The following contains potential SPOILERS for Bill and Ted Face the Music. It all depends if it all means what I think it means, but you've been warned.
A new trailer for Bill and Ted Face the Music dropped today, and as I was the one who wrote about said trailer, I had to watch it a few times over a brief period in order to talk about it all here. It's an unfortunate side effect of this job that in order to write about all the news and rumors surrounding new movies, you must be exposed to them. In doing so, it's more common than not that I have various aspects of movies spoiled for me well ahead of time whether I like it or not. Most of the time, that sucks. This time, I think I may have accidentally spoiled the ending of Bill and Ted Face the Music for myself, but if I'm right, I'm so excited to see this ending play out that I don't even mind.
Bill and Ted Face the Music sees our title protagonists all grown up. The two men who were supposed to change the world by uniting the globe with music have, somehow, failed to do that which they were destined, and it seems that perhaps for that reason, reality itself is coming apart. Our heroes then jump back in the old phone booth to go to the future so that they might take the song they need from their future selves. To be fair, this sort of behavior has worked for them in the past, so why not now?
If you haven't seen the new Bill and Ted Face the Music trailer, check it out below and see if you notice what I did.
Now that you've seen the new trailer, then you may have already come to the same conclusion that I have as to where all this is going. By no means do I think my reading of all this is particularly deep or complex. Certainly, we expect Bill and Ted Face the Music to have a happy ending. The song will be written and the world will be saved, but the catch is that the perfect song or whatever else needs to be created to save reality won't come from Bill and Ted.
The song will come from their kids.
What We See And Hear In The Bill & Ted Face The Music Trailer
The new trailer shows us a second thread of the main story for the first time. We see the two daughters of Bill and Ted, Bill's daughter Thea and Ted's daughter Billie, who will be going on their own time travel adventure. They want to help out their dads ,and so they travel through time collecting musicians to form a band to play with Wyld Stallyns. It's unclear from the trailer if the girls are talented musicians themselves, but they clearly have the same love of music like their dads. We see them rocking out with headphones listening to tunes.
In addition, there's a telling line early in the trailer, where it is stated that the thing needed to save reality as we know is "a song created by Preston and Logan." Not a song by Bill & Ted, but by Preston & Logan. I haven't sat down to watch the first two Bill & Ted movies in a while, but I've seen them both many times and I can't think of any time previously when our heroes were referred to by anything other than Bill and Ted.
The use of last names here rather than the more familiar first names feels like an intentional loophole to allow not Bill and Ted, but the children of Bill & Ted to save the world. Preston and Logan will get us a song, just not the ones in the title of the movie.
There are certainly other interpretations one can make from what's in the trailer, and there could be any number of things in the movie itself which discount this reading, but based on what we have here, this theory is at least worth considering. If I'm wrong, then I'll be surprised when I watch Bill and Ted Face the Music and that's not a bad thing, but I actually hope I'm right.
Why This Ending Is Perfect
I've been looking forward to Bill and Ted Face the Music since I first read of the film's premise. The idea that Bill & Ted, who have been told since they were teenagers that they would change the world, have failed to do so, and must come to terms with that, is a story that I'm sure a lot of people will be able to relate to in some way. It's a beautiful place to base this movie because, if you're going to bother to make a Bill & Ted movie nearly 30 years after the last one, it really needs to be a story that needed to wait that long.
But for all the reasons why people might find themselves relating to Bill and Ted in this movie, it would feel like a cop-out for them to ultimately succeed in writing the song that the movie is all about. If the movie plans to take a hard look at concepts of destiny that the original movies set up and deconstruct them somewhat, then it should stick the landing.
That's why the idea of the movie ultimately being about Thea and Billie's success is so perfect. It doesn't change anything about the two movies that came before. The two previous films still have to exist. Bill and Ted must meet the women who became their wives, have kids and raise those kids to become the people they are in order for Thea and Billie to be who they need to be in order to do this thing that changes the world. Bill and Ted still do change the world, just not directly.
It's been over 30 years since the first Bill & Ted film came out, which means that those who were kids when the first movie came out will likely have kids of their own. That's certainly the case for myself. While I'm sure the new movie has been written to be of interest to a wide audience, it's difficult for a movie with this set up to not be especially attractive to those that have grown up with the franchise.
If this is how Bill and Ted Face the Music ends, it has the potential to be quite an emotional finale for a film series that started with a couple of idiots trying to finish high school. But that's why even if I'm right on the money with this idea, it doesn't bother me that I know how it ends before I even see how it begins. It's going to be the execution of this idea that matters. I may see the broad strokes here, but I have no idea what the little details will be that get us to that point, so watching it all play out will still, hopefully, be as funny and exciting as it would have been if I had no idea where it was all going.
Bill and Ted Face the Music will be on-demand and in theaters on September 1.