Movies - TV
Popular Avatar Fan Theories Debunked
Many fans often see themselves in the art they love and want to engage with it as a way to understand its contents further, leading people to theorize about the world they just witnessed. However, these fan theories can regularly contradict the artist’s vision and diverge from the truth, such as these speculations surrounding James Cameron’s “Avatar.”
Jake is brainwashed
A popular theory first addressed in 2012 by Reddit user scottmale24 claims that Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) didn’t actually fall in love with Neytiri (Zoe Saldana), but was brainwashed. The user stated, “Pandora functions as a giant and incredibly neural network, and essentially rewrites Jake Sully’s mind to protect one of it’s primary networking hubs.”
The film somewhat demonstrates Jake’s susceptibility to group programming as he initially believed in the Marines’ cause, but his perspective changes once he falls in love. The protagonist realizes his role in spreading bigotry and fascism, which becomes apparent when Quaritch claims they’re going to “blast a crater in [the Na’vi’s] racial memory.”
While trying to understand the behavior and motives of the human characters in “Avatar,” Reddit user Scotscin proposes one explanation: Pandora drives humans insane. Scotscin notes that Pandora is described as “the most hostile environment known to man,” and while the planet seems almost entirely disease-free, it might mentally affect humans.
Although this theory could explain Quaritch’s erratic behavior and military mistakes, it doesn’t fit with how Cameron often portrays heroes as those who remain mentally strong against all odds. Scotscin’s theory isn’t exactly wrong, but the filmmaker’s point is how characters react to the pressure Pandora causes, revealing who they really are.