A little more than half a year after fed-up JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater scurried down an emergency chute, the airline is promoting the new Broadway musical Catch Me If You Can.
The Slater incident and JetBlue's becoming the "official and exclusive airline" of Catch Me If You Can, slated to open at the Neil Simon Theatre on Broadway April 10, have little to do with with one another in the airline's mind.
But, oh, the juxtaposition -- you can't make this stuff up.
Actually, there are a couple of parallels for those of us who know how to really stretch a comparison.
Slater complained in the wake of his unscheduled escape from the aircraft that passengers were rude and that the bygone days of passenger-flight attendant civility were long gone.
And, JetBlue, too, apparently pines for that bygone era.
"JetBlue's mission and brand essence [is] to bring humanity back to air travel, resurrect the glamour and joy of flying in the 1960s, the industry era created for the Broadway show," says Lisa Borromeo, the airline's manager of brand and partnerships.
The musical portrays the life of a runaway teenager who searches for the high life and along the way passes forged checks and poses as a pilot.
Fictitious transgressions arguably worse than Slater’s.
There are social media themes running through the flight attendant incident and play partnership, as well.
The Slater incident created a social media firestorm for JetBlue, which actively engaged customers and others on Twitter, Facebook and in blog posts after Slater's slide went international and viral.
For Catch Me If You Can, JetBlue is back at it with customer engagement and social media.
The airline and the theater production are running a contest where fans are asked to upload an audition video of them reading a pre-written news story about Frank Abagnale Jr., the play's protagonist.
The grand prize winner will be designated JetBlue Carpet Correspondent for opening night, April 10, and will earn roundtrip tickets for two to New York, a hotel stay at the Flatotel, tickets for Catch Me, and exclusive access to the Blue Carpet and a post-theater party.
JetBlue says details of the contest are available at CatchTheMusical.com [although said details weren't immediately available at press time].
If the videos don't end up on JetBlue's Facebook page, this reporter will parachute out of my next flight.
Incidentally, there's no word yet on whether Slater, who no longer works for JetBlue, has been invited to audition.