Total Nerd

Genius Fan Theories About the Tarantino Universe 

Ann Casano
Updated June 19, 2019 10.8k votes 2.9k voters 231.7k views 14 items

List Rules Vote up the theories you think make the most sense.

Imagine it’s the 1980s and you’re working in a video store. You’re not just a movie fanatic, but a true student of cinema. You write a script that gets made into a movie directed by Tony Scott called True Romance, and have the wherewithal to link one of the characters in that script (Alabama) with a character from another script you have,  Reservoir Dogs (Mr. White). You also lay out plans for the next script, and the script after that, and even work out connections for five scripts down the line. You plan to expertly intertwine characters and create alternate universes where these characters exist. Then you have to sit, wait, and hope someone notices your elaborate plans. Welcome to the world of Quentin Tarantino. 

Fan theories about Tarantino's films are all over the internet. Such theories begin with the (now confirmed) interconnected universe idea and expand from there. Not all these theories have been proven, and some are pretty far fetched, such as one claiming Bill from Kill Bill survived the five-point-palm-exploding-heart technique.

Regardless of whether a theory proves true, perusing these wildly imaginative works of fan fiction is a bloody good time for Tarantino fans, film buffs, and casual moviegoers alike. 
Mia Wallace's Failed Pilot Turns Into Kill Bill
Mia Wallace's Failed Pil... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Genius Fan Theories About the Tarantino Universe
Photo: Miramax Films

We know Kill Bill exists in the movie movie universe. Therefore, it's a film characters from Pulp Fiction could go to see.

When Vincent Vega takes Mia Wallace to Jack Rabbit Slims in Pulp Fiction, she tells him about a failed pilot she made called Fox Force Five, about a gang of deadly female assassins. According to one theory, Fox Force Five was turned into a movie starring Mia as The Bride.

From Mia's description of Fox Force Five in Pulp Fiction: "There was a blonde one...she was a leader [Daryl Hannah's character]. The Japanese fox was a kung fu master [Lucy Liu], the black girl was a demolition expert [Vivica A. Fox]. French fox's [Julie Dreyfus] specialty was sex. Mine [Thurman] was knives."
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All Tarantino's Movies Are Connected
All Tarantino's Movies A... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Genius Fan Theories About the Tarantino Universe
Photo: Miramax Films

The Tarantino universe is a well known fan theory confirmed by Tarantino. As per this theory, all of Tarantino's movies take place in the same universe, which is a unique to his films. For example, Vince Vega from Pulp Fiction and Vic Vega from Reservoir Dogs are brothers. Sleazy film producer Lee Donowitz from True Romance is the son of the Bear Jew Sgt. Donny Donowitz from Inglourious Basterds. The Tarantino universe extends beyond just characters, incorporating nonexistent products and cultural references such as Red Apple cigarettes and Big Kahuna Burger.

This Tarantino universe is called "the realer than real world universe" by QT himself. It's essentially an alternate reality similar to our world. The following films take place in this universe: Reservoir Dogs, True Romance, Pulp Fiction, Death Proof, Inglourious Basterds, Django Unchained, and The Hateful Eight. What about Kill Bill, you might be asking yourself. Well, read on. 
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Bad Things Happen When Vincent Goes to the Bathroom in Pulp Fiction
Bad Things Happen When V... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Genius Fan Theories About the Tarantino Universe
Photo: Miramax Films

You may remember that Vincent goes to the bathroom after dinner with Mia, in order to figure out how he's gonna get out of her house without being rude. During that pit stop, Mia overdoses on heroin she finds in Vincent's coat.

At the diner, Vincent goes to bathroom while Honey Bunny and Pumpkin hold up the restaurant. Finally, Vincent gets shot by Butch with Marsellus's gun (Marsellus went to get donuts; he's on his way back when Butch runs into him) during yet another trip to the bathroom.

Vincent does take a really long time in the restroom. It seems that he's really into reading Modesty Blaise, which is his literature of choice for lavatory visits.
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The Briefcase from Pulp Fiction Contains Marsellus's Soul
The Briefcase from Pulp ... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Genius Fan Theories About the Tarantino Universe
Photo: Miramax Films

Vincent Vega and Jules Winnfield nearly get shot trying to retrieve a briefcase for their boss, Marsellus Wallace. We see Vincent open the case, which emits a bright light. The case is opened again, at the diner, when Jules shows its contents to Honey Bunny and Pumpkin. "It's beautiful," Honey Bunny says.

We never find out what's in that case, making it a classic MacGuffin. The MacGuffin is a narrative device, suggested by Hitchcock, by which an object with no real significance is coveted by more than one person, creating instant conflict and the impetus for a story. 

But this glowing briefcase is more than just a MacGuffin - it's a mystery unto itself. What the hell is in there? Well, there are about a million fan theories suggesting answers to this question. The most common theory suggests the case contains Marsellus's soul, which he sold to the devil for wealth and status. The band aid in the back of Marsellus's neck covers the hole through which the devil extracted his soul. The briefcase's lock combination is 666.

Another theory is that the case contains the jewels that were stolen in Reservoir Dogs.
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