16 Reasons Why “We Dont Talk About Bruno” Is Clearly The Superior Disney Song Of Our Times

We’re gonna talk about Bruno, dammit!

Against all instructions, absolutely everyone who’s seen Encanto has been talking about Bruno!

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The English language version of the song has a staggering 169 million views on YouTube, and the 21 language version (my personal fave) has also been viewed over 24.2 million times!

Having studied music and English before, I couldn’t help but think about the song and what makes it so good LONG after I finished the movie. I decided that since it has so many amazing elements to it, I would break down the song – and its accompanying visual sequence in the movie – and share my thoughts with everyone.


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This might be starting to sound a bit “Charlie in the mailroom”, but stick with me!

There are a million reasons why “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” (“WDTAB”) goes so hard (and why it topped the Billboard Hot 100!!!), so let’s break some of the main ones down…

We’re gonna be talking about this for a LONG time! 🗣️ Congratulations to @Lin_Manuel Miranda, the cast of Disney’s #Encanto, and of course, Bruno, on landing at No. 1 on this week’s @billboard #Hot100 with “We Don’t Talk About Bruno”! ✨🦋 Listen now: https://t.co/y2PBW7l8fw

02:57 AM – 01 Feb 2022


Twitter: @EncantoMovie

1.

Obviously, the song has a catchy beat and you can’t help but bop to it!


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There’s a reason why 4/4 is the most common time signature – it’s easy to dance to, nod along to, and just sounds good! Even if you play it in the background without focusing on the lyrics, it’s hard NOT to bop along.

2.

It also has endless replay value, as all good Disney tracks should.


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The song actually gets better upon a second listen, and it only goes up from there! There are so many fun details to notice – like the view panning down to Isabella just as Dolores says “betrothed to another” – and it feels so satisfying to go back and rewatch or listen to the song again.

3.

The song is cleverly aimed at Mirabel – who knows nothing about Bruno – and in doing so gives viewers a lot of helpful exposition.


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Mirabel is kind of along for the ride here. She gets pulled into each character’s part just as we are being drawn into the story, whilst learning more about the Madrigal family’s history and relationships.

4.

Consequently, the song adds a whole lot to the plot in just three minutes and 36 seconds!


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One of the main reasons the song is so great is that it develops the story so much, giving us a lot of hints for later plot points. The song also builds the family timeline by showing the past (Pepa’s wedding), the present (current views of Bruno), and the future (Mariano’s proposal).

5.

Each character’s lines not only build the story, but add to their character development.

Many asked about the birth order of the original triplets: Julieta’s oldest, healing helps everyone and she’s most responsible, Pepa’s “the middle child” – more emotional because Julieta was the “adult”, Bruno is the baby… making his departure all the more tragic.⚕️🌤⏳ #encanto

07:27 AM – 08 Dec 2021


Twitter: @thejaredbush

Pepa may be the only triplet with a verse, but we can tell what kind of relationship ALL of the triplets had, even if they don’t sing anything. Pepa has spent her whole life trying to control her emotions, so being married in a hurricane of her own creation was lowkey her worst nightmare. She chose to push the blame on Bruno, which implies she’s always had little time for him.

Julieta on the other hand doesn’t appear in the song, which implies she either never received any predictions from Bruno or, if she did, she didn’t take them to heart.

6.

Bruno is built up to be a terrifying creep, which isn’t true at all, but it’s still fun to see!


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The type of prophecies people complain about Bruno having make it fairly obvious that he didn’t cause anyone any actual harm. Still, “WDTAB” suggests Bruno was an evil troublemaker, which is part of the fantasy of the sequence and film more generally!

7.

All the key family members and their diverse personalities are expressed, which is relatable as heck!


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In the song, we see all different types of personalities coming out – the quiet one (Dolores), the dramatic theatre kid (Camilo), the baby (Antonio), the fun lover (Félix), the stressed and repressed type (Pepa), the strict older generation (Abuela), the black sheep (Bruno), the strong one (Luisa), the pretty one (Isabella), the responsible one (Julieta), the clumsy one (Agustín), and the curious one (Mirabel).

Basically, it’s hard NOT to find someone you can relate to in Encanto.

8.

Side characters like the husbands also get some character development too!


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We discover that Félix is really the ultimate supportive wifeguy who constantly validates his wife’s feelings; however, he doesn’t let himself be completely overshadowed by Pepa! He can be very flamboyant, and it shows throughout “WDTAB” as in the part where he yells “THUNDER!” Camilo probably got his dramatics from his dad.

Agustín is seen helping set the table and dancing along at the end, but he has no singing parts per se. He’s likely just grateful to be included since he married into the family and has no gift, but he also doesn’t have anything bad to say about Bruno, implying he’s an all-round nice guy!

9.

The lyrics are just ~really~ clever.


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The lyrics obviously tell us a lot on the surface, but many of them have clever, deeper meanings. When Dolores says “ch-ch-ch”, she’s making both “the sound of falling sand” and a shushing noise because she’s trying to stay quiet.

Later, when she says “It’s like I hear him now”, Dolores could mean Mariano who just arrived, or Bruno who she’s been hearing for years! That same double meaning applies when the family cries. “He’s here!”, since Bruno is around even if they don’t know it.

10.

The writers and designers made the whole song (and movie) accurate to Colombian culture.


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The writers went on a research trip to Colombia to inform everything from the architecture to the clothing style to the games villagers play in the background! The whole movie is a homage to Colombian culture, even down to the type of bamboo growing on the walls of the Madrigal’s Casita!

In “WDTAB” specifically, we see Pepa and Félix dancing cumbia during their wedding story. We also see Mirabel dance salsa cali style to show her awkwardness, whilst Dolores has cat-like movements to show that she’s more cautious and quiet. 

11.

The music style blends genres with Latin influences present throughout.


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“WDTAB” makes use of a range of Latin rhythms, including guajira, salsa, and cumbia. When incorporated into a musical theatre style ensemble, with elements of hip-hop and rap, it all comes together to form an absolute tune!

It’s perfect for a group karaoke sesh because everyone can pick their favourite part to sing along to! For once, everyone singing different parts over each other is actually recommended – but only if you’re good at singing. Ah, what the hell, do it if you’re bad too!

12.

The animation is so fluid and realistic – it looks like actual people dancing!

Merry Christmas/Feliz Navidad🎄! Have you seen @encantomovie yet?! It’s streaming on @disneyplus We Don’t Talk About Bruno!!!!
From Dance Reference to finished product! Cheers to everyone involved in the making of this magical film!
#encanto #dance #choreography

10:32 PM – 25 Dec 2021


Twitter: @kai_martinez__

The fact the characters are animated so fluidly, and are doing actual dance moves instead of cartoony wiggling, brings a fantastical story about people with magic powers granted by a candle to life!

Seeing these characters do ~actual~ Latin dances also makes the song so much more engaging. In fact, choreographers Kai Martinez and Jamal Sims were brought in to make sure the dancing was accurate.

13.

The use of magical realism is really cool!


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Magical realism – which has roots in Latin America – is basically when a story is set within a realistic environment, but it incorporates magical elements. We aren’t really seeing a recreation of Pepa’s wedding or Mirabel falling into a sandpit, but it’s cool to see those things happening in the visual landscape of the song.

14.

The song is all about perception, so what we see goes hand in hand with what we hear.


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If you watch closely during Dolores’ rap, you can see Bruno sneaking around on the balcony behind her. When everyone sets the table, you also see the crack in the kitchen mural where Bruno watches their dinners from the wall.

The whole song is based on how people (wrongly) interpreted Bruno’s gift and viewed him a certain negative way, so all these little details in the background add to or counteract that idea.

15.

Abuela isn’t in the song at all, and that’s the genius of “We Don’t Talk About Bruno”!


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Abuela Alma sticks to the “we don’t talk about Bruno” rule so closely that she literally never speaks of him – even during the song! She’s generally the strictest about rules, hence following the WDTAB rule throughout the movie. Even when Bruno returns, she hugs him and acknowledges him, but technically doesn’t talk ABOUT him.

16.

And finally, this parallel is just really fun!


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Basically, what I’m trying to say is Lin-Manuel Miranda’s a musical genius… but we knew that already! Since you read all the way to the end, here’s a hilarious cover by impressionist umokayig for you to enjoy!

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Do you have a favourite thing about “We Don’t Talk About Bruno”? Sound off in the comments below!

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