Sponge Bob Square Butt Burger King Commercial Has Parents Up In Arms

Burger King's Sponge Bob Square Butt – Full Video

I have to admit that I had not seen the entire Sponge Bob Square Butt Burger King commercial.  I walked into the family room the other day and Cody (who is six) was laughing at it.  You have to know that my son thinks butts are funny, by the way.  So I just saw a brief couple of seconds of the controversial commercial. 

Then last night a friend was telling me about a conversation she had with some Twitter users about the commercial.  Here is the Twitter stream of that conversation.

The commercial parodies Sir Mix-A-Lot's 90s hit song, Baby Got Back, with new lyrics that use Sponge Bob Square Pants in the ad.  The original song lyrics say, "I like big butts and I cannot lie" and the parody says, I like square butts and I cannot lie" with dancers gyrating around with phone books in their shorts, while Burger King's mascot the King dances around among them.

So I did some research… first I went to YouTube to see the ad.  Now this video is the full video, so I warn you if the 30 second commercial upset you – well you'll not be happy at all with this video.  I advice you to forego watching it; and definitely do not watch it if you have a child in the room.

I don't frequent Burger King often but (no pun intended) will I think twice before going again?  Here's the thing though… I am more upset with Nickelodeon.

The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood is asking whether Nickelodeon Television President Cyma Zarghami approved the controversial SpongeBob SquareButt television commercial.  They had over 2,600 CCFC members writing letters to Nickelodeon and Burger King requesting they pull the ad.

They wanted to know if Cyma Zarghami or anyone else at Nickelodeon approved the SpongeBob SquareButt ad.  From the letter,

It's bad enough when a character popular with children, like SpongeBob SquarePants, is used to promote junk food, but it's absolutely egregious when that character simultaneously promotes objectified, sexualized images of women.

Burger King responded to criticisms by disingenuously claiming that the ad -which is for Kids Meals and features perhaps the most popular children's television character – was aimed at adults.  The ad ran during Monday Nights Men's NCAA Championship, which aired at 6:00 pm on the West Coast.

If Nickelodeon has responded publicly I couldn't find it.

So do you believe the ad is targeted towards adults?  Does it change your opinion of the ad if is was meant to target adults?  Or do you think people are being too uptight?  Maybe you thought the Sponge Bob Square Butt Burger King ad was perfectly fine… maybe even funny? 

Whatever your thoughts and opinions I'd love to hear them. 





  1. Hey Donna I did a blog post about this called Burger king of butts which addressed this very issue http://sogeshirts.blogspot.com/2009/04/burger-king-of-butts.html I agree with you completely that this commercial is terrible for kids and I don’t buy that it is aimed at adults. They used spongebob squarepants and are trying to sell kids meals. They blew the execution unless they are trying to pander to adults with square butt fetishes. All in all a pretty disturbing commercial where the only winner is sir mix a lot.

  2. They said it was targeted towards adults… They might as well said we think you all are morons so we’re going to insult your intelligence. You don’t put SpongeBob and BK kids meals as the focus if it’s geared towards adults. I’m not super-conservative or liberal, but that’s over the top for a kids meal. It’s not horrible, but come on! Plenty of other songs to choose from……….

  3. The commercial won’t, but the food will. 🙂

  4. "Last I heard, the federal criminal offense of "corruption of a minor" carries a heavy prison sentence."

    Last I heard, you’re a moron.

    "Why is it that TV stations and magazines can get away with this crime constantly, in ways where it’s impossible for parents to block them?"

    Turn off the TV, moron.

  5. this is inaproppriate, i dont want my lil sis to be watching this, and now in the world you see kids having sex and pregnant, and its all becuz of stuff like this, and at the end, "BOOTY IS BOOTY" drew the line. GROW UP YOU ONE HIT WONDER!

  6. When I complained to Burger King they wrote back saying they were "targeting adult audiences". This is what I said in reply:
    That is not relevant. What is relevant is whether children are watching. I can assure you that children are watching. Of course they are, and your marketing people know they are. The ad runs during prime time, features a Kids Meal , and is designed to appeal to children.

  7. @Robert: That seems to be BK’s stance on the issue… that it was "targeting adults". But we know better.

  8. I don’t know about BK’s Square Butt ad. But what about Taco Bell who, during their "Win 1 Million Peso’s" ad, you would go to the website and enter your numbers from the cup, to win the suitcase of money hidden under El Presidente’s desk? Nobody seemed to mind that one.

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