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'Quels...se and/or pre

Updated on February 17, 2013

No...this isn't a French and/or Spanish language piece...it's about sequels/prequels and how we perceive them as a society. Now just for the sake of this piece, instead of having to write the words sequel and/or prequel over and over again I'm just going to refer to them as 'quels...it's a whole lot easier...and I'm way too lazy to have it any other way.

Most of the time 'quels are awarded to those original works that have met and/or exceeded their expectations both financially and critically, however, there are exceptions to this rule...this is something that is very prevalent in the horror movie genre. Not all horror movies deserve and/or warrant a 'quel, but due to the fact that most are very inexpensive to make and are normally released right around Halloween which gives them that added push, most of the time they make money, which in-turn has the studio releasing a followup shortly after...the Saw movies are a perfect example of this.

Some companies even rely on the brand itself to sell and move units, like for example "Call of Duty" and/or "Madden"...do these games really need a new installment every year, of course not, but they know the diehards are going to buy them up,...and most likely for full price...so why not. The new updates/enhancements they add each year could easily come in the form of a $15 - $20 addon to the original game itself, but if the consumer is willing to spend $60 for the same old thing with just a few added features then why would they handle it any other way. I know sometimes these games are a complete overhaul and upgrade from the original and warrant a new game, but for the most part this isn't the case.

Most of the time 'quels suck, but is that because we as the audience expect too much, or are they really all that bad? If they were standalone works would they still suck as bad...if they didn't have their predecessor(s) to live up to, would they be received much better or probably about the same? We all know in most case they would suck just as much, or possibly even more, because they wouldn't even have their predecessors name and positive vibes working for them.

One thing that amazes me when it comes to 'quels is that instead of just sticking with the same formula that made their name sake great, they try to change things around and add way too much filler, ultimately making it something entirely different altogether. When something is good and well received it's not a bad thing to give them more of the same...if you're eating a steak dinner and you enjoyed it so much that you ask for seconds and they give you a hot dog instead it's just not going to satisfy your appetite...sure they're both meats but they are not one in the same.

Entertainment mediums have a bad habit of trying to outdo their previous works, instead of continuing down the path that made them a success in the first place, they try to one-up themselves. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying change is bad, but sometimes it's uncalled for...and if it's not broke, don't fix it. Think Star Wars...the original three movies were great, just enough substance to keep you entertained and wanting more...the next three movies, way too much and left you scratching your head trying to figure out what the poop is going on. It's like going from a delicious peanut butter and jelly sandwich to a peanut butter and jelly and Fluff and Nutella and banana sandwich...just way too much going on...total overkill.

There are times when the 'quels get the job done right...sometimes even better than the originals...like in the case of Terminator 2 and Aliens (thank you James Cameron)...they took what they had and ran with it, they didn't try to change it all around and make it into something it's not. This seems like such common sense...I'm really surprised we have so much crap out there when it comes to 'quels...it's just uncalled for and needs to be stopped.

MJM

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    • Shinkicker profile image

      Shinkicker 4 years ago from Scotland

      I like that word 'quels' :-) And you're right, very few are better than the original.

      Cheers

    • MichaelJohnMele profile image
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      Michael John Mele 4 years ago from Seffner, Florida

      @Shinkicker thank you for reading and for commenting back kind sir...I really do appreciate it.

    • thebiologyofleah profile image

      thebiologyofleah 4 years ago from Massachusetts

      I have a love/hate relationship with 'quels, in general though I agree why do they do so many of them? The curiousity factor usually draws me in though even if I just end up ridiculing it the whole way through.

      And a little off topic I hate reboots for the most part, Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy being the expection. Why remake and reboot things that have already been done?

    • MichaelJohnMele profile image
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      Michael John Mele 4 years ago from Seffner, Florida

      @ thebiologyofleah I know what you mean…sometimes, even knowing they are going to suck, you are just drawn to them…kind of like how a bug is drawn to one of those bug zappers…they know the end result is going to suck but they just can help themselves.

      Yes reboots for the most part do suck…and suck bad…there has only been a few that have been just as good and/or better than the originals.

    • EJ Lambert profile image

      EJ Lambert 4 years ago from Chicago, IL

      I understand the perception of prequels and that they are meant to enhance a story. However, I view them as completely pointless. Why do you need to explain a story about characters and a universe that people already know and love? To me, if you already see what is coming, then it kind of ruins the whole point of the prequel in the first place.

    • MichaelJohnMele profile image
      Author

      Michael John Mele 4 years ago from Seffner, Florida

      @EJ Lambert I agree with you for the most part...there are times where the story needs to be expanded and further told and warrants a prequel...but these cases are few and far between. Most of the times sequels are a waste of time...and just a way for the studio to cash in on a hot property.

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