Thadd’s Thoughts: Why sequels

Thadd’s  Thoughts: Why sequels

Thadd Simpson, Columnist

So I have this friend named, oh I don’t know, let’s just call him Andy, and Andy has been nagging me for what seems like a month to go see “Zootopia” with him.

Now “Zootopia” the movie was actually pretty good, it had talking animals and jokes and even a surprisingly relevant plot.

I could even tolerate sitting between two Grandmas and behind a legion of giggling, farting children.

However, and I address this to the entire human race, sequels and remakes have become more annoying than interesting.

While sitting in the mystifying Majestic Theater (which had a most peculiar odor might I add), anxiously waiting for the movie to start, I was run over and reversed-upon by a semi-truck’s worth of previews for sequels and remakes.

“Jungle Book,” “Alice in Wonderland,” “Barbershop 3” and these were just the trailers I saw!

A quick trip over to the swell Mr. Google taught me (by way of that there are more than 160 movie sequels in the works as of April 6th!

Who needs three more “Avatar” movies where Jake Sully can remind us of the worst parts of “Dances with Wolves” and “The Last Samurai?”

Now I’d be lying if I thought all 160 were bad ideas. I am pumped like a gas station for “Pacific Rim 2” and “Avengers: Infinity War,” but seriously, it is impossible on any rational level to justify “Expendables 4” or God-forbid, 5.

And see, this is the problem.

There’s this feedback loop effect that Hollywood clings to, desperate to make measurable, safe returns.

If a movie does well at the box office, (and even terrible movies do well at the box office, see Adam Sandler’s career), a bunch of cigar-toting mafia boss wannabes in a board room somewhere decide to make three more, and then those movies do well enough on their own, and then before you know it, you’ve seen five Air Bud movies in six years. (Fun fact, there are 14 movies in the “Air Bud” canon, with two additional spin-offs.)

This feedback loop, which I’m going to call “Refusing to shoot Old Yeller” syndrome, is responsible for many, many less-than average movies, and a general aversion to originality in general. “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,” the last two movies in “The Hangover” trilogy and “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull,” all suffer from this incurable disease.
RTSOY (pronounced “art-soy”) has even begun to manifest itself in new ways, splitting otherwise rational trilogies and series into even smaller parts (see “Mocking Jay part 2” and “Deathly Hallows part 2”).

Soon, and I know I sound like a Fox News-style fear monger, media will be so fragmented and splintered that coherent stories will be upwards of ten parts long, and entire middle-part movies will be spent on nonsense irrelevant to the original plot.

Like the best hookers in Bangkok, Hollywood is mastering the art of delaying orgasm, or more accurately, resolution.