John Connor's existence POLL

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by The Borgified Corpse, May 27, 2009.

?

Was there ever a timeline where John Connor was not fathered by Reese?

  1. Yes. John Connor cannot independently create himself. He had to come from somewhere.

    18 vote(s)
    20.9%
  2. No. The first film is a closed loop predestination paradox.

    68 vote(s)
    79.1%
  1. xman

    xman Commander Red Shirt

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    It could very easily have happened that way, but that's all gone now and we're stuck in the loop.

    The question I have is, doesn't John have to send Kyle back before Skynet sends the T800? Otherwise, the machines would succeed and John Prime would never exist. Connor has to find the time machine before Skynet decides to use it. He's literally bound to do it. Skynet is also bound to make more Terminators before this is all over. We've seen a couple of them show up in the past. This would all have to be resloved at some point if there are going to be more movies.

    Assuming John is successful in getting Kyle out in time, anything that happens after the T900 and the T-X (and any others I may not be aware of because I haven't watched all of SCC) are sent is outside the loop and thus fair game, especially if the break the time machine.

    X
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2009
  2. Scout101

    Scout101 Admiral Admiral

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    Nah, check that link from the last page. The gist would have to be:

    Sarah has a kid (boy or girl, name not important) who grows up to be a leader in the resistance. Skynet sends someone back to kill her before the kid grows into the leader. For Connor to send someone back in time to oppose the Terminator, it has to have already failed. Most likely, it *kinda* failed. It came back to 1984, made an attempt on Sarah, and she got away, and had a kid while in hiding. Eventually, the Terminator finds her and kills her, but the kid still grows up to lead the resistance. follow THAT future back to 2018 (or 2029, or whenever), and Connor (but not OUR Connor) sees the Terminator go back to do that again. He (or she) now decides to try and send someone to protect their mother, and sends Kyle. This is where the train goes off the rails, and into the loop. Kyle, in the process of saving Sarah, replaces Connor's father with himself, and that creates John. Also creates a future where Skynet comes into existance earlier than they normally would.

    In this loop, Skynet decides to try and kill Sarah, and John knows that he has to send Kyle to save her, because she's already told him that's how it happens. Round and round we go.
     
  3. captcalhoun

    captcalhoun Admiral Admiral

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    why does everybody assume that as soon as the Terminator goes back, it succeeds in its mission and kyle can't go back? Kyle and the T-800 clearly arrive within minutes of each other.
     
  4. nx1701g

    nx1701g Admiral Admiral

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    I love the theory of multiple timelines. Did you know there is even a Terminator reality where Sarah Connor gave birth to a Daughter instead of a son? Her name was Jane Connor.
     
  5. Scout101

    Scout101 Admiral Admiral

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    Because once the Terminator disappears into the past, the result is known in the future. Kyle isn't 5 minutes behind him, for all intents and purposes, he's 40 years late.

    If I go from 2009 to 2006 and kill you, you'll have a tough time coming from 2009 to try and stop me, having died in 2006.

    That's the only way ANY of it works. Essentially, the T-800 has to fail before you can try to stop it. And in that case, stopping its primary mission can't be yours, because you already know it failed.

    That's what is talked about in the T2 discussion, for example. Arnold isn't sent back to save John, no matter what he says. John sent him from the future, so we know John survives. It's more likely that he's sent back to save Sarah, who probably died protecting John the last time through the loop. When the t-1000 goes back, and John doesn't disappear, he knows the T-1000 didn't kill him (and remembers the circumstances of the attack). Logically, Arnold has to be there to do something else, the most likely of which is to protect Sarah...
     
  6. Samurai8472

    Samurai8472 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    cue John Connor sharpening "John Connor" batarangs in a cave
     
  7. captcalhoun

    captcalhoun Admiral Admiral

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    the T2 novel actually features a bit of narrative where John can't remember anything past seeing the table with 'no fate' carved in it.
     
  8. hyzmarca

    hyzmarca Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    But you don't know why it failed. For all you know, it only failed because you stopped it.

    Again, you're making the mistake of plotting time in two dimensions instead of in one.

    Backwards time travel cannot alter the past, because it is already written into the past.
     
  9. Ryan8bit

    Ryan8bit Commodore Commodore

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    Nah, he even admits that certain things wouldn't work out, like how the lieutenants die. The only way for him to work around it is to say they didn't die, which is a huge stretch. But his whole theory is a stretch as applied to Terminator. However, I don't think there really is one sensible time travel theory since T2 came along.

    Actually, I don't believe that is his reasoning, although it's an interesting concept.

    There are a lot of holes in his logic, and required leaps of faith it takes to get to his conclusions. How would John even know a time traveling cyborg killed his mom (unless Skynet was really off of the mark in time)? This is just one example of many that I don't have too much time to get into right now.
     
  10. The Borgified Corpse

    The Borgified Corpse Admiral Admiral

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    Exactly. A very good example of this kind of time travel occurs in the Gene Roddenberry's Andromeda episode "Angel Dark Demon Bright." In it, the Andromeda accidentally travels back in time and winds up at a point in history right before the battle where the Nietzcheans finally defeated the Commonwealth. Captain Hunt has no intention of changing the timeline but his chief engineer, Seamus Harper, has other ideas. Harper grew up under the tyrannical reign of the Nietzcheans and tries to prevent that from happening by secretly rigging the nebula with some kind of explosives that will destroy the Nietzchean fleet when they arrive. Harper's crewmates discover his plan and stop him. But when the Nietzchean fleet arrives, they count 1500 ships when the historical records say there should only be 500. The crew then realizes that the only way to prevent the subsequent rise of a dominant Nietzchean Empire is to follow through with Harper's plan and destory the other 1000 Nietzchean ships. Thus, they play an active role in affecting events but it's events that already occurred in the past from the perspective of the Andromeda crew.

    I think this example is a little easier to wrap your head around because (1) the time travel is accidental, not a deliberate attempt to amend history and (2) none of the Andromeda crew were directly involved in the historical events that they were now affecting.
     
  11. SummerDream

    SummerDream Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    I have nothing to add except that they should bring Andromeda, too, back.
     
  12. JoeZhang

    JoeZhang Vice Admiral Admiral

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    They don't change anything they just act out their pre-ordinated roles in the loop - a loop with no start or end, it simply is.
     
  13. Jayson

    Jayson Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I beleive in the predestination theory in regards to the first movie. Of course if this is the case then doesn't that mean that John Reese that we saw in the new movie won't have to go back and create John Connor. The John Reese from the previous timeline did the job already so doesn't that mean if John Reese went back he would run into this alternate version of himself? It could be argured that the predestination theory was in place for all the 3 movies. Skynet couldn't be made if the Terminator doesn't go back and Skynet couldn't take over if the timelines weren't shifted so as it would be in postion to take control of all the interconected computers in T3.

    Jason
     
  14. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Discussions of temporal mechanics give me a headache ;) I have always been conflicted about this particularly topic. Kyle Reese exists in the future, John Connor exists in the future. The resistance somehow is able to construct or get a hold of a time traveling device and Connor orders Reese to protect his mother in the past from a Terminator who has already gone to eliminate her. The original John Connor had to come from some where...if we use the Back to the Future time travel model, John was born from Sarah and Kyle's encounter in the past thus the closed loop theory. Connor can't have existed without there being Kyle Reese in the first place...which is why that particular plot is so important in T4. These movies seem to be all about destiny (especially Rise of the Machines) and that you can't subvert your destiny, delay it yes but not change it. I voted for a close loop...
     
  15. Ryan

    Ryan Commodore Commodore

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    Geez Scout, it's called a predestination paradox for a reason. Not being able to figure it out isn't exactly a knock against it. You might as well argue infinity doesn't exist because no one can count that high.
     
  16. Ryan

    Ryan Commodore Commodore

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    No, because Skynet failed before it ever sent a terminator back. That's the only reason John even exists in the first place.
     
  17. xman

    xman Commander Red Shirt

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    Agreed, but that's a different issue. My question is, in the examples of the first three movies and the instances of Skynet/Resistance time travel, doesn't John have to launch a preemptive mission to the past in order to have any hope of affecting the outcome? T1 would otherwise have been successful in his mission eventually if not for Kyle Reese. The T-900 likewise if not for T2 and the T-X if not for T3! In each instance there is an attempt to protect Skeynet's target in the past with a time traveler ordered to protect Sarah Connor and/or John Connor. If Skynet is first to send any Terminator, the T-800, T-900 or T-X then it should meet no resistance from the future and eliminate John Connor's influence on subsequent events.

    X
     
  18. nx1701g

    nx1701g Admiral Admiral

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    As I explained earlier in the thread the reason why Kyle Reese and John Connor didn't vanish when the T-800 went back was because the temporal energies inside the time sphere protected them. They were in the chamber when the T-800 went back so they weren't affected by the changes to the timeline caused by the T-800 and they were able to send Kyle back in time to stop the 800. Because of this new timeline now there would exist a reality where Connor knew of all the proposed attacks upon him because he would have experienced them. I think arguing about temporal paradox has given me a headache.

    But there was a reality where John Connor was born not to Kyle Reese but someone else.
     
  19. hyzmarca

    hyzmarca Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    You are making the mistake of assuming that the time travel even happens in the future, and then changes made to the past propagate into the future. This requires multiple time dimensions and is incorrect. In essence, you have the order of things backwards.

    The past effects of the backwards time travel happen before the backwards time travel occurs. It doesn't matter when Kyle steps into the time macchine, or in what order. All that matters is when he appears in the past, and where, and what actions he takes there.

    From John Connor's perspective, and the perspective of an outside observer, the events of The Terminator and of Terminator 2 have already happened. They're written in stone before Skynet even builds the machine.


    Temporal energies? Seriously? That's very scifi pseudosciency. I prefer my Terminator harder than that.

    The propagation of a field change across closed timelike curves always results in the initial conditions. This provides a hard limit to the potential energy states of a universe in which CTCs are possible, and fulfills Novikov's self-consistency conjecture.

    Thorne's and Klinkhammer's solution to Polchinski's paradox confirms Novikov's conjecture, suggesting that alterations to the past are impossible. Though it shows that there are in infinite number of self-consistent trajectories along any CTC for any initial conditions, it also demonstrates that each of these trajectories has a distinct quantum probability. Quantum waveform collapse would produce a single set trajectory that would be unchangable.

    In modeling the CTC created by Skynet and Jon Connor, one can treat Skynet, the T-800, Sarah Connor, John Connor, and Kyle Reese as a single system. Their interactions create a single self-consistent worldline.
    This remains true up to Terminator 3, in which case things change, which I prefer to choock up to an error in T3's than a mistake made by Novikov, Thorne, or Klinkhammer.
     
  20. Rowan Sjet

    Rowan Sjet Commodore Commodore

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    Eh, if it's good enough for Star Trek, it's good enough for me.