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SpongeBob SquarePants (often referred to simply as SpongeBob) is an American animated television series, created by marine biologist and animator Stephen Hillenburg. Much of the series centers on the exploits and adventures of the title character and his various friends in the underwater city of "Bikini Bottom". The series' popularity has prompted the release of a media franchise, contributing toits position as Nickelodeon's highest rated show, the most distributed property of MTV Networks, and among Nicktoons' most-watched shows.[1] As of 2011, SpongeBob SquarePants is the only Nicktoon from the 1990s that has not ended yet.
The basis for SpongeBob SquarePants was formed by Hillenburg in 1984 while teaching and studying marine biology at the Ocean Institute in Dana Point, California,where he wrote the comic strip The Intertidal Zone, which starred various anthropomorphic forms of sea life, many of which would evolve into SpongeBob SquarePants characters. He left the institute to become an animator in 1987, and later attended the California Institute of Arts in 1992. In the institute, he made his thesis film Wormholes (1992), which led to his hiring as a director, writer,producer, storyboard artist, and executive producer of the series Rocko's Modern Life by creator Joe Murray. He started to develop the series in 1996 following Rocko's Modern Life's, and pitched the series to Nickelodeon in 1998 and was later greenlit for a first season.
The pilot episode of SpongeBob SquarePants first aired episodes in the United States on Nickelodeon on May 1, 1999, following theNickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards. The first episodes were called "Help Wanted", "Reef Blower", "Tea at the Treedome". The "official" series premiere followed on July 17, 1999, with the second episode, "Bubblestand/Ripped Pants." The show reached enormous popularity by 2000 and has remained popular since. A feature film of the series was released in theaters on November 19, 2004. The series celebratedits tenth anniversary on July 17, 2009. SpongeBob was renewed for a ninth season on January 3, 2011.[2] (Note: the definition of season for this show is that more episodes have been ordered for future airing.)
Contents [hide]
1 Characters
2 Voice cast
2.1 Main cast
2.2 Recurring cast
3 Episodes
3.1 SpongeBob SquarePants special episodes
3.2 SpongeBob SquarePants TV movies
4 Setting
6 Progression
6.1 Hillenburg era (1999–2004)
6.2 Post-movie era (2005–present)
7 Music
8 Reception
8.1 Popularity and appeal
8.2 Awards and nominations
8.3 Criticism and controversy
8.3.1 Criticism of decline in quality
9 Other media
9.1 Amusement rides
9.2 Film
10 Merchandise
11 See also
12 Notes
13 References
14 External links
14.1 Wikis

Main article: Listof characters in SpongeBob SquarePants
SpongeBob SquarePants is an extremely energetic and optimistic sea sponge (although his appearance more closely resembles a kitchen sponge) who lives in a pineapple under the sea with his pet snail Gary, who meows like a cat. Although Gary only actually speaks in a few episodes, (mainly in "Sleepy Time" in Spongebob's dream world, where Gary is portrayed asa librarian with an English accent) the characters have shown an ability to understand him. Living two houses down from SpongeBob is his best friend Patrick Star, a dim-witted yet friendly pink seastar who lives under a rock. Living between the two is Squidward Tentacles, an arrogant and egotistical octopus[3] who lives in an Easter Island moai and dislikes his neighbors (especially SpongeBob) fortheir child-like behavior. He enjoys playing the clarinet and painting self-portraits.
Another close friend of SpongeBob's is Sandy Cheeks, a squirrel from Texas. Sandy is an expert at karate and lives in an underwater tree dome. When not inside her tree dome, she wears an astronaut-like suit because she cannot breathe in water. SpongeBob and Squidward's employer is former officer cadet for...
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