You know how we all love it when two actors who play a couple on a TV show or in a movie actually get together in real life? Or how everybody loves the fact that the cast of Friends are actually friends in real life? For some reason, we can’t get enough of pretend friends and lovers being real friends and lovers.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out that way. Especially for animated sea creatures!
Fans of SpongeBob Square Pants will be both delighted and devastated to see a tweet from marine biologist Christopher Mah from Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, in which he captured a photo of a real-life SpongeBob sitting beside a real-life Patrick Star.
— Christopher Mah (@echinoblog) July 27, 2021
He goes on to educate his followers with their scientific names – “The sponge is [in] the genus Hertwigia and the sea star is [in] the genus Chondraster…” – before lowering the boom on anyone who had dreams of SpongeBob and Patrick’s real-life undersea adventures.
“This species of starfish has been observed feeding on sponges,” Mah said. Well yikes. Don’t tell your kids that part!
It’s probable that SpongeBob Squarepants creator Stephen Hillenburg knew that, being that he was an animator AND a marine scientist when his show, intended to teach kids about sea creatures, debuted in 1999. Mah is happy to carry on Hillenburg’s work.
“I’m happy that the photo has brought delight to so many people,” Mah said. “I hope it also brings awareness to the deep sea as a habitat, which has been threatened by mining and deep-sea.”
SpongeBob himself is happy too, judging by the image the official SpongeBob Instagram put out in response to Mah’s photo.
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