By: Alex Phuong (Three Beers) –
High School Musical was a smash hit when it premiered on Disney Channel in 2006. Because of its immense popularity, it is no surprise that Disney would make a sequel. In fact, a sequel was basically inevitable given the high television ratings of the first film. The entire gang came back for another television film filled with singing and dancing, but this time… class is NOT in session. High School Musical 2 is a sweet and smart family film that is just about as fun to watch is relaxing by the sea on a warm summer day.
Just like the first film (and the third installment), this film features catchy tunes, the romance between Troy and Gabriella, and Sharpay showing off her bad side. This film is actually very colorful, especially whenever Sharpay looks pretty in pink. The musical numbers are fun to watch since they romanticize the summer experience for teenagers, which can include either summer fun, summer work, or a combination of both. (Spoiler Alert: This film has both). Working at Sharpay’s golf resort might not be that fun, but this film features a “Disney-fied” version of what real life teenagers often times go through during their summer breaks. Even though such depictions might not be that realistic, they are still fun to watch, especially since this is a Disney musical that can provide a nice escape from the monotony of real life.
Out of the three films from the series, this is arguably the worst. Some people have even said that this film does not deserve the title High School Musical 2 since it hardly takes place at East High. Some of the songs are also not as great as the musical numbers from the other two films. For example, the song “Fabulous” is a musical number that might be hard to watch since it showcases Sharpay’s materialism. Some of the lyrics in that particular song are really corny, such as, “Iced tea imported from England / Lifeguards imported from Spain / Towels imported from Turkey / and turkey imported from Maine!” It is a bit of a shame that a Disney film would feature such a self-centered villain, but hey, at least Ashley Tisdale knows how to play the “good girl” Maddie on The Suite Life of Zack and Cody as well as the atrociously selfish Sharpay Evans.
Even though this film received a “TV-G” rating, there is a surprising amount of innuendo in this film. Specifically, the song “I Don’t Dance” is a very provocative musical number that might raise the eyebrows of parents. Some people have argued that this song contains homoerotic undertones between Chad and Ryan. Knowing that Disney would include such content in a musical family film can be VERY disturbing.
This might not be the best Disney Channel movie ever, but fans still enjoy this franchise. Without this film, High School Musical 3: Senior Year (2008) probably might not would have come into fruition. Disney films might never be as realistic as the novels from the Realism literary movement, but at least films like High School Musical 2 can provide a nice escape from the real world for two hours (even though the real world is usually not as sugarcoated as films made from the House of Mouse).
High School Musical 2 (2007) Drinking Game
Take a Drink: during every musical number
Take a Drink: every time the word “summer” is spoken
Drink a Shot: every time the color pink appears (especially around Sharpay)
and then Cool Off with Some Water: every time someone either falls or jumps into a swimming pool