Fast and Furious 9, officially titled F9, introduces Dominic Toretto’s brother, Jakob, to The Fast Saga, but the problem is, it’s essentially a retcon. Dom (Vin Diesel) has been serving as the primary protagonist for the franchise since it launched in 2001. Former wrestler-turned-actor John Cena is set to portray the role of Jakob in F9. The reveal came during Fast & Furious 9‘s trailer release, but it had many viewers scratching their heads since the twist of Dom having a brother doesn’t make much sense.
Hitting theaters in May, F9 will serve as the ninth and penultimate film in The Fast Saga. The movie comes after the franchise branched off with its second spinoff, Hobbs & Shaw which released in 2019 to much success. The Fast Saga has gone through a lot of transformations over its two decades in existence, trading in street racing for worldwide heists and global threats. At the center of most films were the core characters of Dom, his sister Mia (Jordana Brewster), girlfriend Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), and enemy-turned-ally Brian (Paul Walker).
While the return of Han marked one of the biggest surprises to come out of the F9 trailer, the notion that Dom has a brother has interesting implications. Since the end of The Fate of the Furious, years have passed and Dom has been living the good life Letty and his young son, Brian. With Cipher (Charlize Theron) still in the mix and Jakob now out of the shadows, Dom and his crew will have another challenge ahead of them. Hopefully, F9 can fill in some of those blanks as a result of Jakob’s existence.
The first official trailer for F9 provided some useful insight into Cena’s character, Jakob. According to his face-to-face encounter with Dom, it’s been a very long time since the brothers have seen each other. Instead of a heartfelt reunion expected between siblings, there’s obvious bad blood between these two Torettos. Jakob is presumably the primary antagonist of F9 but he’s working alongside Cipher, the cyberterrorist who was taken down in The Fate of the Furious.
It’s unclear what brings Jakob and Cipher together expect for their mutual urge to kill Dom and his crew. It’s possible that Jakob was involved in her previous efforts, but this is the first time he’s directly shown. Cipher is clearly aware that Jakob is Dom’s brother and uses that sibling rivalry to give him the motivation to take out his target once and for all. Unfortunately for Dom’s team, Jakob has all the resources that Cipher once had as a criminal mastermind.
The trailer also reveals that Jakob and Dom are cut from the same cloth, seeing as the former is also a high-performance driver. Furthermore, Jakob is described as a master thief and a deadly assassin, indicating that Dom and the others have a powerful villain in their midst. F9 will surely reveal more in Jakob’s past and why the brothers are at odds. It will be interesting to see how the two veered off in different paths and never crossed up to this point of The Fast Saga.
As interesting as the brother twist is from a drama standpoint, the reveal doesn’t quite make sense when taking into account the rest of The Fast Saga. From the very first installment in 2001, the franchise took a lot of effort into presenting the theme of family. Even though Dom’s closest allies weren’t all members of the Toretto family, he constantly treated his crew like they were blood. This importance of family was a driving force of The Fast Saga, so why hasn’t Jakob ever been mentioned?
Surely during all of their conflicts and heart-to-heart conversations, Dom would have brought up Jakob while talking to Mia, Brian, or Letty. Dom even confided in Brian about his father and how his father helped Mia with her education, as an example. For someone who cares so much about that familial relationship, it’s easy to assume Jakob’s name would have been mentioned to reveal some sort of falling out or past mystery. It’s also unlike Dom to not try and patch things up with a loved one despite the trouble that might have plagued the past.
Of course, the easiest explanation in the questionable twist is that this particular familial reveal came late in the planning process for The Fast Saga. The core films are nearing nine deep over the course of two decades. The storytellers at the helm of the past films probably never had a reason to hint at Dom having a brother. The idea might not have been formed until after The Fate of the Furious, thus giving the franchise another exciting avenue to explore, despite the various plot holes. The Fast Saga has never cared much about playing it safe or sticking to the side of reality, so fans shouldn’t be too surprised. Anything is possible with these movies and that’s what makes them so much fun.
Dom refers to Jakob as “little brother” in one scene in the Fast & Furious 9 trailer, but other factors could be in play with their true relationship. Jakob could be a long-lost brother or someone who was presumed dead, leading one to believe that Dom never mentioned him due to his involvement in the death. It’s also possible that Jakob was adopted and never fully felt like a member of the Toretto family, resulting in some type of vendetta that he carried with him into adulthood.
The interesting detail revealed in the footage is that Letty refers to Jakob as only Dom’s bother, but she doesn’t mention Mia. Brewster’s character is making her return to the franchise with F9, so she’s clearly present when Jakob causes trouble. At this point, it looks like Jakob might not be directly related to Mia. Dom and Jakob may share a parent like a mother but Dom and Mia may have been raised by their father, a Toretto. When the pair were introduced, Dom was running his own garage and Mia was managing the family’s grocery store, but the parents were never shown. Dom is very protective of his little sister, but the dynamic of Jakob’s parents could have thrown a wrench in that same type of relationship with a brother. The truth about the Toretto bloodline will eventually come out with F9 and the rest of The Fast Saga.
Next: Why Dwayne Johnson Isn’t Returning For Fast & Furious 9