The trailer for Jordan Peele’s latest gut-wrenching horror opus, Us, has dropped, and it’s just as cryptic as the trailer for Peele’s Oscar-winning directorial debut, Get Out. But unlike most trailers that want to shroud their movie in mystery, it is actually filled with hints and clues and dots to connect.
So, naturally, thousands of people have taken to social media to try to connect those dots and figure out what the hell this unnerving tale of violent doppelgangers is all about. Ahead of the movie’s March 22 release date, here are 8 Fan Theories About Jordan Peele’s Us Based On The Trailer.
8. The son is key to the plot
One Twitter user theorized that the son will be the key to solving everything that goes wrong in Us. The doppelganger of the son has his mouth sealed shut, which may indicate something he did in the past, like take mercy on someone, that made the others take away the privilege of speech. The real-world son, meanwhile, is the first to discover the doppelgangers.
First, he speaks to the scarecrow figure on the beach that seems to set things into motion, and second, he’s the one who spots the other family at the end of the driveway from the window. Whether he’s some sort of Danny Torrance supernatural go-between or simply the hero of the story, it’s clear that the son will be key to the plot of Us.
7. Physical manifestations of the family’s anger against racism
One fan theory suggests the doppelgangers in Us will be physical manifestations of the family’s anger against racism. They have to put up with racist microaggressions at work and at school and in the neighborhood and possibly from the white friends (Elisabeth Moss and Tim Heidecker) they have come out to the beach house to visit. These doppelgangers could be clones that were developed from this repressed anger building up to murderous levels and finally getting out.
This would keep Us in line with Peele’s previous movie Get Out as a socially conscious thriller with a point to be made beyond its narrative. However, it is a little heavy-handed and it doesn’t make sense that they would take their anger out on their other selves. Maybe they’re angry at them for not calling out those microaggressions as they happened.
6. The movie is about the struggle to “fit in”
Jordan Peele has stated that his new movie is not overtly about race in the same way that Get Out was, but he has described it as a “social thriller” in the vein of his previous film. One fan theory suggests the movie is about black people’s struggle to “fit in” to society.
The Twitter user who formulated this theory pointed to Winston Duke buying a boat, Lupita Nyong’o failing to snap her fingers in rhythm with a hip hop song, and a black family going on vacation with their white friends as signs that this is a movie about black people altering their personalities to assimilate with white people. This would make the doppelgangers their true selves and it would also keep the movie thematically in line with its tagline: “We are our own worst enemy.”
5. The doppelgangers are actually clones
The general consensus from the trailer for Us is that the doppelgangers are a scary, supernatural force that can’t be explained. But one fan theory suggests they won’t be so inexplicable within the movie’s full story. One Twitter user suggests Lupita Nyong’o will be revealed to have a jealous twin sister who was envious of her perfect life -- the perfect husband, the perfect kids -- and decided to clone them all to have it for herself.
Her experiments with cloning led to a murderous bunch who want to take their mirror lives from the real deal. Nyong’o’s doppelganger will really be her insane twin sister fighting alongside them. A lot of these fan theories revolve around twins, but how could they not? It’s a movie about people who are identical to other people!
4. Lupita Nyong’o killed her daughter
This theory goes that Lupita Nyong’o got into a nasty car accident that killed her young daughter, who was the boy’s twin sister. This would explain why she doesn’t drive the car in the trailer, why the boy’s doppelganger is so badly burnt that he needs to wear a mask, and why her own doppelganger has scorched eyebrows.
It also explains the imagery of a fiery car wreck in the trailer and why Nyong’o has a better understanding of the situation than anyone else in the family. If a dead fifth family member wants revenge from beyond the grave, this would explain the use of “I’ve Got 5 On It” in the trailer.
3. The movie is about drugs
One fan theory is that the movie is all about drugs. The family’s conversation about the meaning of “I Got 5 On It” and whether or not it is a song about drugs might turn out to be more significant than it seems. Why else would it be featured so prominently in the trailer? It would also explain why so much of the imagery is so darkly trippy, and it is also in keeping with the movie’s whole ethos that “we are our own worst enemy.”
The Twitter user who posed this theory suggested it would only work if the movie was set in one character’s head, and Lupita Nyong’o is the prime candidate. All throughout the trailer, she seems to know more about the strange situation than everybody else. Plus, she’s not in rhythm with the rest of the family, suggesting something is holding her back. Perhaps she’s hiding a drug addiction from the family and it all comes to a head at the beach house.
2. The doppelgangers are the real heroes
This one is a stretch, but it would be a truly effective rug-pull if it’s done right (and let’s be honest, this is a Jordan Peele movie -- if something’s being done, it’s being done right). This fan theory suggests that there will be a huge plot twist where it turns out the doppelgangers -- known in the movie as “the Tethered” -- are the heroes of the story and they have arrived to kill this family because the family is bad news.
It would be shocking to find out halfway through the movie that they’re the villains and the doppelgangers are the heroes who are justified in wanting to kill them, but it’s hard to imagine a way to pull this off.
1. It’s set in the same universe as Get Out
Hollywood has fallen in love with shared universes in the last few years, following the success of the format in everything from Marvel to The Conjuring. One insane theory about Us is that it’s a sort of sequel to Get Out taking place in the same universe.
Some viewers even believe the family in Us is actually a white family living in black bodies, and the doppelgangers are the black people who escaped from the Sunken Place and came back for revenge. This would mean that the scene from the trailer in which the family enjoys the hip hop song “I Got 5 On It” actually makes an unseen point about cultural appropriation.
- Us (2019) release date: Mar 22, 2019