Ask any Prep student about their thoughts on the hit television show SpongeBob SquarePants and they likely are to reply with one of the show’s thousands of quotable lines or express the enjoyment they received from the show as a child. SpongeBob was, and still is, viewed by millions of children and adults as a wholesome, comedic show that provided great life lessons to its viewers, including how to fail a driver’s test, how catch jellyfish, and how to be a fry cook. Moreover, many enjoy the show for its quality and wholesome characters such as SpongeBob SquarePants, Patrick Star, Sandy Cheeks, Mr. Krabs, Plankton, and perhaps one of the show’s most popular characters, Squidward Tentacles.
Squidward is best known for his clarinet playing skills and his stable job as a restaurant cashier at the Krusty Krab, in addition to his high standing within Bikini Bottom’s cultured society. Due to these characteristics, Squidward proved himself to be one who children can look up to as a positive influence on their lives.
However, the actor behind the squid is stirring up quite the controversy due to a recent run in with the law. On the night of Friday, Jan. 15, 65-year-old Rodger Bumpass, the voice of the famous cephalopod, was arrested in Burbank, California, for an alleged DUI. According to reports, Bumpass was found leaning against his blue PT Cruiser that was stopped in the middle of a Burbank roadway. As police approached the troubled celebrity, he attempted to leave the scene before collapsing on the ground. The actor failed a field sobriety test and a breathalyzer test reportedly showed that his blood alcohol content was more than twice the legal driving limit. Bumpass admitted to driving while intoxicated and stated that he was trying to find his house.
Following his arrest, Bumpass spent the night in prison before being released on $15,000 bail the following morning. Bumpass’ arrest comes as a shock to the millions of SpongeBob fans who looked up to Squidward and Bumpass alike as positive influences on their lives.
Among those impacted was Prep senior Peter Jefferys. “The arrest of Bumpass has brought a serious halt to my emotional stability,” Jefferys stated. “This series of events will go down as some of the most detrimental happenings to the little pineapple under the sea that is my life.”
Though Bumpass is presumed innocent until proven guilty, the recent series of events do not bode well for the actor’s standing among members of the SpongeBob fanbase.
SpongeBob SquarePants was created in 1999 by Stephen Hillenburg and has been continuously broadcasted on Nickelodeon for the past seventeen years. The show hosts the vocal talents of Tom Kenny, Bill Fagerbakke, Clancy Brown, Carolyn Lawrence, Mr. Lawrence, and Rodger Bumpass. The two-time Emmy Award-winning show boasts over 194 episodes and is broadcasted around the world.