I know, this was supposed to be Commercial Suicide 2, but I’ve STILL not completed my research for that, so I’ve dragged a post I started 12 months ago out of the drafts folder, given what I did a bit of a polish and got round to finishing it. That doesn’t mean it’s not any good (or no worse than any of the others at least) although it does verge on being a bit of a ‘rant’ which I promised to try and avoid. Oh well, a little grumbling once in a while can’t do any harm…

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Imagine a world without sequels… While you’re doing that, imagine a world without reboots, remakes, reinventions, rehashes and whatever other name they might go under. Whenever a film (or a book or a videogame) finishes, that’s the end, you won’t ever see those characters again, the story is over, FIN!

I know this is a bit of a controversial suggestion, there have been an awful lot of good sequels and remakes*, but for every one of those, there’s probably at the very least ten atrocious ones that should never ever have been made.**

If there was an unwritten law that said film-makers and authors could not create works featuring characters and scenarios that had been previously used, then surely the quality of the work would improve. It would encourage creativity. I like my stories with a beginning, middle and especially an end, a conclusion. It doesn’t have to be a ‘happy ever after’, in fact I quite enjoy the opposite outcome, but anything’s better than open-ended ‘to be continued’ type climaxes.

Yes, I know I’m being naive here, the reason that sequels are churned out is purely financial. There’s nothing creative or artistic about it. Simply get your captive audience, your fanbase, and charge them again and again for lazy, ill-conceived follow-ups. It’s easier and cheaper than going to the trouble of creating a truly original work, and there’s less risk involved as you already know that people will buy into it.

The relatively recent spate of interminable TV dramas is another good example of this, and I think it’s fair to say that 99% of my friends have recommended that I get into one or the other of these endless series. Again, it’s just lazy writing, creating an inconclusive narrative to keep people coming back and making easy money. I’m not interested. While I’m having a bit of a rant, might I ask where this word ‘season’ has come from regarding TV shows? It’s a SERIES, not a SEASON, as anyone capable of picking up and using a dictionary should know. That’s just another reason for me to dislike these things.

Despite not being the biggest fan of the superhero movie genre, I think it’s only fair that they should be excluded from the ‘no sequel law’ due to the nature of their source material, which has always been episodic. Saying that, there have been a heck of a lot of stinkily bad remakes of superhero films, but that’s just down to poor quality control.

I can well imagine that I’m going to be in a small minority with my opinions on this subject, but I don’t care. As I said near the start, there have been a great number of excellent films that would never have been created if sequels and remakes were not allowed, but maybe losing those classics is a small price to pay to avoid the conveyor belt of dross that is served up across so many forms of media.

Finally, I was  horrified to discover a few months ago that The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz was subject to a staggering 34 sequels! Frank L. Baum, the author of the original, grudgingly produced 13 further Oz books to satisfy popular demand, and on his death Ruth Plumly Thompson took over the writing duties to create 21 more, the last being published in 1942. So maybe it’s not such a recent phenomenon after all!?

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Rant over, back next time, hopefully with what I said would be next last time o_0

Back soon :)… ses x

*I decided to put together a quick list of some great films (in my opinion) that wouldn’t exist if I had my way…

1) Evil Dead 2. Not so much a sequel as the same film made again with a bigger budget.

Bruce Campbell, who deserves an oscar for being Bruce Campbell.

Bruce Campbell, who deserves an oscar for being Bruce Campbell.

2) Cape Fear. If you’re going to remake a film, at least have the decency to wait a reasonable amount of time after the original version, like this.

It takes a certain type of actor to be sinister in a shirt like that.

It takes a certain type of actor to be sinister in a shirt like that.

3) Return Of The Killer Tomatoes. Again, not exactly a sequel, but a classic nonetheless.

George Clooney's career kinda went downhill after this...

George Clooney’s career kinda went downhill after this…

** And here’s some examples of films that should have been left well alone…

1) Prometheus. If the original Alien movie hadn’t existed, this would be ok, but it does exist, and this is little more than an insult to it.

Even aliens enjoy reading whilst having a poo!

Even aliens enjoy reading whilst having a poo!

2) The Day The Earth Stood Still. The 1951 version is one of my all time favourites. The 2008 version is a crime against humanity.

Pretending to act, unsuccessfully, as usual.

Pretending to act, unsuccessfully, as usual.

3) Total Recall. They didn’t wait long enough after the original, and exemplified the saying “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Garbage!

There's more to movie-making than special effects... Or there should be.

There’s more to movie-making than special effects… Or there should be.