F9: The Fast Saga delivers all the same absurdity and hilariously improbable action that the franchise has become famous for in recent years, creating a number of plot holes and continuity errors along the way. Nitpicking a Fast and Furious movie for consistency and believability might seem like a fool’s errand, but the series has actually done a decent job through the years of justifying its various wild occurrences within its own less-than-realistic rules. But even still, there are some things in F9 that simply break the series’ established continuity.
It’s no secret that Fast and Furious is far from realistic, and in fairness, most of the things that happen in F9 could be categorized as plot holes if looked at through a strictly logical lens. How does Dom manage to collapse a concrete bunker on his head, plummet into a pool of water far below him, and still survive? How does the crew manage to outrun landmine explosions when that is physically impossible? How do Roman and Tej manage to find the International Space Station in the vast expanse of Earth’s orbit? The simple answer is that these aren’t plot holes. They’re perfectly sensical happenings in the world of Fast and Furious – a comic book world where people survive impossible things and wield superhuman abilities.
What’s less excusable in F9 are the actual plot holes, the continuity errors that clash with what’s already been established as true in the universe of the Fast franchise. There are a number of them throughout the movie, some of which can be partially explained with enough effort, and some of which simply don’t make sense.
Why Did Dom Never Mention Jakob?
The biggest apparent plot hole in F9 is the introduction of Jakob Toretto (John Cena), Dom and Mia’s estranged brother. Jakob was never mentioned once in the franchise before the first trailer for F9 released, and because of Dom’s intense family values, many fans took the mere existence of Jakob as a huge plot hole. It’s somewhat explainable through the film’s own logic, however. Since Dom values family so much, cutting his brother out of his life would necessitate a severe level of erasure. In other words, rejecting Jakob is at odds with Dom’s own morals, so he has to act as if Jakob is dead, or never existed, to live with his decision. That makes Jakob’s previous invisibility a bit more believable, but it’s still a significant continuity error.
Where Is Dom, Mia And Jakob’s Mother?
F9 shows a lot of Dom, Mia and Jakob’s youth through flashback scenes, but those scenes never involve – or even mention – their mother. In fact, Dom’s mom has never been mentioned once in the entire franchise. This is a big plot hole, as it impacts Mia and Jakob’s life significantly after Dom goes to prison. If they still have a parent at home during that time, things would be a lot different than if they were left to fend for themselves. And while everything about Jack Toretto’s story suggests he’s a single parent by the time of his death, this is never confirmed. If Dom and Mia’s mom is dead, why don’t they talk about her like they talk about Jack? There’s a lot that doesn’t make sense, and it won’t be fixed until Dom, Mia and Jakob’s mother is finally acknowledged.
How Did Mr. Nobody Capture Cipher?
Cipher (Charlize Theron) escapes capture at the end of The Fate of the Furious by leaping from her spy plane, but F9 begins with her being rescued from Mr. Nobody’s imprisonment by Jakob. The movie claims that Cipher was simply apprehended some time between the two movies, but the fact that her capture is never shown or explained seems like a bit of a plot hole. In Fate, Cipher is treated like the ultimate villain, whose technological skills and advanced weapons make her nearly impossible to find, let alone catch. It’s true that Mr. Nobody has access to similarly advanced tech, but it still seems like a bit of a stretch that he could just arrest her in between films with no fanfare at all.
Where’s Tokyo Drift’s Neela?
Most of the cast of The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift returns triumphantly in F9, with one notable exception. Neela, who played a major role in the third Fast film, is nowhere to be seen, and she isn’t even mentioned by her former friends. There’s a significant amount of time between Tokyo Drift and F9 in the official Fast and Furious timeline, so it’s possible she and the rest of the gang simply fell out of touch. However, it still seems odd that she doesn’t get so much as a line referencing her whereabouts, given everything she went through with Sean, Twinkie, Earl and Han in Tokyo Drift.
How Could Dom Not Know About His Father’s Debts?
In F9’s flashback scenes, it’s revealed that Dom kicked Jakob out of the Toretto family because he blamed him for their father’s death. While in prison, he remembers seeing Jakob doing something suspicious under Jack’s hood on the day of the accident, and in his grief and rage he chooses to believe that Jakob killed their father by choice. The truth is that Jack Toretto had was deeply in debt, and that he had Jakob sabotage his car on purpose to try to throw the race. He didn’t tell Dom at the time because he felt ashamed, and he made Jakob promise never to reveal the secret.
The problem here is that, as the de facto head of the Toretto household after getting out of prison, it seems highly unlikely that Dom wouldn’t have learned about his father’s debts eventually. It’s possible that the arrangements Jack made to throw the race still ended up easing his family’s financial burden enough that it wasn’t an immediate problem when Dom got out of prison, even though he died. It’s also possible that Jakob managed to square things up in the interim. But wouldn’t Mia have known something was up? And wouldn’t Dom have found out once he had control of the family’s financial history? It’s all technically feasible that he somehow never learned the truth, but that feels like a stretch too far.
Why Did Mr. Nobody Never Tell Dom About Han?
In Fast and Furious 9, it’s revealed that Mr. Nobody faked Han’s death, retconning Tokyo Drift and Furious 7 through an incredibly convoluted side plot involving super weapons, holograms, and secret adopted daughters. But somehow, within the odd logic of the franchise, it all sort of makes sense. What makes less sense is why, in the years since Han supposedly died, didn’t Mr. Nobody tell Dom? He obviously wouldn’t want to say anything in Furious 7 because Han would have still been highly vulnerable, and also because the belief that Deckard Shaw had killed Han helped convince Dom and the crew to work for Mr. Nobody in the first place. But what about in the years after? Surely a confidential acknowledgement that Han was still alive would have been safe, provided that his location wasn’t revealed. However, instead, Mr. Nobody lets Dom and everyone else continue believing that Han is dead.
Why Doesn’t Hobbs Help Dom In F9?
The biggest absence in F9 is Dwayne Johnson’s Luke Hobbs, who’s been a major player in the franchise since Fast Five. The highly publicized off-screen reason for his exclusion from F9 is that Johnson and Vin Diesel have a longstanding feud and refuse to work with each other. But in the world of the movie, F9 gives no real explanation for Hobb’s absence. There’s a throwaway line from Tej about how Mr. Nobody told them not to trust anyone else, but Hobbs is basically part of the family at this point in the story. His resources would surely have come in handy, and F9 doesn’t really even try to come up with a decent reason why he wouldn’t join the action.
Where Is Brian?
Closing out this list is a plot hole that isn’t really a plot hole, but is still worth mentioning. Because of Paul Walker’s tragic death prior to the completion of Furious 7, Brian O’Conner has effectively been written out of the Fast and Furious franchise. It’s the right decision, as recasting the character would be disrespectful, and F9 does a good job of weaving Brian into the background of the story. However, his absence inevitably feels a little off, as it did in The Fate of the Furious. Brian is a Toretto after marrying Mia, and while saying that he’s watching the kids during F9 is a good way to keep him out of the picture, it’s strange that he wouldn’t do everything possible to be by Dom’s side during his battle with Jakob. Again, F9 does the best it can with Brian, and it pays tribute to Walker in touching ways. But it’s also just a fact that F9, and the franchise in general, can’t help but feel a little empty without Brian.
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