F9 investigates the truth behind Han’s death at Tokyo Drift, revealing what he’s been up to since then.
Seemingly killed off in The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, the return of the teasing Han (Sung Kang) has been a huge mystery surrounding F9 since it was first announced. Now, fans finally have an answer to how Han cheated death and what his all-important mission was after.
Han Lue was introduced in Tokyo Drift (though she previously appeared in director Justin Lin’s previous and initially unrelated film, Better Luck Tomorrow). Tokyo-based street racer Han becomes a mentor to newly immigrated Sean Boswell and is killed in a car crash during a race. However, the timeline of the Fast & The Furious franchise means the events of Tokyo Drift take place after Fast & Furious 6. Fast & Furious, Fast Five, and Fast & Furious 6 saw Han serving as a crew member (Vin Diesel) Dominic Toretto, assisting in several heists, and falling in love with fellow crew members Gisele (Gal Gadot).
They are recruited back by Toretto to take on Owen Shaw (Luke Evans) and amnesiac Letty (Michelle Rodriguez) in Fast & Furious 6, proving crucial to Shaw’s defeat. However, Gisele lost in the next climactic battle. Han is later recaptured to die in the conclusion of Tokyo Drift at the hands of Shaw’s vengeful brother, Deckard (Jason Statham).
Instead, he faked his death with the help of Mr. Nobody (Kurt Russell). A recurring government agent who has recruited Toretto and his allies several times over the years, Mr. Nobody approaches Han after Gisele — who was secretly one of his agents — is assassinated. He dropped Han in his place, giving the grieving man a new purpose in life.
One of the missions is to recover half of Aries’ devices, which can be used to take control of almost any computer system in the world when finished. Although his mission is successful, Han is also forced to save a young girl named Elle, the daughter of a device designer. Taking Elle under his wing, Han and Mr. Nobody orchestrated her staged death to make the world believe that she – the last possible connection to Elle, secretly the key to activating the device – had perished. The two remain in hiding for years until Jakob’s hunt for Aries brings Mia (Jordana Brewster) and Letty to Tokyo to learn more about his death.
Han is quickly and happily reintegrated into the crew, taking young adult Elle (Anna Sawai) with him. Although Elle is briefly kidnapped and used to nearly activate the device, Han rescues her during the F9’s climactic chase — with the film ending with her and Elle attending a celebratory barbecue at Toretto’s rebuilt house. However, F9 also teases the potential impact of his “death” in the post-credits scene. Deckard Shaw (as well as the rest of his family) is later revealed to be more heroic than he initially appears, with Deckard even becoming an honorary crew member.
The F9 post-credits scene sees Deckard interrogating a criminal, seeking information about a mysterious new case. Hearing a bang on the door, Deckard opens it and is surprised to see Han alive. It’s an interesting setting, with questions remaining about how Han will respond to Deckard and his place in the group. There was a chance that the two could let the past lie and focus on their future as potential allies.
However, there’s also the possibility that Han decides he wants revenge against the Shaw family, especially considering Deckard who tried to kill him, and his brother Owen’s scheme that ultimately took Gisele’s life. While it seems likely that Han may officially return to the field, his future with the crew and Shaw’s family will likely be investigated further in future stories.
The film is now in theaters.