'Magic Mike XXL': 6 Things to Know Before You See the Stripping Sequel

Warner Bros.

If Magic Mike, the
2012 stripper drama starring Channing Tatum, Joe Manganiello, Matt Bomer, Adam
Rodriguez, and Matthew McConaughey, was a surprise hit, then the sequel --
hitting theaters on July 1 -- is an all-knowing victory tour.

Ditching Xquisite
Strip Club (as well as Matthew McConaughey and a large amount substantive of
plot), Tatum and his band of burly men hit the road in this stripper odyssey,
which serves to celebrate the women who flocked to see first film.

WATCH: Go on the Set of 'Magic Mike XXL'

Magic Mike XXL, if
nothing else, is a love letter to its fans, putting the audience into the sequel.
Joining the cast this time around are Amber Heard, Andie MacDowell, Elizabeth
, and Jada Pinkett Smith, all representing stops along the way as the men
journey from Tampa, Fla. to Myrtle Beach, S.C. for the 2015 stripper

While fans may go in thinking they’re going to get more of
the same (including plenty of bare asses and washboard abs), stripping is
secondary to the art of seduction. Sure, there’s plenty of rump shaking, but
there’s very little nudity with the men staying largely covered up. (Manganiello’s
bare ass represents the film’s brief, thong-free nudity.)

And that’s OK because the women steal the show, which brings
us to a few highlights from the film: 

1. Mike Is Not the Only
One With Magic Touch.

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In a scene-stealing moment, MacDowell plays a sexually
unsatisfied divorcee, who finds herself in the company of Magic Mike (Tatum),
Big Dick Richie (Manganiello), Ken (Bomer), Tito (Rodriguez), and Tarzan (Kevin
Nash). Fueled by expensive wine and southern drawls, the 57-year-old actress welcomes
the men when the stripper tour stops by her Savannah, Ga. home. It’s there,
where we realize that Mike isn’t the only one with a bit of magic when it’s
discovered she has something BDR had given up on finding.

2. Move Over, McConaughey.
It’s Time for the Second Coming of Jada Pinkett Smith.

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While Smith’s role as Rome, the owner of the private, all-male
strip club, is not as layered or as surprising as McConaughey’s turn as Dallas
in the first film, the actress takes full advantage of every moment of screen
time. She seduces, she empowers, and puts Tatum’s character in his place.
Between this and Gotham, she’ll have fans yelling, “Yassss queen!”

3. Matt Bomer Sings, for
Your Pleasure…

In a bit of a surprise, Bomer dusts off his singing voice --
first heard on Glee -- in an attempt
to woo women (and gay men) everywhere. The first moment comes when he sings
Bryan Adams’ “Heaven
to a group of divorced housewives. He later takes on “Untitled (How Does It
Feel)” by D’Angelo -- a song he tells ET that made him “feel
.” And it will make audiences feel lots of things.

4. There’s Plenty of
More Joe to Go Around.

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Just because the former True
is engaged to Sofia Vergara doesn’t mean she gets to keep him
all to herself. In addition to baring his ass early in the film, Manganiello
benefits from plenty of more screen time. He not only gets all the one-liners,
he also gets the best solo dance of the entire movie. In an attempt to make one
grimace-faced woman smile (a running theme in the film), BDR takes cues from the
Backstreet Boys for a truly unique display of the art of seduction.

5. Watch Out for Michael
Strahan’s Surprising Cameo.


We all knew he was going to appear in the film, but to what
extent we. Did. NOT. And there’s plenty of him one pivotal scene at Rome’s
private club. Between his appearance in Magic
Mike XXL
and Kelly Ripa’s shockingly funny guest spot on Comedy Central’s Broad City, we will never watch Live! the same way again.

6. And Just Remember,
This Is a Victory Tour.

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So forget the idea of a serious plot (that weighed heavily
in the first one), or understanding why Mike decides to go on the road trip in
the first place, or even why he is smitten with the elusive Zoe (Heard as a
more likeable and totally watchable Cody Horn), and just enjoy the men letting
loose and slapping each other on the ass for righting the wrong of Showgirls’ past while proving that
people (women, in particular) want to see a bunch of men objectified on the big

Before you go see the film, check out all the stars of Magic Mike XXL before they were strippers: