At a special panel at San Diego Comic-Con, Nickolodeon revealed some more information about its upcoming Halloween Special, entitled Spongebob Squarepants: The Legend of Boo-kini Bottom. The Spongebob Squarepants Halloween Special is the second production in the franchise to be totally made using stop-motion animation, featuring some of the most adorable puppet versions of the whole cast.
The Legend of Boo-kini Bottom is made by the same team as the 2012’s It’s a Spongebob Christmas! special, which was animated by Mark Caballero, Seamus Walsh, and Christopher Finnegan of Screen Novelties.
Although the team didn’t want to spoil The Legend of Boo-kini Bottom’s story, they did give fans a little tease as to what we can expect. It all revolves around the fact that Spongebob doesn’t really get what Halloween is, decking out his house with flowers and butterflies rather than the more traditional Halloween paraphernalia.
Patrick and Spongebob go on a tour of Bikini Bottom and enjoy the fact all the houses and businesses are decked out in Halloween chic. All the characters have brilliant costumes, with Patrick a knight, Spongebob an out-of-place flower, Sandy a mad scientist, Plankton the devil, Karen a cat with articulated legs and everything, and Mr. Krabs donning a rather fetching dollar bill costume.
The Krusty Krab has been decked out with cheap stuffed marionettes and the sort of decorations you’d find in a dollar store, while the Chum Bucket is now know as the “Horrors of the Chum Bucket experience.” As per usual, the frugal Plankton’s efforts are even more budget and low-key, but that doesn’t stop Patrick finding the whole thing so terrifying that he passes out.
Spongebob is forced to wheel the unconscious Patrick around on a trailer and laughs so hard and loudly that it reaches the Flying Dutchman who’s floating through the sky in his haunted ship. He then becomes the main antagonist of the Halloween Special, wanting to prove to Spongebob that Halloween is a scary event and definitely not a funny one.
“It’s all about how we all feel when we’re kids about being scared,” Doug Lawrence, writer and voice of Plankton.
During the panel, Nickolodeon showed off some of the materials used to make Bikini Bottom into a little 3D world. According to Screen Novelties, the set includes over 1000 googly eyes, breakfast cereal (including some gluten-free brands), Popsicle sticks, cardboard, tape, pipe cleaners and even some tears.
“We try to make it so you can feel the materials that we’ve used,” said Caballero. Patrick’s knight armour is a scrubbing sponge, for example.
In addition to stop-motion, the team used a load of other technical features, including live puppetry. One moment Sandy is making an acorn Frankenstein a marionette that moves in a very different way to everyone else on the screen, making him very creepy indeed.
Spongebob Squarepants: The Legend of Boo-kini Bottom will air in October just in time for Halloween.