Fast X Spoilers: Ending, Deaths, Cameos, and What This Means for Part 2
Fast X concludes on several massive cliffhangers and surprises. We consider what this means as Fast and Furious approaches its endgame.
This article contains major FAST X SPOILERS.
For a franchise where no one seems to ever stay dead, things sure look deadly serious at the end of Fast X. Vin Diesel’s Dominic Toretto and his young son sit beneath a Portuguese dam with mere seconds to think before its massive waters and debris crash on their heads; the B-team of Roman (Tyrese Gibson), Tej (Ludacris), Han (Sung Kang), and Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel) appear to have almost certainly perished in a car wreck; and even the return of Gal Gadot’s Gisele does little to soften the sting of Uncle Jakob’s (John Cena) noble sacrifice.
In its final moments, Fast X appears to reach for the sudden shock of seeing your favorite superheroes turn to dust in Avengers: Infinity War. Whether it actually pulls that off with excitement (as opposed to bafflement) is open for debate, but either way there is a lot to unpack regarding what this means for the series going forward, even before you start taking into account the Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson of it all…
Fast X Ending Is Meant to Leave You Hanging
As originally conceived by producer Neal H. Mortiz and star/producer Vin Diesel, Fast X was at first intended to be the grand finale for the franchise: a 10th installment that could come out in time for the series’ 20th anniversary in 2021. Obviously, the pandemic harmed that plan, but so did the filmmakers’ own plans. By early 2020, Diesel was already hinting that the finale could be split into two movies, and in 2021 confirmed “part of the reason why Fast 10 has to be broken into two different movies [is] because there’s so much ground to cover.”
Since Fast X’s premiere, Diesel has even teased that the plans have changed yet again, and what was once supposed to be a two-parter may now turn into a trilogy. So the 2023 films’ ending was never going to be fully satisfying, although just how abrupt the actual thing plays is still more jarring than it is tantalizing:
After Uncle Jakob uses his Batmobile-esque vehicle to kamikaze a fleet of enemy vehicles coming for Dom’s ol’ Dodge Charger, apparently killing himself in the process, Dom finds himself surrounded at the top of a dam by self-driving oil tankers. The villainous Dante (Jason Momoa) reveals this is exactly where he always intended things to end against Toretto, with Dom and his son Little Brian (Leo Abelo Perry) helpless as they are betrayed by corrupt CIA man Aimes (Alan Rtichson*), who uses a bazooka to knock Tej, Roman, Han, and Ramsey’s airplane out of the sky.
(*Fun fact: Ritchson played Aquaman on the CW’s Smallville well before Momoa did the same on the big screen, which means the real villains of Fast X are the Aquaman Bros!)
Dom being Dom, however, means he of course can improvise out of a tricky situation. Hence the Charger incredulously driving down the side of an almost vertical dam, outrunning the first explosion. But with the car seemingly crashing for good in the water below, there is now no escape when Dante blows up the rest of the dam, burying the Torettos under countless gallons of water.
Frankly, the pair should be dead. Although they should’ve died on the dam, and in fact, Dom should’ve died many times over the course of this movie, beginning when he drove his car head-long into a brick wall in Rome. So ignoring physics, there is one Hail Mary yet to be revealed which we think can save him…
The Return of Mr. Nobody
Gone but never forgotten, Kurt Russell’s Mr. Nobody has cast a long shadow across the Fast and Furious movies. After stealing scenes with his preferred Belgian ales in both Furious 7 and The Fate of the Furious, this master spy for “the Agency” was last seen wounded but still very much alive in the eighth Fast movie. In fact, one of the inciting incidents in F9: The Fast Saga is Dom and the Family thinking they’ve located Mr. Nobody after his disappearance. This turns out to be a trick, with the spook’s disappearance remaining unexplained even after we meet his daughter Tess (Brie Larson) in Fast X. It is during her first scene with the duplicitous Aimes that the traitor complains her father has done his disappearing act.
All of this is setting up one inevitability: Russell needs to return to the Fast films and round out his character’s storyline. What better way than to begin Fast X Vol. II with Mr. Nobody showing up out of nowhere in a helicopter to rescue Dom and his son? Would it make sense given how we last saw them with mere seconds left to act before the dam blew up? No, but Dante’s teleporting chopper also disobeyed the rules of reality when it surprised Dom and Tess in Brazil after they had Momoa’s villain captured earlier in Fast X.
Logic and physics don’t matter in this series. Some type of deus ex machina is needed to begin the 11th Fast movie, and those always go down better when an old familiar face from three movies ago shows up and garners an audience cheer of recognition. It’s Mr. Nobody’s turn to get that applause.
Gal Gadot Is Back: What Does This Mean
If you need a better example as to why Mr. Nobody has to come back, look no further than the newly resurrected Gisele (Gal Gadot). This Family member, and lover of Han, was last seen in Fast & Furious 6 where she seemingly died after sacrificing herself to save Han during the climax. The aftermath caused a grieving Han to travel to Tokyo alone, where he was supposed to have died in the third film, The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift/Furious 7 (the timeline is wonky, innit?).
However, Gisele’s return seemed imminent after it was revealed in F9: The Fast Saga that Han faked his death in order to continue Gisele’s mission for Mr. Nobody, which involved protecting Elle (Anna Sawai) from bad guys. If Han faked his death to become a secret agent for Mr. Nobody, it only makes sense that Gisele might’ve done the same, right? It would also explain why Han was so ambivalent about Roman trying to get him on Tinder in Fast X.
Fast X also seems to tease Gisele’s continued association with Mr. Nobody since she shows up in a submarine similar to the one the Family fought on behalf of the Agency in The Fate of the Furious. She uses it to save Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) and Cipher (Charlize Theron) from their Antarctic prison. This all seems to suggest the next movie(s) will involve Mr. Nobody’s shadowy operations being put to the test in the fight against Dante, who has inexplicably replaced Cipher as the series’ final big bad.
So Gisele’s back from the dead (and Gadot back in the franchise after the cancellation of Wonder Woman 3) with a military grade submarine, ready to fight Dante and his acquisition of the powerful MacGuffin from the seventh film, the Godseye. This is the same MacGuffin that was designed by Ramsey. Alas, Ramsey seems dead after the events of Fast X… right?
No One Is Really Dead in These Movies
Let’s be honest, there is no way that Han, Ramsey, Roman, and Tej could survive their plane crashing into the side of a mountain. We also saw absolutely no parachutes. However, there is no way Han should’ve been able to survive that explosion from Tokyo Drift/Furious 7 with his car flipped and the fire rushing to his strapped-in body. Yet an insert shot of a manhole in F9 hand-waves away certain death.
Similarly, if Gisele comes back, they’re all coming back. The comic relief trio is especially safe since they’ve established Ramsey has personal beef with Dante using the Godseye MacGuffin to hurt people. She’s going to need to get her revenge for that narrative to have payoff. How did they survive? I’m not sure it matters any more than the fact that Jakob ended F9 by saying he’s not ready to come to the barbecue and then spends Fast X playing the goofy uncle with Dom’s son, going on roadtrips and watching Minions.
Plotting cohesion and consistent characterization matter as much to these films as they did soap operas and comic books in the 1990s. Uncle Jakob is probably going to show up with just a scratch in the post-credits of Fast X.2 despite pancaking his car upside down with no roof. After all, everyone loves a great post-credits scene…
Luke Hobbs Is Back, So Where Does Fast and Furious Go Next?
Fast X’s post-credits scene was certainly a doozy. After publicly and vocally distancing himself from the series, and even declining Vin Diesel’s overtures in the press to get him in Fast X, Dwayne Johnson showed up in the post-credits scene as Luke Hobbs, ambivalent and unfazed by Dante’s audio threats.
Like Gadot’s return, Johnson’s reprise of a Fast and Furious character probably has something to do with how the hierarchy of power in the DC Universe changed last year. Still, it’s good to see Johnson’s magnetic swagger, which honestly was a big reason as to why Fast Five and Furious 7 remain the best films in the series.
It also makes sense that Dante would go out of his way to kill Hobbs since it was this guy who shot Dante’s father to death in Fast Five; Dom simply drove the car that made the old man vulnerable to Luke Hobbs’ reach. We imagine a big part of the 11th Fast movie will thus be about how Dante will try to screw with Hobbs’ life in the same manner that he attempted to pick apart Dom’s Family in Fast X.
It would be especially interesting if this led to Hobbs bringing the whole Family to Samoa, which was the climactic setting of Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, and where it was revealed that Hobbs has a large extended family. Getting Diesel on Johnson’s home turf would have meta interest appeal. However, we suspect they’ll just keep the next installment(s) focused on Dante going after Hobbs’ daughter, much the same way he went after Dom’s son in Fast X.
There is also one other cliffhanger in Fast X, too, with Shaw (Jason Statham) appearing onscreen just long enough to discover his mother (Helen Mirren) is in danger, and driving to her rescue. Hopefully the next film will actually let Shaw and Han discuss the whole “trying to kill you” thing with a little depth, but either way we imagine the amusing frenemy bromance between Shaw and Hobbs will inevitably lead to Johnson winding up in the UK to participate in their storyline.
In the end, it seems the whole series is about bringing everything and everyone back: the Godseye from Furious 7; the potential of cars vs. submarine warfare from The Fate of the Furious; and a descendant of the spectacle from the franchise’s best film, Momoa’s Dante and his connection to Fast Five. We stand by our theory, then, that Mr. Nobody will thus turn out to be the linchpin of all this labyrinthine mythology, and who knows, maybe Jordana Brewster’s Mia and her children with Brian (the late Paul Walker) will get something to do next time too.
But what do you want from Fast and Furious XI: The Finale Part 1 (of At Least Two More)?