Terminator: Dark Fate's New Villain Rev 9 Explained

Gabriel Luna as Rev 9 in Terminator Dark Fate

A new Terminator, the Rev 9, will be introduced in Terminator: Dark Fate. The Skynet villain follows in a long line of Terminator assassins who have been sent back from the future to ensure the humans don't successfully rise up overthrow their technological overlords.

Although the Terminator franchise has experienced some low points, critically and financially, with its more latest installments, the dream team of Cameron, Schwarzenegger, and Hamilton have returned for Dark Fate and are joining forces with Deadpool director Tim Miller and actors Mackenzie Davis, Natalia Reyes, Gabriel Luna, and Diego Boneta to tell a new story. Taking place years after Terminator 2: Judgment Day (and ignoring franchise installments Rise of the Machines, Salvation, and Genisys), Dark Fate will follow half-human, half-machine Grace (Davis) as she tries to protect Dani (Reyes) from a Rev 9 Terminator (Luna). Along the way, Grace and Dani get some much-needed help from Schwarzenegger and Hamilton, both reprising their roles as a Terminator (albeit one named Carl) and Sarah Connor, respectively.

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Related: Who Is Carl? Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Terminator: Dark Fate Character Explained

Grace, Dani, Sarah, and Carl are going to have their work cut out for them against the Rev 9 of the Dark Fate trailer is anything to go by. But what can audiences expect from Luna's Terminator? What abilities does it have? What is its mission? Here's everything we know about Terminator: Dark Fate's Rev 9.

Gabriel Luna Plays The Rev 9 In Terminator: Dark Fate

Gabriel Luna will play Rev 9 in Terminator: Dark Fate. The latest actor to step into the Terminator's metal shoes is best known for playing Robbie Reyes/Ghost Rider in Agents of SHIELD, the ace motorcycle driver who becomes Satan's bounty hunter through a supernatural and macabre twist of fate. Luna has previously appeared True DetectiveNCIS: Los Angeles, and Prison Break. Dark Fate will introduce Luna to his biggest audience yet.

The Rev 9 Can Split In Two

The Rev 9 is a unique Terminator because it has the ability to split into two, something no other model has been shown to be able to do before. This new ability was revealed at CinemaCon back in April 2019. Director Tim Miller commented on this upgrade, telling CinemaCon attendees, "Our cool new feature... is he can split. So he’s twice as deadly."

The mechanics of how the Rev 9 splits in two were spotlighted in the Terminator: Dark Fate trailer: his mimetic polyalloy exterior can fully detach from his metal endoskeleton, creating a totally new Rev 9 body. The trailer shows it do this during the highway chase scene, with the main body driving a truck while the liquid mental version attacks Grace et al. Even though the endoskeleton and the polyalloy have separated, it would seem both Terminators maintain their durability and are not actually weakened by the separation.

Related: Everything You Need To Know About Terminator: Dark Fate

Every new Terminator introduced in a sequel movie tends to have some interesting new upgrade or ability to make them stand out. A prime, if not slightly cringey, example of this was the T-X's ability to enlarge her breasts at will in order to distract a human male cop in Terminator: Rise of the Machines. Rev 9's ability to split into two Terminators is a more useful upgrade, reminding Dani, Grace, and Sarah they're fighting a Terminator unlike any other.

What Is The Rev 9's Mission In Terminator: Dark Fate?

As seen in the Dark Fate trailer and San Diego Comic-Con footage, Rev 9 is ultimately on a mission to kill Dani. In the trailer specifically, it's revealed Dani's destiny is very similar to Sarah's, although what that destiny might be isn't made explicit.

The exact reason Dani is being targeted by the Rev 9 is simultaneously obvious and frustratingly unclear: the Terminator: Dark Fate trailer heavily implies Dani is just like Sarah Connor, but the how of the comparison isn't explained. If Dani, like Sarah, is meant to birth the leader of the Skynet resistance, then viewers can expect Rev 9's actions to closely mirror the Terminator's mission in 1984's The Terminator. Dani could also be like Sarah, as stated in the trailer, in the sense that she's meant to bring down the entire system herself. This would still give the Rev 9 a reason to pursue her.

Sarah and John Connor's presence in Terminator Dark Fate, to varying degrees, calls Dani's purpose - and the Rev 9's mission, by extension - into question. The Connors' impact on and involvement with the resistance will still be important to the story, even if the shape of it all isn't clear just yet. Additionally, not knowing if John is still alive or if his role has somehow changed since Terminator 2: Judgment Day could affect Dani's Dark Fate arc and how exactly she is like Sarah.

Related: Terminator 6 Theory: John Connor Isn’t In Dark Fate (Because He’s Dead)

How The Rev 9 Compares To Other Terminator Models

The Rev 9 almost appears to be a combination of a T-800 and a T-1000, as seen in The Terminator and Terminator 2: Judgment Day. As a result, the Rev 9 oddly most closely resembles the T-X, which was last seen in Terminator: Rise of the Machines.

The T-800, as seen in The TerminatorTerminator 2: Judgment DayTerminator: Salvation, and Terminator: Genisys, is the first Terminator of its kind to feature living tissue grafted onto the skeleton of a Terminator body. This theory has been applied for the Rev 9, but mimetic polyalloy outer frame is derived more from the T-1000 (right down to the knife arms).

Other New Terminators In Dark Fate

Terminator Dark Fate New Model

The Rev 9 isn't the only new robot in the movie. In addition cyborg Grace, Dark Fate features a Terminator with metal tentacles coming out of its endoskeleton. The tentacles are likely made of the same material as the endoskeleton, making them hard to destroy but easy to use to move and to fight its enemies. The tentacles may be sharp enough to stab but they could also come equipped with other weaponry, too. It's unclear if this is an entirely new Terminator model or part of the Rev 9's features, but its presence in SDCC footage suggests it's part of the future-set sequence.

Next: The Best Terminator Movie Viewing Order

Key Release Dates
  • Terminator: Dark Fate (2019) release date: Nov 01, 2019
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