The Evolution of Spongebob

Mercedes Maldonado

   Spongebob SquarePants is a worldwide favorite for children all over the world. In 1984, Steven Hillenburg’s comic “The Intertidal Zone” was the very first look into what would become SpongeBob SquarePants. In Hillenburg’s comic SpongeBob is depicted as a circular sea sponge with sunglasses. However, Hillenburg was reluctant to change SpongeBob’s appearance from the comic into something similar to today’s sponge. When SpongeBob was going to be first aired it was supposed to be originally named SpongeBoy AHoy. 

   It wasn’t until SpongeBob first aired that SpongeBob’s features changed into the Sponge we know him to be. During season one of SpongeBob, when it first aired, he was hand drawn as his square form rather than what he would’ve looked like in his first original comic.

   During the first season you will notice that he  isn’t a perfect square. One eyebrow is purposely drawn longer than the other, and his teeth are slightly diagonal. However, once season two hit, SpongeBob was no longer hand drawn. If you don’t actually pay close attention, the line work in season two is thicker than season one. In season three, SpongeBob is wider and closer to being perfectly squared. 

   It isn’t until season eight that SpongeBob’s face is made smaller. His pupils are made bigger in comparison to his earlier designs, and his eyes are rounder than what they used to be. This may correspond with Steven Hillensburg leaving the show.

   When Hillenburg stepped down from being the show runner, Paul Tibbit took over. Paul Tibbit was the series writer, storyboard artist, and one of the original show developers. Hillenburg didn’t expect SpongeBob to grow such a large following. He thought he would get one season and maybe a cult following but to his surprise SpongeBob was a big success.

   After the first SpongeBob movie Hillenburg wanted to end the show but SpongeBob was a great success and a Nickelodeon favorite. So rather than the show ending, Hillenburg stepped down from being show runner and handed the show over to Paul Tibbit.