Panel Questions

Dec 8, 2018
Originally published on December 8, 2018 12:37 pm
Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

PETER SAGAL, HOST:

Panel, right now time for you to answer some questions about this week's news. Paula, "SpongeBob SquarePants" is one of the most popular TV kid's shows ever. In fact, according to researchers, it's even loved by whom?

PAULA POUNDSTONE: Actual sea creatures?

SAGAL: Yes.

POUNDSTONE: No.

SAGAL: Specifically...

POUNDSTONE: Sponges?

SAGAL: No.

(LAUGHTER)

PETER GROSZ: Paula, you're so close.

SAGAL: Although that would be really surprising if, like, literally, a sponge - this inert, practically dead organism - was, like, no, don't turn the channel.

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: No, I'll give you a hint. They...

POUNDSTONE: Starfish. Dolphins.

SAGAL: No - yes, dolphins.

POUNDSTONE: There we go.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

SAGAL: Dolphins Love "SpongeBob."

(APPLAUSE)

SAGAL: According to the study, which was published in the...

POUNDSTONE: Oh, Jesus.

SAGAL: ...Esteemed science journal Jesus, The Internet is Going to Have a Field Day With This...

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: ...Dolphins actually enjoy watching TV, and they really love "SpongeBob SquarePants." It makes sense to them. It's to them both the adventures of delightful undersea creatures and a menu.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: Wait a minute. How did - OK, how did they do the research? How did they select the dolphins?

SAGAL: Well, the first phase of the experiment...

POUNDSTONE: Did they raise their little fins to be - like, who would like to be in the "SpongeBob..."

FAITH SALIE: (Imitating dolphin).

POUNDSTONE: ...Experiment?

(LAUGHTER)

SAGAL: So here's the thing. They're trying - these scientists are trying to find out how intelligent dolphins are. Now...

SALIE: (Laughter).

POUNDSTONE: They tell if they're intelligent if they watch "SpongeBob?" That doesn't mean you're intelligent.

(LAUGHTER)

POUNDSTONE: So from now on, when a college is doing admissions, instead of asking for SAT scores, they'll go, who likes "SpongeBob"?

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS THEME SONG")

PATRICK PINNEY: (As Painty the Pirate) (Singing) Oh, who lives in a pineapple under the sea?

UNIDENTIFIED CHILDREN: (Singing) SpongeBob SquarePants.

PINNEY: (As Painty the Pirate, singing) Absorbent and yellow and porous is he.

UNIDENTIFIED CHILDREN: (Singing) SpongeBob SquarePants.

PINNEY: (As Painty the Pirate, singing) If nautical nonsense be something you wish...

UNIDENTIFIED CHILDREN: (Singing) SpongeBob SquarePants.

PINNEY: (As Painty the Pirate, singing) ...Then drop on the deck and flop like a fish.

UNIDENTIFIED CHILDREN: (Singing) SpongeBob SquarePants.

PINNEY: (As Painty the Pirate, singing) Ready? SpongeBob SquarePants, SpongeBob SquarePants...

SAGAL: Coming up, our panelists lie to you in under 10 minutes. It's our Bluff the Listener game. Call 1-888-WAIT-WAIT to play. We'll be back in a minute with more of WAIT WAIT... DON'T TELL ME from NPR. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.