Alright, now that you have “We’re All In This Together” sufficiently stuck in your head, let’s get down to it. You’ll remember Sharpay Evans as the “bitchy” girl in the movie who, along with her brother Ryan, was super into theater.
That whole brother-and-sister dynamic was a really weird one, but that’s a totally different story that we won’t get into...
Twitter user @SHARPAYSAVICTIM wrote out a whole tweet thread explaining why Sharpay Evans, one of the “villains” of High School Musical, is actually the victim. And in case you don’t feel like reading the entire thread, we’ll break it down for you…
Sharpay and Ryan are seasoned actors who’ve been performing since preschool. They know everything about theater, while all Gabriella and Troy (our “heroes”) have on their resume is one measly little New Year's karaoke song.
And let’s be real, that song wasn’t even that good.
Later on during the school year, we see Troy and Gabriella looking over the signup sheet for the school musical auditions. Sharpay walks by and suggests that they sign up to try out for supporting roles, which we all assumed at first was a #bitchmove, but in reality, that’s pretty realistic seeing as neither Troy or Gabriella had any acting experience whatsoever. Like, where else are they supposed to start?
We see Ryan and Sharpay performing “What I’ve Been Looking For” at their audition along with an awesome choreographed dance. Gabriella and Troy watch from afar, and after Ms. Darbus, the theater teacher, closes the auditions, Gabriella runs out saying she wants to audition, with Troy reluctantly following her.
Of course, Ms. Darbus says they can’t audition because, you know, punctuality is kind of important in theater. Kelsi, the composer of the musical, then tells Gabriella and Troy that she was wanted the song to be slower and more melodic, so they perform it standing next to the piano.
Okay, but for real, does this version even compare to Sharpay and Ryan’s performance?
After Ms. Darbus hears them perform the boring, slow version, she invites them to callbacks, and of course Sharpay gets a little defensive about the fact that total amateurs are moving in on her spotlight. Who wouldn’t be mad about that?
Sharpay then asks Ms. Darbus to change the date of the callbacks to a time when both Troy and Gabriella are busy with their basketball and nerd stuff, respectively. But really people, if you’re going to be starring in a musical as a total theater noob, then you’ve got to be present!
On the day of the callbacks, Troy and Gabriella’s friends pull some super legal s**t, including overheating chemicals in their chemistry class to try to sabotage their other priorities so they can actually make the callbacks.
Meanwhile, we see Sharpay and Ryan freaking slay their performance of “Bop To The Top.”
Once Troy and Gabriella’s song gets going, Gabriella totally freezes with stage fright. Okay, c’mon Ms. Darbus, that’s like five strikes against them already! If your leading actress is too afraid to even perform in front of an audience, isn’t that kind of telling that she’s not fit for the job?
But of course, Mr. Troy Bolton saves the day and magically cures Gabriella of her stage fright, and they end up performing the song without any choreography or anything. Oh right, and they also brought the whole school with them to the performance.
Ms. Darbus gives Troy and Gabriella the part even though their performance didn’t stand a chance against Sharpay and Ryan’s brilliant performance! And in the end, everyone thinks theater is just the coolest thing now because the popular jock is into it, while Sharpay and Ryan get left in the dust.
And can we just point out that everyone in this movie is a big fat hypocrite for calling Sharpay a “drama queen” because of her love for theater throughout the movie? And then Troy and Gabriella go and steal the lead roles and suddenly they’re the good guys? Someone didn’t think this through! Also, does anyone else just think that Sharpay is a way better singer than Gabriella?
Hold on there, Ms. Darbus isn’t off the hook yet either. She clearly chose Troy and Gabriella over Ryan and Sharpay because they brought in a bigger audience, and bigger audiences mean more ticket sales, even though Sharpay and Ryan are much more talented and experienced.
And then at the end of the day, Troy wins his basketball game, Gabriella wins her nerd crap, and Sharpay gets...nothing? But she’s still the bigger person and congratulates Gabriella, telling her to “break a leg.”
But Gabriella doesn’t even know what that phrase means!!
So let’s get this straight: The moral of the story is, when you’re a popular jock you can do whatever you want even if you have absolutely no experience whatsoever and make said thing cool again, while the person who works hard for years gets nothing in return.
What the hell are you trying to teach kids here, Disney?