Top Gun: Maverick Speculation Proposes Maverick Was Deceased Throughout the Entire Film

And you know what, it kinda makes sense.

Even if you love Top Gun: Maverick (and you should because it’s ace), you’ll be able to admit that it can get quite ridiculous at times.

We’re not just talking about the intense and thrilling set pieces where everything seems to happen just at the right time, including a couple of last-ditch rescue attempts. It’s baked into the very set-up of the legacy sequel as Maverick is called back to Top Gun to train up pilots for an impossible mission that only he knows how to do.

That’s a classic action-movie concept, for sure, but an excellent theory from Vulture from May 2022 suggests that there’s a logical plot reason for why everything is so heightened: it’s all the dying fantasy of Maverick.

We’re about to go into spoilers, so last warning if you haven’t seen Top Gun: Maverick yet. (And if you haven’t, it’s on Netflix in the UK and Ireland right now.)

tom cruise in top gun maverick

When we reunite with Maverick at the start of the movie, he’s about to attempt to reach Mach 9 in a hypersonic jet as part of the Darkstar program. He’s told that Rear Admiral Cain is on his way to shut it down to redirect the funds to unmanned drones.

Before Cain arrives, Maverick takes to the skies anyway and reaches Mach 9 before deciding to push on to Mach 10, the planned target of Darkstar. He manages just that but, Maverick being Maverick, decides to push the scramjet even further which is when things go very wrong.

We see the jet break apart in the sky and yet, somehow, the next scene sees Maverick wander into a diner a little bit dazed, but still alive and in one piece. The theory argues though that this never really happens, and everything we see play out is the “death dream” of Maverick.

Now, we know that you’ve heard plenty of ‘They were dead all along!’ theories and, sure, this isn’t accurate, yet it does hold up extremely well. As it states, if you accept the “death dream”, it makes a lot of the little niggles about the sequel work.

tom cruise, top gun maverick

It’s Maverick’s dying fantasy, so of course he’s the one pilot in the world that can make this impossible mission work. And, of course, despite Maverick only intending to be the teacher, he ends up leading the mission that includes him making a sacrifice play to save Rooster, which he also somehow survives.

Even the fact that Top Gun: Maverick leaves the actual identity of the enemy unknown makes sense in the theory. Maverick is just using inspiration from his last major Top Gun mission where he also went up against a similarly-unspecified enemy in the first movie.

It’s also why when we first meet Rooster, he’s dressed exactly as his father Goose did and sports the same moustache, going on to play the same song at the piano. You could even take the theory further and argue that Maverick and Rooster’s reconciliation in the finale is part of the fantasy, something that Maverick wasn’t able to do in life.

You could also apply it to the other main relationships that Maverick has in the movie. It would have to be Iceman who recommended him for the mission as he had Maverick’s back throughout his career, while Maverick gets together with Penny at the end as it’s another relationship that, like Rooster, Maverick didn’t get right in life.

tom cruise, jennifer connelly, top gun maverick

Following the movie’s release in May 2022, director Joseph Kosinski refused to “throw cold water” on the theory. “Movies are meant to be interpreted in a variety of ways, and I love it when people read different meanings into it,” he explained.

“So I love hearing that theory, and certainly, there’s a mythic kind of element to the story that I think lends itself to that sort of interpretation, based on who Maverick is and what he represents and the fact that he’s kind of going through this rite of passage at a different phase of his life.”

Maybe we’re letting ourselves get carried away here and, like we said, it’s almost definitely not the case that Maverick died at the start. After all, the sequel has been a mega-hit at the box office already which makes a third movie a serious possibility, and Maverick can’t exactly be dead if that does happen.

You still can’t deny though that the theory makes a lot of sense. As Vulture concludes, we could be watching “someone dreaming impossible dreams right before they burn up in the atmosphere” and the movie would make just as much – if not more – sense.

It might be a grim and dark kind of sense, but that doesn’t mean it couldn’t be true…

Related Posts

Our Privacy policy - © 2024 News75today