Looper Paradox Examination and Alternate Timeline Theories
Introduction & Synopsis
If you caught on to the many paradoxes in Looper, you might agree that it is frustrating to make sense of it all. I attempted to play out the potential paradoxes created by the ending and I feel that I‚??m rather close. Since Seth‚??s future self was the first time the alternate timeline was clearly represented, we‚??ll start there. In the end we learn that Seth and all the other Loopers were having their loops closed because of the, ‚??Rain Maker.‚?? When Joe shot himself and stopped future Joe from killing the mother, he created 2 timelines. We know that the future is just a potential outcome because the future representation of Joe said to himself that he is just one possible future, clarifying that there are alternate timelines. If what Joe from the future (Bruce Willis) said was factual, by shooting himself Joe (young Joe/joseph Gordon-Levitt) basically just created 2 alternate universes. If the ending were to elaborate on these universes/timelines, my theory is that it would prove 3 universes would co-exist, with the first/ *original universe being the setting of the entire movie:
Universe II- Cid Harrington Isn‚??t a Demon Child/ the New Universe
This is the ending we last see, where Joe kills himself and erases his future self from the timeline (which, by the way, should have been unnecessary because when Joe saw the puzzle play out in his head, Bruce should have seen it almost simultaneously assuming there isn‚??t a delay in sharing/merging memories). Now Cid is no longer the same would-be Damian Thorn demon child, that Bruce Willis prophesized; this is a future we haven‚??t seen any glimpses of. It‚??s completely uncertain to us, but from that moment and on, we do know that Joe Simmons will cease to exist in that universe, but not entirely. If he had erased his future entirely, Bruce Willis would have never existed and the youth Joe would have never followed his directions to the farm house to meet the mother and son, as well as to kill Bruce Willis and himself. This universe is heavily sustained by the *original universe deeply impacted by the Rainmaker, because without it, Joe would never try to kill the woman or himself.
Universe III- Joe‚??s Future
The kid grows up and he doesn‚??t hold a grudge against Loopers and he doesn‚??t begin to close all the loops. By not closing these loops this universe is created. Since old Seth isn‚??t sent to the past to be killed by himself (at least not the way or time it happened in the first universe), he doesn‚??t tell Seth about the Rainmaker; Joe never interacts closely with his future self (except to eventually kill his future self since it comes with the job) and never interacts with the kid. In universe 2, Cid probably has a respect for Loopers after Joe‚??s sacrifice, but in universe 3 this respect is probably neutral, yet this is probably irrelevant. Joe continues to suffer with his addiction to drugs and continues his career in crime, eventually meeting the Asian woman that Joe (Bruce Willis) falls in love with. This relationship continues on for a while, we don‚??t know how long, but it probably ends in his death when his contract is up and his loop is closed. Maybe he puts up a fight, maybe he lives. Maybe his wife dies of cancer, but she probably isn‚??t murdered.
*original- the movie is full of paradoxes and we can‚??t determine what the original universe was, the term is only used to describe the setting of the movie up until the point when Joe kills himself.