The supporting cast is great. Principal Wilcox starts out patronizing and ends up flat-out cruel. There’s borderline psychotic Professor Burn, reclusive gadget nerd Icky, and Derek’s love interest Basilah. This relationship brings out more of the little touches that bring me such joy, like the way Derek walks this line between “inexperienced” and “creepy”. And there’s even a bit of prep-school style rivalry, only with flamethrowers.
While it seems like it might be a homicidal coming-of-age story, there’s a lot more going on at Maximum High. It could almost have been a two-parter to give the third act a little more room to breath, but there’s a real benefit in having a complete story between two covers. It’s a lot of fun, with big ideas sitting nicely alongside clever little touches. I liked it despite the presence of teenagers, which is almost unheard of.