Patrick Star

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Patrick Star
SpongeBob SquarePants character
First appearance"Help Wanted" (1999)
Last appearanceSpot Returns
Created byStephen Hillenburg
Voiced byBill Fagerbakke
Information
SpeciesPink sea star
GenderMale
RelativesParents: Herb and Margie[1]
Cousins: Gary[2]
Uncle: Sluggo[2]
Sister: Samantha[3]
Ancestors: Patar[4]
Patrick Revere[5]
Pecos Patrick[5]

Patrick Star is a fictional character in the Nickelodeon animated television series SpongeBob SquarePants. Bill Fagerbakke plays him. Patrick first appeared in the series' pilot episode, "Help Wanted", which played on May 1, 1999. Patrick was made by animator Stephen Hillenburg. Patrick's biggest character trait is his lack of common sense, which sometimes makes him a bad influence on his best friend, SpongeBob SquarePants.

Role in SpongeBob SquarePants[change | change source]

Patrick is as a pink starfish who is silly, fat, lazy, immature, forgetful, rude, and generally ignorant. He has been shown to make many silly mistakes such as forgetting how to eat, and not realizing that the character Sandy Cheeks is a girl.[6] But, he sometimes is shown to overly observe particular events happening around him. At those moments, he would focus on very specific objects or details that other characters would usually ignore. However, he always quickly turns back to his usual, silly self after.[7] He does not have a job. But, he worked at the Krusty Krab for short periods of time in many positions (often unpaid),[8] and mostly spends his days either goofing off with SpongeBob or resting beneath the rock. He lives under the rock. At home, Patrick is usually either sleeping (stuck to the bottom of his rock), watching TV (whether the TV is actually on or not), or doing the "art of doing nothing." He is very good at that.[9] All of the furniture under his rock are made of sand, and Patrick can simply build new furniture as needed. But even so, his living space contains only the most basic things.[1] His best friend SpongeBob is often impressed by Patrick's ability to come up with silly yet genius plans or solutions. But, Patrick often irritates those around him and is confused by the simplest questions or subjects. The characters of Mr. Krabs and Squidward Tentacles have no patience for Patrick's stupidity. They don't pay him much regard. Sandy Cheeks often gets annoyed by Patrick, but still sees him as a friend.

Development[change | change source]

SpongeBob SquarePants maker Stephen Hillenburg began making cartoons and caricatures of tide pool-dwelling sea life, including starfish, while teaching marine biology at the Orange County Marine Institute in Dana Point, California, from 1984 to 1987.[10] In 1987, Hillenburg left the institute. This is so he could become an animator.[11][12] Patrick Star is voiced by Bill Fagerbakke.

Reception[change | change source]

Criticism and controversy[change | change source]

In 2005, a video that involves SpongeBob promoting diversity and tolerance[13] was criticized by a Christian evangelical group in the United States because they saw the character was being used for homosexual people, but the video had "no reference to sex, sexual lifestyle or sexual identity."[14][15]

This made questions about whether or not SpongeBob, his best friend Patrick, and the rest of the series' characters are homosexual characters. In 2002, Hillenburg said that his characters were not gay. He clarified the issue and said "We never made them gay on purpose. I think they are almost asexual. We are just trying to be funny and this has got nothing to do with the show."[16][17]

Jeffrey P. Dennis, writer of the journal article "The Same Thing We Do Every Night: Signifying Same-Sex Desire in Television Cartoons," argued that SpongeBob and Sandy are not in love, while adding that he believed that SpongeBob and Patrick "are paired with arguably big intensity." Dennis noted the two are "not thought of as romantic partners," since they live in separate places, and have different groups of friends, but claimed that in the series, "the possibility of same-sex desire is never excluded."[18] Martin Goodman of Animation World Magazine described Dennis's comments regarding SpongeBob and Patrick as "interesting."[19]

Notes[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 "I'm with Stupid". Writers: Aaron Springer, C.H. Greenblatt, Mark O'Hare. SpongeBob SquarePants. November 30, 2001. No. 37b, season 2.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Rule of Dumb". Writers: Zeus Cervas, Erik Wiese, Dani Michaeli. SpongeBob SquarePants. February 19, 2007. No. 77b, season 4.
  3. "Big Sister Sam". Writers: Casey Alexander, Zeus Cervas, Richard Pursel. SpongeBob SquarePants. January 15, 2011. No. 152a, season 7.
  4. "Ugh". Writers: Paul Tibbitt, Kent Osborne. SpongeBob SquarePants. March 5, 2004. No. 54, season 3.
  5. 5.0 5.1 "Pest of the West". Writers: Luke Brookshier, Tom King, Steven Banks, Richard Pursel. SpongeBob SquarePants. April 11, 2008. No. 96, season 5.
  6. "Pressure". Writers: Jay Lender, William Reiss, David Fain. SpongeBob SquarePants. March 8, 2001. No. 32a, season 2.
  7. "Squidtastic Voyage". Writers: Luke Brookshier, Tom King, Dani Michaeli. SpongeBob SquarePants. October 6, 2006. No. 75a, season 4.
  8. "No Hat for Pat". Writers: Casey Alexander, Zeus Cervas, Dani Michaeli. SpongeBob SquarePants. July 19, 2009. No. 120a, season 6.
  9. "Stanley S. SquarePants". Writers: Luke Brookshier, Nate Cash, Eric Shaw. SpongeBob SquarePants. November 23, 2007. No. 100b, season 5.
  10. Banks, pp. 8-9
  11. Banks, p. 9
  12. Hillenburg, Stephen (2003). The Origin of SpongeBob SquarePants. SpongeBob SquarePants: The Complete First Season (DVD). Paramount Home Entertainment.
  13. BBC Staff (2005-01-20). "US right attacks SpongeBob video". BBC News. Retrieved 2007-06-11.
  14. "Will Spongebob make you gay?". MSNBC. Retrieved 2005-01-21.
  15. Associated Press (2005-01-22). "Spongebob, Muppets and the Sister Sledge writer suffer criticism". USA Today. Retrieved 2007-06-11.
  16. BBC Staff (2002-10-09). "Camp cartoon star 'is not gay'". BBC News. Retrieved 2007-06-11.
  17. Silverman, Stephen M. (2005-01-28). "SpongeBob Asexual, Not Gay: Creator". People. Retrieved 2009-08-26.
  18. Dennis, Jeffrey P. "The Same Thing We Do Every Night: Signifying Same-Sex Desire in Television Cartoons." Journal of Popular Film & Television. Fall 2003. Volume 31, Issue 3. 132-140. 9p, 3bw. Within the PDF document the source info is on p. 137 (6/10)
  19. Goodman, Martin. "Deconstruction Zone — Part 2." Animation World Network. Wednesday March 10, 2004.4. Retrieved on October 28, 2009.

References[change | change source]

  • Banks, Steven (September 24, 2004). SpongeBob Exposed! The Insider's Guide to SpongeBob SquarePants. Gregg Schigiel (Illustrator). New York City, New York: Simon Spotlight/Nickelodeon. ISBN 978-0-689-86870-2. |access-date= requires |url= (help)

Other websites[change | change source]