Michelle can't come to the phone right now, because she's dead — or at least that's what some fans think. It's been four years since Fuller House was first announced and Full House fans continue to hold out hope that Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen will reprise their shared-role as Michelle Tanner. Well, based on this new Fuller House theory about Michelle, there are some viewers who have given up completely and are now theorizing that Michelle isn't in the show — because she's dead.
Michelle's potential death was first floated by ScreenRant, after noting how the first part of Season 5, which dropped on Netflix on Dec. 6, referred to Michelle in the past tense. After DJ and Steve's engagement in the season, Danny said to his eldest, Stephanie, and Kimmy, "It's so nice to have three daughters again." It's somewhat of a throwaway line, but definitely implies that for a time, he only had two daughters, which begs the question: what about Michelle?
Well, Candace Cameron Bure discussed the Olsen twins' absence in a December interview with TVLine, where she confirmed that the two weren't even invited onto the show this season. "We did not reach out to them," she said. "It was very clear several seasons ago that they did not want to do it." Former showrunner Jeff Franklin also told TVLine during Season 3 that he was done extending an invite to Mary-Kate and Ashley.
The Olsen twins discussed Fuller House in 2015 when the reboot was first announced. They told Women's Wear Daily that they had just found out about the spinoff and were hoping to speak with Bob Saget and John Stamos about details. Later, Stamos told Howard Stern (after some drama), "I did call and talked to Mary-Kate and explained what the show is going to be and told them I'd love for them to be on there and they decided not to, which I respect."
There were several Michelle references throughout Season 5's first half, including when DJ's middle son, Max, recalled the time "Aunt Michelle got amnesia," which happened in the Full House series finale. In Season 1, Fuller House addressed Michelle's whereabouts by making yet another joke about the Olsens. After Stephanie asked where her younger sister was, Danny replied, "Well, Michelle sends her love, but she's busy in New York running her fashion empire."
As for Michelle's "death," the theory might seem like a dark twist, but, as BuzzFeed reported, both Full House and Fuller House have incorporated not-so-lighthearted storylines before, including the death of Danny's wife and the death of DJ's husband. Either Danny truly meant something by his statement (Michelle could also be estranged from her family), or the series was simply poking fun again at the fact that Michelle remains nowhere to be seen after five seasons.