In the Fast and Furious saga, Dominic Toretto and his crew live their lives a quarter-mile at a time. They also change their minds and retcon the plot and timeline of the series on a whim. Decades have passed since these films were just about street racing, and now, they’re all-out action extravaganzas complete with mind-boggling physics that we can’t even get into.
Aside from the bonkers set pieces in the Fast and the Furious series, there are plot holes that you just have to gloss over if you want to enjoy the films. Those plot holes, when combined with the shaky Fast and Furious timeline, make for an interesting watch. Latter movies in the saga feature characters who, while new to the series, have apparently been kicking around the universe for a while. In many ways, the viewer just has to accept these changes if they want to keep up.
The Fast and Furious series has changed its mind about stories, characters, and relationships so many times that it’s honestly hard to keep track of these retcons.
- Photo: Fast 9 / Universal Pictures1255 VOTES
Han Escaped His Fate In 'Tokyo Drift'
Good news, folks. Han didn't die in Tokyo Drift (or at the end of Fast 6, or the beginning of Furious 7, if you’re keeping track of all of this in your head). Despite Han's death (and complicated timeline of this franchise) being used for foreshadowing and emotional resonance repeatedly across multiple films, Han returns almost casually in F9.
It’s not the first time someone has come back from the grave in this series, and as in other instances, Han's revival is explained in convoluted fashion: Mr. Nobody and Han worked together to fake his death in order to protect a little girl whose DNA is integral to the plot and whom Han adopts when he secretly becomes a spy for Nobody. Follow that? It doesn't really matter: Han, and the movie, explain it as a “nice magic trick.” and that's all anybody needs to know.
- Photo: Fast 9 / Universal Pictures2242 VOTES
Dom Has A Brother Who Is A 'Master Thief, Assassin, And High Performance Driver'
The F9 trailer reveals that, throughout the entire saga, Toretto had a brother that no one knew about and who is apparently the toughest, smartest, best driver on the planet. Obviously, he’s played by John Cena.
This retcon completely changes the character of Dom. In the early films of the saga, the only other family member he has is his sister, Mia, whom Dom is incredibly protective of. When Dom lets down his guard and forms a relationship with Brian (Paul Walker), it’s as if he found the brother he never had. But now we have to go back and rethink all of those interactions.
- Photo: Universal Pictures3149 VOTES
Letty Didn't Actually Meet Her End In 'Fast & Furious'
Fast & Furious is built around Dominic Toretto returning to Los Angeles to investigate Letty’s demise. She and her car were set on fire by a baddie named Fenix after he discovered that she’s working undercover. That’s it for Letty, or at least until the next film.
In the post-credits sequence of Fast Five, Monica Fuentes reveals to Luke Hobbs that Letty is actually alive and that she’s working for evildoer Owen Shaw. According to Letty, Shaw discovered her in a coma and then put her to work.
- Photo: Fate of the Furious / Universal Pictures4144 VOTES
Cipher Was Pulling The Strings Of Jakande, Owen Shaw, And Possibly Even Braga All Along
This is classic Fast and the Furious timeline shenanigans. In a Machiavellian twist, the events of Fate of the Furious reveal that the villainous hacker Cipher has been overseeing the events of the previous two movies through her connection with Shaw.
Not only was Cipher pulling the strings of Owen Shaw and Mose Jakande, but she probably had something to do with Braga as well.
This kind of retcon is purely done to give the character extra menace, which is fine but weird. Why can’t she just be a baddie who lives in a plane that never touches the ground?
- Photo: Universal Pictures5206 VOTES
The Events Of 'Tokyo Drift' Take Place At Least Seven Years In The Future
The earliest - but not the most egregious - instance of timeline shenanigans in the Fast and the Furious franchise occurs in Fast 6 when it recontextualizes the demise of Han.
Han was originally shown to perish in the third film of the series, 2006's The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift. As it happens in that film, Han is taken out by a random car during a traffic collision. However, in Fast 6, this random car is shown to have been driven by Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham), and the collision is not so random at all.
The problem, of course, is that Fast 6 came out in 2013, which means the events of Fast 4, 5, and 6 are all prequels to Tokyo Drift. So, Tokyo takes place seven years after 2 Fast 2 Furious.
- Photo: Furious 7 / Universal Pictures6155 VOTES
Letty And Dom Actually Got Married Before 'Fast & Furious'
This is one of the more out of nowhere retcons in the series, mostly because it deals with something that we should have known or even seen in one of the many films in this franchise.
Throughout Furious 7, Letty deals with intense amnesia and it’s not until Dom suffers a near-fatal incident that her memories come flooding back. While cradling Toretto, Letty reveals that she remembers their wedding - something that the audience didn’t see until Letty had a flashback.
This means that she and Dom had to have been married after the events of the short film Los Bandoleros but before the events of Fast & Furious. So, when Dom leaves Letty in the beginning of Fast & Furious, he's not just abandoning his long time lover, he's abandoning the person he promised to be with "till death do us part."