Last night’s Super Bowl between the New England Patriots and the L.A. Rams turned out to be a lackluster battle on the gridiron (New England won 13-3). And while the halftime show reviews were just as tepid, there was at least one bright spot — and it had a CalArts connection.
Introducing rapper Travis Scott’s halftime performance were Squidward and SpongeBob, two characters from the hit Nickelodeon show SpongeBob SquarePants, created by CalArts alum Stephen Hillenburg (Film/Video MFA 92). The beloved artist and animator passed away in November 2018 after a battle with ALS.
Since his passing, more than a million fans signed a change.org petition to have Hillenburg honored at the Super Bowl through a performance of “Sweet Victory,” a song from the 2001 “Band Geeks” episode. Squidward and company appears at the 3 minute mark during the NFL halftime show in the official NFL video.
While fans were hoping for a full performance of “Sweet Victory,” the brief appearance of Bikini Bottom residents still served as a touching tribute to a man whose work touched so many lives.
Here is the full 2001 performance from the Bikini Bottom Super Band: