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All The Pop Culture Callbacks In Ariana Grande's "Thank U, Next" Video

Updated December 3, 2018 4.6k votes 601 voters 22k views15 items

List RulesVote up the references that made you feel the most nostalgic.

We've all been patiently awaiting the release of Ariana Grande's music video for her 2018 single, "thank u, next." In the song, Grande - who broke off her highly publicized engagement to Pete Davidson in October 2018 - sings about her exes and the lessons they taught her. Grande teased the video through social media posts and trailers before dropping it on November 30, 2018. It references four early-2000s romantic comedies: Bring it On, Mean Girls, 13 Going on 30, and Legally Blonde.

Grande recruited stars from the films she features, including Jonathan Bennett, who played Aaron Samuels in Mean Girls, and Jennifer Coolidge, who played Paulette in Legally Blonde. Also making appearances are Grande's close friends like Troye Sivan and Colleen Ballinger of "Miranda Sings" YouTube fame. This star-studded, reference-packed music video is one of 2018's most-anticipated releases.

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    Jonathan Bennett, Who Played Aaron Samuels In 'Mean Girls,' Makes An Appearance

    According to an interview in Out, Jonathan Bennett says Grande's manager contacted him through Instagram to appear in the video. At first, he didn't think it was real, but when his team verified that it was, he quickly agreed.

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  • 2

    The Delivery Man's Uniform References BDE

    Instead of "UPS," the deliveryman's uniform reads "BDE," which stands for "Big D*ck Energy." Twitter user @imbobswaget coined the term after Anthony Bourdain's death. But just a few days later, Twitter popularly applied BDE to Grande's former fiancé Pete Davidson after Grande seemed to reference his generous endowment in a since-deleted tweet.

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  • 3

    Stefanie Drummond From 'Mean Girls' Cameos

    Stefanie Drummond, who was in Mean Girls, makes an appearance. In the movie, she delivers the memorable line, "One time, she punched me in the face. It was awesome."

    To the left of Drummond is Scott Nicholson, one of Grande's backup dancers and close friends.

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  • 4

    Grande Writes In Her Own Version Of The Burn Book

    The video features a book titled "Thank U, Next" that looks just like the Burn Book from Mean Girls.

    Grande broke off her engagement with Saturday Night Live cast member Pete Davidson in October 2018. In her version of the Mean Girls burn book, titled "Thank U, Next," Grande writes a message that reads, "sry I dipped... I love u always" with Davidson's name in a heart.

    Below a photo of the former couple, Grande scrawled "HUUUUUGE," in what appears to be a reference to his endowment.

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