GREASE vs GREASE 2: A Important Research and Evaluation



When Grease got here out in 1978, the Randal Kleiser-directed movie used to be this sort of hit that the studio deliberate to make 3 sequels. On the other hand, the primary sequel, Grease 2 (1982), used to be a bomb. Consequently, long run plans for the franchise temporarily evaporated. Nonetheless, in fresh years, Grease 2 has loved a resurgence and turn out to be fairly of a cult hit. However how does the notorious sequel really stack up in opposition to the undying authentic?

The Forged – Grease

A lot of the forged from each and every Grease movie is a family title now. But, on the time, they have been simply upcoming hopefuls on the lookout for that Hollywood giant spoil. Whilst Grease made stars of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, their appearing careers would taper away all over the Eighties. Pulp Fiction (1994) would rejuvenate Travolta’s occupation and propel him again into A-list standing.

Stockard Channing, who performed Betty Rizzo in Grease, by no means loved the glittery marquee good fortune of her co-stars. On the other hand, the Tony and Emmy-award-winning actress has all the time been an impressive presence on each level and display. The likes of Jeff Conaway, Michael Tucci, and Didi Conn all labored frequently on tv. The unique movie additionally boasts a who’s who of Outdated Hollywood gamers, together with Sid Caesar, Eve Arden, and Joan Blondell.

Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta in a scene from ‘Grease’ (1978)

With regards, to Grease, there may be any other celebrity that must be discussed. That’s the electrical chemistry between Travolta and Newton-John. The 2 sparkle each time they seem in combination, and also you root for them all over the tale. Their authentic affection for each and every different is what drives the movie ahead.

The Forged – Grease 2

Michelle Pfeiffer principally were given her get started in appearing starring in Grease 2. Whilst this wasn’t her first movie credited movie function, her portrayal of Stephanie Zinone will be the stepping stone that she wanted with a purpose to carry herself to A-Checklist standing. She would stay there for many years. Pfeiffer is a super Oscar-nominated actress who instructions the display in each function she seems in. Grease 2 isn’t any exception.

Maxwell Caufield is a forged actor who would later blame Grease 2 for tarnishing his occupation. Nonetheless, it’s a must to query whether or not he had the cinematic oomph to cope with the slew of motion heroes who’d in the end dominate the Eighties. Caufield is a level and display veteran who has labored frequently for over 40 years. He even will also be observed within the Hulu sequence Pam & Tommy (2022) portraying Penthouse mag founder, Bob Guccione.

Christopher McDonald is a superb persona actor, despite the fact that his portrayal of Goose McKenzie turns out to channel Lenny from Laverne & Shirley. Adrian Zmed’s first credited display function used to be starring as Johnny Nogerelli in Grease 2, and he’s been appearing frequently ever since, maximum particularly because the Disco King host of Dance Fever all over the 80s, in addition to William Shatner’s spouse in T.J. Hooker.

Adrian Zmed and Lorna Luft at the set of ‘Grease 2’ in December 1981

It’s unattainable to expect how actors will have interaction with their audiences, in addition to how their marquee will develop. On the other hand, Hollywood is stuffed with tales of actors that everyone expects to be giant stars, handiest to look them fizzle out. Looking back of this, the unique Grease obviously has the easier solid. It will have to be famous that a part of this has to do with the characters themselves.

Characters – Grease

Grease strongly identifies all of its supporting characters. Rizzo is the chief of The Red Girls. Marty is flirty. Jan is quirky, and Frenchie is a devoted buddy. They’re all strongly outlined thru their discussion and their movements. Kenickie is the chief of the T-Birds, Sonny is the try-hard. Doody is the goofy one and Putzie is the naïve one.

Whilst Doody and Putzie are fairly an identical of their traits, they’re each given a handful of distinguishing moments that makes them each and every distinctive. Putzie speaking about how lengthy intercourse takes is an instance. Additionally, the 2 characters are visible opposites as one is a blond, the opposite a brunette.

The Red Girls and the T-Birds are bookended via Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta in a scene from ‘Grease’ (1978)

In Grease, Most important McGee accosts Sonny, one of the most T-Birds to present him a dressing-down. It really works so properly as it comes right away after Sonny talks about how he’s going to rise up in opposition to McGee’s authority. On the other hand, given the risk, Sonny is as an alternative bumbling and apologetic. Danny and the opposite T-Birds then mock him. The well-edited scene actually provides you with a way of the dynamics which might be at play.

Characters – Grease 2

In Grease 2, so far as The Red Girls cross, Pamela Segall sticks out maximum as Dolores. This isn’t simply on account of the transparent age differential from the opposite characters, however as a result of she has additionally an enchanting and fulfilling persona arc. Maureen, Lorna, and Alison are nearly interchangeable. Whilst they’re given the occasional idiosyncratic thrives, they’re no longer totally discovered characters.

In Grease 2, the T-Birds fare worse than within the authentic movie. On this incarnation, Johnny, Goose, Louis, and Davey all play one-dimensional goofballs. They’re principally consigned to comedian aid that by no means actually works. Even wrooster they’re given the risk to polish, the moments are poorly written and fall flat.

Once more, in Grease 2, Most important McGee will get the risk to accost one of the most T-Birds. This time it’s Johnny, who can’t even reply as a result of he’s taken his lit cigarette into his mouth. He cowers ahead of McGee. It’s a scene that turns out to exist for the sake of one thing taking place and mirroring the unique. That it’s the T-Chicken chief is a peculiar double-down. You couldn’t consider Kenickie behaving this manner.

The Tale – Grease 2

The screenplay for Grease 2 units up a reasonably poorly written love triangle in that Stephanie and Johnny are exes, whilst Michael loves Stephanie. Because of this, one would suppose that Johnny will have to be established as a miles larger danger, each bodily and romantically. Wouldn’t it make sense that he would possibly take factor with Michael, and would in reality take the time to win Stephanie again?

This is able to right away make his persona extra compelling, in addition to give his total arc extra weight. It additionally would make his gesture on the finish of the movie (presenting Michael with a T-Birds jacket) extra significant. But, even Johnny and Stephanie’s former courting is rarely that deeply explored. Evaluate it to The Karate Child (1984), the place you get a way of the couple Johnny and Ali have been. In Grease 2, those main points are simply asides thrown available in the market for the sake of making a love triangle.

Apparently, when the critiques for Grease 2 began to come back out, the movie used to be accused of being fairly by-product. This complaint is arbitrary because it’s taking part in to a style that calls for sure staples. That it’s accused of being by-product is similar to condemning a romcom for having a romance in it. Grease 2, extremely, in reality has a miles more potent storyline than one would possibly in reality suppose.

The Tale – Grease

In Grease, the demanding paintings has been performed ahead of the tale starts. When the movie opens, Danny and Sandy are already in combination. The issue is she’s shifting again to Australia. Now, does that turn out to be a hurdle? No. Her oldsters alternate their minds, and he or she remains. Then Rizzo arranges for her to stumble upon Danny. He treats her appallingly. Danny then has to win her again via taking over a recreation to provoke her.

Maxwell Caulfield and Didi Conn in a scene from ‘Grease 2’ (1982)

This plot setup in Grease quickly ends up in a number of quick comedian scenes the place Danny comically fails at quite a lot of sports activities. On the other hand, his efforts do in the end win Sandy again. The downside with this method is that romcoms are usually about preserving the couple aside. After they get in combination, it’s most often the fairy story finishing of the film.

Grease throws stumbling blocks in Danny and Sandy’s trail as Danny continues to regard Sandy poorly. He meets her on the pep rally and mocks her. On the diner, he tries to cover they’re in combination, although nobody turns out to care. At the college dance, he lets in himself to be separated from Sandy and continues dancing with Cha-Cha. Why would Sandy forgive him for humiliating her in entrance of the college, and on nationwide tv?

Inexplicably, we then see Danny and Sandy on the drive-in. He offers her his ring and is bemused that she’s beaten via the gesture. He then tries to drive himself on her. The one redeeming factor Danny does is display up on the lead to a letterman jacket. This demonstrates he’s keen to switch for her. But, she presentations up and has modified for him, rendering the gesture meaningless.

Additional Research

Grease 2 units up the tale in a a lot more conventional style than its predecessor. Stephanie has a jealous ex (Johnny) and believes she needs a undeniable form of man. Michael is smitten together with her however he’s a no person and he or she’s a Red Girl. He writes homework papers for cash, and saves up to shop for a motorbike so he can turn out to be who she needs – the “Cool Rider” she sings about.

John Travolta, Olivia Newton-John, and Jeff Conaway at the set of ‘Grease’ (1978)

Stephanie quickly turns into enraptured with the mysterious helmeted motorbike rider. As a part of the movie’s plot tool, Stephanie by no means in reality realizes that the cool rider is Michael. It is because when Michael’s on his two-wheeler, he all the time stays coated up, nameless, and a whole enigma.

There’s a brief nice scene in Grease 2 the place Michael and Stephanie are speaking in a cafe. He’s going to tutor her and he or she’s inspired that he’s clever. He’s embarrassed. They attach. She sees one thing in Michael. The scene is easily written and the pair have actual chemistry.

Additional, when Stephanie hooks up with Michael because the cool rider, additionally they have this deeper connection as a base on account of this scene. It’s a actually cool storyline that they will have to’ve excited about extra. It is because Maxwell Caufield and Michelle Pfeiffer are in a position to play off one any other. It’s attractive and elevates the fabric out of the dregs.

The Antagonists

Each motion pictures use Dennis Stewart because the antagonist “Leo.” Despite the fact that in Grease 2, he’s known via his surname “Balmudo.” In Grease, Leo is the chief of the Scorpions. In Grease 2, Leo and many of the Scorpions were recycled because the biker gang the Cycle Lords. Each gangs exist to present the T-Birds an enemy and create a contention that may underpin the tale with an arc that comes to the entire characters.

Maxwell Caulfield and Michelle Pfeiffer on the premiere celebration for ‘Grease 2’ on June 9, 1982

In Grease, Leo and Kenickie have a number of altercations. Additionally, it’s vital to notice that Kenickie by no means backs down from Leo. When Leo takes Rizzo to the dance, Kenickie counters via taking Cha-Cha. The 2 nearly get eager about a struggle and the tale ends with a drag race that Danny wins. Leo is defeated.

All over Grease 2, Johnny and the remainder of the T-Birds many times cower ahead of Leo and the Cycle Lords. Given the T-Birds are supposed to be cool and perilous, it’s no longer an ideal glance. It additionally does not anything to construct their stature. The movie ends with Leo and the Cycle Lords crashing the luau, ahead of Michael, because the Cool Rider, heads off Leo. Leo rides into the pool and that’s it. That’s the tip of his involvement within the tale.

However, in Grease, there’s a real good judgment this is with regards to the antagonism. Danny beats Leo within the climactic drag race. This can be a appropriate and rewarding end to the contention that has been development. Falling right into a pool doesn’t represent the tip of a contention. If the rest, you’d consider that Leo will have to emerge even angrier than ahead of.

The Track

Grease has one iconic hit after any other in it. It is because the movie is in keeping with the 1971 iconic award-winning musical, written via Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey. Moreover, the movie model of “Hopelessly Dedicated to You” used to be nominated for an Academy Award in 1979, dropping to “Final Dance” from Thank God It’s Friday (1978). The unique musical additionally gained more than one Drama Table awards.

Grease 2 necessarily has two excellent songs: “Cool Rider” and “We’ll Be In combination.” Neither has turn out to be as iconic as any of the undying Grease songs, corresponding to “Summer season Lovin,” “Hopelessly Dedicated to You,” “Greased Lightnin’” and “You’re the One That I Need.” Even the lesser well-received songs corresponding to “Good looks College Dropout” are catchy. The vital factor concerning the track in Grease is that each music by some means advances the tale.

Throughout the songs in Grease, we both be told extra concerning the characters, or we’re informed how they’re feeling. As an example, Stockard Channing fought to stay “There Are Worse Issues I May Do” within the completed movie as it confirmed any other aspect to Rizzo. With out that music, she is simply the bully. But if Rizzo belts this out, we be told that deep down she’s insecure and inclined.

In terms of Grease, the entire songs discussed above, let us know about Danny and Sandy’s courting by some means. On the other hand, only “Cool Rider” and “We’ll Be In combination” be offering storytelling of any kind in Grease 2. The remainder of the songs are simply observation on no matter’s taking place on the time. The songs “Again to College Once more,” “Ranking This night” and “Replica” don’t have any deeper that means previous their titles.

Chief of the Scorpions, Leo Balmudo aka Crater-face, in a scene from ‘Grease’ (1978)


Grease has handiest two songs that function a observation. “Greased Lightnin’” used to be this sort of excellent music that John Travolta stole it clear of Jeff Conaway, who used to be in reality intended to sing it. The music’s narrative facilities across the automotive they’re going to rebuild for the drag race. “Good looks College Dropout,” additionally gives up observation on Frenchie’s indecision about what she will have to do together with her existence. Either one of those songs play into the narrative, reasonably than being some apart that has no additional bearing at the tale or the characters.

One thing else to imagine is the best way the songs are built-in. In Grease they’re offered and conclude organically. Even with giant fancy dance numbers, the transitions are seamless. On the other hand, in Grease 2, the segues are awkward, and every now and then they don’t appear to understand how to finish them and resume the motion.

More than likely the funniest of those examples is with the music “Cool Rider.” Stephanie belts it out as Michael watches in awe. Stephanie dances out of the college and Michael assists in keeping staring at. Extras stand round, offering background surroundings. It’s a peculiar juxtaposition and it doesn’t finish. Stephanie bounces across the nook of the college and out of sight because the music fades away.

An aspect-by-side take a look at the celebrities of ‘Grease 2’ (1982) and Grease (1978)


Grease began as a 1971 musical, so it existed in an previous shape. It used to be workshopped and advanced on because it advanced and reworked from the level to the display. The tale and thought is also minimum. On the other hand, the forged, the characters, and the songs have immortalized Grease as a undying vintage.

The large downside with Grease 2 is they made up our minds to replicate the method, however didn’t appear to grasp how or why the unique labored so properly. Red Girls? Test. T-Birds? Test. Songs? Test. But, no longer a large number of concept used to be put into how and why each and every element functioned within the total construction of the sequel. The supporting characters are given useless busywork that handiest distracts from the primary theme.

Whilst it can be true that Sonny, Doody, and Putzie aren’t actually given the rest overly significant to do in Grease. But, their characters by no means occupy any screen-time that may be higher used in other places. They by no means detract from the total narrative that’s retaining all the tale in combination.

It’s little marvel that during Grease 2 when Stephanie and Michael have interaction (the only really attention-grabbing facet of the tale – that the movie abruptly develops an id and reveals its personal voice. If extra used to be performed with them and the track surrounding their courting, it will’ve made Grease 2 simply as excellent as the unique.

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