Choose the form of the destructor! When Ghostbusters: Afterlife hits theaters on November 10, 2021, one very familiar “ghost” will make a comeback in a big way. Well, actually in a small way. In the first clip from the new movie, Paul Rudd’s Mr. Grooberson is hassled by teeny-tiny Stay Puft Marshmallow Men in the grocery store. Is Zuul back? Oh, Zuul-y you nut!!!
Unlike the 2016 Ghostbusters, the new 2021 movie (directed by Jason Reitman) is a directed sequel to the two classic Busters films. In theory, this movie takes place in the present day, but in a time when the events of the ’80s movies are a distant memory. Back when we thought this movie was going to come out in 2020, a trailer showed a new squad of teens picking up the Ghostbuster gear, including the classic Ecto-1. (Which really, should have looked like Ecto-1A from Ghostbusters 2, but whatever.)
Mr. Grooberson (Paul Rudd) encounters an army of miniature Stay Puft Marshmellow Men in the first clip from Ghostbusters: Afterlife. pic.twitter.com/6Cr685dXPX
— IGN (@IGN) April 7, 2021
The return of multiple Marshmallow Men is obviously visually nostalgic, but does this have anything to do with the classic movie? In the OG Busters, Ray accidentally makes Zuul transformed into the form of the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man — a fictional mascot for a fiction brand of marshmallows. In the same film, Dana has a pack of these marshmallows on her counter when her eggs start frying themselves on her countertop. Clearly, the new scene with Paul Rudd in Afterlife is designed to remind us of both scenes from the 1984 movie, but will make sense?
In other words, is Afterlife just literally about the return of Zuul? In the original film, the Busters sent Zuul back into another dimension — right? So, is Zuul just back, sort of Steppenwolf-style?
If Afterlife is about the return of Zuul, then hopefully, the destructor can take on a few different forms this time. After all, nostalgia is scary — but only to a point. Many aging millennials remember what it was like to be roasted in the depths of the sloar in 1984, I can tell you. And frankly, something new might be nice.
Ghostbusters: Afterlife is out on November 10, 2021.