Super Bowl 53 Stadium Weighs in on 'Spongebob Squarepants' Halftime Tribute

The petition to have SpongeBob Squarepants, Patrick Star, and company playing their 'Sweet [...]

The petition to have SpongeBob Squarepants, Patrick Star, and company playing their "Sweet Victory" hit single at Super Bowl LIII is nearing one million signatures, prompting a tease from the stadium hosting the annual event.

Atlanta's Mercedez-Benz Stadium, home to the Atlanta Falcons and Major League Soccer's Atlanta United, posted a cryptic tweet earlier this weekend of a GIF featuring SpongeBob, Patrick, Mr. Crabs, and the crew as they prepped for their iconic Bubble Bowl performance. This will be Mercedes-Benz Stadium's first time hosting

The petition was started by Isreal Colunga three weeks ago after the passing of Stephen Hillenburg, the creator of SpongeBob Squarepants due to complications from ALS. He was 57.

"As some of you may or may not know, Stephen Hillenburg - the creator of SpongeBob SquarePants - has passed away recently," Colunga wrote in the petition. "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."

The National Football League had previously announced the Adam Levine-led Maroon 5 would be headlining the halftime show, although reports have begun to surface saying they're having trouble getting guest performers to board.

"Sweet Victory" first debuted in "Band Geeks," an episode in season two of the show. In the episode, Squidward finds himself telling a lie to his archnemesis Squilliam Fancyson, claiming he has a marching band. Not believing the Krusty Krab worker, Squilliam offers Squidward's band a slot to perform at halftime of the Bubble Bowl, Bikini Bottom's equivalent to the Big Game.

The band Squidward assembles is pretty awful to begin with — ahem, "Is mayonnaise an instrument?" — but the group eventually comes together to knock their show out of the park with their hit song.

Though the song was performed on-screen by the barnacles of Bikini Bottom, the song was originally created as a rock ballad by rocker David Glen Eisley.

As of this writing, the petition has north of 940,000 signatures, hundreds of thousands past the petition's original goal.

Are you still holding out hope that SpongeBob and company make a cameo appearance at the Super Bowl LIII halftime show? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

The full clip of SpongeBob performing "Sweet Victory" is available on the Nickelodeon website.