The internet thinks SpongeBob is gay after Nickelodeon shares photos of the Bikini Bottom dweller in Pride month tweet
In honor of Pride month, Nickelodeon sent out a low-key tweet in the wee hours of Saturday, June 13, 2020 to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community, but in doing so, they sent the internet into a tizzy as everyone began to wonder if the iconic Bikini Bottom character SpongeBob SquarePants is gay. However, true Nick fans know that SpongeBob is asexual (and therefore still under the LGBTQ+ umbrella), but more on that later.
“Celebrating #Pride with the LGBTQ+ community and their allies this month and every month,” Nickelodeon wrote alongside rainbow-hued images of SpongeBob, the character Schwoz Schwartz from Henry Danger, and Korra from the Avatar spin-off show Legend of Korra.
— Nickelodeon (@Nickelodeon) June 13, 2020
It makes sense to include the character Schwoz Schwartz, because the actor — Michael D. Cohen — who plays him, is a trans man. And then Korra is queer and the series ended with Korra riding off into the metaphorical sunset with the show’s other female lead, so that leaves us with SpongeBob‘s inclusion in the tweet, which means that Mr. SquarePants is either under the LGBTQ+ umbrella or is an ally. Either way, it’s awesome.
Although the folks on Twitter have made SpongeBob into a gay icon, it’s more likely that Sponge’s inclusion in the LGBTQ+ community is that he’s asexual, which falls under the “+” in LGBTQ+.
In the early 2000s, the show’s late-creator Stephen Hillenburg said that Spongebob (and Patrick) were both asexual, after fans wondered if the show’s twosome were a couple.
“We never intended them to be gay,” Hillenburg said in 2005. “I consider them to be almost asexual.”
FYI: Spongebob isn’t gay, he’s asexual, and creator Stephen Hillenburg confirmed that before he died. Asexuals are part of the LGBTQ+ community and therefore are fully represented under the rainbow flag.
Put some respect on his asexuality.
Thank you for coming to my Ted Talk. https://t.co/Shh1rw0Fm7
— BJ Colangelo (@bjcolangelo) June 13, 2020
Also like, sea sponges are asexual, so this tracks.
Of course, where there is inclusivity, there’s a conservative who hates it. When Nickelodeon shared the tweet, all sorts of “they’re pushing a gay agenda” pearl-clutching occurred on social media.
Nickelodeon revealed that SpongeBob is part of the LGBTQ+ community and of course this caused a public meltdown. Those who oppose this always make the same argument: Children shouldn’t be introduced to sexuality at an early age. I hate to break it to you, but children’s shows/films have always been infused with sexual references. For decades, parents have been okay with this because those references were HETEROSEXUAL. Now that homosexual narratives are being introduced, “concerned parents” have decided that this is problematic. These shows need to reflect the diversity that surrounds us. Queer children and children who have same-sex parents need to be represented. You can’t deny them that just because it makes you feel uncomfortable. And no this won’t make your children want to be gay because that’s not how it works. Think of all the queer kids who grew up watching heteronormative narratives. Did that make them want to be straight? NO! I also read a lot of comments saying “I’m not homophobic, but I’m tired of the media pushing this down our throats”. First of all, whenever you start a sentence with “I’m not homophobic, but…” stop yourself immediately because I assure you that what you’re about to say falls under homophobia. And if you really want to talk about “forced agendas”, then let’s discuss how the media has been cramming heteronormativity down our throats for decades, and introducing other sexualities only as a punch line.
A post shared by Saint Hoax (@sainthoax) on Jun 14, 2020 at 7:01am PDT
Maybe SpongBobe is gay, maybe he’s asexual, regardless, SpongeBob is awesome and if a viral tweet about a possibly gay cartoon sponge helped some people learn a bit more about asexuality and its representation under the rainbow flag, that sounds good to us. Happy Pride month!