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T-800 (T2) portal

The T-800 on his mission to find and protect John Connor

Terminators are assigned with missions that guide their priorities.

These missions can range from terminating certain subjects, to protecting others. Some advanced model Terminators have been assigned more nebulous missions in addition to terminate a subject, such as ensuring the creation of Skynet.

Terminators will often narrowly restrict their actions to the parameters of a mission. They can, however, use discretion in determining whether or not to terminate witnesses or immediate obstacles. For example, Cromartie did not kill FBI agent James Ellison[1] because it intends to follow him to John Connor.[2]

Secondary missions can be assigned to Terminators by authority figures. For example, Sarah Connor has given Cameron several missions, even though Cameron's original mission was to protect John Connor.

Despite the fact that Terminators can not self-terminate as an act in and of itself,[3] they can engage in any degree of self-destructive acts if they have calculated that doing so will achieve their primary mission. [4]

Known missions

Protection
Main article: Protection
Termination
Main article: Termination
Creation of Skynet
Main article: Agent of Skynet
Other missions
  • Marcus Wright: To infiltrate the Resistance and deliver John Connor and Kyle Reese to Skynet Central. However, Marcus is totally unware of this. After realizing, he ripped out his implanted chip and went to rescue John Connor and Kyle Reese. Terminator Salvation

Quotes

John Connor: You're not here to kill me - I figured out that for myself. So what's the deal?
Terminator: My mission is to protect you.
John Connor: Yeah? Who sent you?
Terminator: You did. 35 years from now you reprogrammed me to be your protector here - in this time.
John Connor: This is deep...
Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Terminator: I have to stay functional until my mission is complete. Then it doesn't matter.
John Connor: Yeah. I have to stay functional too. I'm "too important".
Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Terminator: The T-1000's highest probability for success now will be to copy Sarah Connor and to wait for you to make contact with her.
John Connor: Great, but what happens to her?
Terminator: Typically, the subject being copied is terminated.
John Connor: Shit! Why didn't you tell me? We gotta go right now!
Terminator: Negative. She's not a mission priority
John Connor: Fuck you, she's a priority to me!
Terminator 2: Judgment Day

John Connor: What is your mission?
Terminator: To... ensure the survival... of John Connor... and Katherine Brewster.
John Connor: You are about to fail that mission.
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines

Cameron: I was sent here to protect John.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles pilot episode

Cameron: (steps toward Sarah) I can play hooky.
Sarah Connor: Find Dmitri. Derek says he has a sister, teaches ballet. Start with her. Low profile, no guns.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, "The Demon Hand"

John Connor: So how often do you lie?
Cameron: When the mission requires it.
John Connor: Do you lie to me?
Cameron: Sometimes.
John Connor: About important things?
Cameron: Yes. Important things.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, "Vick's Chip"

Agent Ellison: I'll never lead you to her. (Cromartie turns from the safe house and walks up to Ellison) If that's why you left me alive you'd better just kill me now. I'll never do the Devil's work.
Cromartie: We'll see.
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, "What He Beheld"

References

  1. Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles episode "What He Beheld"
  2. Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles episode "Samson & Delilah"
  3. The T-800 in Terminator 2: Judgment Day was unable to self-terminate, thus it asked for help to be lowered into a pit of molten steel.
  4. The I-950 Serena Burns in T2: Infiltrator was initially deployed during the Future War with a self contained high explosive device. Her first mission was to infiltrate the Resistance, attain close proximity to John Connor, and detonate.

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