In ‘Coming to America,’ director John Landis (‘National Lampoon’s Animal House’) explores the familiarity of the New York culture and life in Queens through the wide-eyed perspective of an immigrant, albeit the king of a nation. Its much-anticipated sequel, ‘Coming 2 America,’ flips that approach upside down and depicts quintessentially New York natives attempting to understand the foreign culture and tradition of the fictional Kingdom of Zamunda. Understandably, the film is brimming with nostalgia and easter eggs.
Director Craig Brewer (‘Dolemite Is My Name’) is courageous enough to acknowledge that some fans of the original movie might feel that a sequel was not particularly necessary in a very fourth-wall-breaking scene. But perhaps because of such unassuming earnestness, the filmmakers have managed to replicate the spirit, heart, and humor of the first film in ‘Coming 2 America.’ Here is everything you need to know about its ending. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Coming 2 America Plot Synopsis
It has been over three decades since Prince Akeem Joffer (Eddie Murphy) went to America searching for true love and found Lisa McDowell (Shari Headley), a strong and independent woman from Queens, New York. In the intermediate period, the two of them have become the parents to three wonderfully well-adjusted young girls: Princesses Meeka (KiKi Layne), Omma (Bella Murphy), and Tinashe (Akiley Love). Although Akeem loves his daughters, his country’s inherent conservatism and the responsibilities he has as the Crown Prince have worn him down, and he has become almost as big of a conformist as his father, King Jaffe Joffer (James Earl Jones).
Amidst his father’s failing health and the increasing threat from Zamunda’s militaristic neighbor, aptly named Nextdoria, and its leader, General Izzi (Wesley Snipes), Akeem discovers that he has a son in Queens, conceived during a marijuana-induced one-night stand. After his father’s death, Akeem and his lifelong friend Semmi (Arsenio Hall) travel to America once more, hoping to bring back Akeem’s only son and secure the line of succession.
The problem is, this newly discovered prince, Lavelle Junson (Jermaine Fowler), is as willful and independent as Akeem was at the height of his rebellious phase, and having spent all his life in America, he has no idea how to deal with the expectations that come with being a prince of a traditional nation like Zamunda. Add to this Meeka’s growing disappointment towards her father. She has spent all her life training and preparing to be Akeem’s successor. When her father overlooks her in favor of a son he didn’t even know he had until recently, it breaks her heart. She genuinely thought that he is better than continuing the erroneous ways of his forefathers.
Coming 2 America Ending: Whom Does Akeem Choose as His Successor?
After arriving in Zamunda, Lavelle tries his best to embrace the custom and traditions of his father’s country. But his New York liberal upbringing has become so ingrained in him that he finds his new duties to be suffocating and ridiculous. On the suggestion of the royal groomer, Mirembe (Nomzamo Mbatha), who tells him the story of Akeem’s journey to America to find love, Lavelle introduces the New York flair to his princely conduct, and that changes everything for the better.
His uncle, Reem (Tracy Morgan), who helped his mother Mary (Leslie Jones) raise him, arrives in Zamunda and brings with him a certain casual understanding that Lavelle has sorely missed. Lavelle starts to really fit into the role of a prince and fulfills all the requirements to be his father’s heir. Ultimately, however, he is his father’s child in a way that Akeem may not have wanted him to be, at least not initially. Like his father, Lavelle discovers that the woman chosen for him, General Izzi’s daughter, is definitely not right for him and chooses Mirembe instead.
They subsequently elope and go to America, where they try to have a wedding at Reverend Brown’s (Hall) shady church. Akeem arrives and tries to convince his son to return with him before realizing that he himself is at fault here. Lavelle and Mirembe’s wedding eventually takes place in Zamunda, in the presence of both sides of his family. In the end, Lavelle doesn’t inherit his father’s throne, only his romantic spirit, but this is enough for him. As for Meeka, she overcomes her anger and envy toward Lavelle to help him during his trial. And the two of them subsequently develop a genuine sibling bond.
When General Izzi comes looking for the intended groom for his daughter, Meeka is the one who stands up to him. With her brother absconding and her father gone, the eldest princess of Zamunda takes charge and defeats the invaders. When Akeem returns, he correctly picks Meeka as his successor, ending the age-old tradition in favor of merit. In the course of the movie, it gets demonstrated time and again how socially backward Zamunda is. Under the reign of Queen Meeka, it is bound to experience some radical changes.
What Are Some of the Easter Eggs and Throwbacks in Coming 2 America?
Like in the first film, both Murphy and Hall play multiple characters in ‘Coming 2 America.’ Murphy portrays Mr. Clarence, the local barber in Queens, and Saul, Mr. Clarence’s Jewish customer. He also depicts Randy Watson, the lead singer of the soul band Sexual Chocolate, which appears in the film’s closing scene. Besides Semmi and Reverend Brown, Hall depicts Morris, Mr. Clarence’s employee at the barbershop, and Baba, a witch doctor attached to the Zamundan royal family. The now-famous New York Mets jacket from the original film makes an appearance when Akeem meets Lavelle for the first time.
The film gives the enmity between Akeem and General Izzi a backstory by connecting it with the original film. Imani (Vanessa Bell Calloway), the woman with whom Akeem’s marriage was initially arranged, is revealed to be Izzi’s sister. General Izzi did not take the eventual rejection well and since then has been plotting to overthrow the Joffer family from their throne. He didn’t dare to move when Jaffe was ruling the country. After Jaffe’s death, Izzi decides that this is his opportunity. Unfortunately for him, Meeka turns out to be as competent and ruthless as her grandfather.
Read More: Where Was Coming 2 America Filmed?