The Los Angeles Rams and New England Patriots are battling in Super Bowl LIII from Mercedes-Benz Stadium, and by the time we know who'll hoist the Lombardi Trophy, we'll also know if there was a 'Sweet Victory' during halftime.
A prop bet this year lets bettors gamble on whether Maroon 5 will perform the "SpongeBob SquarePants" song during their halftime set on Sunday. Even though it seems like an absolutely preposterous bet, there's good reason to believe it might actually happen. In fact, the betting odds are pretty strongly leaning towards 'Yes.'
The song entered popular culture when it aired during a 2001 episode of "SpongeBob SquarePants" in which some of the show's characters performed at halftime of The Bubble Bowl, a championship football game intended to mimic the Super Bowl. That episode (and the song) have become iconic in the years since.
Here's a look at the scene:
But, like many SpongeBob references, it has recently regained popularity and entered meme culture thanks to the internet using it with Travis Scott's mega hit "Sicko Mode." As it so happens, Scott will be joining Maroon 5 on stage as a guest performer at halftime.
Perhaps the rapper will utilize the song as he takes the stage?
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While it's an easy tie-in, it's far from the only reason to believe we'll be hearing "Sweet Victory" in Atlanta.
There's a rather high demand for the song to be played, as over one million ... yes, ONE MILLION ... people have signed a petition requesting it be included in the halftime set list. Many of those signing the petition want the song to serve as tribute to SpongeBob creator Stephen Hillenburg, who died last November from ALS.
"As some of you may or may not know, Stephen Hillenburg -- the creator of Spongebob Sqaurepants -- has passed away recently," the petition reads. "As a tribute to his legacy, his contributions to a generation of children, and to truly showcase the greatness of this song, we call for 'Sweet Victory' to be performed at the halftime show."
And there's more.
Rodger Bumpass, the voice actor behind SpongeBob character Squidward, announced that he'll be recording "a very short piece" for the Super Bowl because Squidward will be introducing the halftime entertainment. Interesting ...
And, yup, there's more.
A few weeks ago, Maroon 5's official Twitter account posted a video teasing their Super Bowl performance. In that cleverly edited video, there's a single second of SpongeBob footage included. No, it's not a clip from "Sweet Victory" but it's the only cartoon featured in the short video. Interesting ...
(The SpongeBob clip can be found at the 0:32 mark.)
You guessed it, there's still more.
Last December, only a few weeks after Hillenburg's death, the official Twitter account for Mercedes-Benz Stadium -- home to this year's Super Bowl -- shared this GIF.
Sure, a Twitter GIF void of any context could mean nothing. But it also could mean everything.
That leads us to the Vegas odds. The question regarding whether Maroon 5 will play the song was included on the long list of prop bets that are tied to the Super Bowl every year, some more ridiculous than others. (You can find our guide to those prop bets here.) As of right now, Bovada lists the odds as "Yes" at minus-220, "No" at plus-155.
So, let's recap:
- Initially played at faux-Super Bowl
- Ties to guest performer Travis Scott
- Fan demand for Hillenburg tribute
- Squidward's confirmed involvement
- SpongeBob imagery used for teaser
- Favored by bookmakers
Yeah, this is definitely happening. And yes, mayonnaise is an instrument.