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Not all fan theories are created equal. Some are brilliant breakthroughs that unlock a whole new understanding of a popular show or movie. Others are ... totally off the mark. That's okay, because part of being a fan is interacting with what you love! There are bad fan theories, but no bad fan theorists, in other words.
The problem arises when a legitimate entertainment news source spreads around one of these theories, milking it for your hard-earned click rather than actually engaging with the theory on its merits and contributing to the discourse. When that happens, SYFY WIRE will let you know which viral fan theories should be dismissed.
January's wrapping up, and that means we’re that much closer to the only month in 2019 that really matters: April. With Avengers: Endgame and the final season of Game of Thrones — undoubtedly the two biggest drivers of the Fan Theory Industrial Complex — both set for an April release, expect to see even more fan theory write-ups, for better or worse. We’ll focus on the "worse" this week, as we always do, with theories about Hodor’s zombie, a Jon Snow and Cersei hook-up, and Doctor Strange being the most important movie in the entire MCU.
01. Hodor will return as an undead wight
Hodor's death was a tragic and memorable loss in a series that's chock full of sad character deaths. His story arc — which we realized was actually more of a story circle, given the closed-loop time-travel aspects of the "hold the door" moment played out — had concluded in a jaw-dropping fashion.
But, what if, as this post which references Reddit users but doesn't name or link to any, Hodor comes back as an undead servant of the Night King? We didn't see his body burn, after all, so what if he comes back and, because he's so big and strong, his wright changes the tide of the battle?
The "evidence" for this theory is a classic bit of "well, we didn't see the body, so how can we really be sure he’s not coming back?" And, well, yes, it's possible that Hodor was revived as a wright, assuming he wasn't literally torn apart by all the undead pursing Bran and Meera.
But, what does the narrative of the story stand to gain by bringing Hodor back as an undead goon? From a strength perspective, we know the Night King has actual, literal zombie giants in its ranks, so Hodor being a big strong dude just isn't that impressive. And while it might be a jarring emotional shock for viewers to see good ol' Hodor as an undead terror, where would that emotion play out in the story? Bran and Meera are pretty much the only characters left who had a strong enough relationship with Hodor that they would feel shock upon seeing him as a wright, and neither one seems likely to be on the front lines of the battlefield. Jon Snow knows Hodor, yes, but there's no evidence that the two had any sort of deep bond, so it likely wouldn’t be all that traumatic for Jon to fight him on the battlefield.
To bring Hodor back just to shock the audience would be cheap and, hopefully, beneath Game of Thrones' level of storytelling.
02. Jon Snow and Cersei Lannister will get married to forge an alliance
International Business Times, which is less of a respectable journalism outlet and more of an alleged money-laundering front, wrote up this bit of content speculating that Jon Snow and Cersei Lannister will get married in the final season of Game of Thrones. The theory isn't sourced to Reddit, so let's really did into why this potentially homebrewed idea is totally flawed.
Remember how, in Season 7, Jon and Daenerys tried to forge an alliance with Cersei to beat the White Walkers, and she pretended to agree to help them only to reveal to Jaime that she planned on betraying them? If Jon and Cersei do somehow get married, it will largely negate this whole plot twist and put things more or less where they were a half season ago. There are only six episodes left — Thrones does not have time to repeat itself.
And, on a character level, this makes no sense at all. We've already seen that Jon Snow is in love with his (aunt) Daenerys to the point where he's valuing his pledge to her above more realpolitik concerns. Also, the driving force of Cersei's story since Season 1 has been her resenting that she was married to a man she despised for political reasons. Since then, Cersei has become a powerful queen in her own right, and it would make no narrative sense to undo that by forcing her to return to where she was at the beginning of the series.
Also, Cersei's probably gonna die in Season 8, so don't expect to hear any wedding bells.
03. The extremely memorable villain from Doctor Strange will be the ultimate villain of Avengers: Endgame
This is the way that fan theories work: Because one leaked bit of copy for a Rocket Racoon toy mentioned the Avengers fighting off against an “even greater threat,” theorists and aggregators are going nuts trying to guess who the greater threat might be. I touched on a version of this theory last week, but this latest spin is more specific in a way that merits debunking.
The original theorist posits that Dormammu, the terrifyingly powerful entity that Doctor Strange successfully bargained with in Doctor Strange, will break free and unleash havoc in Endgame. "It's possible that Thanos snap somehow opened a gateway for the ruler of dark dimension and to his most advantage there are no sorcerer supremes left to guard Earth from him," they theorist wrote on Reddit.
Sure, it's possible that Dormammu could come back, but as we keep saying, think about what kind of storytelling that would be? Marvel spent a decade building up Thanos as the ultimate villain, and he certainly made an impression when he took action in Infinity War. He's strong, he's charismatic, and he's complicated. Why would Marvel suddenly shove him aside and replace him with an almost literally faceless villain who appeared in one scene of one of the MCU's B-tier films? Thanos is a character, while Dormammu is a special effect.