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Inconceivable Yet Believable 'Princess Bride' Fan Theories

Updated September 12, 2019 7.3k votes 1.3k voters 56.6k views14 items

List RulesVote up the most inconceivable yet believable fan theories for 'The Princess Bride.'

The Princess Bride is the quintessential feel-good family film. Along with an eponymous novel that served as its source material, the movie tells a fantastical story of a couple in love who must overcome many dastardly adversaries to live happily ever after. As one of a whole bunch of funny and heartwarming '80s movies, The Princess Bride is the ideal film to watch with kids or a date, thanks to its romantic themes. The film's fantasy setting combined with its cult following makes it perfect for speculation fodder. Since the film's 1987 release, there has been no shortage of The Princess Bride fan theories.

These range from the importance of the film's famous three-word phrase (as seen in the "as you wish" fan theory) to the argument that Prince Humperdinck did ultimately triumph, despite the film's optimistic ending. In the "Dread Pirate Roberts grandpa" fan theory, some speculate that the senior man telling the story could be more significant than the viewer initially believes. Remember to vote up the arguments that you think are most believable, and vote down those that are inconceivable.

  • 1

    The Exaggerated Accents And Silly Voices Are Part Of The Grandfather's Performance

    Anyone who has seen The Princess Bride is familiar with how many of the characters have nonsensical or exaggerated voices. The reason for this, according to Redditor /u/Stuckinthevortex, is the grandfather is performing these roles as the grandson imagines the scenes in his head.

    This would also explain why the assistant of the person with albinism has an accent that appears to change. The original voice was too difficult to maintain, so the grandfather had to alter his performance to finish the story. There's some evidence for this in the way the assistant coughs before his voice changes, perhaps indicating that the grandfather was clearing his throat before modifying how he spoke.

    Is this believable?
  • 2

    Inigo Prompts The Six-Fingered Man So He Can Reply With His Prepared Speech

    While The Princess Bride mainly focuses on Westley, Buttercup, and Prince Humperdinck, a number of intriguing side-plots occur within both the book and movie. One of these centers around dueling rogue Inigo Montoya and his quest to get revenge upon the six-fingered man who slew his father.

    He has rehearsed the confrontation thousands of times, and when he finally encounters Count Rugen, he is ready to exact his vengeance. However, as Redditor /u/mrhorrible points out, when the actual duel with Tyrone Rugen arrives, Inigo soon finds that his opponent doesn't follow his plans. This is why Inigo instructs Rugen on what to say once he has the count in his clutches - he wants to deliver his prepared line.

    Is this believable?
  • 3

    Vizzini Only Played The Battle Of Wits Out Of Desperation

    Several times in both the book an film, Vizzini gets referred to as incredibly clever. Yet, the audience is left thinking that he is something of a fool - or at least incredibly arrogant - for taking part in a battle of wits with Westley. Redditor /u/magrippalfcos suggests that Vizzini took part in the game not out of arrogance, but because he saw it as the only possible path to survival.

    By this point in the story, Westley had already defeated a legendary swordsman and a giant, meaning he could have easily defeated Vizzini in a physical fight. While the battle of wits left Vizzini at a disadvantage, it was the best chance he had to survive the encounter with the Man in Black, especially after Vizzini switched the goblets when his opponent was distracted.

    Is this believable?
  • 4

    Westley Learned Swordsmanship From A 'Wizard'

    In the book version of The Princess Bride, a character by the name of Bastia gets mentioned. He was a swordsman who held the rank of a wizard, which put him a step above master swordsmen like Inigo. Bastia apparently perished at sea and was never seen again.

    Redditor /u/pasdinquietude, however, believes that Bastia may have met a similar fate to Westley's. Rather than being slain, he was taken by the Dread Pirate Roberts on his ship. Westley was then able to learn directly from Bastia while aboard the ship. He became highly skilled with a sword, ultimately gaining the know-how to overcome Inigo.

    Is this believable?