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The Wild Naruto Fan Theory That Turned Out To Be Totally Wrong

Every fanbase, no matter the series, is going to create its own theories for the show. There's nothing fans love more than piecing together clues that they believe foreshadow a certain outcome in a story. When fans are right, their theories have the potential to change everything about how people view a series. But oftentimes fans miss the mark, and their theories never come to fruition. In retrospect, these theories can even seem ridiculous.

One terrific example of this comes in a fan theory surrounding "Naruto," the popular shonen anime about magical ninjas fighting to cease cycles of violence. Specifically, the theory surrounds the character of Tobi, a mysterious figure whose identity remains a closely guarded secret throughout most of "Naruto: Shippuden." For years leading up to the eventual reveal of Tobi's identity as Obito Uchiha, fans formed a number of theories explaining who Tobi could be. One fan theory in particular, however, turned out to be totally wrong to a hilarious degree.

There's no way that Tobi could be Naruto from the future

In a Reddit post submitted to r/Naruto, fans traded some of their favorite war stories regarding failed fan theories for the series. Among the most popular of these was a theory claiming that Tobi's true identity could be Naruto or Sasuke from the future. In retrospect, this theory sounds comical, as Tobi is actually Kakashi's ex-teammate, Obito, who most of the village believes has been dead for decades. At the time, time travel as a concept hadn't yet even been hinted at in the lore of "Naruto," so there wasn't much concrete evidence. Despite that, many fans accepted the time travel theory because it explained how Tobi knows so much about Naruto.

"Tobi said something like 'Jiraiya and the 4th entrusted you, what if you failed' like 2 chapters before the reveal," wrote a now-deleted Reddit user. "So the theorists said 'How would Tobi know about Naruto's promise with Jiraiya or the 4th Hokage unless he was actually Naruto?'" Realistically, Tobi shouldn't know about Naruto's promise, since both Jiraiya and Nagato — the only people who would be able to pass this information on to others — die before they can do so. However, the fact that Tobi knows more than he should still isn't any evidence that he's a time traveler, much less one of the show's main characters in disguise.