Fan theories are theories made by fans (hence the name) about novels, TV shows or films that explain certain elements, solve plot holes or are more enjoyable that the official explanation. None of these theories are true but they are considered to be Headcannon by many fans and they’re a lot of fun to think about.
Here are my top ten fan theories.
1) James Bond: James Bond and 007 are code names passed down from agent to agent.
Don’t you find it strange that in the James Bond films six different actors have played the hero and none of the other characters such as M or Q have commented on his change of appearance? James Bond has been around for fifty years, isn’t he a little old to be a super spy? What about his alcohol intake? He must be an alcoholic, right? The real reason is because actors want to change jobs and it’ll be hard to explain away the drastic changes 007 goes through so the writers ignore the problem.
The fan theory is that the name James Bond and 007 are both code names passed from spy to spy. When one 007 or James Bond leaves MI6 the next agent takes his place. We know this happens in the James Bond universe, characters like M and Q are constantly being replaced with their title being handed down. This theory also explains Bond’s drastic characteristic changes such as why he would burn a man alive in Licence to Kill and dress up like a clown in Octopussy. Each James Bond leaves M16 for one reason or another with Daniel Craig’s Bond still in their employment.
The problem with this theory occurs when a new Bond reflects on the missions of a previous agent. The theory also takes away from the James Bond mystique but several notable people at one point believed in the theory including the director or Die Another Day.
2) Star Wars: Yoda is dead
There are lots of Star War theories floating around and this is one of my favourites. According to this theory Yoda died sometime between episodes three and five and what Luke sees is a force ghost. We know ghosts exist in the Star Wars universe as evidenced by ghost Obi Wan in episode five and a whole group of ghosts in episode six. Dagobah is an intelligent haunting ground (meaning a place where ghosts can interact with the living) as proved by Obi Wan communicating with Luke. Yoda is simply doing the same thing but without the blue glow. The cave where Luke fights Vader is called the Cave of Evil and is the spot where Yoda died. Vader, upon realising Yoda survived Order 66, tracked him down to the swamp and murdered him. The Vader in the cave is an imprint in the force left by both Vader and Yoda. This also explains why Vader doesn’t mention Yoda when he reads Luke’s mind on Cloud City. Vader says…
Vader assumes Obi Wan taught Luke how to fight sometime before the first Death Star assault at the end of episode four.
Yoda being a ghost also explains R2D2’s erratic behaviour. R2 goes crazy when Luke’s ship raises itself out of the swamp and shocks Yoda upon their first meeting in episode five. It’s very uncharacteristic of R2. He’s just a droid and is unable to see Yoda’s ghost. R2 is scared and beeps and whirs when he sees Luke talking to himself, unsure what is going on.
To become a ghost one must have unfinished business, in this case Yoda’s goal is defeating Palpatine and the Sith. Yoda can’t leave the planet Dagobah because that is where he was killed and his spirit lingers. His ghost causes the strange mists that surround the swamp similar to what we see in ghost busters. We never see Yoda use his lightsaber even though we know he has one thanks to the prequel trilogy. Wouldn’t he need it to defend himself from the local wildlife? He wouldn’t need to use it if he was already dead. (The counter point for this being Yoda lost is lightsaber in the duel with Darth Sidious in episode three)
The biggest flaw in this theory is that Yoda has a death scene in episode six but his death scene is unique when compared any other. His ghost fades away to become one with the force because Luke is ready to defeat Darth Vader. The only other Jedi that faded away was Obi Wan but that was because Vader was swinging a lightsaber at him.
3) The Simpsons: The Simpson family are all geniuses but only Lisa decides to show it.
The Simpsons have been around for ages and no matter what you think of the show now it’s widely accepted it ruled the TV back in the 00’s. Each Simpson family member has proved themselves to be intelligent at one point or another. Grandpa used to play the piano and fly jets during World War 2, Grandma Simpson spent many years on the run from the law, Marge has been a police officer, politician and written a novel (a’hem), Homer has been into space and briefly embraced his genius when he had a crayon removed from his brain in the episode HOMR, (more on that later) Bart’s pranks are elaborate and he has shown signs of intelligence on multiple occasions and even Maggie the baby has done extraordinary things such as saving her Dad from the Mafia. So why do the family hide their brilliance?
They believe it will make them miserable and outcasts like Lisa. Lisa is always struggling to make friends in the show and is teased by many characters. Bart in particular bullies her perhaps in the hope that she will conform to the family’s way of life. When Homer has the crayon removed he becomes very intelligent but isolated from his friends. Eventually he has the crayon reinserted into his brain to return to his normal life and live in ignorance and bliss.
4) Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: Willie Wonka is a serial killer (and possibly a cannibal)
This idea can be applied to either the 1971 film version Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory or the 2005 film Charlie and the Chocolate Factory directed by Tim Burton. In both versions Willy Wonka invites badly behaved children (and the protagonist Charlie Bucket) into his chocolate factory for a tour in which they meet “accidents”. Immediately afterwards the Oompa Loompas perform a song and dance and the tour continues. In the 1971 version the characters travel in a boat, a car and a great glass elevator but each vehicle only has enough room for the current number of characters, meaning that the missing children and parents weren’t meant to reach this far in the tour. Then there’s this boat scene near enough proving that Willy Wonka is a psychopath.
In Tim Burton’s version we see more of Wonka’s backstory. His father denied him sweets and burned any that his son brought home from trick or treating. He forces the boy to wear a hideous head brace and openly states he doesn’t care about the child. After building his legacy Wonka realises he needs someone to carry it on after his death and has idea of Golden Tickets. Once he invites the children inside and they witness the first accident he comments of the Oompa Loompas…
“They haven’t had a fresh audience in many a moon”
So they’ve done this before then? Shortly afterwards he assures Augustus’ Mother that her child wouldn’t be turned into food.
“Can you imagine Augustus-flavoured chocolate-coated Gloop? Ew. No one would buy it.”
This raises the question, what exactly goes into the chocolate? Wonka mentions cannibalism in the same scene.
“Everything in this room is eatable, even I’m eatable! But that is called “cannibalism,” my dear children, and is in fact frowned upon in most societies.”
Is Wonka just a creepy character or it there more to it? You be the judge.
5) The Matrix: Neo isn’t “The One”
The Matrix was a ground breaking film about a man called Neo who realises he is living inside a cyber-world called The Matrix. The real world is ruled by machines in which the humans are reduced to batteries powering The Matrix. There was a second film which had one great sequence involving a Chateau fight and a highway chase and a third film that nobody really understood. Like many other films The Matrix has a prophecy that talks about The One or The Chosen One that will restore the balance of the world. The Prophecy is as follows:
“When The Matrix was first built there was a man born inside that had the ability to change what he wanted, to remake The Matrix as he saw fit. It was this man who freed the first of us and taught us the truth. When he died, the Oracle prophesied his return and envisioned that his coming would hail the destruction of The Matrix and the war, bring freedom to our people.”
So in order to be The One the person must:
- Be Born in The Matrix.
- Able to Change the Matrix.
- Destroy the Matrix.
The Matrix films finished in 2003 so I’m going to drop a spoiler and let you know that Neo does it. He saves the day, restarts the Matrix blah blah blah. This theory states however that he wasn’t The One and isn’t responsible for any of these things. Agent Smith is.
Let me explain. Was Neo born inside the Matrix? No. He had a rebirth inside the Matrix, true, but Agent Smith was born inside the original Matrix. As we learn in the second film The Matrix Neo enters is the sixth version.
Can Neo Change the Matrix? Kind of. He jumps into Agent Smith at the end of the first film and changes his coding killing him, he can fly and he can use Kung Fu but that’s it. In the second film Agent Smith has gone rogue and corrupts the system to creating hundreds copies of himself to destroy Neo. In the third film he has god like powers. That’s far more power than Neo.
Does Neo destroy the Matrix? Sort of. At this point in the third movie Agent Smith is completely separate from the machines that control the humans, he is a rogue program, so Neo and the other humans strike a deal with the machines. If the machines let Neo into The Matrix he’ll try to defeat Smith for them. The Matrix will reset when the code of The One enters a place called the The Source. Smith explains in film number two he is avoiding going to The Source and after the final fight between Smith and Neo, Smith turns Neo into another Smith clone. What Smith doesn’t know is that Neo, in the human world, is at the source and by turning him into a code Smith is giving his code to the Source, thus restarting the Matrix. (I’m sorry if that’s complicated but trust me, the films are a lot harder to understand.)
6) Batman: Batman is an Arkham inmate.
For those unfamiliar with the Batman franchise allow me to explain. Arkham is an asylum that most of Batman’s villains break out of on a regular basis. You don’t need to be an expert in Batman or psychology to realise that Batman’s rogues gallery is insane! Did you know that each villain represents a certain illness? Penguin has a Napoleon complex and Two Face represents Duel Personality Disorder. The Riddler has OCD and is a narcissist. Harley Quin suffers from shared Psychotic Disorder in which one person picks up someone else’s psychotic inclinations. She hangs around with her boyfriend The Joker who is the most interesting inmate. Joker is sane. To be insane you must meet two criteria.
- You must not be in control of your own actions and
- You need understand that what you’re doing is wrong.
The Joker is in control of his actions and he understands what he is doing is wrong but he enjoys it anyway.
What about Batman? Can a man who dresses in leather, jumps from rooftop to rooftop and beats people up be sane? The theory states that Batman is actually a patient in Arkham Asylum and his rogues gallery are actually medical staff trying to help him or they are other inmates in the same cell block. Bruce’s dreams of Batman are just that, his way of coping with the trauma of his parents’ death and he imagines his inmates and doctors as villains and himself as a hero. The reason he sees himself as a superhero is because that is what young Bruce liked as the time of his parents’ murder.
Just a note, many of Batman’s villains exist because of Batman. Bane is inspired to travel to Gotham by the stories of Batman, Batman knocked Joker into a vat of chemicals triggering his transformation and Joker corrupted Harley Quinn making Batman indirectly responsible. Bruce Wayne’s family was responsible for bankrupting the Penguin’s and in some versions Victor Freeze kept his wife Nora frozen in Wayne Labs before being attacked by security guards on Bruce’s payroll.
7) Pulp Fiction: The briefcase in Pulp Fiction contains Marcellus Wallace’s soul.
Pulp Fiction is a Quentin Tarantino classic. We never see what is inside the briefcase but we know that the crime lord Marcellus Wallace wants it and sends two of his thugs, Jules and Vincent to fetch it. Vincent opens the briefcase with the lock combination 666 in a diner. He sees a golden glow radiate from the briefcase and looks awed. That’s all we know and it’s lead to plenty of speculation. What could fit inside the briefcase, glow and promote shock in the viewer? The answers range from the stolen loot in another Tarantino movie Reservoir Dogs, to Elvis Presley’s golden suit. The most widely accepted answer is Marcellus Wallace’s soul.
There are lots of biblical references in Pulp Fiction the most famous of which is here. (Warning, very strong language.) 666 is the number of the Devil and Marcellus Wallace has a cut on the back of his neck which according to the bible is where the Devil would remove your soul. The two men Jules and Vincent kill to receive the case are agents of the devil and the bullets that miss them are divine intervention.
We know what was physically inside the case. A light bulb and a pair of batteries.
8) Back to the Future: Doc Brown is suicidal
You may have noticed that when we meet Doc Brown he is testing the Delorian by driving the car directly at himself. If it hadn’t of worked he would have been struck at 88mph and killed but maybe that was the point?
If you wanted to test your invention to onlookers in order to prove you have faith in it you might stand in front of the car as it speeds towards you. If the Delorian works then great, if it doesn’t work you’re dead. If you’re suicidal then it’s a win win situation. Watch Doc’s reaction when the Delorian disappears before him. He was surprised, overjoyed and in such a state that he completely forgot to feel suicidal.
9) Lord of the Rings: Gandalf’s plan was to use the eagles and fly to Mordor.
The biggest plot hole in Lord of the Rings is why didn’t the fellowship fly to Mordor? The answer is that Gandalf always planned to. Once Gandalf escaped Saruman’s tower he made a pact with the eagle that saved him. Once he took the Fellowship past the Misty Mountains they would fly the rest of the way to Mordor. Gandalf couldn’t tell anyone else this plan because he was afraid what would happen if anyone was captured and interrogated like Gollum. Unfortunately for the fellowship Gandalf sacrificed himself to stop the Balrog in the Mines of Moria. He realised he needed to tell Frodo and Co about the eagles but couldn’t say it directly because of the goblins, orcs and cave trolls about. “Fly, you fools,” was a coded message than none of the fellowship picked up on.
So why doesn’t Gandalf pick up Aragon, Legolas and Gimili, save Pippin and Merry and search for Frodo and Sam from the air after he was resurrected? He forgot. Aragon has to remind Gandalf of his name when they meet again. By the time Gandalf remembers the plan Frodo and Sam have destroyed the ring and the eagles, having grown bored of waiting around the Misty Mountains, arrive at Mordor, see the battle and pick up the Hobbits.
10) Doctor Who: Lots of eccentric fictional characters are secretly Timelords.
This theory is a bit of the stretch but it’s my favourite on this list. To recap a Timelord is a being from the planet Gallifrey with two hearts, access to a time machine called a TARDIS and a quirky personality. First of all there are the Timelords we know about, The Doctor, The Master/Missy, Romana and several others on Gallifrey. (There was a rumour that Rory Williams was a secret Timelord but that sadly turned out to be false) Several fictional characters share such traits and could be Timelords in disguise. The list includes Merlin, Loki (from The Avengers) James Bond, Willie Wonka, Mary Poppins, Sherlock Holmes and perhaps the strongest case is Ms. Frizzle from The Magic School Bus. The school bus shares many characteristics with a TARDIS and Ms. Frizzle and River Song look eerie alike. Coincidence?
So what do you think of these fan theories? Do any of them hold any merit with you? Do you have or have you heard of another fan theory that explains away a plot hole? Leave your comments down below and I’ll see you next time.