SpongeBob Square Pants has consistently been the most watched animated show over its 12 season run. If you are worried about the kids losing out on SpongeBob when you ditch cable, stop! There are plenty of ways to watch the current season of SpongeBob online. You can even watch past seasons on-demand on a few services.
Watch Full Episodes of SpongeBob Online
SpongeBob airs on Nickelodeon. As readers of this site know, you can easily watch Nickelodeon without cable. The cheapest way to do so is Philo, which gives you that channel as well as 44 others for $25/month. You can check out a free trial and see if the service will meet your needs.
Since Philo provides Nickelodeon live, you can watch episodes of the current 12th season as they air. Philo also includes a cloud DVR for you to record shows to watch later. Considering SpongeBob airs on Nick about 5 times in a given day, this should allow you to load up on tons of SpongeBob
You can use your Philo credentials to sign on to the Nick app and watch at least some of the episodes there. They tend to offer episodes currently airing on the network, which could be any over the past 12 seasons.
FuboTV is another way to watch SpongeBob on Nickelodeon. You can check out a free trial to FuboTV and read our review of FuboTV for more details. FuboTV’s standard package costs $54.99 per month ($44.99 for your first month) after the free trial.
You can also access Nick and 40 other channels through DirecTV Now but at $50/month. Be sure to check out our Direct TV Now review for more details.
Other Ways to Stream SpongeBob
The easiest way to stream “SpongeBob Square Pants” is with Amazon Prime. The first four seasons of SpongeBob Square Pants are included with the Prime membership at $12.99/month. Season 5 is available through Amazon if you subscribe to NickHits, which is an additional $7.99/month on top of the Prime fee.
Buying Full Episodes of SpongeBob
If you want to watch certain episodes, you might consider just purchasing the show by the episode or by the season. On Itunes and Amazon Prime you can buy 20-episode seasons for $21.99-29.99 HD each, or $2.99 per HD episode, $1.99 in SD, and $0.99 for half of an episode (one story.)
Special collections of episodes range in price. Google Play and YouTube bundle SpongeBob in groups of 13 episodes each for $19.99HD or $14.99 SD or per episode $2.99 HD/$1.99 SD.
You can buy a season pass to the latest season 12 on Itunes or on Amazon for $29.99HD/$19.99 SD and have access to the new episodes when they come out.
SpongeBob Square Pants Review
To understand SpongeBob Square Pants, you’ll need this primer in philosophy. First, you’ve got existentialism: we make our own meaning in a meaningless universe. Second, there’s nihilism: there is no way to find meaning in a meaningless universe. Finally, there is absurdism, in which life is still meaningless but you might as well have fun with it.
Into this last option charges “SpongeBob Square Pants,” a cartoon which shows absurdism itself going nuts. The sponge named Bob lives in a pineapple under the sea, as we learn from the theme song. “Absorbent and yellow and porous is he,” as it continues. He does indeed wear square pants throughout his adventures and his daily work as a fry cook under a crab. His friends are Patrick, an intellectually-challenged starfish, Squidward, a grumpy squid, and Sandy, a squirrel that lives in an air bubble.
That’s all pretty absurd – but probably no longer surprising to most of us, of course, since this May marks the 20th year for the squishy protagonist. Since its premiere in 1999, there have been over 200 episodes of the show. There have been movies, endless memes, and even a musical on Broadway. Now in its 12th season, SpongeBob shows no signs of stopping any time soon.
In fact, today’s kids have never known a world without SpongeBob. The squishy protagonist is almost old enough to buy alcohol – but still, his zany exploits in the undersea realm of Bikini Bottom still entice kids and adults alike.
Maybe that’s because the show never stops getting weirder and weirder. There’s the one episode where SpongeBob and Patrick’s brains and spinal cords fly around independent of their bodies – or the one where Squidward has a clarinet-based nightmare trip. There’s a town made of bubbles, there is a real-life pencil that can erase their world. Thanks to the cartoony, broad-stroked animation, truly anything goes.
But you also can’t discount the appeal of SpongeBob’s shiny enthusiasm, so effervescent you can feel bubbling through the screen. He has a wide-eyed wonder for every mundane task of the day and heartfelt affection for everyone. It’s cloying and eternally irritating to Squidward, but for us, it’s also a welcome contrast to modern cynicism.
That said, “SpongeBob Square Pants” doesn’t necessarily give modern parents everything they might want in their kids’ programming. Female representation is sadly lacking, for instance. As usual, we have only one main girl character, Sandy, and she wears a flower and a coconut bra (even if she is feisty). Also, laughing at Patrick for simply being stupid isn’t exactly high-brow entertainment.
That said, in moderation, this dose of absurdism may be just what we need, especially in an era where so much feels like it’s spiraling out of control. Nothing much makes sense, and who knows what the meaning of it all is, but no nihilism will win the day – at least while Bikini Bottom is around.
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