The Fast & Furious 9 trailer is here and while yes, there’s the exciting addition of John Cena, and all the usual incredible car stunts — cue island-hopping in a car via wire cables — there was one big shock at the end that fans cannot get over. Han is alive. That’s right, fan favorite Fast & Furious character Han Lue (Sung Kang) is not dead, and will be back with his fast-driving family for the new film.
Han was presumably killed at the end of Fast & Furious: Tokyo Drift, so on this current timeline, his appearance means that he did survive his car crash at the end of the film somehow. Does this mean that Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) is innocent? Does this now change the entire team dynamic? Presumably we’ll find out in the new film.
Needless to say once the trailer dropped, the Fast Family (the cute nickname for the fandom dubbed by lead actor Vin Diesel) was in shambles. In particular, fans appreciated the film’s callback to Han having a perpetual snacking problem after quitting smoking.
As usual, once the initial shock was over, the waves of jokes and memes began.
One fan even made a callback to a comedy sketch explaining how Han survived his presumed killing by Shaw. It was revealed in Furious 7 that Shaw had been driving the car that killed Han at the end of Fast & Furious: Tokyo Drift. This sketch reimagines that scene in an exaggerated joke format.
Fast & Furious 9 director Justin Lin, who has directed previous installments, told Entertainment Weekly that he brought Han back into the franchise because of a special connection he had with the character, and to tie up some loose ends in the story.
“Obviously, I have a very personal connection to the character,” Lin said. “And so to be able to go through that journey with Han...when I left, I felt it was appropriate and I felt like we were putting the character to bed, but it’s because of some of the things that happened that didn’t quite make sense to me, and so I felt like if I was going to come back, I really wanted to explore why.”
As for how Han will fit in with the franchise, Lin did not reveal any spoilers, but did say he did not make the decision lightly and that “in this world, things happen for a reason.”
Whatever the reason is, we’re just happy our favorite dry-humored car thief is back.
Fast & Furious 9 will hit theaters May 21.