The past has a tendency to repeat itself, even in movies. One of the most popular movies of the 70s recently returned to television for a live performance. With the Grease Live on January 31st, fans were able to reminisce in the past, and take a look at comparing it to the present.
A comparison often made by Grease fans is the similarity that it has with the Disney Channel original movie, High School Musical. HSM is a classic Disney film that all East students hold close to their hearts.
Grease (1978) stars two main characters, Sandy and Danny, who meet over the summer and later learn that they attend the same high school. The two face challenges together regarding their romantic relationship because the mix of their different groups does not fit the norm of the school.
Similarly, High School Musical (2006) involves two main characters, Gabriella and Troy, who meet over winter break at a ski lodge and later run into one another at East High. Gabriella and Troy also face obstacles due to their auditions to perform in the winter musical and are able to go against the “status quo.”
Although both movies are about high school students and how they go about their days of high school, Grease and HSM were somewhat based off of the Shakespeare play, Romeo and Juliet. The love story of two characters in families that dislike each other is the basis for many plot lines seen in movies today.
Another similarity made between the two films involves the mean girls of the schools: Rizzo and the other “Pink Ladies” in Grease, and Sharpay Evans in HSM.
Shayne Maggard (’18) said, “I love both HSM and Grease. But, I personally don’t feel that Grease has a good message: changing the way you dress, starting to smoke, acting different to get a guy, and not staying true to yourself. The music is super fun in Grease though, and I’d have to say my favorite scene is when Rizzo sings ‘There Are Worse Things I Could Do’ because it shows the cold, uncaring, and unwelcoming girl is actually hurt by what everyone says and has emotions.”
According deviantart.com, HSM is not realistic for its time period. Grease is practical in revealing the brutalities of high school, whereas HSM is a children’s film by showing the unrealistic lives of innocent teens.
Maggard also stated, “High School Musical is typical, but realistic [in the sense that] two people fall in love, but their friends and popularity keep them apart. HSM is great for young children and even teens because it shows that if you’re passionate about something, like Troy and his love for singing, then you should go for it, even though you might be ridiculed.”
Whether you prefer Grease of High School Musical, the popular plot line that shaped both films will always be the same.