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SpongeBob SquarePants is an American animated series created by Stephen Hillenburg, Matt Groening and Mike Judge for Nick@Nite and MTV, based on The Sponge and the Star shorts from the Gametoons franchise.

The series' popularity has made it a media franchise, as well as one of the highest-rated series to ever air on any Viacom television network, and the most distributed property of MTV Networks. As of 2020, the media franchise has generated $13 billion in merchandising revenue for Viacom.

The series officially premiered on July 17, 1997. It has received worldwide critical acclaim since its premiere and gained enormous popularity by its second season. A feature film, The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie, was released in theaters on November 19, 2001, and a sequel was released on February 6, 2010. In 2020, the series will began airing it's twenty-fourth season. The series also airs on Comedy Central, Nickelodeon and Paramount Network. As of July 30, 2020, all prior seasons of the show are available on CBS All Access.

The series has won a variety of awards, including six Annie Awards, eight Golden Reel Awards, four Emmy Awards, 15 People's Choice Awards, and two BAFTA Awards. Despite its widespread popularity, the series has been involved in several public controversies, including one centered on speculation over TBA's intended sexual orientation. A Broadway musical based on the series opened in 2017 to critical acclaim.

On February 14, 2019, it was announced that a SpongeBob SquarePants spin-off is in development. It is titled Kamp Koral, will focus on SpongeBob's early years, and will be animated using CGI animation.

The show is rated TV-PG-DLSV for mild suggestive dialogue, use of mild language, mild sexual content, and violence. Some episodes are rated TV-14-LV with more strong language and more violence

Premise 

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Main characters

  • SpongeBob SquarePants (voiced by Tom Kenny) -  a yellow anthropomorphic sea sponge who is loud, fun-loving, goofy, idiotic, crazy, annoying, and optimistic employed as a fry cook at a fast-food restaurant called the Krusty Krab, TBA.
  • Patrick Star (voiced by Bill Fagerbakke) - An idiotic pink starfish who lives under a rock, TBA
  • Squidward Tentacles (voiced by Rodger Bumpass) -  SpongeBob and Patrick's short-tempered octopus neighbor who is frequently annoyed by SpongeBob and Patrick. He believes himself to be a talented artist and musician, but nobody else recognizes his abilities. He plays the clarinet and often paints self-portraits in different styles, which he hangs up around his tiki house. Although he dislikes SpongeBob and Patrick's childish nature, they are oblivious to his animosity and consider him a close friend.
  • Gary - SpongeBob's pet snail, TBA.
  • Mr. Eugene Krabs (voiced by Clancy Brown) - a red crab who owns and operates the Krusty Krab restaurant where SpongeBob and Squidward work on. He is self-content, cunning, and obsessed with the value and essence of money. He lives in a giant anchor with his teenage daughter Pearl, who is a whale. He dislikes spending money but will go to great lengths to make Pearl happy. He tends to worry more about his riches than about the needs of his employees. Having served in the navy, he loves sailing, whales, sea shanties and talking like a pirate. Other running jokes featuring him include being attacked by angry people who demand refunds, doing several illegal activities in which he is frequently arrested and a tragic origin story.
  • Sandy Cheeks -  (voiced by Carolyn Lawrence) is a squirrel from Texas who lives in an air-filled glass dome and wears a diving suit to breathe underwater Whenever any aquatic creatures enter her home, they must wear helmets of water. Sandy works as a scientist, explorer, and inventor. She is a rodeo champion with a number of athletic interests, such as "sand-boarding" and karate. She speaks with a Southern drawl and uses typical Southern slang words and phrases.
  • Sheldon Plankton (voiced by Mr. Lawrence) - a small planktonic copepod and a self-proclaimed evil genius/criminal mastermind. He is a skilled inventor and possesses a Napoleon complex due to his short stature. He is also the owner of the Chum Bucket, an unsuccessful restaurant located across the street from the Krusty Krab. His business is a commercial failure because he only sells inedible foods made from a chum. As the villainous archenemy to Mr. Krabs, he constantly tries to steal the secret recipe for Mr. Krabs' popular Krabby Patty burgers but is always unsuccessful (except temporarily in The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie). Not only does he wishes to run Mr. Krabs out of business but he also wishes to take over the world, sometimes believing he can use the secret recipe to his world domination plans. The majority of his evil plans come from his intelligent yet sarcastic talking computer wife Karen, who is more competent and less conceited than him. Though he is considered the main antagonist of the series, he has been portrayed as an antihero on several occasions.
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Production

Development

Early inspirations

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Conception

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Assembling the crew

Pitching

Executive producers and showrunners

Writing

Voice actors

Animation

Music

Broadcast

Episodes

Tenth anniversary

Crossover special with Ren and Stimpy

Twentieth anniversary

Reception

Ratings and run-length achievements

Critical reception

Awards and accolades

Legacy

Criticism

Controversies

Other media

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