The John Wick franchise starring Keanu Reeves is beloved for its incredible fight sequences, its tightly written story, and its Keanu Reeves having-ness. It might be the defining action series of the modern era, but for all of the carnage and death we witness throughout the films, there's one tiny plothole that should have rendered it all impossible. See if you can catch it in this scene here:
It's hard to spot, mainly because there's not really a thing for you to spot. (As a native son of New Jersey, I can say that it's really more of a smell.) Yes, what I'm getting at is this scene takes place in New Jersey, and that's a problem. See, in New Jersey, it's technically illegal to pump your own gas. There's an attendant who pumps your gas for you while you pretend to check your text messages in shame. It's all part of the ritual and if John Wick and those Russian gangsters had an attendant, then the conversation with Theon (hmm, apparently his name is "Tarasov" in this movie.) would never have taken place and SPOILERS they wouldn't have then hunted John Wick down, stolen his car, and killed his dog. Everything that happens in John Wick chapters 1, 2, 3, and soon 4 would have been replaced with various shots of Keanu in a bubble bath as he mourned his dead wife because the inciting incident would have never taken place.
Now you could argue that, even if they had gas station attendants, Tarasov could have still spotted John's car and gotten out of his own car to inquire about it, or could have asked him questions from a rolled-down window. It's all very possible, but it's a much more aggressive move to do so. Not only are you interrupting a transaction of sorts between the attendant and John Wick, but you are also identifying yourself to a third party - a witness. Yeah, that attendant is probably a sweaty, high school kid who isn't going to do shit to stop the confrontation, but their presence in and of itself acts as a deterrent.
Yes, this is one nit to pick, but that's what we do here at Cracked. If it improves your enjoyment of the film to pretend this scene takes place in New York, as it easily could have (and was the actual shooting location despite the movie insisting this took place in New Jersey), then go ahead and imagine they're at a gas station east of the Hudson. If you can manage the existential turmoil of knowing this is a scene set in New Jersey, but doesn't feature a gas station attendant, then go ahead and do that too. It really doesn't matter. It's a movie in which a human being sustains levels of damage that would destroy most Terminators and explains it away without much more than, "He's really pissed about his dog."
As for us, we're going to imagine that this hints to New Jersey being drastically different in the John Wick-verse. Perhaps Governor Chris Christie was ousted after the Fort Lee Lane closure scandal, leading to a chain reaction of Jersey related events that changed gas station attendant laws and ... oh god, someone check on John Wick-verse Snookie!
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Top Image: Lionsgate