It’s going to be a lot of work to fully capture the legacy of Spongebob Squarepants creator Stephen Hillenburg over the next few weeks. His animation and cartoons were revolutionary and deeply influential, but the generation that it influenced is yet to grow up and control all of media the way that the fans of other creators have. Three places however truly felt the influence of Steve Hillenburg. One is animation, where the unique strange and funny sense of humor of Spongebob — with its unapologetic positivity beating out the cynisim of the day. One is memes, which while absolutely repetitive and disposable, also represent just how deeply Spongebob Squarepants ingratiated itself into the current generation’s consciousness. And another, after Genius.com collected examples of how rapper have referenced the cartoon, both generally and very very specifically (DoodleBob and the Hash Slinging Slasher!? Damn! That is SPECIFIC).
Check out the rap references below.
spongebob appreciation thread in honor of stephen hillenburg. RIP to a true legend 🙏🍍
— Genius (@Genius) November 27, 2018
As for memes, we figure since we are the kind of website that rounds up the best of internet culture and joyfully dances about in it, we’d collect some of our favorite types of Spongebob memes. There are countless different kinds — in the weird language of the internet, Spongebob Squarepants was indeed king, especially for the generation that came up in the 2000’s.
We made our principal into a meme and hung it in the cafeteria. pic.twitter.com/3g9qd3BXcE
— HALEY🌼 (@HaleyH1999) May 24, 2017
We did a whole video on this one. Sarcastic Spongebob (or “Mocking Spongebob”) would simply show Spongebob pretending to be a chicken, as he repeated the sentence he was mocking in lower and upper caps alternating seemingly at random. It was a wonderful way to quietly send up whatever dumb quote didn’t have to have a logical response, just a brief Spongebob based sticking out of the tongue, and everyone can walk on their merry way.
The entire class when there's a sub pic.twitter.com/qkE6KO3oo0
— bebecita (@JessFrmTheBlocc) May 27, 2016
Caveman Spongebob, a Spongebob that Squidward discovers in a time traveling episode of the cartoon that aired during a special programming block on December 31, 1999, is used often to just show a stupid, animalistic reaction to something. Sure, we want to be Spongebob, but some times… our more bestial form simply emerges.
Tired Nature Pants Spongebob
me after I put the fitted sheet on my bed by myself pic.twitter.com/R1DAjYWlyG
— m ¨̮ (@mckenziedenisee) March 27, 2018
Sometimes the greatest memes show the simplest idea. Therefore, this nude Spongebob taken from the episode “Nature Pants”, looking like he just exerted a lot of effort (in the episode, running from a jellyfishing Patrick), became popular online as people just… jokingly referenced to the great amount of effort they exerted. Classic meme! Huzzah!
Krusty Krab vs. The Chum Bucket
— Kerry Copito (@yungdavidbeckhm) March 9, 2018
The Krusty Krab is that incredible restaurant in Bikini Bottom that serves that delicious meal for the kings and queens amongst us — The Krabby Patty. The Chum Bucket, owned by Spongebob villain and desperate recipe thief Plankton, serves subpar garbage food as Plankton jealously looks at the much better Krusty Krab. Therefore, when the two places of business are compared in meme form, the Krusty Krab represents the better of the two options, and the Chum Bucket represents the lesser garbage knock off. If you want to own someone, comparing them to a bucket of whale food compared to the glory of burgers made by a crab is a way to go.
Evil Patrick we wrote about too. Basically it was Patrick scowling (also from “Nature Pants”… actually, it’s the same sequence! Jeez!), and the people of Twitter, Tumblr and more used it to illustrate the slight joy you get with getting away with a slightly evil thing. Eating the last of the snacks kind of thing. Putting the milk back with just a drop in it. You name it.
Surprised Patrick came from the Spongebob Squarepants Movie, and was basically some beloved weird, stoner ridden imagery. Basically, like so many of the amazing drawings in Spongebob, he just looked funny. Shocked Patrick, we salute you.
What Spongebob memes that you love did we miss? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter at @WhatsTrending.