Terribly Awesome!: High School Musical 2

Just another Manic Monday? Wish it was Sunday? Nothing beats a case of the Mondays like a camp-out. And we ain't talkin' s'mores, sing-a-longs and psycho killers. We're talking about getting in touch with your guilty pleasure zone. That's right, every Monday we'll be bringing you the best of the worst. It's gonna be awesome - and terrible! - all at the same time.

Photo: movieposter.com

I know what you're thinking - how could anyone think about writing about a second-rate Disney Channel movie musical when they could be resting up for the Glee Season 2 premiere? Well, the answer is simple, Gleeks. Someone needs to prepare you for the mess that will most likely be.

Musical sequels, whether on stage or screen, are just a disaster waiting to break out into mediocre song.  I mean, think about it.  Other than Grease 2 (which is obviously the C-O-O-L-E-S-T), Camp Rock 2 (which is obviously just another excuse for Joe Jonas to make out with his BFF with benefits, Demi Lovato) and that long-awaited Phantom sequel, they are fairly nonexistent. The reason being? They suck harder than that gangly dude at the back of Ms. Darbus' afternoon drama class.

Admit it, you kind of love the original High School Musical. It was - and still sort of is - your guilty pleasure - the perfect, overdone antidote to the serious stress that is your life. You watch it every time it comes on TV (even the terribly uninformative pop-up video editions). You listen to the songs on your iPod more than you'd like to admit ("Breaking Free" is still my jam, okay?).  And you may or may not own at least one pen with Troy Bolton's mug on it. So when you found out it was going to have a sequel, you gathered up all your closest friends to celebrate, ready for more heavily choreographed Wildcats sing-song action and awkwardly colour-coordinated fashions. And boy, were you in for a surprise.

High School Musical 2 is nowhere near as awesomely guilty pleasureful as the original. In fact, it's pretty much all guilty. With a lame storyline, half-baked songs and limp acting (save for Efron's always-ready-for-random-angry-songs-brows), HSM 2 doesn't soar, fly or get anywhere near the stars that surround the Disney version of heaven. To put it in a So-PG-It's-Kind-Of-Awkwardly-Sexual-and-Vanessa-Hudgens terms, High School Musical 2 is the Disney Channel Original Movie equivalent of kindergarten - a pointless, yet entertainingly messy stepping stone on the way to a bright-ass future (I'm talking to you High School Musical 3: Senior Year!).

Why it's terrible:

- For a high school musical - there isn't very much schooling. This installment of the East High Wildcat saga takes place at a hoity-toity country club.

- At one point, Troy's best b-ball bro (and future junkyard dance partner), Chad (Corbin Bleu) sings that he "don't dance" - whilst in the middle of a flamboyant baseball field twirl.

- In an obvious attempt to nip any future gay rumours in the bud (for more on that - see the Awesome section)- Chad randomly kisses the drama teacher Mrs. Darbus during the opening number. Seriously.

- When the going gets tough at the country club, Chad claims he almost wishes he was back in back in detention with Ms. Darbus. "Which is sick!," he adds with a look of faux disgust. EWW.

- The finale song ("All for One") has the East High gang claiming that their summer has "just begin" - right after singing in the end-of-season talent show. 

- Vadgenessa Hudgens' "I'm still trying to look sexy while chanting SUMMER randomly!" face:

- No, Kenny Ortega, it's not offensive to make the fat girl the summer cook. 

- "T as in Troy?!" No, T as in, I'm Totally checking out your tits.

- The side story about Troy getting wooed by college scouts and becoming all douchey. Sorry, but I prefer my Zac Efron confused and ready to angry dance.

- The talent show song ("Everyday") is definitely a retooled version of "Can You Feel the Love Tonight?"  And when I say retooled, I really mean "identical, save for some awful new lyrics."

- They kept this in...


Why it's AWESOME:

- This installment of the East High Wildcat saga takes place at a hoity-toity country club - OWNED BY SHARPAY AND RYAN'S PARENTS.

-What time is it, you ask?! END-OF-SONG FLOOR SIDE TIME! Obviously.

- Okay, but seriously, "What Time Is It?" is awesome.

- Apparently, if Troy wants to go to college next year he needs to, and I quote, "make bank" this summer.

- There are SO many shameless references to other songs - from both this and the first movie.  For example: "Maybe we can work this out - if we're all in this together!"

- What team? WILDCATS!

- There is just so much unintentional homoeroticism embedded in the lyrics of Ryan and Chad's baseball-dance duet ('I Don't Dance") - i.e. "I'll show you how I swing!," "You never know, if you never try...," "Atta boy. Atta boy. YEAAAAAAH!"

- I rest my case:

- No explanation needed:


- Zac is SO much more into this than everyone else.


- How does Troy Bolton let you know he's enjoying your date? Through a unannounced picnic-side half-somersault, of course!

- Can you say pre-slutty Miley cameo!?

- Three words: BET ON IT.

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