Clone High S2 Eps. 3 & 4 Review

It’s been over a week since the revival of Clone High hit Max, and now that the heat’s died down, we can look at new episodes with better clarity. It’s not as funny as the first season after it picked up steam, but the humor’s still there. The show still satirizes the issues many teens deal with. If you’re a teen, you can relate to the stress of things like big tests and dances. If you’re an adult, you can laugh about how minor those problems seem in hindsight, which is basically everything that happens in these new episodes of Clone High.

Also, since it’s now Pride Month, we should point out that the show’s dropping subtle hints for shipping Cleopatra and Frida Kahlo, my favorite of the new clones. 

Attack of the Living Stress Monster from Sharknado

I remember what it was like studying for the big tests in high school. First, you sacrifice your free time reviewing notes filled with facts you might never need to know in the real world. Then you have the stress of other teen problems, like “Will my relationship with my partner last?” “Should I let my crush be happy with their partner or sabotage them for my own sake?” or “Will my looks be gone ten years from now?” Looking back, most of that seems silly, but when you’re a teen whose life is limited to home, peers, and a part-time job, it seems like the most important thing in the world.

All this stuff is the perfect fodder for Clone High in the first new episode this week. Scudworth and Candide decide to test the clones’ ability to work under pressure by coming up with the pre-midterm exam, then constantly reminding them to stress them out. They even go so far as to create a mascot, the Heebie-Jeebie, that seems to sense and feed on stress. And since the clones are teens, they are all stressed. Joan’s worried she’s losing her identity as JFK’s girlfriend; JFK thinks Joan wants to break up. Cleo can’t get more of her makeup; Harriet thinks she’s on the path to a normal life. And Abe’s still hung up over his crush on Joan. It’s an all-you-can-eat stress buffet. The only one staying relatively sane is Frida by channeling it through her art. 

I won’t lie: I wasn’t the most social of people in high school and kept to myself, so I can’t relate to the social drama the clones went through. The stress about tests, though? That I can relate to! Sometimes, I would run myself ragged to make it through a test in my weaker subject and worried that it might be the end of the world if I didn’t pass. Looking back, I see how stupid that was, and, to be honest, I barely use anything. Still, it’s cathartic to get to laugh at how big such things seemed at that age. Because when you’re a teen, even the smallest problems feel like mountains. 

The episode’s premise was funny, but as usual, the major source of comedy was Scudworth and his antics. His attempts to win Candide lead to something eerily similar to this famous scene from Monty Python.

Oh, and this guy from the Sharknado films shows up as himself.

Cleo and Joan’s War Reignites

After taking a backseat in the opening episodes, Cleopatra retakes the spotlight as one of the main characters, much to the dismay of Joan. In fact, this whole episode reignites the long-standing rivalry between Joan and Cleo. The latter’s resentful of the fact that Joan’s as popular as she is in the modern-day, and the former still sees Cleo as a shallow queen bee. So, when Cleo runs for Homecoming Queen, Joan can’t stand that fact, and after spreading a bad rumor about her, she winds up homecoming queen. This is perfect for Candide since the homecoming queen’s crown is a magical artifact that makes everyone obey whoever wears it. 

Now, this would be a good chance for an exciting episode. They could have Joan wear it, go mad with power, and realize that she’s no better than Cleo can be. That would make for an interesting plot. But instead, the writers do what viewers expect and have Cleo end up wearing the crown. And she uses it to turn everyone at Clone High into clones of herself, right down to the hairstyle and speech patterns! So it’s…a little creepy, and Joan has to save the day.

I’m going to come out and say it: while I thought the episode was funny, I don’t like how they used Joan and Cleo’s rivalry in it. Those two were at odds a lot in the show’s initial run, and it only got worse when Abe started dating Cleo. When the show came back, it would’ve been a good idea to have Cleo bitter towards Joan, both for Abe breaking up with the former in favor of the latter and then for dating her ex, JFK. But instead, they don’t address any of this, and the episode ends with the status quo restored.

Missed an opportunity if you asked me.

Get it Together, Guys! You Can’t Afford to Slip Up

Overall, I did like the new episodes of Clone High, but I don’t think they’ve yet to reach the level of the first run, especially in its latter stages. There are plenty of funny jokes, to be sure, but they’re not diving into the overarching plot as much as they can be. Like I said, the rivalry between Cleo and Joan could be far more heated; they were Heather and Gwen from Total Drama before Heather and Gwen was a thing! 

On the plus side, though, I think I’ve found my favorite clone in Frida Kahlo. She’s got all the fun of Gandhi minus his more annoying qualities and is very chill. In addition, the show keeps making not-so-subtle hints that Frida and Cleo might be a thing. I ship them, by the way.

What do you guys think, though? Is Clone High living up to its potential? Let us know!

I Give “Anxious Times at Clone High” and “The Crown: Joancoming: It’s a Cleo Cleo Cleo Cleo World” a 4/5 and 3/5 Each.