Dissecting Kendrick Lamar’s 15 Subliminals Towards Drake In Not Like Us Video

First of all the song starts off with an insane snippet at the beginning. Which has many people wondering, is that a snippet from a new Kendrick Lamar album coming this summer?

Fans are looking for it since he hasn’t dropped a solo album since Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers in 2022.

And as the Not Like Us song starts, the first subliminal hits. The clown, Tommy The Clown, and the other dancers are dancing a style known as “clowning.” So right off rip Kendrick is clowning Drake and does so the entire video.



Also, keep in mind the colors the dancers are wearing as they are of great significance. For one, the video was dropped on July 4th. America’s independence day. The colors signify the American flag.

Also, he’s displaying unity among other flags, gang flags. We know Crips and bloods represent their respective gangs by using the colors blue and red, respectively. In the video Kendrick Lamar is showing unity by bringing those colors together. 

Kendrick is really intentional about unity among gangs in LA, and this displays that very well.

Kendrick Lamar is really in his bag right now. He did the Pop Out on Juneteenth and now he releases the Not Like Us video on July 4th! Truly iconic timing.

What about this, the WAP WAP on the owl, which is synonymous with Drake. The owl piñata caught a whooping and busts open on the last hit and then Kendrick still gives it one more hit.

In the same scene Kendrick taunts Drake with the disclaimer at the bottom of the screen: “NO OVHOES WERE HARMED DURING THE MAKING OF THIS VIDEO.”

But now it gets crazier. This is probably one of the most insane and critically acclaimed parts of the video. Kendrick Lamar hopscotches, which is a children’s game, while he sings the prolonged “A minorrrrr” part of the song.


Kendrick just kept outdoing himself. He then has the whole city singing his song about how much he doesn’t like, or hate, Drake. Just craazzzy!

There’s no features listed on the song, but when you hear the whole city singing with him, you feel like there’s a feature on it and it’s Compton.

What about the next scene, with Mustard, who made the beat. As Kendrick and Mustard drive to Tam’s Burgers, Mustard is wearing a Blue Jays hat. That is, the Toronto Blue Jays. They’re the professional baseball team from Toronto, the city in Canada where Drake was born.

And after that another subliminal is introduced, the shipping containers. The shipping containers further the allegations of trafficking. Those shipping containers are no coincidence. Kendrick Lamar really masterminded every shot and camera angle of this video along with the director. We’ll get to that in a second.

And then he follows up with a shot of DeMar DeRozan standing solemnly blocking entry to one of the shipping containers. As Kendrick Lamar raps, “I’m glad Deroz’ came home, y’all didn’t deserve him neither.” DeRozan currently plays for the Chicago Bulls, but in 2009 he was drafted by the Toronto Raptors and spent 9 seasons there. DeRoza, like Kendrick Lamar, was born in Compton.

DeMar DeRozan has a cameo in Kendrick Lamar’s “Not Like Us” music video, which was released Thursday (Chicago Bulls power forward).

The forward appears while squatting on a storage container near the 2:43 mark while Lamar raps: “I’m glad DeRoz’ came home, y’all didn’t deserve him neither.”  The line, and the song overall, is a diss toward Toronto-born rapper Drake.  DeRozan was selected ninth overall in the 2009 NBA draft and spent the first nine seasons of his career with the Toronto Raptors.  Like Lamar, DeRozan is a native of Compton, California.

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: This Is Why 2Pac Believed Biggie Set Him Up


Kendrick also has shots of him with the TDE crew to show unity as there was harsh criticism of Drake proclaiming rifts amongst them after Kendrick left the label.

And the subliminal insults kept mounting as Kendrick Lamar calls Drake a colonizer and releases the video on America’s Independence Day.

But perhaps the most iconic segment of the video is this. Kendrick, Whitney and their kids dancing. There’s so much to be said here.

For one it displays unity in their family after accusations by Drake that Kendrick is not the father to one of their children and that Kendrick beat Whitney.

With that said, there’s another subliminal in this shot. Under Whitney’s jacket, she’s wearing a wife beater. If y’all know Kendrick then you know that’s no coincidence.

And they seem very happy as she dances throughout the video and Kendrick joins her as well. Whether that’s the C-Walk or Blood Walk she’s doing, we’ll leave that up to the experts. Either way, an iconic clap back. 

Kendrick Lamar reintroduces the representation of Drake through the owl again. First we see Kendrick looking at the owl from the owl’s point of view. And then on the next scene as Kendrick slowly steps away we see that the owl is in a cage.

Kendrick somehow suggests that Drake is in a cage. And what’s crazy is that he suggests that Drake is now in a cage and does not know it. We deduce this because from the owl’s point of view he does not see the cage.

And then as Kendrick walks away the owl sadly looks at him and then blankly stares into the camera as it fades to black.


And just when you thought it was over, Kendick Lamar has one more subliminal up his sleeve. The video was directed by Dave Free and Kendrick Lamar. That in of itself was another subtle and solid clapback at Drake.

Remember that in the Drake song “Family Matters” Drake alleged that Dave Free father one of Kendrick’s children with Withney. Drake rapped, “I heard that one of’em liltle kids might be Dave Free’s.”

What a clapback from Kendrick on that one and without a word being said.

Wow! Kendrick really took himself seriously when he said, “stop playing with me before I turn you to a song.” It’s crazy how Kendrick Lamar’s song where he calls one of the biggest artists in music history a PDF file has become one of the biggest songs of the year.

And at the same time Kendrick unified gangs while elevating himself further in the GOAT conversation. Some said Kendrick lost because he doesn’t make hits, but now he’s dropped the biggest hit of the year in video version.

To sum up the video, Kendrick drops it on July 4th, features the whole city chanting, dances with Whitney and their kids, has shots with TDE crew, has an owl in a cage and directs it with Dave Free.

Let us know what you think of the video.

Check Out Trending Hip Hop Fashion On Amazon


And as always we like to close with a saying, quote or adage and today’s is from Cam’ron: PEOPLE ONLY GO TO PLACES THEY HAVE VISITED IN THEIR MINDS FIRST.

You can follow Change The Game TV on Instagram, and on TikTok. Head over to our  YouTube channel and hit the subscribe button and the notification bell to be notified when we bring you more hip hop videos. You can also subscribe to our blog to get notifications every time we release a post.

Now, go forth and change the game! 

Continue the converstaion. Leave a comment.

You have successfully subscribed to Change The Game TV newsletter. More game is coming to your inbox.

There was an error while trying to send your request. Please try again.

Change The Game will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing.