Either that or the writing was awful. It's hard to say which.
There are a lot of well-known, well-loved characters in popular culture who aren't as fleshed-out as we'd like. Maybe there wasn't time to delve into their stories, or maybe George R.R. Martin killed them before he could devote 100 pages to their everyday routines. We're unlikely to get official answers, but never fear. When the writers close a character arc, the fandom opens its box of crazy ideas. But those ideas aren't always totally crazy ...
WARNING: This article contains spoilers past, present, and potentially future.
As we've noted time and time and time again, Friends revolves around the comical exploits of six people whom you'd immediately ghost if they started making small talk with you. If a disturbingly convincing theory by Reddit user lolalodge is to be believed, however, Monica and Joey are kinda deserving of some sympathy. They aren't terrible people at heart; they're just caught up in some hardcore drug addiction.
Warner Bros. Television
Throughout the show's run, Monica rotates through a seemingly never-ending number of restaurant jobs. Despite working as everything from a sous chef to a lunch chef to a head chef at what it's clear are some swanky high-end joints, she never has any money. She has to ask her brother for a loan when she loses her job, she lives with a roommate in a rent-controlled apartment, and despite having spent her entire life planning her wedding, she doesn't have any money saved. Coupled with the fact that she's not a big spender or party animal, the most likely explanations we're left with are that either that she can't stop splashing her cash on nose candy or that Central Perk charges $50 for a latte mocha.
Plus she works in the restaurant industry, which as we all know from tearfully watching reruns of Parts Unknown is fraught with substance abuse ... although you'd need something to mellow you out too if you had to take a fine steak and grill it well-done for any philistine who walks through the door.
Joey, meanwhile, is easier to diagnose. He's not really dumb, just constantly stoned.
Joey is basically your college roommate, a pothead who can't stop eating your food when he's not falling asleep or missing the point of every word spoken at him. He also, like Monica, works in an industry rife with drug usage (the entertainment industry, those liberal heathens). Plus, it's interesting to note that he gets dumber and dumber as the seasons progress, which is in line with how he works himself up the career ladder and therefore deeper into the reefer lifestyle.
Either that or the writing was awful. It's hard to say which.
The world of Game Of Thrones is populated entirely with characters who hate each other, but none hate each other more than brothers Sandor "The Hound" and Gregor "The Mountain" Clegane. Their hatred is so legendary that there's a long-running fan theory that the two are overdue for an apocalyptic fight to the death known as "Cleganebowl." The theory even has its own subreddit, which is full of desperate Cleganebowlievers seeing clues in everything from badly Photoshopped pictures to cute animal videos and shouting "CLEGANEBOWL CONFIRMED!" at them.
According to the fandom, this showdown has been foretold since the beginning -- almost literally, considering that the first salvo in this war was fired by Gregor when he damn near burnt Sandor's face off as a child. We've had sporadic dust-ups and near-misses since, but we're clearly due something. The show, after all, brought back both characters from near-death. In the case of Gregor, it's clear that there's a plan for him. Since he was zombified in Season 5, he's mostly served as a glorified bodyguard, which isn't exactly befitting his character. It's almost as if he's being kept around ... waiting for something.
There's even an extended version of this theory which states that Cleganebowl is destined to end with a victorious Sandor killing Cersei Lannister, on account of a prophecy delivered to her as a child: "When your tears have drowned you, the valonqar [little brother] shall wrap his hands about your pale white throat and choke the life from you." Admittedly, this prophecy only appears in the books, not in the television adaptation, which robs it of some significance, but it's nice to dream that they're going to deliver an ending which doesn't involve Cersei being killed by her twincestuous brother Jaime. You know, a surprising ending.
Get Out is one of the best films of recent years. It's a dark yet humorous satire in which a cabal of old people are looking to live forever by forcefully transferring their minds into the head of someone younger, with a major role by actress Catherine Keener. When have you ever seen anything like- hey, wait a minute.
In 1999's Being John Malkovich, Craig (John Cusack) discovers a portal in his office that leads directly into John Malkovich's head and allows him to take over the actor's body, albeit only for a short time. Some weird stuff happens, and Malkovich, Malkovich, Malkovich, the movie ends with Craig's wife Lotte (Cameron Diaz) shacking up with Maxine (played by Catherine Keener) to raise a baby -- a baby who, unbeknownst to everyone, contains Craig's helpless consciousness.
According to this theory by Madeline Popelka, Get Out is a continuation of Maxine's story. She takes the baby, who grows into Rose (Allison Williams' character, the creepy mayonnaise girl who doesn't want her colored cereal miscegenating with her white cereal), and spends the next two decades experimenting with brains in the hopes of finding a way to make the transplant permanent. Along the way she moves to the suburbs, marries, changes her name to Missy (Keener's Get Out character), and sets up shop as the savior of the white race. She also uses Rose, her mind warped by decades of having John Cusack plugged into her brain stem, as a honeypot to lure black people to their mental enslavement.
It makes a lot of sense if you remember that Maxine's primary drive was using the Malkovich portal as a way to make fat stacks of cash from voyeurs and fans. It's not entirely unrealistic that upon finding a method of making the transplants forever, Maxine/Missy would immediately set about to get even more fat stacks from old white people interested in finding themselves a new home. It sounds silly ... but not to Get Out writer/director Jordan Peele, who freaking loved this theory. Do Adaptation next!
The internet has made a small cottage industry out of over-analyzing Home Alone, dealing with everything from plot holes to how badly Kevin would've put Wet Bandits Harry and Marv in the ground in real life. Let's add to that madness and talk about the fact that this movie only makes sense if, as Redditor cubanesis points out, Kevin's dad is a high-level member of the mob.
When Harry and Marv are casing the neighborhood, Harry mentions that the McCallister place is the "big one" -- the house that he's had his eye on for months. They even describe it as being loaded with fine jewelry, a cash hoard, unmarked securities, and high-end electronic goods. But why would they think that? There are no obvious trappings of wealth (unless you include those two bitchin' station wagons), and Harry's surveillance only extends to the bottom of the stairs. Unless ... they know Kevin's dad, Peter McCallister, is a mobster, and so they're building a perfect stash based on what they think mobsters have in their homes -- possibly helped by constant viewings of Goodfellas.
Warner Bros. Pictures
Consider the fact that when Kevin tricks Marv into thinking that a gangster got blown away, Harry's reaction is "Huh, that makes sense." It bothers him more that he doesn't know who got blown away ("Snakes?"), not the fact that it happened in this neighborhood. Again, something that he'd expect from a house that he believes contains a well-connected, dangerous mobster.
There's also Peter's reaction when he finds a police officer (Harry in disguise) standing in his hallway. His first question isn't "How can I help you?" or even "Who let you in here, there's no one but kids around?" It's "Am I in some kind of trouble, officer?" Which is the most defensive answer he could give, short of taking a shot at him. Seriously, you give that answer to a cop asking you a basic question and see how much side eye you get while they're turning your house/car/internal organs inside-out.
20th Century Fox
In the years following the end of her money-jizzing book series, J.K. Rowling has kept busy trying to make the Harry Potter world as retroactively progressive as possible. She revealed Dumbledore was gay, claimed that Hermione was never explicitly described as white, asserted that werewolf-ism is a metaphor for HIV, and drew attention to the single Jewish person mentioned in the books. Sure, none of that is as progressive as actually including those things in the books in the first place, but it's a nice try.
The fans, meanwhile, are doing a much better job of rooting out progressive subtext. Case in point: the surprisingly coherent theory that Professor Severus Snape is a trans woman. You probably won't be terribly shocked to learn that this theory originated on Tumblr, where they celebrate a yearly "Trans Snape Week."
The followers of this theory believe that Rowling coded Snape to be female ... so much so, in fact, that changing Snape's gender would have absolutely no bearing on the plot (beyond people going "Gasp! She killed Dumbledore!" instead of "Gasp! He killed Dumbledore!"). One of their main pieces of evidence for this is the fact that Snape's chosen specialty is potions, a magical field commonly associated with witches. His first monologue in the books -- "I don't even expect you will really understand the beauty of the softly simmering cauldron with its shimmering fumes, the delicate power of liquids that creep through human veins" -- invokes a lot of classical feminine witchcraft symbolism. Also, at one point he says "there will be no foolish wand-waving," which is totally about dicks.
There's also the flashback in The Deathly Hallows in which Snape is seen wearing one of his mother's blouses, and the scene wherein another teacher (one of Snape's old childhood tormentors) instructs a student to conjure an image of Snape in a dress coming out of a closet:
"Subtleto metaphorus!" Or how about the chapter where the gang is trying to work out the identity of the "Half-Blood Prince," and Hermione points out that the Prince's handwriting looks like a girl's? The mystery writer turns out to be Snape; "Prince" was his mother's maiden name. So he borrowed her clothes and her name.
This theory also helps to repair one of the creepiest parts of the original text: the reveal that Snape spent years secretly protecting Harry because he was still in love with Harry's mom, Lily. Instead of an adult man pining for a girl he met 30 years ago, this could be the story of a trans woman grieving a friend she looked up to and becoming a surrogate mother to her son (albeit a somewhat jerk one). This idea given credence by the fact that both Lily and Snape have a doe as their patronus. Yep, a female deer.
Rowling has yet to confirm or acknowledge this theory, but she did reveal that Hogwarts was tuition-free! Yessss.
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