpongeBob "a giant block of cheese" in the video game Nicktoons Unite!
Although SpongeBob's driver's license says his birth date is July 14, 1986, which would make the character 12 (nearly 13) years old at the time of his debut appearance on May 1, 1999, Hillenburg joked that he is fifty in "sponge years". He explained that SpongeBob actually has no specific age, but that he is old enough to be on his own and still be going to boating school. The decision to have SpongeBob attend a boat driving school was made due to a request from Nickelodeon that the character attend a school.
SpongeBob is voiced by veteran voice actor Tom Kenny. Kenny previously worked with Hillenburg on Rocko's Modern Life, and when Hillenburg created SpongeBob SquarePants, he approached Kenny to voice the character. Hillenburg used Kenny's and other people's personalities to help create the personality of SpongeBob.
The voice of SpongeBob was originally used by Kenny for a background character present in a crowd scene in Rocko's Modern Life. Kenny forgot the voice initially as he created it only for that single use. Hillenburg, however, remembered it when he was coming up with SpongeBob and used a video clip of the episode to remind Kenny of the voice. Kenny says that SpongeBob's high-pitched laugh was specifically aimed at being unique, stating that they wanted an annoying laugh in the tradition of Popeye and Woody Woodpecker.
In SpongeBob SquarePants' broadcast in non-English languages, the voice actors dubbing SpongeBob's voice use Tom Kenny's rendition of the character as a starting point, but also add unique elements. For example, the French version has SpongeBob with a slight Daffy Duck style lisp.
According to his driver's license in the episodes "Sleepy Time" and "No Free Rides", SpongeBob was born on July 14, 1986. (His age is 27) SpongeBob SquarePants lives with his pet snail Gary in a large pineapple-shaped house on 124 Conch Street, Bikini Bottom. His next-door neighbor, Squidward Tentacles, who lives in an Easter Island head, hates SpongeBob and is constantly annoyed by his antics. SpongeBob is oblivious to this, and believes Squidward to be his friend. Beside Squidward's house is the home of SpongeBob's best friend, Patrick Star, who literally lives under a rock.
SpongeBob works at the Krusty Krab, Bikini Bottom's most popular restaurant, where he is a fry cook and prepares all food served at the Krusty Krab, most notably Krabby Patties. The first episode of the series depicts SpongeBob applying for and being hired to this job. He says that it has been his lifelong dream to join the Krusty Crew, and that only now is he "ready". When he applies for the job, Squidward and Mr. Krabs, wanting no part of him, send him on a fool's errand for a "hydrodynamic spatula with port and starboard attachments and turbo drive". While he is out searching for one, several hundred hungry anchovies arrive and overwhelm Squidward and Mr. Krabs. SpongeBob soon returns, having actually found a hydrodynamic spatula, and saves their lives by feeding the anchovies, showing off his amazing cooking skills in the process.
SpongeBob's house is an orange pineapple with fully furnished windows and doors and even a gas pipe. Apparently when he first moved to Bikini Bottom, he viewed many different houses, but none seem to his liking. Just as he was about to give up, a pineapple from a boat above the water, falls into the sea and land onto the space that was Squidward’s garden where Squidward was still gardening in. He loves the house and buys it, leaving Squidward in misery by losing his garden and having SpongeBob living next to him.
SpongeBob is not only extremely good at his job, being able to produce a Krabby Patty within seconds, but has a strong passion and an abnormal love for it; something of a workaholic, he enjoys his job more than any other activity, and is saddened whenever he cannot be at work. He also has a similar obsession with Krabby Patties themselves; he has on numerous occasions proclaimed them to be the best food in the world and in "Just One Bite" and "Shuffleboarding", he is shocked and horrified to see one thrown away. SpongeBob is one of the few characters to have fingers and the only main character to wear shoes. He is apparently very good at his job because he is the Vice Assistant General Manager of Certain Things (Stanley S. SquarePants). He also has been shown making a perfect Krabby Patty on his first try when he was a baby.
SpongeBob's skills as a fry cook could accurately be described as superhuman; in episodes such as "Help Wanted" and "Employee of the Month", he is seen making them at rates of hundreds or even thousands per minute. He has won 374 consecutive Employee of the Month awards at the Krusty Krab. In "Friend or Foe", it is shown that SpongeBob, as an infant, made a perfect patty on his first attempt. In "Neptune's Spatula", he is able to pull the Golden Spatula from the grease, making him the "chosen one" of King Neptune. In that same episode, it is shown that the burgers made by Neptune himself are horrible compared to SpongeBob's.
Squidward, the restaurants only other employee, runs the cashier and takes orders. Squidward is the polar opposite of SpongeBob; he hates his job (as well as the Krusty Krab itself) and performs it poorly. SpongeBob's and Squidward's boss, Eugene H. Krabs, is extremely greedy, selfish and abusive of his employees. He pays them extremely poorly, far below legal minimum wage, and is unhealthily obsessed with money. Despite this, SpongeBob is unquestioning of Mr. Krabs and looks up to him as an authority figure.
While not working, SpongeBob spends much of his time playing with his best friend, Patrick Star. Like SpongeBob, Patrick is childish, moronic and fun-loving. The two have known each other since early childhood, and are members of the "Best Friends Forever Club".
Their usual activities include Jellyfishing, bubble blowing, and various others. Their antics are of constant annoyance to their neighbor, Squidward, who has, on numerous occasions, been put in harm's way as a direct result of their actions. Despite Squidward openly hating SpongeBob and Patrick, they are completely oblivious to this and believe they are his best friends. SpongeBob and Patrick's favorite superheroes are Mermaid Man and Barnacle Boy, who they convinced to come out of retirement.
SpongeBob's other best friend is a squirrel from Texas named Sandy Cheeks, who wears a special suit and helmet to survive underwater. SpongeBob first met Sandy when he saw her wrestling a giant clam, which he helped her defeat. Sandy then invited SpongeBob to her home, an airtight terrarium known as the Treedome, and SpongeBob, not knowing what air is, accepts. When he comes to the Treedome and realizes that there is no water, he begins drying up and attempts to survive without water, telling himself that he doesn't need it and that "Water is for quitters!" Eventually, however, he gives in and starts panicking. Eventually; Sandy gives SpongeBob and Patrick bowls of water to wear over their heads, which they typically wear whenever they visit the Treedome.
Unlike Patrick, Sandy is very intelligent, both technologically and practically, but is tolerant of SpongeBob's stupidity and enjoys his company, and in some episodes, it is implied that Sandy has even raised SpongeBob's intelligence considerably. They enjoy doing extreme sports together, most notably Karate. SpongeBob's skill in karate is shown to vary considerably between episodes; at times, he equals and even outmatches Sandy in skill, while at other times he is incompetent to the point where Sandy can send him flying a considerable distance with a single punch; in "Karate Island", Sandy openly states that her karate skills are better than SpongeBob's by "a country mile." SpongeBob has also, on various occasions, been hinted to have a crush on Sandy, even though SpongeBob staff has been known to disprove it.
SpongeBob also attends Mrs. Puff's Boating School, where he is periodically tested for his driver's license. However, he becomes extremely nervous and reckless when behind the wheel of a boat, and has consistently failed his test countless times, often injuring Mrs. Puff and/or damaging the school and/or the entirety of Bikini Bottom in the process. According to the episode "Mrs. Puff, You're Fired", SpongeBob has failed the exam 1,258,056 times, and is the only person in the history of the school to ever fail it. In that same episode, Mrs. Puff describes SpongeBob as "unteachable". Despite his inability to properly drive a boat, SpongeBob has been shown to be able to drive/ride various other things capably, including a rock, a rocket ship, a sandwich and a submarine. SpongeBob claims that he does know how to drive, but simply panics behind the wheel and cannot concentrate. In "Mrs. Puff, You're Fired," SpongeBob receives extremely good training from Mrs. Puff's extremely tough military-esque replacement and learns how to drive capably, but can only do so while blindfolded due to the teacher's strict drills and very specific teaching methods.
Although SpongeBob has several friends, and many of the citizens of Bikini Bottom often treat him quite friendly, most; if not all, citizens of Bikini Bottom have been shown to have some degree of dislike for him. In the episode "Gone", it is shown that a holiday called "National No SpongeBob Day" has been started by the citizens of Bikini Bottom. As its name suggests, it is an entire day dedicated to getting away from SpongeBob, where the people leave Bikini Bottom for the day. Even Patrick goes, stating that everyone needs at least one day away from SpongeBob's laughter. In the ceremony, they build a giant wooden effigy of SpongeBob, burn it down, dance on the ashes (though some, like Squidward, are actually shown kicking the ashes), and depart Bikini Bottom. SpongeBob is more honored than insulted by this, as he was the "inspiration" for the holiday.
Sometimes, SpongeBob is a nudist. In which he has a tendency to take off his clothes whenever he wants to. He was shown naked in Ripped Pants, Nature Pants, The Paper, Hooky, Pranks a Lot, All That Glitters, Rise and Shine, Overbooked, and Model Sponge. SpongeBob got nude when he wanted to live with the jellyfish in Nature Pants. And, in Model Sponge, SpongeBob, got undressed when he is used in a sponge commercial. In Pranks a Lot, SpongeBob and Patrick had to strip in order to use the invisible spray. In Overbooked, during the presentation, he is requested to undress and enter the machine.
SpongeBob has many relatives, most notably his parents, who appear in several episodes. Unlike SpongeBob, who has the appearance of a kitchen sponge, most of SpongeBob's relatives, while still cartoony, resemble actual sea sponges, being round in shape and brownish in color.
In "SB-129", a robotic descendant of SpongeBob named "SpongeTron" is seen, as well as a primitive ancestor. "Ugh" features a caveman version of SpongeBob known as "SpongeGar". SpongeGar is distinctly different from the primitive sponge seen in "SB-129", being more evolved and closer to his modern counterpart. "Pest of the West" features SpongeBuck SquarePants; an ancestor who saved Dead Eye Gulch in what is now Bikini Bottom from Dead Eye Plankton in 1882.
For the majority of the series, SpongeBob takes the job of fry cook in the Krusty Krab. Acting like a workaholic, he treats his job seriously and with dignity. Primarily, he works as the janitor and fry cook but, occasionally takes the role of the cashier and manager.
SpongeBob also has been shown to have taken other jobs such as Mayor of New Kelp City after saving the denizens from The Bubble Poppin' Boys. He created the Pretty Patties and opened his own store, which was highly successful. Later, the painted food poisoned the many consumers that admired the creation. In Welcome to the Chum Bucket he was briefly employed at the Chum Bucket, but failed to do any successful work. In "Model Sponge," SpongeBob seemingly hears he was to be let go, but he has mistaken himself as the person to vacate his current life. Throughout his unemployed life during the episode, he tries to apply for many jobs, but he wasn't qualified for them as he was meant for the fry cook role at the Krusty Krab. He has also worked at Fancy during the worker switch.
Throughout the run of SpongeBob SquarePants, the SpongeBob characters have become very popular with both children and adults.
The character's popularity has spread from Nickelodeon's original demographic of two to eleven-year-olds, to teenagers and adults, including college campuses and celebrities such as Sigourney Weaver and Bruce Willis.Salon.com indicates that the unadulterated innocence of SpongeBob is what makes the character so appealing. SpongeBob has also become popular with gay men, despite Stephen Hillenburg saying that none of the characters are homosexual. The character draws fans due to his flamboyant lifestyle and tolerant attitude.
The popularity of SpongeBob translated well into sales figures. In 2002, SpongeBob SquarePants dolls sold at a rate of 75,000 per week, which was faster than Tickle Me Elmo dolls were selling at the time. SpongeBob has gained popularity in Japan, specifically with Japanese women. Parent company Viacom purposefully targeted marketing at women in the country as a method of building the SpongeBob SquarePants brand. Skeptics initially doubted that SpongeBob could be popular in Japan as the character's design is very different from already popular designs.
However, not all reception for SpongeBob has been positive. Many viewers, particularly those older or some that consider them "above" the series, find his character to be very obnoxious and/or annoying. Such issues have been amplified since season four and onwards as hundreds of formerly loyal fans turned on SpongeBob due to a "quality loss," in which the character's antics and mannerisms are significantly up played. AskMen's Top 10: Irritating '90s Cartoon Characters ranked SpongeBob at number four. The publication said that his well-meaning attitude is "extremely annoying."
An alternate SpongeBob exists in a world where Plankton was successful. Like his mainstream counterpart, he likes his career, likes promotions and gets sad when he makes an error in someone's order. The most significant difference is that he was made co-cashier by Plankton and is employed by him.
An alternate SpongeBob is mentioned in every short of the series, What if SpongeBob was Gone is one example: without him, Gary threw a humongous party that ended in disaster; Patrick in this universe cannot hunt jellyfish properly; Sandy gets injured when playing karate and the Krusty Krab ends in ruins and all would say except Gary, everything's better with SpongeBob.
SpongeBob also has friends from other universes as shown in the video game Nicktoons Unite and its other sequels, Nicktoons: Battle for Volcano Island, Nicktoons: Attack of the Toybots and SpongeBob SquarePants featuring Nicktoons: Globs of Doom. In these games, he and Patrick befriend Timmy Turner (as well as his fairy godparents Cosmo and Wanda), Danny Phantom, Sam Manson, Tak, ZIM, XJ9/Jenny, Stimpy, Jimmy Neutron, Tucker Foley, Goddard, Rocko, and Gir.
Patrick Star: SpongeBob's best friend and neighbor.
Sandy Cheeks: SpongeBob's second best friend. In "Truth or Square", when SpongeBob was trapped in the air duct, he remembered a marriage between Sandy and himself; however, it was only a stage show and not an actual marriage and in The Great Escape book he kisses Sandy on the helmet.
"Today's the big day, Gary!" (First line, ‘‘Help Wanted)
"There it is. The finest eating establishment ever established for eating: The Krusty Krab, home of the Krabby Patty, with a Help Wanted sign on the window. I've waited years for this moment. I'm gonna go in there, march straight up to the manager, look at him straight in the eye, lay it on the line, and - I can't do this!" (Help Wanted)
"Bring it around town. Bring it around town!" (Bubblestand)
"The Krabby Patty Secret Formula is the sole property of The Krusty Krab and is only to be discussed in part or in whole with its creator, Mr. Krabs. Duplication of this Formula is punishable by law. Restrictions apply. Results may vary." (‘‘Imitation Krabs)
"If we're discussing the Secret Formula on the third Wednesday in January and it's not raining outside, after we gargle vanilla pudding, what do we do?" (‘‘Imitation Krabs)
"GARY!! YOU ARE GOING TO FINISH YOUR DESSERT AND YOU ARE GOING TO LIKE IT!!!" (Dying For Pie)
"Well, it's no secret that the best thing about a secret is secretly telling someone your secret, thereby secretly adding another secret to their secret collection of secrets. Secretly." (‘‘The Secret Box).
On some occasions, SpongeBob wears glasses, like for Jellyfishing (for protection) or for reading. These are similar to those worn by his portrayer, Tom Kenny.
In seasons one and two, his eyes are larger compared to other seasons.
In Help Wanted, it is revealed that his first words were, "May I take your order?” However, this is wrong, as in Truth or Square his first words are "Krabby Patty". Though, in Truth or Square, he was still inside his mother's womb, so when he said: "May I take your order?” it may have been after he was born.
SpongeBob has displayed some forms of telepathy. This is usually displayed in form of jokes about how annoying he can be.
SpongeBob has on various occasions, insulted any or everyone who insults him or rather enrages him, including his friends. Strangely enough, SpongeBob has never once insulted Squidward except for in Can You Spare a Dime, when he was mad at Squidward for mooching off of him and taking advantage of him while living at SpongeBob's house and in The Abrasive Side where he; due to his abrasive side, has insulted everyone who took advantage of him, including Squidward.
On the cover of the SpongeBob's Box of Books box, SpongeBob's throat is dark purple. In the books, it is maroon.
SpongeBob is the only main character to have a pet. This may be incorrect because Sandy has a snake, a bird and a butterfly and Squidward has a female purebred snail. Mr. Krabs also has a worm in several episodes.
SpongeBob's voice changes by the fourth season; it is lighter and sounds a lot more childish. Also, his personality changes somewhat to be more childish, this affected the episodes plots from the fourth season up until about Season 8. It is unknown why this was done. Most likely to attract even younger viewers, this possibly lessened adult viewers though.
SpongeBob has appeared on a few pictures on iCarly.com.
SpongeBob wears green pajamas instead of his usual underwear whenever he has a visitor or is at a sleepover (usually with Patrick or Squidward), possibly to make the episode more appropriate.
SpongeBob is a shape shifter in some episodes shown.
SpongeBob is a mascot of Nickelodeon and Nickelodeon Movies.
SpongeBob's regular outfit has two shirt pockets, two back pockets, two front pockets, a pocket in his tie, and another pocket.
SpongeBob appeared in every episode of the series, even as a cameo. He did not miss a single appearance. He's the only character to hold this distinction.
Most of the time, his pants refer to his entire outfit, including the shirt and tie.
In one episode, SpongeBob was given a ten-dollar paycheck on Monday. It was a raise from starting out being paid as nothing then receiving underwear.
In "I Was a Teenage Gary", he is left-handed, but in later episodes, he is ambidextrous. This could be he was born a dominant lefty, but an accident with his left arm might have happened sometime after "I Was a Teenage Gary", which made him learn with his right or he just learned to write with both hands.
SpongeBob is said to be right handed, but in "Neptune's Spatula" he approved that he had two left hands.
SpongeBob is considered the most popular character in Nickelodeon.
In "Mrs. Puff, You're Fired", Mr. Fitz states that he has failed Boating School 1,025,856 times. This is likely an exaggeration.
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's voice actor also voices the Ice King in "Adventure Time", another show that debuted on Cartoon Network.
SpongeBob's head has gotten bigger in each season.
So has his pupil and cornea (the blue part of his eye).
SpongeBob's name was originally supposed to be SpongeBoy, but this name was already in use by a mop product. Mr. Krabs references this by saying, "SpongeBoy, me Bob!" in the episode "Squeaky Boots".
When he goes to the beach, he often wears swimming wear; in earlier episodes they are blue, but they change to red in later episodes. This is first seen as a cameo in Clams, but is very noticeable in newer seasons.