Who sent the Guardian Terminator “Pops” to protect Sarah Connor in TERMINATOR GENISYS?


Out of all the questions left unanswered in the 2015 film “Terminator Genisys”, none are maybe more intriguing than who or what reprogrammed the T-800 Model 101 infiltrator “Pops” and sent him through the time displacment device back to 1973 to protect a young Sarah Connor from a T-1000 assassin. While writers Laeta Kalogridis and Patrick Lussier have confirmed multiple times they already know the answer and hope to reveal it in a future sequel, they have been reluctant to give Terminator fans any clue to who this person (or thing’s) identity is in the interim.

So who or what sent the Guardian Terminator back in time to protect Sarah? It’s time to look at the likely suspects:


Sarah Connor

Although we relish the idea of an old Sarah Connor played by Linda Hamilton closing the loop and sending a Terminator to protect her younger self (much like John Connor did in T2), we doubt it will turn out to be her… simply because of this question: Why would an older Sarah Connor erase herself from the Guardian’s memory, hiding the fact that she was the one who reprogrammed him and coded this order of protection? Who could Sarah be protecting by doing so? We know that Sarah Connor would be a target of Skynet at any time (in the future or the past) regardless of this action, so what would be the need of disguising her identity from herself? There is just no good motivation in doing so.  ODDS : 30 to 1


Detective O’Brien

Late last year, actor J.K. Simmons sat down for an interview and was asked about his involvement with a possible sequel to ‘Terminator Genisys’. When Simmons replied “O’Brien was a very fun guy to start to investigate and yeah, really looking forward to hopefully having the opportunity for more O’Brien“, we knew that the involvement of Detective O’Brien in the Terminator universe was likely not finished. But could an extremely old O’Brien of the future be the one responsible for sending the Guardian Terminator to protect Sarah? We doubt it.  ODDS : 25 to 1



New Timeline Kyle Reese

We doubt ‘Terminator Genisys’ is the last time we would see the younger Kyle Reese from the new timeline. His encounters with Sarah Connor most certainly will have a lasting effect. As he grows older, he will likely be drawn to her and feel a debt of gratitude for saving his life after motivating him to flee in the stairwell that fateful day. But does the ability of working on a moped at such an early age translate to an ability to reprogram a cybernetic organism of the future? We doubt that either timeline Kyle Reese is that tech-smart.  ODDS : 20 to 1



Cyborg Resistance

Anyone who watched the hit television show ‘Terminator : The Sarah Connor Chronicles” knows the show’s writers explored the cool premise of a Cyborg Resistance interested in building an artificial intelligence to fight Skynet. ‘Terminator Genisys’ borrowed lots of cool ideas from this beloved series, so it is not far-fetched to believe the writers also plan on using this cool Anti-Skynet concept as well. Machines that believe they should co-exist with humanity, program a Terminator to protect the mother of John Connor? That is certainly a “hope for the future” that you can build a franchise around.  ODDS : 10 to 1



Daniel Dyson

What do we want? Time travel. And when do we want it? It’s irrelevant.

The genius son of Myles Dyson and the primary architect of Genisys, Daniel Dyson has every reason to have a personal vendetta against the machines. The Dyson legacy was taken advantage of by Skynet (via the infected John Connor) and the father & son team were tricked into funding Connor’s evil research & development. Their employee for three years used Cyberdyne (and the Dyson’s trust) to bring forth the apocalypse to the world, and Cyberdyne was ultimately destroyed because of it. These actions will most likely lead to Danny becoming a key member of the Resistance. He will have the technical know-how and the resolve to reprogram a T-800 Model 101 to become Sarah’s protector in this timeline’s past.

In the future, Danny will also have the need to erase his involvement from the Guardian’s memory… so there is no chance the infected John Connor could discover him as the source of the T-800 in the past. If John would find that out in the past, he would likely kill Danny during his three-year employment with Cyberdyne to undo that future action.

And if all that wasn’t enough to support this case, writer Laeta Kalogridis had this to say about Daniel Dyson last year: “We would want to see that character become very significant going forward if we get to go forward.” So we’re hedging our bets on Danny.  ODDS : 5 to 1


Who or what do you think sent the Guardian Terminator back in time to protect Sarah? Let us know on Facebook or the comments below!



4 thoughts on “Who sent the Guardian Terminator “Pops” to protect Sarah Connor in TERMINATOR GENISYS?”

  1. I would say that unless reprogramming a terminator can be done in a user-friendly way, then it is probably beyond the abilities of most people in the future. Terminators were invented in the future, therefore I’ll lay my money on a Skynet scientist who had escaped his captors and joined John Connor’s resistance.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Whoever sent Pop’s back in time, had to have had some personal knowledge or connection of Sarah’s whereabouts and knew about the log cabin.

    As Kyle Reese stated Skynet in the first film, Skynet and the Terminators knew very little of Sarah Connor as most files had been lost because of the war and the Terminator had to be systematic in finding her.

    I think one possibility the Guardian/Pops Terminator could have been responsible with future Sarah’s help sending a Terminator back to create a loop with Pop’s as a protector. It could be that Guardian in the future is captured by Skynet and learns of Sarah’s location in 1973…. thus sending back the T-1000’s… Sarah’s and a resistance team or robotic programmer who was captured by Skynet.. Find this out and reprogramme a new Terminator T-800 and send it back in it’s place…

    Pop’s memory of who sent him back, could be have been erased or he’s programmed to keep it secret. So to protect the younger Sarah and develop her into the soldier she needs to become.


  3. I would think it is a Skynet further in the future or possibly a future that does no yet exist, playing the long game. It knows it cannot exist without this Sarah Connor paradox where it has to continually let Sarah to live to destroy skynet which forces things to change until it is put in to the future it requires to exist.

    Judgement Day and the future has changed twice with Terminator 3 and now Genisys. There may be 1 or 2 more alterations required before the true skynet comes online, which will then no longer need Sarah.


  4. I personally believe it was RoboCop. I’m not kidding either. Old school fans who have read many of the comics know exactly what I mean. I believe they had high hopes for the robocop reboot and eventually intended on having robocop be a part of the final arc.


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