slice of my life

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

High School Musical 2

I have to mention some things about High School Musical 2. We've been watching Disney and Nick all summer, and couldn't miss the continuous hype about HSM2. The Disney Channel has no commercials for products, but they have commercials for all their shows all day long. Over and over. All the time.

Anyway, we were sufficiently hyped up about HSM2, which came on last Friday night. J hasn't really gotten into it, but B is at the young end of the target audience, I guess. I 3rd grader interested in a show about High School? It seems a little wrong, maybe. ?? But I'll get to that later.

She was all set to be home at 7 to watch this show, and it was a little bit of work to get home on time. But B and I were there (without the guys home) and we ate pizza and French onion dip and enjoyed the music and dancing. The storyline was okay, the colors in the show really appealing, the music peppy and fun or dramatically sad. It seemed more like a musical than the last one. It wasn't just singing a song in the story, it was singing a song to carry along the story, singing the lines at times. The dancing was really good, too---very difficult, I thought.

I ended up watching it twice---J succumbed to the hype and watched it the next night. He thought it was pretty okay. He objects to them hyping up an okay movie until it is an obsession. I'm teaching him to be wise about marketing. ;-)

I heard of lots of parties around this movie, and even a friend's daughter's birthday bash with 3rd grade girls walking down a red carpet. heehee!

I caught a few of the TV interviews with the cast I thought were interesting. They said the dancing was harder---more partner dancing. They had to do a lot of filming at night since so many scenes were at night, which was kind of hard. (But they're young!)

I have heard this HSM phenomenon being compared to this generation's Grease. Maybe. Today's culture with DVDs is so different than it was back in 1978 when Grease came out and I was 7 years old. I didn't go see it at the movies, and it wasn't played 3 times in one weekend on my TV. Really, that's a good thing! Grease makes me cringe when I watch it with the kids, especially because J understands so much more now. What's that movie rated? It's not appropriate for third graders at all, really, but the music is so good and it's such a part of American culture.

What's good about HSM 1 and 2 is that the language is clean, the costumes seem appropriate, and the storyline is okay. No one is getting a pregnancy scare in HSM! Ahem! There is a heavy emphasis on "getting the guy" or "getting the girl" but it's not too sexual. The cast is really diverse (someone for all to identify with except maybe Asian-Americans), and they're all so clean-cut and really beautiful to look at! I do wonder what the population of a typical Albuquerque high school---a few more Hispanic-looking kids, maybe?

I have heard that #3 will be at the theaters instead (cha-ching!$!), and that #4 is already in the works as well. So what ever happened to the guy who claimed he wrote a "High School Musical" and Disney stole his idea? I found this article about it after searching for 15 minutes. It's all about the money! I hope he got a quiet payoff for his ideas, if they were stolen! In Disney's defense, this article talks about how the songs were not the same, and part of the Disney movie appeal was the peppy music. That was the top selling CD of all of 2006! Wow! But if anyone is capable of taking someone's idea, changing it enough to not be "the same show," and making a hit out of it using marketing and beautiful actors and catchy tween-appealing music, you know it's Disney. They have the money to get it done.

Hey!! I think that's really some of my money!



  • Well, you've voiced several of my thoughts...working at a store that sells a HSM song card, I can definitely say that B is not on the young end of the fan base. We hear the same song over and over and over again...and it's usually primary school age children or even preschool age children.

    Like J, I tend to be wary of anything that's TOO popular unless I think the material lives up to the hype (HP and Lost come to mind). :)

    Great, thought-provoking post!

    By Blogger Melissa, at Tuesday, August 21, 2007 9:14:00 AM  

  • Wow it's so refreshing that something clean and wholesome is having so much success! (I've heard some critics are trashing it because it's too wholesome. Grr!)
    I hope this craze catches on and we can look forward to more decent programming for our kids!

    By Blogger Trish, at Tuesday, August 21, 2007 10:07:00 AM  

  • I have only seen HSM once and perhaps I was busy and not really concentrating but I didn't really get what all the hype was about. I grew up on musicals such as 'West Side Story', "Hello Dolly', 'Camelot', "Paint Your Wagon', 'Fiddler on the Roof', and I just don't think the HSM was in the same league. My 7 year old niece however knows every word so maybe its just a genre for a new generation. On the back of your post, I will watch it again before seeing the second and reserve judgment!

    By Blogger Arizaphale, at Tuesday, August 21, 2007 11:43:00 AM  

  • At least you had a better excuse than me to watch it...19-month old Norah could've cared less...but I watched it anyway, with my mom! I loved the first one and the second wasn't half bad. I'm just happy to see (clean) musicals making a comeback..and more power to Disney for making them "cool" when a few years ago a kid would have been seriously mocked for claiming to have enjoyed watching a musical.

    By Blogger Robinson Family, at Wednesday, August 22, 2007 11:04:00 AM  

  • Great review! Nice to have your perspective.

    By Anonymous Anna, at Thursday, August 23, 2007 8:11:00 AM  

  • So funny that you brought this up- I was truly feeling like the only mom who actually sits down and watches these shows. Aidan doesn't show much interest at age three, but I think it's decent background noise while we play.

    I thought the songs and storyline (and Troy Bolton's facial expressions) were a lot cheesier than in the first movie, however I give major kudos to the show not only for the wholesome messages/ costuming (not counting "mean girl" Sharpay), but also for the wholesome way in which the cast portrays themselves in public. You never hear any Lindsay Lohan-esque horror stories with these Disney kids, and that's refreshing since they have become so iconic. I saw a Sharpay Barbie the other day!

    By Blogger Miranda, at Saturday, August 25, 2007 10:55:00 PM  

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