- In a comic miniseries called RoboCop vs The Terminator, readers are shown a future where Skynet never existed, resulting in a utopian society characterized by technological advancement and peace.
- This alternate future is significant because it is the only time fans of the Terminator franchise get a glimpse of what the future would be like without Skynet and the destruction caused by the killer androids.
- Instead of destructive machines, this future showcases peaceful humans living in a futuristic city surrounded by nature, offering a stark contrast to the desolate and war-torn landscapes typically associated with the Terminator universe.
Every vision of the future Terminator fans get is one of desolation and death, as Skynet ravaged the world with nuclear weapons before even unleashing the titular killer androids. However, in one storyline, fans get the rare sight of a future where Skynet is actually prevented from going online, with a world that reflects that change in the timeline.
The first time fans were shown the future landscape of The Terminator universe was in the original 1984 film, though it wasn’t until Terminator: Salvation that they really got to experience what it was like to live day-to-day in that hellish existence. Once Skynet went online, the artificial intelligence designed for autonomous defense launched nuclear weapons of mass destruction around the world, obliterating billions of people in a matter of moments. The ones who remained – under the leadership of John Connor – formed a human resistance to fight back against the machines before they conquered the planet. Every attempt at defeating Skynet, and even using time travel technology to undo the carnage it wrought, has ended in failure within the film franchise. However, there’s one comic where humans actually succeed in not only beating Skynet, but making it so the AI never existed in the first place, resulting in a hopeful future rather than one of pain and suffering.
Terminator’s Future Without Skynet Is A Paradise, Not A Warzone
In the four-part miniseries RoboCop vs The Terminator by Frank Miller and Walter Simonson, readers are shown the alternate origin story of The Terminator universe, as well as a grim look at what is to become of RoboCop after the events of his film series. According to this crossover, RoboCop is The Terminator’s origin, as the melding of man and machine paves the way for the creation of artificial intelligence, in this case, Skynet. However, once RoboCop learns that his existence will eventually mean the end of humanity, he does everything in his power to stop the Terminators, both in the past and the future. In the end, RoboCop is successful, and the future he helps create is one of technological advancement for the betterment of humankind rather than its detriment.
While it’s only a single panel depicting the ‘perfect’ utopia for humankind, this moment in Terminator history is immensely significant as it’s the only time fans see what the future will become without Skynet. At most, fans have seen how the present day remains unchanged after the Terminators were thwarted (like in Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines after Judgment Day was delayed due to the events of T2). However, this comic actually peers into the future that used to be in ruins, revealing that humans do develop incredibly advanced technology, just nothing that tries to kill them.
This idyllic future is the exact opposite of the one shown in The Terminator and then further explored in Terminator: Salvation. Rather than destructive machines marching through concrete rubble, it’s peaceful humans lounging in a futuristic city characterized by nature. This future is bright, and the fact that it was shown at all is historic, as this comic is the one and only time fans get to see what Terminator’s far future looks like if Skynet is erased from history.