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Spongebob Squarepants? 10 More Cartoons That Could Ruin Your Kid

By Madeline Holler |

spongebob squarepants, dj lance

If Spongebob is messing with your kid's brain, what's this guy doing to it?

The world is stunned to learn that “SpongeBob SquarePants” is not — I repeat, not! — turning 4-year-olds into prodigies of self-control, moral rectitude or focused attention. Instead, it’s kind of messing with them.

A new study found that the popular Nick cartoon’s editing is too fast-paced — scenes change every 11 seconds and there’s “lots of frenetic movement in between …” Just nine minutes of SpongeBob set the kids in the study up for flunking marshmallow tests and getting disqualified from Simon Says.

The ones who watched “Caillou” were perfect angels.

If quick cuts and frenetic scenes are a problem, we’ll have more than “SpongeBob SquarePants” to blame for spoiling the next generation. If today’s news has you editing the DVR during naptime, be sure you cancel these 10 cartoons as well. A typical episode features quick cuts, packed scenes and/or less than soothing music and dance sequences. Seriously, no scrutinizing DJ Lance? And they call themselves “scientists”!

10 more frenetic, fast-paced, kid ruining cartoons — as determined less by science, more by experience. What do you think? Is SpongeBob, or any of these cartoons, really so bad?

Here are a few kids cartoons Carolyn says you should be watching.

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If Spongebob Squarepants is Bad, Here are 10 More Cartoons to Stop Watching

Phineas & Ferb

Just like Spongebob, this Disney cartoon's target audience is for the older-than-4 set. Also like Spongebob, the scenes are frenetic and fast-paced and feature lots of running gags and inside jokes.

Source 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Main image:

Bargaining on looks, not substance? Check out Babble’s Top 50 Most Adorable Cartoon Characters! [VIDEO]

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About Madeline Holler


Madeline Holler

Madeline Holler is a writer, journalist, and blogger. She has written for Babble since the site launched in 2006. Her writing has appeared in various other publications both online and in print, including Salon and True/Slant (now Forbes). A native of the Midwest, Madeline lives, writes, and parents in Southern California, where she's raising two daughters and a son. Read bio and latest posts → Read Madeline's latest posts →

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24 thoughts on “Spongebob Squarepants? 10 More Cartoons That Could Ruin Your Kid

  1. Tim says:

    Completely ridiculous study! You cannot test one set of children with SpongeBob and another set of children with Caillou, and determine that the cartoons are the problem when one group tests poorly. That’s not scientific. You would have to use a control group of children who are tested with all the various cartoons. Unfortunately, using a control group would also be problematic, because the children would become more accustomed to the testing, and would (theoretically) score higher on the last test than the first test. Perhaps the researchers who conducted this study should watch a bit more Caillou.

  2. mama b says:

    Well I’m guilty of damaging my kids in 9 minutes. I’m guessing all that Bugs Bunny and Tom and Jerry had a real positive impact on me. STUPID study. Did they mention that the kids who watched Calliou are whiny? Calliou is pretty whiny sometimes, maybe he needs some more excitement. I always question studies like this, my guess is it was put on by some Spongebob haters.

  3. Mistress_Scorpio says:

    We call it Yo Yo Gabba and The Blackyardigans. I mean, its got a Uniqua and Tyrone.

  4. Teri says:

    So what are the good shows?

  5. kia says:

    I’m guessing they have never seen ren and skimpy, rocko’s modern life, wagged real monsters, angry beavers, Tom and jerry, cow and chicken, Tom and jerry,bugs bunny, etc etc.

  6. Elizabeth says:

    OMG I laughed so hard when I saw the photo you had w/this! I cannot STAND Yo Gabba Gabba. Hubby likes it. We actually fight about it all the time. I’m convinced the people who make that show are on serious drugs.

  7. wendi says:

    I was guessing it was done by some spongebob haters too. So we are all messed up because i bet alot of people watched tom and jerry and of course we are all fine.

  8. wendi says:

    Well said Terry.. rockos modern life was a pretty messed up show too.. lol. i watched it when i was young then i saw it when i was older and they had some pretty sick stuff. ah.. real monsters wasnt such a great so for kids either. They took alot of the cartoons that i liked away on nickelodeon. when of my other favorite shows when i was little was Rugrats. Everybody liked rugrats.

  9. Gypsie says:

    i’ve got kids that range from 2 -13. Obviously, i don’t let the 2yo watch sponge bob. I’m going to say, that for the most part, i love the programming on Nick Jr (once Noggin) There are no commercials, so i don’t get the constant *I Want’s* with the latest *fad* toys. Honestly, i’d rather all my kids watch Phineas and Ferb, than sponge bob.

    It really all comes down to parental control, and that little red button on the remote, you know..the one that says “power”

  10. Kell says:

    Wow, talk about overexamining! You have to take these shows for what they are worth, they aren’t meant to be a babysitter, tutor, or teacher for your children. If you are using these shows for that then the problem is your parenting not the shows.

  11. vstilt says:

    Some of these shows are great and if you expect t.v. shows to raise your kids, then you’re in a heap of trouble regardless of what show they watch. If your kids end up messed up, maybe instead of doing a study on what shows they watch or watched, maybe take a good long look in the mirror parents. Chill out and enjoy a freakin’ cartoon once in a while (although I do agree that Power Rangers is junk, among a couple others). But like I said, it’s not the cartoons ruining the kids, it’s the parents letting the kids watch too many cartoons. Let them have their childhood fun but remember moderation is key in some areas in life, especially when it comes to an occasional popsicle or some goofy cartoon.

  12. heather says:

    whoever wrote this was an idiot! the ones ive seen that my 2 year old watches are good shows and they have taught her alot!

  13. heather says:

    i can sit down with my 2 yr old all day and try to teach her all kinds of stuff but she has no interest but when they teach her on the shows i hear her counting, telling me her colors and shapes and A B Cs

  14. Angie says:

    If these scientists were so smart they would realize that on every show something moves or the scene changes every 7 seconds. Thats every show. My 10 year old grew up watching it and she turned out just fine.

  15. Anne says:

    You know, Sponge Bob is a very horrible role model. Have you seen some of the things he’s done? I watched it pre-children because it’s entertaining, but no way are my little ones watching SB feed poisoned crabby burgers to someone before they’re old enough to understand it.

  16. Mrs. Wonder says:

    I could have told them Spongebob cause short term memory loss- my husband watches it all of the time and can’t remember what I tell him ;) But seriously, it just sounds like they were out to get Spongebob, rediculous study.

  17. jaina says:

    WE really need to focus on the fact that a ‘no’ TV time is what’s best for our kids. I’m not sure that which cartoons we let our little ones whatch is as much of a problem as watching too much. With that being said, I have a 9 month old and a 2 year old and there is just some programs that I would not let them watch.

  18. the orginal Sarah says:

    I hate Spongebob, but The Cat in the Hat Knows a lot about That? That’s a good show. Both my preschoolers love it and they learn a lot from it too. After one episode, my daughter was telling me stuff about turtles that I didn’t even know. They really like Yo Gabba Gabba, but I agree it’s on the weird side.

  19. Megan says:

    Phineas and Ferb is an awesome and award-winning cartoon. That being said, it is not aimed at toddlers(Neither is Spongebob). My 8 year-old(and myself and my husband to be honest) love the show. The show addresses concepts and vocabulary that are higher than most shows aimed at the 8-10 age-group. None of the humor is innappropriate(poisoned food), and the bad guy is more misguided than evil(an -inator that makes everyone where a formal dress for example). It’s good clean fun with lots of catchy tunes in each episode.

  20. jenny tries too hard says:

    If loving Phineas and Ferb is wrong, I don’t wanna be right. The weird tangential jokes are *catnip* to one of my boys. He was inspired to look up visigoths after a totally random (and adorable) split-second joke about a gothy character on PandF and is now an annoying mini-expert on the subject. Related: Yelling out “the media is a platypus!” at a political rally/protest is now on my bucket list.

  21. lam says:

    The tone of this article is condescending and ridiculous. Everyone knows TV is crap most of the time, especially for kids. You can make fun of the study and defend your cartoons all you want, but it won’t make these results go away.

  22. Kathleen says:

    IIRC, the poisoned Krabby patties were an accident. And, it’s a cartoon! I’m no Spongebob lover, but all in all his character is a pretty upstanding one, although extremely silly. He works hard because he loves his job, not for the money, is good natured, and likes to go jelly fishing. Seriously, though, it’s a cartoon, meant for entertainment purposes.

  23. Laura says:

    Wow. I am really surprised at the judgmental tones here. (except that I’m NOT) Yo Gabba Gabba is a fantastic show. It teaches so many great lessons and it’s all about dancing and music. It’s fun! I AM surprised to see so many people pass it off as “weird”. Show me one kids show that isn’t just a bit weird and I’ll show you a group of kids who will HATE it. Weird isn’t bad.

    Listening to music with friends IS AWESOME!
    –DJ Lance Rock

  24. Jennifer says:

    I agree with alot of the cartoons are not good for kids. My children get to watch them with me so I can monitor them just because they are on a kids channel does not mean they are good. If you ask my kids they will tell you they don’t watch tv a lot. I dont use it as a babysitter. It can be a hard habit to break and too much is bad for them. I know when I took the tv out of their room their creativity level changed gears, they became more active, I dont have to call them 5 or 6 times before they come and they appriciate it when we sit down as a family and watch it. I also don’t use it as a reward their rewards come in outings. Honestly the only reason we have cable is for when we want reception on the tv and want to veg out on a rare occasion. It is rarely turned on even when they are not home. I feel like tv in general makes people lazy, uncreative and is a waste of time.

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