It was one year ago that Paramount announced plans to revive the Terminator franchise with Mexican-American actor Gabriel Luna taking on the metal mantle initially played by Arnold Schwarzenegger. The first trailer for Terminator: Dark Fate dropped about three months ago, which gave us our first glimpse of Luna and new leading lady Natalia Reyes. Now a second full trailer is here, and it leaves us with a lot of questions.
Similar to the first trailer, this one remains dominated by Linda Hamilton’s Sarah Connor and Mackenzie Davis’ Grace. Since this is meant to be a continuation of the 1991 sequel, T-2: Judgment Day, Hamilton’s Connor explains that she stopped the apocalypse, only for Grace to tell her “you may have changed the future, but you didn’t change our fate.” The requisite beats of a standard Terminator movie are included, as is Schwarzenegger himself reprising some semblance of his former role.
But there’s still a marginalization of the Latinx cast. Natalia Reyes’s Dani Ramos doesn’t say a line till about 90 seconds into the trailer, which itself is two-and-a-half minutes long. She’s the new take on Sarah Connor, a fact so pointed that Hamilton says, “I was her.” The white savior elements that were present in the previous trailer remain. We do get to hear Luna for the first time, presented here in a Border Patrol agent uniform. A massive fight between his Terminator and the guards ensue.
This is where the movie could double down on its white savior element or truly utilize the Latino cast for unique purposes. There’s no word on if Luna’s character is playing a Border Guard throughout or, more than likely, just infiltrating them for a moment of narrative convenience. If it’s simply a means to poke fun at border guards, it’ll be a missed opportunity. It’d be fascinating to see a world where the Terminators are working as ICE agents, the ultimate purveyors of evil.
Terminator: Dark Fate hits theaters November 1.