Las Plagas are Eldritch Abominations.Of all the various viruses and Applied Phlebotinum in the series, it's generally Las Plagas or their derivatives that actually cause the most insanely rapid mutations, often seemingly creating new mass from nothing. Las Plagas also were "sealed away" beneath the Salazar castle for centuries or more, and have a cult devoted to their worship. Anyone else smell Lovecraftian abomination?
Ada was Ingrid Hunnigan
Umbrella never toppled.By RE4, Umbrella has since ceased to exist, who's only remembered for setting of one of the worst tragedies and genocides in human history. If this is so, then why are First-aid sprays so readily available? Someone is obviously making more, because even medicine deteriorates over time. It can't be that The Merchant simply obtained a surplus, because they would have been useless by the time Leon, his best customer, came to the area. Umbrella either still exists as an underground company, or is owned by some mother company. Either way, Umbrella could technically go about its research, so long as no one ever found out about them AGAIN.
The merchant in RE4 is a Ganado of the Chaotic Good typeThere's some evidence to this idea. His skin seems to have the same complexion as a Ganado villager, at night his eyes glow like a Plaga-carrying Ganado, and he seems to have a thing for violence (He can't be carrying all them guns just to look pretty), what with him selling guns to Leon. But rather than trying to use all of this weaponry to blast a hole in Leon, if not supply the Ganados with enough weaponry to put the UBCS to shame, he seems to sell them to Leon for varying prices. Not only that, but he gladly accepts any treasure from Leon for cash. It could be some sort of glitch in the Ganado possession programming which rendered the merchant(s?) not exactly evil, since he doesn't try to kill Leon, but not exactly good either, since he chuckles evilly when Leon buys off of him. The Ganados seem to pay him no mind, since he's still alive wherever Leon goes.
The Merchant is the real Big Bad of the entire series...and he makes his profit by selling any random stranger ridiculous guns at a high price, using any other guns left over to blow the sucker away while they're not looking, loot the guns back and sell them to the next traveler, keeping both guns and money. Rinse and repeat. Leon is just too smart for that, which is exactly why the Merchant chuckles evilly when Leon buys things off of him; he considers Leon a Worthy Opponent of some sort. But his Master Plan to take over the world involves taking this de facto currency and bringing it into circulation, and in some massive Artistic License - Economics moment, throws the entire world (or at least Spain)'s economy into chaos.
The Merchant had a Control Type Las Plagas in him.This explains why enemies do not find him, cause he just uses the control Plagas to Jedi Mind Trick them into seeing nothing. Were he to give orders to the Ganados, then the other controllers such as Saddler and Salazar would notice that their minions were going off track. However, since Leon Kennedy killed all the controllers in Spain, The Merchant is free to use the remaining Ganados as he sees fit.
Leon became aware that Ada was Not Quite Dead before the events of RE4Think about it. When they meet in Salazar's castle for the first time, Leon says "So it is true. You are working for Wesker" rather than expressing surprise at seeing her alive despite seeing her die. Noting that one works for Wesker isn't a natural response to meeting for the first time someone you believed (and saw) died. There are many theories to this. For example, the Leon A scenario could be canon and a bit of Leon hoped and thought that Ada could still be alive. Or the both of them could have communicated offscreen, with Ada sending Leon a message that she was alive and in Wesker's payroll. Perhaps the denial overrode acceptance and won out in the end, since in RE2's Leon B scenario, what appears to be Ada throws a Rocket Launcher to Leon to help destroy the Mr X-type Tyrant. Or in fact, canonically, Ada NEVER did die in the first place, but Leon and Ada split up during the laboratory segment and they didn't meet again til RE4.
Mike from RE4 was a Transformer.Come on, it's so obvious! We never see him leave the chopper. When you actually get a good look at the chopper, there's no one inside. It also explains why Leon is so upset. You see, Leon was excited because he was going to get some help from an alien super-robot, but Saddler killed Mike before he was actually helpful! Leon didn't really care about saving Ashley after that, he was just trying to get revenge on Saddler for destroying his robot friend. In addition, Mike was supposed to give Leon the name of a good bar, but he was destroyed before he could. No one comes between Leon and his alcohol.
Jack Krauser didn't use Las PlagasHe was just so incredibly manly he decided to mutate.
The Merchant stole a shipment of weapons intended for Saddler.Given the size and advanced technology of Saddler's facility, it's a bit suspicious that he has to rely on medieval weapons with the exception of a small number of chainsaws, miniguns, rocket launchers, and cattle prods. Ganados are clearly intelligent enough to operate modern firearms, and there's no way that what he was up to wouldn't come to the attention of the government. When the Spanish army comes to investigate, he wants some weapons. The Merchant, on the other hand, has a massive stockpile of big guns and the devices to upgrade them. It's likely that Saddler obtained the weapons from some sort of black-market dealer, but the Merchant stole it during the delivery, intending to sell it either to Saddler or a terrorist organization such as ETA or the IRA at a profit. However, the deal went sour; luckily for the Merchant, there just happened to be an American government agent with a lot of treasure in the area.
The Merchant is Ganados v 1.0When Las Plagas was first being experimented with, the first version made its victims invincible and free-willed. But clearly, the fact they were infected with a virus that did no favors for their complexion didn't go over too well with many of the victims, and they attacked. That's why there's a machine that removes Las Plagas, so the suckers could be killed. The Merchant was a camper from England who escaped after Saddler killed his beloved wife, Leslie, so he decided to assist anyone who came through by selling them stolen guns. He also used to work for Saddler, and thus knows many shortcuts to beat you to wherever it is you're going. He's invincible, so you can't kill him, and he planted the typewriters, and stole your dashed-off apocalypse log, later publishing them as a successful novel.
The Merchant is "That Dog."The merchant is a shapeshifting entity, roaming the forests of Notspain, and assisting those in need. For fighting against the Plagas, he was eventually caught and imprisoned by a bear trap, in wolf form, at the beginning of the game. Along comes a friendly American, who proceeds to free him. As repayment, the Merchant conjures up a bunch of weaponry and assists said agent in his mission against the Plagas. He also assists Ada, for her helping Leon. *He was the chicken in Ada's introductory scene.*
Leon's strength as shown in RE4 comes from the Plaga in his bloodstream, until it is removed.He spends the whole time, from very early on in the game, infected with a Plaga parasite. It explains how, after waking up from being passed out and tied up to Luis, he can kick the guy with the ax with enough strength to fly into the wall, breaking the ganado's neck in the process. It also explains how he can injure a ganado so severely with a kick, while a handgun does less damage.
The Island in Resident Evil 4 is one of the smaller of the Canary Islands.The Canary Islands may be part of Spain, but they're also off the coast of Africa. If you pay attention to the enemies, particularly J.J., you'll notice that there's a mix of Spanish and African appearances.
Leon is the victim of The Dulcinea Effect.That would explain such romantic undertones between Leon and Ada when they honestly (canon-wise; or at least Let's Play-wise) only have seen each other a couple of times in several years.
The Merchant's torch is a Ganado repellent.He never gets attacked by the things, even though he's just around the corner most of the time. What other reason can there be besides the aforementioned "he's one of them" theory? If you shoot him once, he dies like a human would (with the exception of every important character in RE). That pretty much trashes that theory... However, every time you meet him, he has the blue fire in his torch and you don't see him getting attacked by Ganados (on screen). Sure, he gets displaced in the Castle one time, but he never gets injured by the cultists. Rather, he simply moves upstairs behind a barred door while keeping the fire close to make them squirm. In conclusion, the Merchant has found a plant or chemical that, when burned, makes a smoke that repels the Ganado in the general area.
Ada in RE4 is a cloneWell, think about it. Did you guys see Ada's ending in the earlier games? She seemed very adamant that she was not going to use the name Ada Wong anymore. And yet, she was still Ada Wong when RE4 rolled around. I'm thinking the Ada in RE2, while she did as she needed to, could have been killed by Wesker because she allowed people (Leon, Ada, and Sherry) to escape, leaving witnesses who could tell the government what Umbrella was doing. But at the time, he didn't have anyone better, but he didn't have the resources to make the serum that he had in RE5, so he used Ada's DNA to try and create an obedient, willing version of Ada, which is the Ada in RE4. But that Ada was still too much like the original Ada, and as soon as she was off the island and safe from the explosion, she tried to run away with the Plagas sample to stop Wesker from hurting, if anyone, Leon. However, he caught her and killed her quickly, taking the Plagas sample with him, explaining the presence of the Plagas in RE5 and the lack of Ada in the same game.
During RE 4, the president of the United States is Billy Graham.
The true location of RE 4.
The Merchant is The Atoner.Like Luis, he was once a scientist who helped Saddler in his experiments with the Plaga. Upon seeing his experiments in action, he was horrified, and decided to take matters into his own hands: by amassing a small army's worth of guns and equipment. Though he was infected with the parasite in time, he managed to suppress it, nullifying its personality-changing effects (and, incidentally, Saddler's control over him). Who knows, he's probably engaging in a one-man guerilla war against Saddler when you're not buying things from him. If it wasn't for his efforts you'd be drowning in Ganados.
The White House is infested with zombiesThe White House was attacked by zombies prior to Ashley's capture (clearly not Ganados, because Saddler was planning to do something like that on his own), and Ashley thinks they still might be there, which was why she was willing to pay Leon extra to exterminate them. After all, Leon's job at that point is basically running around shooting b.o.w.'s while guarding Ashley; what else would "overtime" mean?
The Merchant is Leon from the futureThis probably explains how he knows where Leon is going to end up. He places his torches up at the RIGHT spot where and when Leon is about to show up. When he passes by Ada, he doesn't have his torches set up properly so he can't upgrade any weapons. ((The torches might be the reason how the Merchant can upgrade weapons. NEW ones that is for Leon's case.)) Keep in mind, both Leon and the Merchant have the SAME VOICE ACTOR. He hides his face so that way his past self wouldn't recognize him...uh...self. When Leon kills the Merchant, he doesn't DIE. Because if he did then why does he keep popping up? It's the SAME Merchant. ((Or Leon doesn't really kill him in the main canon.)) How he can survive getting mine throwered in the face might be possible because...uh...I got nothing. His reasons for being there is to aid his past self because in the end, Leon LOSES control because the plaga took over his body. ((Why the Merchant had red eyes. He is infected with a plaga but was able to break free from its control)) In the future, Leon breaks free and wakes up in a world ruled by Saddler. He goes back in time with weapons of mass destruction with a lone, BUT in order to supply his past self with stronger weapons he needs more money. That is why he charges his past self.
The Merchant's torches allow him to suppress Las PlagaOkay, we all know he is infected someway or somehow but for some reason, the Merchant isn't like any of the other Ganados. So perhaps he burns some special herb or stone that releases a light that appears blue to our eyes but to the Merchant it lets him suppress the parasite or somehow stops it from reaching adulthood. Or maybe the herb/stone's smoke allows him to suppress it. Thus, the Merchant keeps his willpower but also has the glowing eyes. Additionally, Luis' pills are made from the same stone/herb and doesn't need to be burned to be effective. As for why the torches aren't lit in Ada's campaign, the Merchant has a limited amount of the herb/stone he can burn so he only burns it when he needs to. Just like how Leon waits until he strangles Ada before popping the pills. Ada somehow always catches him just before or after he uses the torches and Leon always catches him while he can feel the plaga growing.
The Merchant is a Time LordYes, a cliched WMG, but bear with me. The Merchant is a Time Lord who got infected by Las Plagas, but due to his alien origin, he is affected more slowly/differently than a normal human. The Shooting Galleries are his TARDIS that Leon inadvertedly walks in, and that would explain why he can appear anywhere carrying a enormous cache of weapons. He can get killed by Leon, but regenerates offscreen (and he is always covering his face, so you don't notice) Why he is not attacked by the Ganados? They cannot see him thanks to a perception filter.
Saddler is over 500 years oldJust think about it: There is no mention of a predecessor and the cult was founded some time before the Spanish Inquisition. During said Inquisition, Los Illuminados was nearly wiped out. Nearly. How does a small cult survive throughout the centuries without their brainwash-bugs at their disposal? Their leader survived. He somehow managed to keep himself unnoticed and even managed to amass a fortune. Those tons of weapons, soldiers, battleships, researchers, technology and that private island don't pay for themselves. Also, look at his Plaga-form. Saddler's form looks far more different from the rest of the Dominant Strain-carriers. Mendez, while friggin' huge, stays relatively small compared to Saddler. Salazar just cheated and merged with the Queen Plaga and his remaining Verdugo. But Saddler's huge Combat Tentacles come right the fuck out of nowhere, just look at the scene where he kills Luis with his giant killer tentacle wang. He also seems way more in control of his transformations (as evident in his fight with Ada). The anwser? Over the centuries he has practically become one with the parasite and the parasite has prolonged his lifespan. Plaga are resilient mofo's. They even survided being fossilized (well, more or less through spores).
Leon was right. This IS an alien invasion!In the castle, you can find notes Luis made whilst studying Las Plagas, comparing it to other parasites. One thing most of them have in common is that they influence their hosts' behaviour, usually with the objective of being eaten by some other creature. This is why Los Illuminados wanted to take over the United States- so that they could lure the target(s?) to Earth and pass the parasite to them. TL;DR: Las Plagas are Tyranids.
Saddler was tight with Dr Tongue.How in HELL else can Saddler have Dr. Salvador/The Bella Sisters be so resistant to gunfire? Dr. Tongue's Chainsaw-Wielding Mooks can take rocket launcher rounds like it's nothing, but he never figured out how to make a chainsaw a One-Hit Kill to Zeke/Julie. Saddler overheard that problem he was having and tried to make his Hockey Mask and Chainsaw Mooks a One-Hit Kill. The problem was that the process Saddler used made them more Glass Cannon than Dr Tongue's Stone Wall types.
Assignment Ada takes place in an Alternate Universe.In the plot of the game, there was only one Plagas Sample, that Ada took and gave to Wesker. But during Assignment Ada, there are five. And also in the actual plot, Ada blew up the island after securing that sample. So it isn't like she could just waltz in and find five more for Wesker.