This Day in TV History – May 1st, 1999 – Spongebob Squarepants TV Series Debuts

By: Sean Sporman
By: Sean Sporman

It began as animated series on this day in history and since exploded into a full-on pop culture phenomenon. We're talking about the person who lives in a pineapple under the sea: Spongebob Squarepants.

Created by Stephen Hillenberg, Spongebob Squarepants is an animated series that made its debut on the Nickelodeon cable channel on May 1st, 1999. The series focuses on Spongebob, an optimistic and peppy sponge who lives in the fictional undersea community of Bikini Bottom. Spongebob, a passionate fry cook, has encounters with his cynical neighbor Squidward, his oblivious best friend Patrick Star, the squirrel Sandy Cheeks and a variety of other colorful characters.

The show has been a huge hit, with one feature film already released and another one on the way. Currently, the series has aired over 180 episodes and is in its ninth season, with the tenth on the way. There is also a large variety of Spongebob merchandise—from toys to video games and much more.

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