A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Musical – “Briny Beach”

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Dear Viewer,

The musical you’re about to view is extremely unpleasant. It tells an unhappy tale of three unlucky children. Despite being charming and clever, the Baudelaire siblings lead lives filled with misery and woe. From this very post when the children are on Briny Beach and receive terrible news, continuing through the entire story, disaster lurks on every corner. One might think they’re magnets for misfortune. 

Throughout this musical, the three youngsters encounter a greedy and repulsive villain, disastrous fires, paper-thin disguises, plots to steal their fortune, and numerous dreadful pop song parodies from musicals and rock albums. 

It is my sad duty to chronicle this series of unfortunate events, but there’s nothing preventing you from clicking on any ads or looking from some happier post on this blog. Or even looking for something happy, if that’s what you prefer. Like the Hunger Games parody songs.

With all due respect,

Lemony Snicket

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Alongside the Harry Potter books, A Series of Unfortunate Events was among my favorite books during my adolescence. Like The Hunger Games series, it doesn’t revolve around nice stuff. But at least it doesn’t involve teenagers fighting to the death in live television. But it does pertain to a serial killer who pursues and wreaks havoc on three precocious orphaned children for their money as they move from guardian to guardian. Filled with dark humor, literary and cultural allusions, sarcastic story-telling as well as a lot of content you wouldn’t deem appropriate for children like gory death scenes, this 13-book coming-of-age series isn’t the kind of story you’d think would make a good light-hearted musical. But now that its second season has been adapted for a Netflix series, it doesn’t hurt to try. Especially if the show stars Neil Patrick Harris as Count Olaf and how the setting is entrenched in a world that’s very unlike our own. Besides, A Series of Unfortunate Events is a very dark series which can be a little fun with crazy costumes, eccentric characters, and dystopic feel taken to existential absurdity.

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Note: These songs are parodies. And no, I don’t have permission. But screw them since I think it’s funny. But feel free to make videos of these if you wish, but for God’s sake just give me credit. Some of the lyrics might not be original since I usually copy and paste them before I add my own additions. And I sometimes leave them in if I think it might go well with the song. Nevertheless, the songs chronology may conform to the books at first. But I’ll also add other songs as I go along which won’t conform to the sequence in later additions. So don’t be surprised if these are out of order.

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Anyway, this number is set in the first book where Mr. Poe arrives at Briny Beach to tell the Baudelaires orphans that their parents have died in a fire at their mansion. I thought the appropriate song to parody here could be “Coat of Many Colors” from Joseph and his Technicolor Dreamcoat. Now this is a rather upbeat musical from the 1970s that’s often performed in high schools around the US today. But keep in mind it’s about a young man whose jealous brothers basically abduct him and sold him to slavery like the original Bible story. Also, it has a lot of adult content like the sexual harassment scene with Popitar’s wife. But in this song, Joseph receives his fancy coat and is unaware of what his older brothers will do to him. And by this point, while the Baudelaire children may be sad about their parents and their house, they don’t know all the unfortunate events that’ll await them by this point.

 

“Briny Beach”

Lemony Snicket:
What you’re seeing is an incredibly depressing play
Of three unlucky kids with lives of great malaise
So go see something with more uplift
Perhaps Les Miserables

Violet the eldest, had a great inventor’s mind
Klaus the middle, loved to read in his spare time
And baby Sunny, she loved to bite
The three young Baudelaires-

Their lives started out as sweet
Till that day at Briny Beach

From a visit from a banker named Mr. Poe

Mr. Poe:
Sorry, kids, but what you need to know is

Afraid your house burned in a fire
Where your parents soon expired
Not sure if they could’ve seen the danger
I could not imagine any danger
But they perished in that fiery blaze at home.
As family executor, you will stay with me tonight
Don’t you worry for I’ve already called my wife
But only for the next few days
Until we find you a better place to live

You’ll live with nearby kin
The next four years
Your family’s fortune safe
Till Violet comes of age
Don’t worry for we’ll soon find
A new guardian for you

Lemony Snicket:
And from that day on
The kids knew their carefree days were gone
But they didn’t imagine any danger
Or that Mr. Poe can’t screen any stranger

He took them to their home
Or what’s left of it I suppose
Such a sorry wreckage of a mansion
You can’t even employ a restoration
There were burned books, singed hooks, cinder,
And ash
Their whole house was
Reduced to wreckage from the fire

Violet and Klaus:
There was not much left
For us to take
It’s time to go
To Mr. Poe’s
Our life is so unfair

Lemony Snicket:
The orphans missed their mom and dad
But Poe’s sons were spoiled brats
Made a pair of really shitty roommates

Violet and Klaus:
Asked us whether we killed our own parents

Lemony Snicket:
But things will soon get worse
You’d think these kids were cursed
Shortly they’re fostered by Count Olaf
Some cousin these orphans never heard of

Lemony Snicket, Violet and Klaus, Ensemble & Children
They lost their parents, their home, their books,
Their beds, their clothes, their furniture,
Their photos, their toys, their board games,
Their contraptions, their china, their jewelry,
Their suitcases, their utensils, their stove,
Their dressers, their desks, their pencils,
Their crayons, their chew toys, their manuals,
Their purses, their antiques, their tables,
Their chairs, their counters, their electronics,
Their vacuums, their trash cans, their laundry
Their ribbons, their cribs, their cabinets,
Their hooks, their lamps, their files,
Their papers, their cleaners, their doors,
Their windows, their blankets, their sheets,
And roof

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