Fallen Goldfish

Book By: Dean Phillips II
Play #: 2567
Pages: 20 pgs
Cast: 1 m, 1 w, 1 child, 6 - 16 flexible roles

When Thomas hurriedly flushes the deceased family goldfish down the toilet to replace it with a new one while his young son, Lewis, is at school, he receives a knock on his front door. Greeting him is a golden-cladded warrior claiming that he and his Viking-like associates knew and fought alongside the deceased Stanley (the goldfish). With his living room now invaded by these unusual warriors demanding to have the funeral in his house, Thomas must make them leave before Lewis and his mother come home. All just because of a dead goldfish. About 35-minute runtime.

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Behind The Scenes

With Dean Phillips II


What inspired you to write this play?

This play began with a writing exercise where I had to find the opposite of the title of a well known work. I chose, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” which in my mind, turned into, “To Revive a Goldfish.” Naturally, I wondered why anyone would want to revive a goldfish. That thought then evolved into the idea of a goldfish being a great and honored warrior that saved an entire  army.


What's your favorite part or line in the play?  Why?

THOMAS: There will be no funeral here, got it? Fill a coffin with bricks and say he was lost at sea.

ALL WARRIORS: That would never happen!

Simple joke, but still proud of it. Just the idea of filling a coffin full of bricks for a goldfish with the added fact that fish don’t get lost at sea.


Where did the characters come from? Are they based on people you know?

Thomas and Jane are somewhat amalgamations of family members and friends I see wanting to be good parents while navigating the many obstacles that entails. 

The warriors are inspired by the aesthetics and humor of children's books, fantastical and funny.


What did you try to achieve with this play?

Many times it is easy to forget how smart children can be. Being new to life, kids are capable of taking in so much and naturally will have many questions. My play wants to be a reminder to let children have and ask those questions. It may be difficult, but the chance to learn all of life’s quirks, big and small, can let kids soar.


Do you have anything else you'd like to add?

This play has been on a very particular journey. Almost 10 years before seeing publication. I am incredibly proud of the shape I have been able to mold with it through its many changes.