In honor of Pride month, Nickelodeon shared that Spongebob Squarepants is a member of the LGBTQ community.
Celebrating #Pride with the LGBTQ+ community and their allies this month and every month 🌈
(🎨: by @ramzymasri) pic.twitter.com/pENmTaQB0h
— Nickelodeon (@Nickelodeon) June 13, 2020
The Twitter account has turned off the comments for the post since.
Stephen Hillenburg, the creator of the series, announced Spongebob was asexual in 2002. The term describes someone who does not have sexual feelings towards others.
Some Twitter users were excited about the news and even launched a “#SpongebobIsGay” hashtag. However, the yellow sponge is not gay. Hillenburg told Reuters that Spongebob nor his best friend, Patrick Starr, are gay, despite what others think.
Are we really surprised spogebob is gay?? Dude had a baby clam with a starfish… #spongebob #spongebobisgay
— refuse to comply (@wheyoutspoken) June 13, 2020
“We never intended them to be gay. I consider them to be almost asexual. We’re just trying to be funny and this has got nothing to do with the show,” said Hillenburg.
People tend to associate characters with being gay if they do not have a love interest, which defines asexuality. Others associate the choice of clothes and mannerisms with being gay.
While Hillenburg cleared up the rumors in 2002, Twitter users have not done their research.
Others made their own interpretations and stated this does not come as a surprise. Some even went as far as not introducing the show to the next generations.
Now #SpongebobIsGay ???🙄 I have nothing against anyone but this shit is going too far. My grandkids won't be watching him.
— Mahogany J (@MahoganyJ5) June 15, 2020
Those who did not notice Spongebob was gay the whole time have never watched Spongebob #SpongebobIsGay pic.twitter.com/Y8SHIecqvR
— Vivatavita (@vivatavita) June 14, 2020
like we didn’t know… #SpongebobIsGay pic.twitter.com/3Tc3OiIQ1t
— rOland (@judasaf) June 14, 2020
Everyone doesn’t have to agree with Spongebob’s involvement in the LGBTQ community. However, it is a step in the right direction when children’s shows speak on such topics.
Gay or not, this representation may make children feel comfortable with their preferences as they grow older.