"It's the most un-rock 'n' roll thing you could do, so I never ever talked about it, but that was actually my obsession before rock-and-roll."
-- Bono, on playing chess
U2 Lists: Top 10 U2 DVD Easter Eggs
April 22, 2014
[Ed. note: This is the 57th in a "U2 Lists" series, where @U2 staffers pick a topic and share their personal rankings on something U2-related.]
It's Easter (well, a few days late), when thoughts usually turn to chocolate and that holiday favorite, the egg! This list, however, has nothing to do with chocolate (pity). Instead, it’s about those hidden gems, also known as Easter eggs, found on many a DVD: unexpected or undocumented features included as bonuses or just for fun.
On U2 DVDs, Easter eggs include exclusive behind-the-scenes footage or alternative versions of U2 songs — and in some cases nothing U2-related at all. Listed here are my Top 10 U2 DVD Easter Eggs, some of which were difficult to find.
1. U2 Zoo TV Live From Sydney
This DVD has several hidden gems.
My favorite is a time-lapse video of the Zoo TV stage set-up and breakdown set to the soundtrack of “Some Days Are Better Than Others.”
How to access: Insert Disc 2 and on the main menu highlight the “Extras” entry. Then press the right arrow key on your remote followed by the down key. The Zoo TV logo at the top of the screen will be highlighted. Press “Enter.” A screen with “Abort” will appear. Enter the numbers “2711” and the clip will play.
To access the 25-minute documentary “Interference,” enter the “Documentaries” section and select “Play All.” Fast-forward through the footage, and when you return to the menu screen, highlight the “Subtitles” menu entry. Press the down key on your remote followed by the left key to highlight an “O” in the center of the screen. Press “Enter” and you will access the clip, which also includes “The History Mix.”
To access a one-minute clip of atomic bomb-themed warning drills (sounds like fun!), enter the “Extras” section on the DVD and highlight “DVD” credits. Press the down key, followed by the right key on your remote, and another “O” appears in the center of the screen. Press “Enter” and a screen with “Abort” will appear. Enter the numbers “1993” and the clip will play.
2. U2 Popmart Live From Mexico City
This is possibly the most bizarre egg on the list. Not really U2-related, apart from the footage of the Dublin docklands, it’s set to a karaoke background of “All Kinds Of Everything” performed by Edge at the Dublin Popmart show on Aug. 30, 1997. The song is by Irish singer Dana, who won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1970.
How to access: Insert Disc 2 and press the “Enter” key, which takes you into the documentary aisle. You'll see a security camera at the top left corner of the screen. Press “Enter” at the “x” that’s on the security camera to play the clip.
3. U2 The Joshua Tree Remastered with Paris Bonus DVD
Check out footage of the Dalton Brothers during the third leg of the Joshua Tree tour in 1987.
How to access: Insert bonus DVD. Go to the “Extra Videos” menu screen and click on the bar above the U2 logo at the top of the screen. An access screen comes up prompting you to enter a password. Type “BETTY” and press “Enter” to access the footage.
4. U2 How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb CD/DVD
On this DVD you’ll find a link to access the handwritten lyrics to “Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own.”
How to access: From the main menu, select “One By One,” then select the studio performance of “Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own.” Press left, left, down, right and up — in that sequence — using the arrows on your DVD remote. A little red “x” will appear, next to the big one in the background. Press “Enter” and the lyrics display on the screen.
5. U2 360 At The Rose Bowl
This DVD includes an 11-minute long film, 21 Days = U2 360, a collection of countdown videos released through U2.com before the 360 tour.
How to access: From the main menu, scroll down to “Track Selection.” When “3.32” appears on the bottom left corner of the screen, press “4” on your remote just before it changes to “3.33” and the film clip will play.
6. U2 Live At Red Rocks Under A Blood Red Sky
The egg on this DVD is an alternative mix of “Sunday Bloody Sunday.”
How to access: Insert disc and click on the menu bar under “U2”on the main screen. Enter password “727” to view extra footage with “Sunday Bloody Sunday” playing in the background.
7. U2 Best of 1990-2000
This egg was quite a cool find! It is a brief clip of the making of “Last Night On Earth,” and U2 being chased with a sword by William Burroughs.
How to access: Go to title menu and highlight “Bonus Tracks.” Click on “Last Night On Earth” and press the up and left buttons on your remote four times. Click on the third photo down on the far left to play the clip.
This DVD also features a short clip of a Trabant in a fish tank, accessible from the main menu by choosing the screen for the “One” video. Press “1,” then “Enter,” and the screen will reload. Repeat this process, hitting “1” and “Enter” twice, and the fish tank will appear. The Trabants take a little longer to appear.
8. Elevation 2001/U2 Live From Boston DVD
I had difficulty with this egg, which apparently shows “Until The End Of The World” as seen by Bono. I followed the instructions, but instead of “Until The End Of The World” it featured camera footage of “Elevation." Perhaps you'll have better luck.
How to access: Click on “Additional Tracks.” Press “7” on your remote. If it doesn’t work by pressing “7” alone, follow by pressing “Enter.”
9. Vertigo — Live From Chicago
Apparently this DVD has a short easter egg on Disc 2 featuring video of the stage and diagrams, along with a time-lapse video. I couldn’t find instructions on how to access it, however.
10. Achtung Baby UBER Deluxe Box Set
Unfortunately I don’t have this box set, but apparently on Disc 3 you can access some MacPhisto clips from the Zoo TV tour including calls to Alessandra Mussolini, band introduction, phone call to Schipol Airport and a phone call to Helmet Kohl. You can view the clips here.
Additional @U2 staff contributed to this list.
© @U2/Foster, 2014.