Fast & Furious 9 is celebrating the 20th anniversary of the franchise. The franchise made its debut in 2001 and has managed to make some good collections at the box office. But one character that we constantly got to see in all of the movies was Dominic Toretto, played by Vin Diesel. The character’s bold voice and fearless personality are something that has pulled the audience to the theaters. He is someone who has no fear against best-trained people like Owen Shaw and Deckard Shaw. But the character has also changed a lot since his debut in 2001. Let’s check how that happened in the last few years.
1. Improve in fighting skills
As mentioned earlier, Dominic Toretto is fearless. Despite the level of the odds, he manages to win every battle. We have seen him fighting people who are stronger than him. This includes Luke Hobbs, Owen Shaw, and Deckard Shaw. Now, this is proof that his fighting skills have improved up to a great extent. Dom has now changed to a character who can take down skilled assassins single-handedly without any help. For example, in the plane fight sequence of Fast & Furious 6, Dom was able to hit Owen Shaw’s henchman Klaus with the shotgun, although he did not fall on any occasion.
2. Does not need to prove himself anymore
For the last few years, we have seen Dominic Toretto becoming a skilled racer. He can win any race. Even in The Fate of the Furious, his cousin’s car was the slowest car on the island. Still, he made a few upgrades and was able to win the race. This was not the same when he made his debut in the franchise. He was always seen putting his life in danger to win races. Now that does not happen anymore. He also let Brian win in Fast Five just to see him happy and since Brian was his family. He has also turned down personal challenges from his enemies by not taking their bait as he does not have to prove himself anymore.
3. Made peace with the death of his father
Dominic Toretto mentioned his father to Brian in the first Fast & Furious movie. But the story was never explored properly. Now the past will be revealed in Fast & Furious 9. For most of the time, Dom was holding on to the tragic memory of seeing his father die before his eyes and was never at peace with the fact. When Dom came to know that his father intentionally sabotaged his car, Dom understood that his father was himself responsible for his death and he decided to move on. Dom has frequently mentioned the pain he has to go through after losing his father. But he decided to learn something from the death of his father and not to repeat the mistakes that his father did.
4. Willing to show his weak moments
You might be a very tough guy. But still, a time comes in your life when you openly express your emotions. The same thing applies to Dominic Toretto. He has been shown as a strong person throughout the franchise. But somewhere his family is his strength as well as weakness. We have seen Dom breaking down for a moment whenever danger falls upon his family. We have seen fear in his eyes when his house was blown up in Fast & Furious 7 and when Mia was captured by Owen Shaw in Fast & Furious 6. The same thing happened when Elena and his son were in Cipher’s custody and he had to save them at any cost.
5. Extended those he considers to be his family
In the first Fast & Furious, Dominic Toretto trusted a few people. Somewhere it can be said that rarely there was anyone he could fully trust. The heist of Rio in Fast Five is where he started to trust more people. The best thing here was that they were stealing $100 million but no one planned to run away with all the money. All of them worked together and shared the money equally between them. Dom did not trust Brian in the beginning. The trust increased only from the Fast Five. Along with that, Roman, Tej, Ramsey, Han and Hobbs became a part of his family. They were later joined by Deckard Shaw in The Fate of the Furious.
6. Respect for authority figures
Throughout the history of the Fast & Furious franchise, Dominic Toretto has done almost everything illegally. He never had respect for the law and order. After Luke Hobbs helped him in the Rio heist, Dom was seen starting to respect the authority figures. This is the reason why he was approached by Luke Hobbs in Fast & Furious 6 to catch Owen Shaw. The respect increased more from Dom’s side when Luke Hobbs granted his family pardons and they were all free to go and do whatever they want.
7. Rage is Better Reserved
Dominic Toretto was seen in rage in the first film when he felt he was being done wrong. This thing was mostly targeted by his enemies and also made Dom predictable. But from Fast Five, we have seen Dom keeping control of his anger. This was only seen when Luke Hobbs enters his place to arrest him, smashes his car and both of them engage in a brutal fight. In Fast & Furious 6, Dom was threatened by Owen Shaw to take his crew and leave so that his family can be safe. But Dom was seen simply answering Owen Shaw with a smile on his face. Even Cipher threatened to kill Dom’s son and killed Elena in front of his eyes, but he did not react angrily.
8. Gives second chances
In the beginning, Dominic Toretto rarely used to forgive people. He simply finished off his enemy without even caring for the consequences. But Dom changed when Brian gave him a second chance and allowed him to escape at the end of the movie. Since that time, Dom has given people a second chance without mentioning that Brian did the same for him at one point. This is the reason why he gave Deckard Shaw a second chance when he saved Dom’s son from Cipher’s custody. Shaw eventually became a protagonist and this led to his spin-off movie, Hobbs and Shaw.
9. Acknowledges his mistakes
A recent change in Dominic Toretto’s character has been noticed in Fast & Furious 9. He accepts that he wrongfully judged his brother. All this time, Dom thought that Jakob deliberately sabotaged his father’s car to kill him but learned that this was not the case. This is the reason he became estranged from his brother. If we see the last few movies, we have always seen that Dom considers himself as right and even his team members never try to interfere in his decisions. But this is now different in Fast & Furious 9. He has accepted that he was wrong about his judgment for his brother Jakob.
10. Doesn’t want to go looking for problems anymore
Dominic was shown as a protagonist in The Fast and the Furious, although he was running an illegal racket of stealing car parts. By doing this, he was inviting problems for himself. This continued till Fast Five where he and his crew stole $100 million so that they don’t have to run for the rest of their lives and can lead a happy and peaceful future. After this, Dom was seen staying out of the way of trouble and never got involved in anything that can create issues for him and his family. But this continued again when people like Owen Shaw, Deckard Shaw, and Cipher forced him to come out of his retirement and follow some illegal ways.
So this is how Dominic Toretto has changed over the last two decades.