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Things In Sing 2 Only Adults Notice

Spoilers ahead for "Sing 2"

From the studio that brought you the likes of "Despicable Me" and "Minions" comes another heartwarming children's film that's bound to get all the tykes in the audience dancing. The Universal Pictures animated sequel "Sing 2" showcases the story of Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey), a koala who has dreams beyond the theatre company at his little podunk town. He wants to make it big in Redshore City, so he and his troupe of performers set out to land an audition in front of the guy who can make their wildest dreams come true. They get a shot at the big time, but it's only after Buster lies about knowing legendary rock star Clay Calloway (Bono). Clay and his crew will have to scrape something together to put on the show of the century.

The use of singing animals and the hit pop songs pulled straight off Spotify make it clear "Sing 2" is, first and foremost, for children. But that doesn't mean the adults in the audience can't find something to enjoy, as well. There are plenty of jokes and knowing references that only the adults in the crowd will likely catch, so if you need something to look out for when you bring your kids to see "Sing 2," let this be your guide.

The opening musical number is an homage to Alice in Wonderland

Before Buster and his pals can make it to the big time, they first have to impress the talent scout, Suki (Chelsea Peretti). To accomplish this, they fall back on a tried-and-true tale filled with magic and whimsy — "Alice in Wonderland." 

All the telltale signs of this being an homage to Lewis Carroll's work are in the opening performance is "Alice," from Meena's (Tori Kelly) outfit to the fact that Rosita (Reese Witherspoon) is dressed up like the Cheshire Cat. Johnny (Taron Egerton) even sports a stylish hat to pull off one wicked Mad Hatter. To top it all off, if you look carefully, you'll find that the marquee outside of the theater lists the show as "Alice in Wonderland." Given how many animals show up in this movie, we're kind of surprised they didn't give the show a pun name like "A Lice in Wonderland."

All the adults out there may be thinking, "Wait a second ... doesn't Disney own the rights to 'Alice in Wonderland?'" While Disney's version is the most familiar adaptation, the original story is in the public domain, per Legal Current. This status allows anyone and any studio to incorporate elements of Carroll's story into their other works, so Universal and Illumination are in the clear.

Redshore City is a stand-in for Las Vegas

Calatonia seems like a pretty popping city, but it's small potatoes compared to what Buster has in mind for his friends. He thinks they have what it takes to make it in a vast metropolis, and, in the world of "Sing 2," that means catching the bus to Redshore City. Of course, once you get a glimpse of the new landscape, it quickly becomes apparent that Redshore City is intended to serve as a stand-in for Las Vegas in our world. 

The Redshore City skyline bears a striking resemblance to Nevada's most famous location. Adult audience members will find all kinds of Easter eggs relevant to Sin City across the film. From the auditoriums where the gang performs "Out of This World" to the large-screen outdoor projections of advertisements, everything's bound to look familiar if you've ever stepped foot in the iconic real-world locale.

Even the little details are there, especially when it comes to Nooshy (Letitia Wright), a lynx who is a street performer that dances for the amusement (and money) of passersby. Naturally, some of the more adult elements of Las Vegas aren't carried over; this is still a kids' film, after all.

Yes, that's Eric André as Darius

"Sing 2" has assembled an incredible voice cast to bring its colorful characters to life, many of whom have ample experience in children's properties. Scarlett Johansson voices teenage punk-rock porcupine Ash while Nick Offerman shines as Rosita's husband, Norman. However, there's one addition to the "Sing 2" cast who's probably only really known to adults. After all, it'd be strange if any parents out there actually let their young kids watch "The Eric Andre Show" on Adult Swim.

Eric André makes his entry into the "Sing" franchise as Darius, a self-obsessed yak who stars opposite Meena during their big romantic musical number. While he is best known for starring in extremely adult-oriented fare, such as the 2021 Netflix film "Bad Trip," this isn't his first time voicing a character for a children's movie. In 2019, he provided the voice for one of the three hyenas in the Jon Favreau-directed remake of "The Lion King." Could this be the beginning of audiences seeing a more family-friendly side of André? Eh, don't count on it.

Miss Crawly loves 'Chop Suey!'

Many of the songs you'll find throughout "Sing 2" make sense. They're Top 40 hits from the past several years that most little kids have probably heard of before. Audience members will hear tracks from popular artists like Billie Eilish, Drake, and Ariana Grande, but there's one song that may take all the little kids in the theater by surprise. 

In one scene, Miss Crawly (Garth Jennings) drives to find Clay Calloway, who's been living as a recluse for the past 15 years. As anyone would do when taking a road trip, she has her favorite tunes cued up. Apparently, Miss Crawly enjoys some heavy metal in her free time. On her road trip, the song she's listening to is none other than "Chop Suey!" by System of a Down.

The band hasn't released an album since "Mezmerize," released in May 2005, and "Hypnotize," released just six months later in November 2005. However, they did recently come out with two new tracks, titled "Genocidal Humanoidz" and "Protect the Land." Between these new releases and their "Sing 2" appearance, it's clear there's still plenty of System of a Down love out there for the rockers.

Some surprise names in the end credits

"Sing 2" has amassed quite the talented cast to bring its characters to life. There are so many huge names, it's understandable if you missed a few over the course of the movie, but if you stick around through the credits, you'll find a couple of big names pop up you may not have realized were there initially.

Under the credits for "Additional Voices," you'll find a massive list of names. It's easy to get lost in the jumble, but for anyone who looks closely enough, you'll realize two prominent Hollywood directors are in there, namely directors Edgar Wright ("Shaun of the Dead," "Last Night in SoHo") and Wes Anderson ("The Royal Tenenbaums," "The French Dispatch"). It turns out, they're actually reprising voiceover artists from the first film, as confirmed by Collider in October 2016, just two months before the first "Sing" film was released.

It looks like they're back, but it's unclear who precisely they voiced in the film. You'll just have to watch "Sing 2" again to see if you can catch their voices the second time around.