The ‘Dark Fate’ Of Bad Sequels

It’s no mystery many popular movies hold their popularity enough to bring about a franchise, and movie goers will give their money to another sequel despite its predecessors being terrible.

Why though?

Because we think the next sequel to a failing franchise might just redeem it. We’re creatures of habit and think we know what we’re in for when buying a ticket to another Transformers or Terminator movie, ‘This next sequel will be better, though, surely’, we tell ourselves, but we’re often disappointed, again …

Of course the sexy new trailers fuel the deception. I respect the creators of movie trailers because they do a fine job of giving those new installments a fresh and appealing look.

The problem lies with us, when we think the entire movie will be just as good as its trailer and nothing like Terminator 3, 4 or 5, and of course a safer option than that independent feature no one heard of.

So who’s looking forward to the next 25 Avatar sequels? From what I hear no one really cares, but we’re all secretly hopeful they’ll live up to our low expectations, just like Pirates Of The Caribbean: The Mild Inconvenience Of The Brown Amethyst did. (Not a real film yet, but fingers crossed)

Sequels are always a bit of a gamble. The few awesome ones like Dark Knight, Paddington 2, and 90% of the movies in the MCU seem to be a good enough reason for us to put our faith in the sequels of the future.

Thanks to the inspiration I got from the MCU, I recently decided to watch every X People installment in chronological order. However, when I found out there’s multiple viewing orders, I began to understand a little of how messy their timeline really is.

I found myself making excuses for every little plot hole until it became too much, and simply decided each movie was set in its own universe, but also not …?

The X-Men franchise has gotten messy after attempting to resurrect their inconsistent plots by adding in time travel with X-Men: Days of Future Past but then screwing it up again with X-men: Apocalypse, followed by the upcoming X-Men: Dark Phoenix which just appears to be a new telling of X-Men: The Last Stand which is the whole reason they went back in time in the first place.

All this to say sequels often disappoint us yet we are still willing to invest our time and money despite their predecessors bombing. It’s human nature to avoid risks, and independent films can often be risky without the $100M budget we’re used to.

We think we’ll know what we’re in for when Terminator 6: Dark Fate arrives and even if it tanks we’d rather see it over and indie like The Last Black Man In San Francisco (That’s my plug for a beautiful looking movie also coming out in 2019. Go watch the trailer now.)

You may disagree, but the ratings show that ‘Movie title, semicolon, The Final End Fate Of The Last Villain/Protagonist just made $800M. Meanwhile, many of these incredibly compelling, original and independent features are getting passed over.

So is the fate of bad sequels actually dark? Not by the looks of it. They’ll probably continue to do well if we continue to watch them, but not every successful movie needs 12 sequels. Many times it’s a case of ‘quit while you’re ahead’ meaning the good memory of a movie should stay as a good memory and not something that needs resurrecting.

Give independent filmmakers and their original stories a chance and the world will be a better place.


  • Jay Evans


    Jay Evans has spent the last 8 years working as a film editor, 4 of which have been with The Initiative Production Company. In his spare time he enjoys music, comedy, experimental cooking and getting lost in the woods.


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