What if there was a more insidious reason that Dutch and his team were sent to the Val Verde jungle in Predator? A fan theory posits that it was actually a proving ground for Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character, connecting the film with the first Terminator in a big way.
A video uploaded to Uproxx’s YouTube page on Thursday argues that the T-800 was actually modeled after Dutch. A key piece of evidence they cite is the Alien vs. Predator arcade game that was released in 1994. As the video explains, the game was based off of an early draft of Predator and features a character named Dutch Schaefer. The main difference between the film and game versions of the character? In the game, Dutch is a cyborg who was made to fight aliens, and his model number was CDS-170A3. What was the name of the organization that made SkyNet? Cyberdyne Systems (CDS).
The video later references how Cyberdyne was working with the government to produce terminators in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, and theorizes that the Predators are a big problem the government is aware of. As a result, the Val Verde mission could have been a test to see who could defeat the Predator, and who they should choose as the basis for the T-800.
Of course, this theory requires you to either believe that using the physiology of Dutch would be better than any augmentation that could simply be created. Or that Dutch’s appearance might have a psychological effect on or scare the Predators, which would mean the Predator he killed was able to somehow send an image of him off before dying, and that Predators actually have a capacity for fear.
It also means that, like the rest of the world, you have to ignore Arnold Scwarzenegger’s turn as Chief Master Sergeant William Candy, who was chosen as the face of the T-800 in a deleted scene for Terminator 3.
Regardless of how convincing the theory may be, future Terminator films could provide a definitive answer as to who the T-800 was originally based upon.
As of now, the release date for a new Terminator film is unclear, though James Cameron believes he can still make new films “relevant.” Maybe a Predator crossover is the ticket.