• Michael Hilton

The Weekly Geek

Greetings, humans! Here’s a short list of stuff I’m geeking out about this week. Fair warning, most of it revolves around Disney+ this week.

  • Show I’m watching: The Mandalorian. Been waiting to see how the first Star Wars live-action show would turn out. After watching Tuesday’s premiere episode and Friday’s second episode, I’m...still undecided. While it’s production values are as astronomical as a galaxy far, far away, I feel a little underwhelmed by the story so far. I will say they’ve introduced some great plot points, so I’m looking forward to seeing how it pans out.

  • Show I’m watching that I’m pleasantly surprised about: *Mumbles* High School Musical: The Musical - The Series. Alright, here’s the thing. I was a little too cool (or thought I was) to watch High School Musical when it came out, and it wasn’t until much later I actually saw it (*ahem*lastyear*ahem*). Anywayyy, I was kinda curious about the show, and, um, well, I wasn’t expecting to like it so much. I feel like I need to justify this, but I won’t because these lists are all about geeking without apology. The show could have been a rote series churned out to an already-built audience, but it forgoes that obvious choice in favor of some surprisingly fresh creative choices. Rather than being a continuation of the movies, the series takes a meta approach where HSM is actually a Disney movie within the show’s world, with the students of the “real-life” high school where HSM was filmed auditioning for a musical version of the movie. In addition, the episodes are shot in a mockumentary style, and aside from some clunky dialogue, there are some actual laugh-out-loud moments, with one character even poking fun at the two HSM sequels. The script could have easily held the movies in holy reverence, but by not taking itself so seriously, some truly unexpected humor emerges, like the intentional irony in its own title. Probably no surprise, but I'm fascinated with the creative process, and I think it's so cool when a franchise or company will break its own established traditions. It reminds me of the way the excellent Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse handles its own source material. Make no mistake, this show is true to the HSM spirit, and if you're not a fan of musicals, high school love triangles, and some really cheesy feels, there may not be enough to sway you. But the storytelling is above average. I didn't even mean to write this much about it, so I'll stop so you can go check it out.

  • Shirts I'm digging: You'll probably see a lot more Disney+ listed in the coming weeks, but I am actually geeking out about other stuff. Case in point: these limited-run Godzilla shirts from Mondo.

That's it! Have a great week, humans!

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