10 Reasons Why You Should Watch "HSM: The Musical: The Series" on Disney+

It's the start of something new for the High School Musical franchise and people are LOVING it. Disney+ was absolutely worth it for two reasons: Baby Yoda and the honest, awkward, sweet, sing-along love story of a new age Troy and Gabriella, but this time their names are Ricky and Nini. This 21-year-old fangirl and all my closest gals became totally obsessed the second we started watching High School Musical: The Musical: The Series. I feel particularly indebted to Kenny Ortega and the HSM franchise because of how it fundamentally changed my life. When I watched the premiere of the first installment of High School Musical at seven years old, slowly but surely, while falling in love with Zac Efron and spending every car ride screaming along to the lyrics; I learned the basics of how to be a fangirl.

Now as a junior in college majoring in entertainment and media, I am making a career out of being a fangirl. The franchise grew into more than Disney or Kenny Ortega ever imagined and it will forever live in the hearts of kids who grew up alongside me. But then, Disney did what it does best, which is creating nostalgia and a whole new set of devoted Wildcat fanatics. It created a series that takes us back, while simultaneously causing the craze to happen all over again. It's genius. It's the Disney way.

If you haven't heard of the show or if you're feeling a little hesitant to watch something that won't do Efron and Hudgens' love story justice, allow me to explain. The series takes place in the actual high school that the original films were shot, which means the sets are a beautiful flash from the past. A new drama teacher is hired at the high school and upon finding out that the drama department has never put on a production of the movies at the hallowed grounds of its creation, she begins auditions for our beloved characters. There are new love stories to root for, kick-butt girl power friendships you want to be a part of, original songs written by the cast and of course the occasional cameo. This article absolutely contains spoilers because we really need to talk about all that has happened and all that is yet to come for this new set of Wildcats. So, getcha head in the game, but beware of spoilers. Here are some reasons why you should still watch this show, even if you're a little late to the game: 

  1. 1. Disney+ has recently uploaded the sing-a-long version of the show, so you can belt out the lyrics into your hairbrush microphone on a girl's night in.

    What's more fun than a HSM Sing-A-Long? Nothing! In true Wildcat style, Disney+ uploaded a new version of the show in January with an added layer of fun. Now it will be impossible to get this music out of our heads and we are okay with that. You might recognize some of the music even if you haven't seen any of the show before. Disney uploaded the shows tunes to the TikTok sound options and the lyrics to Olivia Rodrigo's "All I Want" became its own little meme-able trend. 

  2. 2. The casting! You are sure to find someone to relate to, obsess over and adore. You can't help but fall in love with this cast and the sweet friendships they have both on and off-screen.

    The friendship duos and dynamics that take place on and off-stage are precious. The chemistry is real. The love triangles are intense and complicated. Everybody gets their moment being the star of the show. While we hope to get a deeper look into all the character's lives next season, everyone was celebrated for their individuality and it was really special to see. Something I've always loved about the HSM world is their take on the "mean girl" trope. Nobody ever stays the villain ... after a while, everyone just decides it's a whole lot better to be nice. 

  3. 3. "Just For A Moment" is an original song that two of the stars wrote themselves! Olivia Rodrigo and Joshua Bassett's harmonies are perfect together. 

    The show's own Gabriella and Troy are songwriters themselves. Rodrigo and Bassett, both being musically inclined, joined together and combined their skills to write Nini and Ricky's love song. It is the perfect theme song for the character's complicated love story and the two stars perform it stunningly. Many of the songs in the show were revamped versions from the first High School Musical movie, but others were written specifically for this story. Writers like Michael Weiner, Matthew Gerrard, Robbie Nevil and Alan Zachary collaborated to create both beautiful music and catchy lyrics. 

  4. 4. Kourtney and Nini's friendship is honest, selfless and strong. We love a girl-power duo. 

    Kourtney's power ballad to encourage Nini to be brave was not only an act of true friendship, but a showcase of Dara Reneé's vocal abilities. This duo is all about girl power, and we at Her Campus UGA love it. Though we hope to see more of the backstory to their sweet friendship in season two, we know we already love these two gals. There is some drama looming in the Spring semester for this pair, as Nini must decide if her academic future will remain at East High or if she will choose to go to a prestigious performing arts school in Denver and leave her BFF behind. 

  5. 5. "Wondering" by Julia Lester and Olivia Rodrigo 

    This song is just so good. Take my word for it when I say that you just won't be able to stop listening. The performance of it is gorgeous and you'll want to add it to that list of songs you belt out when you're alone in the car. You know, the ones where you pretend you're in your own music video? Come on, don't pretend you don't do that — we're all friends here. Nobody is going to judge you! 

  6. 6. Lucas Grabeel's cameo and accompanying song, "Role of A Lifetime"

    What is a High School Musical remake without a couple of cameos. Disney couldn't resist sprinkling in a few original cast members throughout the series as a nod to those nostalgic fans. Kaycee Stroh, who played Martha Cox, the "braniac who can break it down on the dance floor" in the original trilogy, had a cameo in the sixth episode of the series. However, fans were most ecstatic about Lucas Grabeel's surprise appearance and the song that went with it. Grabeel, who played Ryan Evans in the original films, was loved by fans then and is loved by fans now. This song is sure to make you laugh and if you're a drama teacher, it'll probably make you cry too. 

  7. 7. All the Joshua Bassett originals you can find on his Instagram.

    Just like Zac Efron got the title of "teen heartthrob" after the release of the first HSM movie, Joshua Bassett has found himself with a massive teen girl following. Something about Troy Bolton is just irresistible. Not to mention that Ricky is just downright adorable. It's no doubt that all of these actors were cast for their musical abilities, making them perfect for these roles. However, it is incredible to see just how talented they really are. Josh's Instagram is full of short snippets of his original songs written along to the strumming of a guitar or the chords of a piano. His co-stars joke that he simply cannot resist playing instruments when they're within reach and that wherever he is on set, there is music. 

  8. 8. It's meme-able. 

    Everybody loves a show that can make fun of itself. Disney+ loves any chance to use content to advertise other content. Laugh along with your roommates at the sometimes cringy, but very accurate high school moments that the show portrays. These memes are just the icing on the cake when it comes to this show. An undeniable truth about HSMTMTS is the accuracy of its portrayal of high school students and all of their awkwardness. It's the perfect chance to laugh at the character's dysfunctional hijinx, make fun of your own high school self and reminisce with your roomies about those hilarious memories. 

  9. 9. Ricky's adorable "I love you" speech

    This "I love you" confession is one that will make you cry every time. It's also one you'll be waiting quite literally all season to hear. "Heart-eye" reactions to it are all over social media because people just cannot get over it. The show's writers executed the genre's necessary inclusion of a grand gesture spectacularly and Joshua Bassett performed it flawlessly. He sure had me convinced. While this show is silly and fun, it also shows the depths of emotion and hardship that people in high school face, which is something that is not always taken seriously in entertainment content.  We all need our own Ricky Bowen kind of guy in our own HSM level love story.  

  10. 10. Catch up before you get too far behind! You don't want to miss season two, where the East High drama department will be taking on "Beauty and the Beast." 

    Season two of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series (say that three times fast) is likely to premiere in the fall of 2021, mimicing the release date of the first season. This Insta post reveals that the cast had their first table read for the second season at the beginning of February. It's likely that production has begun and will last until June 2020 in Salt Lake City, Utah. That means we are sure to get some cute content of our favorite stars on each other's social media. All we are wondering now is what is the cast list for the much-anticipated Spring musical? 

Happy binging!