While the High School Musical franchise is centered on the musical aspirations and relationship of Troy and Gabriella, fans couldn't help but love the series' antagonist, Sharpay Evans. Though this high school diva is painted out to be the villain who is always trying to get in the way of Troy and Gabriella's happiness, contemporary audiences have pointed out that she's actually just misunderstood and has many redeemable qualities. Because of this, we thought it was time to look at her defining traits on both sides of the argument.
With that said, it's time to journey back to East High, Wildcats. Here are five reasons Sharpay is the best character in High School Musical and five reasons she's the worst.
10 Best: She Worked For What She Wanted
Gabriella and Troy never took musicals seriously. The pair showed up late to their auditions in the original High School Musical, Troy nearly quit singing for good in High School Musical 2, and Gabriella chose Stanford over the final show in High School Musical 3. Sharpay, on the other hand, had always been passionate about music.
She appeared in several musicals before and during the series, and always worked really hard on them. Not only did she practice a whole bunch, but she gave her 100 percent every time. She even managed to add new life into a couple of Kelsi’s boring ballads even though no one asked her for a rewrite. That kind of dedication is to be admired.
9 Worst: She Was Entitled
Yes, Sharpay worked really hard. But also, she thought she was owed things. Sharpay was born into a wealthy family. Her parents actually owned the Lava Springs country club and employed Sharpay’s classmates there.
Because of this, Sharpay oftentimes held an entitled attitude. While she probably was the best performer at East High, she expected everyone to act like it and cater to her.
8 Best: She Stayed True To Herself
Sharpay liked theater long before Troy and Gabriella made it “cool.” Though lots of Troy’s friends made fun of Sharpay behind the scenes for being over-the-top, she doesn’t care and continued to be herself.
Sharpay knew how to rock glitzy dresses and the color pink. She liked to be girly and have fun, even when no one else was going along. She was fabulous for knowing what she wanted and sticking to it.
7 Worst: She Was Mean To Her Brother
Though Sharpay and Ryan make a good team on stage, they faced their fair share of issues behind the curtain. Rather than truly caring about her brother’s musical aspirations, Sharpay frequently put him in the No. 2 position. She got snippy with him when he made mistakes and had no problem cutting his song out of the Lava Springs talent show in order to make room for Troy.
Through most of High School Musical 3, she continued to treat Ryan like a stepping stone to her success rather than a true partner.
6 Best: Deep Down, She Cared About Family
Sure, there were many times that Sharpay pushed Ryan to the background, however, she always realized her mistakes eventually.
In High School Musical 2, she is set to win the Star Dazzle award but gave it to her brother even after he sabotaged her performance. In High School Musical 3, she selflessly congratulated Ryan on his acceptance to Julliard even though she lost out on it.
5 Worst: She Tried To Sabotage Troy And Gabriella’s Relationship
Sharpay had a longtime crush on Troy, and there’s nothing wrong with that. What is wrong is that she constantly tried to come between Troy and Gabriella. Sharpay shamelessly flirted with Troy throughout the series. She constantly tried to steal him away from Gabriella while he worked at Lava Springs and even manipulated him into singing a song with her.
She even schemed to steal Gabriella’s part in the senior musical after learning she might go to college early. This was another one of her attempts to get closer to Troy.
4 Best: She Said What She Was Thinking
Gabriella was pretty wishy-washy the entire High School Musical franchise. Sometimes she wanted music, sometimes she wanted Troy, and sometimes she wanted something else. She also did a terrible job of expressing her mixed feelings to the other characters. Sharpay, however, not only knew what she wanted but communicated it.
When her Lava Springs talent started to go downhill, she expressed that the "show makes the captain of the Titanic look like he won the lottery." When she noticed her uncomfortable new wall bed in her New York apartment, she told Peyton, “That is not a bed. It’s a closet with a tongue.”
3 Worst: She Could Be Overdramatic
Sharpay has a few anger issues. Rather than staying composed when things don't go her way, she tends to create huge scenes.
When Sharpay saw Troy and Gabriella’s names on the callback sheet, she screamed in the hallway. She screamed again when Gabriella dumped lunch on her shirt, when she fell into the Lava Springs pool, when she discovered her classmates were hired at the country club, and when she walks into her old New York apartment building.
2 Best: She Knew How To Move On
Sharpay rarely got what she wanted even though she put in the work. Gabriella and Troy took the spotlight in the Twinkle Towne musical and the Lava Springs talent show, and Kelsi stole her scholarship to Julliard in High School Musical 3. Nonetheless, Sharpay never held a grudge and moved on each time with her head held high.
She wishes Gabriella good luck at the end of High School Musical, bops with the gang by the pool in the sequel, and makes peace with them once again by the end of the third film.
1 Worst: She Rarely Encouraged Others
Rather than welcoming East High’s jocks and smarties to the drama club, Sharpay tried to get them out. While she could have used some friendly competition, she instead tried to shut out the other students altogether.
In High School Musical 2, Sharpay was so threatened by her classmates that she required them to work during the Lava Springs talent show. In High School Musical 3, she continued to look for opportunities to upstage the others. At least she eventually learned.
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