What it's about
A volcano is about to erupt and wipe Bikini Bottom off the map. It's up to Spongebob to save the day. Meanwhile, every sea creature in Bikini Bottom wonders how they will spend their final hours before the apocalypse. Also, it's a musical and Patrick's a God.
The amount of love and effort and talent in this show is actually shocking. The list of people who made music for this show is legitimately out of this world. David Bowie wrote a song for this musical - like I am not even kidding. As someone who grew up on Spongebob (I still watch it with my little brothers), I was excited to see this show. My excitement only grew, the closer it got to showtime. The theater is completely decked out in every way. Every small object on the ceilings have been painted with the Spongebob seastars. The sides of the theater spin out into these wild Rube Goldbergs that launch boulders later in the show.
The entire show was ludicrous and nonsensical and weirdly wild from second to second. It was amazing.
There's a lot of clever design and talent deep within this show, from its main plot to its many, many, many building subplots, that anyone who enjoys a day of weird theater, regardless of knowledge of the Spongebob Lore™, would absolutely love. To open Pandora's box without providing context, Mrs. Puff's drunken bender, Patrick becoming a cult leader, Squidward's promise to his dead mama (smooch to the heavens), Patchy The Pirate's heist, and The Conductor: Prop Manager are just a few of the subplot highlights that just kept me engrossed the entire time.
My favorite part of the show, what I have been thinking about since I saw this, was actually right after it was over. There were a lot of kids in this theater, as you would imagine. And, as they streamed out of the theater, there was a lot of the same sentiment thrown around, "That was so cool," "That was awesome," and "That was amazing," I heard these as this stampede of shortstacks rolled on past me.
I had talked a bit about it with a friend back in December, when we found out about the show. "I cannot understand why they're doing a goddamn Spongebob musical," my buddy had said.
I was cautiously optimistic about it, even then. My reasoning was proven at the show: there really aren't many big shows that can get kids into theater. There just aren't. I've heard the obvious ones, The Lion King and Aladdin right now. However, both shows are meant to appeal to an audience twenty years removed from the adaptation's source, and rely on parents dragging their kids to see it most likely. After that, the big Broadway shows get progressively less kid-friendly. As much as I dislike it, I fully look forward to the Frozen musical coming out because it and Spongebob will make for great kids theater.
So, I find myself incredibly grateful to Spongebob Squarepants™ The Musical™. I got to watch one of the most fun shows on Broadway while also looking around at a future audience of hopeful theater kids.
Also, there aren't enough Spongebob memes in this article, accept this as payment:
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