My Dissertation on “Us”

“Creep on in…”

I want to say a few things before I nosedive into my thoughts, feelings and takeaways from Us. First and foremost, I guessed the end. While in the movie, there was this nagging feeling I had that the girls has switched places. Now that I think about it, and when you read the tweet from Gayle King on Jordan Peele talking about his idea of doppelgängers coming from the Parent Trap, it makes you think that we should have guessed this earlier.

I also would like to say that I was going to write a trailer review on Us but soon realized that I had no idea at that time what was or could happen in this movie (which I loved). So, there was no way I could tell y’all whether to see the movie or not based on the trailer.

Let’s start with Winston Duke’s character Gabe. First, I would like to condemn all of those women who thought that Winston Duke wasn’t as fine as we know he is and he’s a sexy dad! C’mon man! But back to the movie. As I reflect on the film, after having seen it only 20 minutes ago, Gabe was the comic relief in this film. You don’t really see a lot of that in a serious horror film. Usually, when someone is making jokes in a horror film, the film is not that great, in my experience with horror. In this film, however, Gabe expresses his fear in a joking way. I appreciated the little jokes because they gave a level of realism to how this family is still a family even when they’re killing people.

Now, I watched an interview with The Breakfast Club where they interviewed Roland Martin. At the end of the interview, Charlamagne made the comment that he believed that Get Out was abut racism while Us was about classism. I wholeheartedly agree.

SPOLIERS ARE AHEAD but I gave y’all a week so deal with it. There are a couple of instances where classism is relevant in this film. The first instance could be explicitly seen when we first meet the tethered. Lupita Nyong’o’s character Adelaide talks about the difference between the tethered and the people above ground. The fact that those above ground got nice things and real food while the tethered got to eat rabbit and played sharp toys. She also mentioned that the people who created the tethered eventually left them to fiend for themselves. Sound familiar? Later, we see that the tethered Adelaide was above ground the whole time and the real Adelaide was stuck with the other tethered. So in reality, we are watching a fight from a woman who is fighting to be back where she belongs. The complexity of it all! You could also argue classism at the beginning of the film when you see all the white people that surround Adelaide as a child at the boardwalk carnival if you will. We also hear Gabe go back and forth with Josh about the boat. Later, we hear Gabe lament about the fact that Josh and his family have what he wants for his family, a generator and a new car.

Another important fact is the fact that at any moment our position is society can change. Think of all the celebrities that we’ve forgotten all about that now live regular lives like we do. Or someone who won the lottery and spent all of their money and are now back at square one. Harsh reality that Red and Adelaide face in this movie but it also semi-humanizes the tethered. As Adelaide said, “We’re Americans.”

There is also the underlying theme of having to kill yourself or at least a certain version of yourself. There are some questions that I have for Jordan but I feel like he could have left this open for another film (fingers crossed!). For example, how were the tethered made? Are the tethered only in Santa Cruz? What’s up with the son? Does he know the truth, is he different because of the true nature of his mother or is he content with the situation? Some think Jason and Pluto switched places at some point in their life like their mom did. I believe this to a point. I’ve seen some theory videos and it’s a possibility but I don’t think the tethered Adelaide would let that happen to her children. She would never want them to like the life she had before she was able to escape. I’m entirely sure about Jason and Pluto but I know there is something different about that boy. My second time watching the film I caught that he was eating naked Fruit Loops like ole girl in Get Out was as she was surfing the web for a new victim. He also had no idea where the bat was when his sister went right to it. It seems as though that bat is a known thing in that house that Jason should have known about. I’m still tryin to process Jason and Pluto. If anyone has any idea of what could have happened, leave me a comment.

I would like to semi-conclude by saying that I applaud Jordan for not killing Winston Duke. I thought he was a goner during the first 30 minutes of the movie. I appreciate you and your mind, Mr. Peele.

This movie, if anything, is more creepy than scary. Below is the remix to the classic “I Got 5 On It” and it is CREEPY AF…but it is on iTunes for $1.43. If you’re easily scared, this is not for you. You’ll be jumping at everything and the people beside you will hate you. Don’t be that person.

Last but not least, for the bedside Baptist believers like myself, here is what Jeremiah 11:11 says, “Therefore thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will bring evil upon them, which they shall not be able to escape; and though they shall cry unto me, I will not hearken unto them.” You’re welcome! Also, did anyone catch the Jesus imagery when Jason saved his mom by walking backwards with his arms opened, causing Pluto to walk into the fire. Maybe a modern day version of the crucification of Jesus, who sacrificed himself for the sake of other.

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