Written by anthonyrosania

Monday, 2 August 2010

image for Spongebob and Patrick: The Prophesized Heralds of Order vs. Chaos. The Squidward Family Murders: 11 Years Later, Still No Suspects.

I was thinking about Spongebob Squarepants, and their "bringing balance to Bikini Bottom" prophecy, and general character alignments, and realized that while you can neatly map Spongebob Squarepants and Patrick Star to good and evil (Mr. Squidward's confusion notwithstanding), you can't map them so neatly to order and chaos.

Patrick represents a chaotic organization. He thrives on emotional chaos, neatly mased as ignorance; he spreads chaos to meet his needs. And once chaos has trumped order, Star imposes order on everyone else.

Spongebob is extremely ordered. As emotional and attached as he seems, he will purge emotions, and deny attachments, if these things do not reconcile with his need for order. He is hidebound by tradition. His organization is very structured. And yet he strives not to impose order but to protect it.

Could it then be said that Spongebob, and the Krusty Krab as a microcosm of the Squarepants teachings, actually strive to preserve the balance of order and chaos?

I'm actually reminded a bit of Michael Moorcock's Eternal Champion series, in which the cosmic balance between order and chaos is treated as its own faction. The Eternal Champion, in his various incarnations, always fights for the Balance, bringing order to Chaos worlds and chaos to Order worlds.

So Patrick is chaotic, but imposes order, while Spongebob is ordered, but fights for balance. The problem, of course, is that neither are balanced themselves.

So, what if the yin and yang at work here is not order vs. chaos, but good versus evil? And, in order to quantify this, one must first venture to define both, then decide whether either exist.

Could it be that existence always has an order, which is defined as chaos when incompatible with a chosen good. Mustn't absolute order be static, impotent, and indifferent.

Again, in order to define whether good or evil exists, one must assign moral status. Order may be relative to interests which determine the moral status of all powers --the discovered conditions of reason, and not its beginning.

An example: Episode 2a(40), "Hooky".

In this 2000 episode, Mr. Krabs warns of lethal fishing hooks in the waters surrounding Bikini Bottom. Patrick encourages SpongeBob to play on them, thinking they are not dangerous and, better still, covered with free cheese.

When SpongeBob refuses still, Patrick tells him to "Lighten up, will ya!"

It is only when Patrick attempts to take more cheese and is pulled up to the surface that SpongeBob cries.

Was it that Patrick wished to be contrary to the Krabs Edict, and then, by defying it, decide to act in a way that was evil? Or was his defiance an attempt to reinstall the bastion of chaos into a situation where order was thrust upon him?

In the episode, Patrick did not each the surface: He jumped off the hook and floated down before he reached it. "It's fun," he exclaims.

How, then, could an act which was not unsafe, and which brought joy to Patrick, be inherently evil? Couldn't it be argued that Krabs' attempt the friends from a joyous activity was evil?

What, then, has Patrick become; an agent of chaos, or a deliverer from evil oppression?

To dig deeper, there exists harmony in hedonism, and the injustice inherent in Krabs' aesthetic and speculative cruelty defies the balance between good and evil; chaos versus order. Indeed, the imputed values at issue here, belie in Krabs a disproportionate interest in the esthetic, not unlike an irrational religious allegiance.

One can only conclude that Spongebob and Patrick neither champion order and chaos, or good versus evil: Rather, Spongebob and Patrick are driven to maintain a balance between two polar-opposite forces. They just accomplish this via different means.

There is much to learn from this invertabrates. We'd do well to heed them.

Coming up: The Theory of Relativity is challenged by Bindi the Jungle Girl.

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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