Turning Red Theory Says Mei’s Friend Is Secretly A Monsters Inc Character

Warning: this article contains spoilers for turn red.

Pixar is renowned for its Easter eggs and vast interconnected cinematic universe, and one of Mei’s friends in turn red could add a lot to it. The film follows Mei as she uncovers her family’s secret; when the females of the family come of age, they turn into red pandas under emotional duress. Mei is pressured by her mother, Ming, who desperately wants her to undergo the ceremony that would trap her panda in a talisman, but Mei feels conflicted. Mei loves the emotional freedom her panda brings, and with the strength of her friends and the transformation of her mother, Mei decides to keep the panda.


Mei’s friends Abby, Priya and Miriam play a huge role in the film and are certainly not relegated to secondary characters. They are an important force in encouraging Mei’s authentic self, and as such, they feature prominently in the film. This means that they are each well-balanced and unique three-dimensional characters, and the audience can really feel them. Therefore, a theory via Reddit suggested that Mei’s friend Abby might be slightly familiar to the public.

Related: Turning Red Continues Pixar’s Major New Break From Tradition

The theory outlines the idea that Abby might actually be an older Boo from Monsters Inc.. Boo is a little girl who finds her way to Monstropolis and is somehow adopted by Sully and Mike, Monsters Incorporated’s top scary team. Boo is 2 years old in Monsters Inc.and Abby is about 13 years old turn redand their similarities could mean they’re secretly the same character.

Monsters Inc’s Boo in Pixar’s Theory Explained

A woodcarving of Sully from Monsters Inc. appears in the Witch's House in Brave

Before Boo found her more official place in the Pixar Theory, she was believed to be in Toy Story 3. Audiences thought Boo was either Bonnie, the new owner of Woody and his gang, or one of Bonnie’s playmates, subtly hidden in the background of the film. Two potential playmates were chosen for their resemblance to Boo; one wearing a pink headband and holding a stuffed cat, which audiences saw as a reference to “kitty” AKA Sully, and another playmate who had Boo’s classic pigtails. We even think that Boo is in toy story 4.

At the exit of Brave in 2012, a new theory emerged regarding Boo. It goes that the witch in Brave did Boo grow up, and the witch magic comes from Boo trying to find a way back to Sully and Mike using portal magic, similar to the doors of Monsters Inc.. This theory carried some weight due to a wood carving in the witch’s hut which resembled a familiar blurry face; Defile. It has also been speculated that the witch could time travel, as she had a sculpture of the timeless Easter egg from Pixar’s Pizza Planet truck. All this considered, it’s not incredible that turn red fits into Pixar’s shared universe by casting Abby as a teenage Boo.

All the evidence that Abby from Turning Red is Boo from Monsters Inc

Turning Red Meis friends Priya Miriam and Abby meet Meis Panda

Abby and Boo undoubtedly share an uncanny physical resemblance. The two have the same face shape, the same big brown eyes, the same hair color and even the same bangs. But while Boo has her hair in pigtails, Abby has long hair that she wears. It wouldn’t be abnormal for Boo to grow up and step out of his pigtails, opting for a different style. She still has an affinity for hair accessories and trades in her pink hair ties for a glittery pink headband as she gets a bit older. Mei’s costume reveal turn redends, and his friends all have unique costumes as well. Miriam is coded green, Mei is red, Priya is yellow, and Abby is pink and purple – which is, coincidentally, Boo’s color scheme. Plus, Abby’s purple overalls are dotted with little flowers, which could be a reference to Boo’s signature door, and her heart earrings match the heart cutout on Boo’s chair in her bedroom. .

Related: Monsters, Inc.’s Child Fear Comes From The Plague – Theory Explained

Personality-wise, the two also seem incredibly similar. Boo is distinctly characterized by his fearlessness in the face of Sully, who is otherwise considered by humans to be a fearsome monster. Likewise, Abby shows almost no fear when she first encounters Mei’s panda. Instead, his eyes become huge and glowing in true anime style (making turn red different from other Pixar movies) and she rushes headfirst into the panda’s stuffed animals. If the theory is true, Abby’s lack of fear may stem from the blue furry friend she had as a child.

How Turning Red & Monsters Inc Timelines Would Work (If True)

In any Pixar theory, timelines are always the trickiest bit and the part where most theories like this could fall flat. turn red was released in 2022 but took place in 2002, and Monsters Inc. was released in 2001. If that release date were to be taken at face value and one had to assume that the film was set in the year it was released, the theory clearly wouldn’t work, as Boo can’t age 10 years from 2001 to 2002. Pixar’s official timeline theory, however, establishes Monsters Inc. as the final installment in the Pixar universe, dating it thousands of years in the future, around 3100, which again shifts the theory.

Still, not everything in Pixar’s theory works seamlessly. Pixar’s filmography continues to grow, making it harder to explain where its new movies fit into the theory, leading to inconsistencies in timelines. For example, Riley of Upside down thought to be spotted in Finding Dory, which does not match the timelines of these films. Therefore, if the witch and Boo/Abby are all the same person, her time travel abilities could easily account for some inconsistencies.

Boo’s identity has been a long-standing motif at Pixar, with audiences clamoring to spot her in movies. Of course, Boo’s real name in Monsters Inc. could also mean that this theory is again proven wrong. Yet in the way of adapting films to Pixar theory, a few minor deviations should be allowed. turn red is Pixar’s 25th feature film, and the studio has come a long way since the theory first emerged nearly 10 years ago, which means these similarities seem less than coincidental.

Next: Turning Red: Every Easter Egg Explained & Secret Pixar Reference

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