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A Frankie Tale

The New Yorker PART III: An Underwater Comedic Fairytale, Welcome to Bikini Bottom!

Now that we have covered my amazing Yotel stay, you know how I truly feel about dope-ass; dirty-ass New York and you have gained a wealth of knowledge over my love for yellow sponges with flute noses; squared pants; pet snails that meow like cats; that live at the bottom of bikinI's apparently, it is now time to give you the inside SCOOP on my FIRST EVER Broadway Musical Adventure! It is my last day in New York, and I made sure to go out with a BANG!

I'm sure when folks plan a trip to New York City, the last thing on their agenda is to go be a BIG ASS KID and watch their favorite childhood cartoon live on stage. I mean it's NYC! You can do virtually anything you freakin' want! Imagine going to a city where the nightlife culture consists of binge drinking, club hopping, having sex, and doing drugs. The day time however, you transform into a classy tourist. Going to museum visits, art gallery walks, deli hopping, and what rhymes with hopping that we can all appreciate about one of the world's most iconic fashion meccas: SHOPPING! This is soooooo the New Yorker thing to do. Because as soon as the moon rises, the FREAKS are out!

But this party girl traded the "party" for a "program." Though I knew I was attending a children's fantasy, I felt so grown attending a Broadway Musical. Where I'm from, going on Broadway means taking selfies up and down the strip and posting up with the homies in the city. It NEVER means to actually purchase tickets and watch the productions. Not because it's corny, but because it's simply not a part of our budget. (Broadway is for the "other" tax bracket is the perception.) All I can think about from the moment I landed was, "I can't wait to see Spongebob!" Sure, he looks like me and you and isn't yellow or square, but it's all good. I can't wait to see how this will pan out. I have so many questions. What does the theater look like? Is my seat good enough to see well? Is it going to be too much singing? What episodes will they mirror?

As you enter Broadway's Palace theater, you walk into a total underwater fantasy. Floral florescent lights and blue streamers hanging from the ceiling complimented with decor made from everyday household items like pool noodles and packing boxes, create the perfect underwater feel. You know you have entered Bikini Bottom if you are a fan of the show because the flowers are very distinct, and the set team totally nailed it. Up ahead near the main stage, sits 2 giant Rube Goldberg machines (basically, they're ginormous contraption machines) with a smaller staging area below- equipped with a fully functional sound effects booth. Conscious: What? A sound effects booth? Is this a "thing!? Sound design Director Walter Trarbeach and the sound engineering team, definitely captured the essence of Bikini Bottom, by carefully selecting distinct sounds that brought the entire set design and experience together. Luau music, ukulele melodies, and the sound of bubbles enhance the underwater feel, creating a whole new underwater world. Again, if you're a fan of the show, you would appreciate the selection in sound and music because you know....

  • Spongebob's background music is Luau genre on the cartoon series.

  • Bubble sounds transition the episode's scenes on the cartoon series.

  • Ukulele melodies are played throughout several, "happy" scenes.


"The show’s songs (supervised, arranged and orchestrated by the composer Tom Kitt) have been written by a plethora of pop-rock eminences, including John Legend, Cyndi Lauper, Lady Antebellum, Yolanda Adams and They Might Be Giants."

- The New York Times

The atmosphere could be best described as fun, festive, and full of fantasy. If you're a child, you're mesmerized by the colors and art; if you're an adult you appreciate the attention to detail, creative DIY approach and artistic direction by David Zinn and the set design team. Either way, all those walking into the theater have something to look at. Your eyes are constantly moving because there is so much to admire. And this is only the beginning, the show hasn't even started yet!

As the show kicks off, our favorite passive-aggressive Patchy The Pirate (refer to previous #aFrankieTale Blog-Post for insight on how I really feel about this here pirate) greeting us with a creative public service announcement about footage and photography prohibition. The pirate's PSA collaboration with what I thought was [actual] Theater Security, however, was totally unexpected. From "Arrrggghh, A-Hoy me maites..." to the actors who played security chasing Patchy off stage, to security yelling at the crowd with a whole lotta sass NOT TO RECORD or TAKE PICTURES--was hilarious! The skit was entertaining, yet very clear. We got the message: "DO NOT DUPLICATE!" (Aka...SCAMMERS, don't even try it.)

I observed the reactions of other parents and adults, and everyone thoroughly enjoy it, signaling me to no longer feel like a weirdo. What better way to open a show than with a pre-show....but wait, there's more-- with a little PSA thrown in there! It's genius! Conscious: It's on! The show is about to start. (Could you read into my excitement in that very moment!?)


"The set design included over 4,000 sponges."

-David Zinn

As the optical illusion of Spongebob's Pineapple home rises and the scene opens, you're immediately captivated by the amount of color radiating from the stage. The amount of thought and precision put into every single aspect of the set design, allowed the audience to feel as if though we had left earth and dove deep into the splashy depths of the sea. All of our favorite characters came out for the opening number, "Bikini Bottom Day". And I do mean ALL of our favorites! (And by our, subconsciously I mean 'my', but until you reach the end of this read, you too are going to make them your favorite.)

Broadway Photography

Stingy-Ass Mr.Krabs played by Brian Ray Norris crabby-ass Mrs.Puff played by Abby C. Smith, evil-ass Plankton played by Wesley Taylor & his robot wife Karen, played by Catherine Ricafort, miserable-ass Squidward played by Gavin Lee (who wore four legged pants as suction sounds follow his every footstep on stage), dumb-ass Patrick played by Danny Skinner, Southern tough-ass Sandy played by Christina Sajous, Bikini Bottom's Mayor played by Gaelen Gilliland, Bikini Bottom's one News reporter, giant-ass Pearl played by Jai'Len Christine Li Josey, swole ass Larry the Lobster played by Allan K. Washington, Gary the cat-meowing Snail, and of course what's Bikini Bottom without meeping-ass sardines.

It must be destiny. I am in my favorite state, on Broadway for the first time EVER, watching my favorite cartoon of all-time, performed by a literal genius.

Slater, totally brought our favorite yellow sponge to life!

***Yeah, let's be happy for Frankie in this very moment.***

The Broadway Production mirrored some of the greatest moments of the Spongebob Series. Bringing a musical-element to the already semi-musically driven Nickelodeon cartoon series. Some of my favorites musical numbers included Squidwards "I am not a Loser", Mr.Krabs and Pearl's heartfelt song about money and a father's love (Yeah...I know, how sweet right!? Psshh...) "Daddy Knows Best", and Spongebob and Patrick's kiss and makeup "BFF" song. (Relax...obvi it's an expression. There were no homosexual acts here, though this CARTOON duo is constantly being jabbed for promoting homosexuality.)

As if Rube Goldberg Machines and pool noodles were not enough, the cast proved great athleticism with their acrobatic scenes throughout the musical. During the scene where Spongebob and Sandy were "climbing up" the volcano, to interrupt the eruption (see what I did there!?), the amount of creativity poured into creating illusions were put to the test. Both Spongebob and Sandy were climbing up and down ladders and cardboxes, wheeled around by stage set crew on dollies. Scene and set design changes and transitions were nearly flawless. (Some stuff I didn't even catch...maybe it was my frugal seats...hmmmm) Flamboyant costumes, aerialist, acrobats, professional rock-star skaters, coupled with special effect lights, live sound effects, and top notch circus acts, left the audience wondering: What will POP UP next!?

Overall, you can sum up my experience as "MAGICAL!" This show was everything but ordinary, basic, and boring. I'm not gonna lie....I set my expectations pretty high. But even with my high level of scrutiny and judgement, my expectations were by far defeated. I was laughing and smiling the entire time. Every aspect of the show was so well thought out and executed, it left me hungry for more.

My ultimate goal this trip, was to ensure my VERY LAST adventure was a memorable one-- and that it was. The musical fed me laughs, nostalgia, excitement, and it was a visual spectacle! (Dazzling Darling!) I appreciated the the great deal of comedic relief for both children and adults and pay my respects to the script writers, whom did an excellent job in creating a narrative which included fables and real-life lessons about teamwork, diversity, unity, loyalty, commitment, and trust. Somewhere between my laughs and amusement, I felt like I was at a Lady Gaga Concert meets PRIDE WALK. Would I watch it again? HELL YA! Who knows, maybe someday I'll be able to take my currently non-existing children to watch it. I mean, have you seen how long LION KING has been on Broadway!?...yeah, there's hope.


Guess what thick Mami will be strutting her thunda thighs during NEW YORK FASHION WEEK!!! Muahhh!!!

Shouts to my bae @Fara_Charles for booking ya girl for a 3rd #TFCP in a row!!

I’m hype!! New York, wash Poppin- I’m coming back Bxtches!!

1 WEEK AWAY!! #iLoveRedWordz ..



Come back next week to read up on all things TFCP & NEW YORK FASHION WEEK! NOT ONLY WILL I BE A MODEL RIPPING THE RUNWAY, BUT REDL!GHTV will also be in the building with Sir Lance Jay Talks!! So you already know, I got chu with ALL THE DEETS AND BACKSTAGE ACTION!

This is #aFrankieTale....get a peek inside my head!

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