Sunday, 11 March 2012

Bamboozled by film sequel and franchise headings Upd 03/06/12

Guess what, I've thought of a lot more and I'm largely disappointed at myself that I initially forgot these babies.  Who knows, must've had a blank spot.

I haven't updated this for a few months now as I've been working on other stuff but I've added quite a few more which share the same lack of sanity, thus similarity with the others.

These (along with any new material) are denoted with an * and each new franchise featured will begin and end with.*

So if you haven't yet dipped into this unforgivable madness, just 'Edit', 'Find' and find * for continued insanity and no matter where I shove them, you'll find them.

I think it's worth taking the time to do so as I've added some more great stuff and my style of writing doesn't let up either.

Of course if you're a noob to this post, please ignore the above and start from the original beginning (directly below).  Enjoy!

We all love films, or at least have a soft spot for a franchise, character or a particular type of genre.

Directors, creators and writers alike, hope that in years to come, their silver screen creations will be etched in the tablet of the much sought-after status as being regarded as a classic.

This is mainly due to their many iconic moments, either as catchphrase, character or story.

Some catchphrases will be used commonly in everyday life.  Such as 'friend' spoke in a high-pitched OTT way, as seen in the Inbetweeners.

Yes I know that's from the TV show and not the film, but you catch my drift. 

The thespians who portray them in turn make them legendary and sometimes when they hang up their acting shoes, or quit the character and move on, changing the actor usually results in movie-goers concluding 'Yeah, he or she was alright but I definitely prefer [insert actor/actress here] or even 'God why oh why did they choose him/her to replace [insert actor/actress here], what a stupid idea as it was never gonna work'.

To keep a popular franchise going or maybe more accurately when it's dying out, that's when those who feature in the original tend to drift away (as do directors).

So orders are passed to find a suitable replacement - that's when things go wrong.

However, although part of a reboot, one effort really did work with Heath Ledger portraying the Joker in The Dark Knight.

Debate on who was better continues to rage but I'd say they are better in different ways.

Jack Nicholson was brilliant and darkly humourous as the smiling freak, with a large dollop of menace with Ledger being incredibly creepy, oozing more insanity than a Cuckoo's Nest.

But sticking with the Caped Crusader example, replacing Michael Keaton with Val Kilmer and George Clooney respectively just didn't work.

I'd never say Keaton was great actor but his feet really fitted snugly in Batman's boots.  Although to contradict myself, he was awesome in Beetlejuice.

Anyway, adding Robin and Batgirl too?  Yeah we really needed those highly annoying pains in the asses.  The films got more camp and ridiculous too, as the first two Tim Burton films were particularly dark.  Those chars deserve to be consigned the comic books only.

Some films are regarded as cult classics, who just have something about them that's particularly famous, but are of a particular taste which others may think are awful.  Some are just so bad, they're good (either on purpose or unintentionally) and there's even 'growers' too.

After watching a film, there's so many categories that I'd incorporate them with. My examples include the a single-watch wonder i.e in the bracket of 'Glad I've seen it, but never watch it again'.  Nowadays, a new film that I'd watch more than once is an achievement in itself.

I could further dip into my comparison bucket but that may be saved for another time.

I'm a self-confessed cinephile and hence, doesn't really care if they're spoken in my first language or subbed by any other.  Some are really put off by subtitled films but I'm afraid they're really missing out as some foreign films (mainly horror) are up there with the best.

Still, for those who have a phobia to subtitles, fear not as the originals are so good, America eventually remakes them.

This tells me two things - either the Yanks are jealous and must have 'their' version and/or, are made so people don't have to read subtitles.

To be fair, some of these remakes aren't bad and even pretty good but whatever, the originals remain the best.

Now to the precise point of this feature.

Take a long running franchise, or a film with a single sequel or trilogy etc.  What do you call the next one?  Well that's a burning question, sometimes hotter than the contents of an active volcano.

So I would call it something obvious to associate it with the original?  But to those charged with the responsibility, the common mindset seems to be - give a sequel a title that bears little or no link-up with the original that confuses everybody, or ensure without research - it makes no fucking sense whatsoever!

They also seem to lose the ability in continuing a familiar sequence of numbers and/or numerals.

I have to say this, purposely search for a famous film/sequel that was numberless or those w/o a numeral on a website and it will even pathetically make up a title to explain the tripe.

For instance, check out what Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter 'link' and/or 'title' is known as....

Like the franchise - absolutely fictitious.

Well I've got good news, I'm chosen many who are particularly guilty of some or even all of the above.

Soon after, if there was a film called 'Bongo goes Bananas' you'll be thinking the sequel will in no doubt be named 'Princess Apricot Becomes Addicted to Cauliflower'.

Incidentally in this sequel, Bongo isn't featured and it turns out that Princess Apricot ate him with pitch fork while he was giving birth to a goldfish and Bongo was a drug-fuelled hallucination.

It that wasn't bad enough, this would be compounded by the fact that even if the residents of the disconsolate asteroid, Who Jumps Highest Over the Spaghetti Fence achieve the self-titled feat, they would argue about the celebrations of eating scented toilet paper if the texture wasn't right.  Forfeits of snorting white pepper proved unpopular due to nose explosions.

Some may not be as spectacularly bad as others but are still way off the mark in the 'making sense' criteria.  Some titles may even sense, but what happens in a sequel is bollocks.

Further to this, some of the sequels may as well be standalone films as the content contained is totally different to the previous and shouldn't even exist as a sequel to that franchise.

Even the Addams Family will scratch their heads in bewilderment.

If any of the 'sequels' have an 'aka' in another country, or some other angle which explains the madness, I couldn't give two hoots as it's what they're known as in the UK that's important.

To kick things off nicely it's Friday the 13th.

Things started well, how could they not as it's the first film as it's impossible to fail with 'Friday the 13th', things chugged on nicely with Part 2 and then Part 3, but then came the fourth film.  It was called Friday the 13th - The Final Chapter.

This was odd in itself as the Part 4 was missing.  Okay I can forgive this as it was the final film as it would be silly to add another part or number to the final film, but wait - was it actually the 'final' chapter?  At the time, no eyebrows were raised as they'd decided this was it and end a slasher tetralogy with an explosive climax.

Whether it did or not is irrelevant because they made another film.  How could they right?  To me, the word 'final' means 'that's it', 'no more', 'kaput' etc.  Sadly, not in their dictionary as thereafter, things were going to get odder than a two-headed turkey

The fifth was named 'Friday the 13th - A New Beginning' so again, w/o a number - was this supposed to start the franchise again?  Well you'd think so as it boasted a totally different killer - in the form of a teenager taking on the role as Jason.  WTF right?

So the next should be 'Friday the 13th A New Beginning - Part 2'.  That would be far too easy and so it proved, as Jason returned and then we'd go from there.  Why was this part of Friday the 13th?

From 6-8 they'd sensibly decide to resurrect Jason and get things back on track (regardless of what bullshit subtitle they gave them) but not for long because in 1993, the ninth film was called Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday.  So the number to hint at where the fuck we was at was missing again?  Bullshit!

In my normal world it should've been called Friday the 13th Part 9  - The Final Friday so for the first time, they failed to include '13th'.  Wow, that is some piece of work.

Definitely 'it' right but a good few years later - they would fuck up again as there would be a tenth.

Obviously the malevolent ghost who haunted the set of A New Beginning was bored....

Jason X would see him continue his bloodthirsty carnage with the crew on a spaceship in the future.  Ho, ho, ho green giant.

Okay this was the tenth film so with the right numeral but that doesn't clear the previous film as that was w/o any numeral or number.  Also, another unwelcome first - no 'Friday', 'the' or even '13th'.

Although unlikely and maybe wishful thinking, Jason vs Michael or vice versa would be cool.

Jase would go on to feature in a spin-off (yes that's fine) starring alongside his main competitor in Freddy vs Jason in 2003.

Six years later, a reimagining was released sensibly (yeah - amazing) named Friday the 13th.  That was obviously a single film but did shove in a tidbit of Parts 2 and 3, (showing the bag and trademark hockey mask transition respectively).  Did exactly what it said on the tin.  Good stuff!

Those who haven't seen it, sorry - but that's all set for a sequel as it ends with one of the final scenes in the 1980 original but instead Jason rises from Crystal Lake as an adult and not as a child.

As some may fail to still understand, that Jason wasn't the killer until Part 2, instead it was Mrs Vorhees (Betsy Palmer) who became a nut-job as she blamed camp counsellors for allowing Jason's apparent drowning in Crystal Lake as they were too busy being amorous.

This misconception is highlighted in the Wes Craven's Scream, as the killer asks a terrified hotty who the killer was in Friday the 13th.  When she answers incorrectly with Jason Vorhees; she is rightly corrected.  I was nodding in agreement on my first watch.

Hence why so many people call them Jason films, which to a large extent is true, apart from the important original of course.

If a sequel was made, let me get my crystal ball working, it's gonna be called - Vorhees 2: Here lies Jason - died Friday the13th.

I like that.... I want credit for it, but just to be boring, it's gonna have a sensible title like Friday the 13th: Part 2 isn't it?  Surely lessons learnt by now?  We'll see, if and when a sequel is made.

To very briefly touch upon things that are bollocks in sequels - how about Gremlins.

I'm not knocking the film here, brilliant 80s stuff but here's the bullshit.

During one of its famous sequences, the nasty gremlins nick a snow plow and smash their way through the Futterman's home.  It's not shown in graphic detail but the inference is 100% as it's fairly obvious they are both killed by this mechanical beast.

Billy then reports the gremlins to the sheriff's department and they get a phone call informing of a 'freak accident' involving a snowplow at the Futtermans.  They are not seen thereafter...

So Gremlins 2: The New Batch explodes onto our screens, or in my case my VHS and there they are - The Futtermans, bold as brass and in the flesh, totally fine.  So they're telling me, they still can be a character in this film?  Bollocks of course.

Mr Futterman also gives a flying gremlin a concrete showering, who then flies away to become a gargoyle.  With all this mayhem happening, surely someone would lend a hand, but no, the crowd are apparently oblivious to this.... 

The Karate Kid was another 80's classic so keeping with the current trend, it'd eventually be remade in 2010.  As with any remake, the resemblance to the original remained but while not totally awful, the title is stupid.

The title in itself is fucked up as the film is set in China and the 'new' Daniel is taught kung fu by the 'new' Miyagi.  This is factually inaccurate as the title is 'karate' and that martial art originated in Okinawa, hence why the original made total sense as Miyagi is from Okinawa.

So considering that, just call it The Kung Fu Kid and then it'd make sense, and it could disguise itself as a reboot.

Too late - more incredible Hollywood bullshit.

*Sporting films can mess things up quicker than an inexperienced chef in the kitchen.

The Mighty Ducks series about hockey team misfits proved this conclusively.

The Mighty Ducks, then....

D2 The Mighty Ducks and then D3 The Mighty Ducks.

This is wrong on so many levels as what the fuck does 'D' mean?

So it must and maybe stands for 'Ducks'?  Okay but what the fuck is the laziness behind using the same subtitle?

I don't think any film had the audaciousness to pull this shit.*

A Nightmare on Elm Street as already mentioned was Jason's nearest movie villain so it's next.

The first stuck with the tradition of Friday the 13th and was simply called A Nightmare on Elm Street.  They would not confuse nobody and stick with it for Parts 2 to 5 - all's well.

Then here we go, the sixth film is not called Part 6, instead it's called Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare.  So it's definitely the sixth film but why not just call it A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 6: Freddy's Dead - The Final Nightmare.

To take the piss, as with Part 4 (and the ninth) of Friday the 13th, it's supposed to be the final film as Freddy would be 'dead' and it's the 'final' nightmare, but noooooo.

There would be a seventh film (would be now more of a reimagining), but that term didn't exist at the time.

In 1994, Wes Craven's New Nightmare would appear.  Only the second time that 'Elm Street' wouldn't be mentioned.

Keeping with Hollywood and remakes of old classics - A Nightmare on Elm Street was remade with the same name in 2010.

So reasonable enough, but still still had the same problems as Friday the 13th.
*Blood suckers and hairy full moon dwellers feature now and the latter have really pissed fellow blood drainer Kate Beckinsale off.

The Underworld franchise follows Selene (Beckinsale) who is on the rampage to kick werewolf arse.  Of course, it's not gonna be easy as those pesky Lycans are not going to relent w/o a fight.

This franchise is going to get mixed up every which way but loose, but this ain't gonna turn me.  Even Doc Brown and Marty are gonna be more muddled up as this dares to challenge the greatest of intellects.

This franchise doesn't follow numbering, parts, numerals or anything else, as each 'sequel' just slaps a subtitle after Underworld.  Let's do this thing.

So in chronological order, the films (up until the present) were released as follows:

Underworld - 2003, Underworld: Evolution - 2006, Underworld: Rise of the Lycans - 2009 and Underworld: Awakening in 2012.

So I mentioned the word 'chronological' but as turrets couldn't blame Chell, surely you can also find it your hearts and do the same.

Take a peek at the year sequence year pattern upon the release of each, so having successfully cracked that Layton like, convoluted mathematical equation; Underworld: [insert subtitle here] will be out in 2015, right?

But moving on, there is a mess, a huge mess and an even bigger kerfuffle - involving chronology.

My oh my, my perplexed and puzzled pudding and pie.

I'll gonna deal with time and the order of, but sorry, that's only gonna confuse.  I'm just grateful it's not yet turned into a Freddy or a Jason as I couldn't handle it...

Don't bother trying to work it as that's where I conveniently step in.

So let me get my chronological calculus out and having solved this complicated equation, here it is.

The third released is actually the first;
The first released is the second film;
The second released is the third film; and
The fourth and final (currently) is 'third.5' and beyond.

Selfishly, there's not yet a fifth so I can't state that it's actually the fourth film?

Let's be sensible here, will it really be called Underworld?  How about Lycans: ? or Selene: ? or fuck it ?: ?

Which still wouldn't fucking help as even if we had a fifth, we'd have an uneven amount of films so explaining how that would fit in...

Okay, go ahead and make a fifth and shove it uncomfortably between Underworld making it the fifth released and is somewhere between the 1st and the 26th film.

Eventually in Awakening we'll get set for WW III but have no fear because I'm gonna find a fuse, and light it.

To conclude, let's confusingly recap (in their lunacy).

First came Underworld: Rise of the Lycans - 2009, then Underworld - 2003, Underworld: Evolution - 2006 and finally Underworld: Awakening - 2012.

Well shit the bed, my head is blagged just by writing this and that's w/o the cool soothing taste of alcohol.

How can they fucking do this to us?  It's a total, undeniable mess and an unintentionally, well-designed head fuck.

After disecting that, I've no choice but to ask a favour and please pull the trigger.

P.S Don't worry, there's no rental charge and the chamber's jammed fuller than an unopened pack of cigarettes.*

There are some films that just didn't need a sequel and The Hustler is definitely one of them.  You could also say the same about The Jungle Book.

Anyway, the brilliant original was made in 1961 and ended without the slightest hint that a sequel ever and could be made.

But wait, fast forward 25 years (an anniversary coincidence?) and it's upon us, a sequel to an original that didn't need one.

Was it named The Hustler 2, Hustled: The Hustler Part 2 or The Hustler 2: 'Fast' Eddie Felson Returns.  I'm really wasted on originality but no, The Colour of Money was released in 1986. 

Clearly washed up, Paul Newman reprises his role but instead oversees a young pool shark - Tom Cruise.  I think the film is pretty good but I'm not reviewing here, it's the title.

The Colour of Money - it could be or based on anything.  A gambling drama?  A history lesson in how 'the colour of money' was decided or a sequel to an iconic 60s film?  Hmmmm.

The ending of that even threatened a third, and then it would be a trilogy.  Never made but here's a swipe.  The Hustler Part 3, Felson's Legacy etc, who knows but it would be insulting to do a third but would be permissible as a reboot/reimagining as Mr Newman passed on in 2008.

I'm sure if the Felson character was retained, whoever replaced him wouldn't be as arrorgantly good though....  It'd be like somebody replacing Harrison Ford in another Indy adventure.

Halloween now - all sequels in numbers and numerals (whatever) but so far so good.

But before we continue, in 1982 came Halloween III: Season of the Witch, major WTF moment folks not in title, but in content.

This had absolutely no connection with any other Halloween film in the series (except in name). 

So those expecting Myers on his murderous warpath again, would be sadly disappointed and at the same time, very confused. 

It involved witchcraft, Stonehenge and religious aspects of the Celtic festival.

To get things back on track - The Return of Michael Myers did exactly what it said on the tin and get Mike back in the mix but it begs the question as to why this was allowed to be made as a 'Halloween' film.  Who in the fuck knows?

So as mentioned, the sixth film came, Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers.  So it was definitely the sixth film but notice something missing?  Yes it's a number or numeral after Halloween.

Why omit that, were they trying to be original by forgetting a number?

Arrrggghhhh, and it'd get worse.

The seventh in 1998, was Halloween H20: 20 Years Later.  Okay no 7 or VII but at least the subtitle was mathematically correct (I mean the period in years between this and the first movie).

It didn't care about events that happened between 4-6 and explains that Laurie faked her own death to hide from mad brother Michael.

I always jokingly called this one 'water' as in 'H2o' but of course it's meant to be said as Halloween H Twenty to highlight the twenty years passed.

To move speedily on, after much killing and he is presumed dead to everybody else, she nicks an axe and drives off up in a coroner's van, together with his lifeless corpse (now in a body bag).

Her fears are proved right as he 'wakes' up and escapes the body bag.  However, he is thrown through the windscreen when Laurie slams on noticing this.

He gets trapped between the van and a tree and is absolutely helpless.  As a nice touch, he reaches out seeking forgiveness but she's having none of that bullshit and decapitates him.

Surely that is it, and a reboot is the only way forward....

I presumed wrong as there would be eighth film in 2002 and it wouldn't go backwards to traditional roots by being called Halloween 8.  Nope - Halloween: Resurrection.  Was this a joke stating that the franchise needed to be 'resurrected' to make money or was Michael resurrected as a form of ritual?  No.

This one offers an explanation for a sequel bordering on the proposterous.  As with water, it ignores events in 4-6.

Jamie Lee reprises her role as Laurie but is sent to a psychiatric hospital after well, here comes the bullshit - it's revealed that she didn't kill and/or decapitate Michael at the end of water.

Instead, it was just a just an innocent paramedic who found Myers in the school, but was attacked and his larynx (or voice box) was crushed and Myers somehow managed to force the orderly to change into his clothes and don the mask.  That's why he kept schtum throughout his ordeal during the climax of the previous film.

I'm sorry, that is the most ridiculous explanation for a sequel I have heard. 

So a few years later passes, with Myers on the run.  The time comes for Michael to again find Laurie and attempts to finish what he hasn't being able to do in 24 years of trying.  Will he succeed?

After a chase, Laurie lures Michael into a trap on the roof of the hospital by surprising him with a convenient noose trap (that snares his leg) which forces him to drop his knife.  She begins to cut the rope but Michael starts to hold his ears (with a flashback to water).

She now doubts it is really Michael and reaches to remove his mask as confirmation.  Big mistake as Michael takes his chance and after a struggle, they both go over the roof and she's stabbed.  Hanging on, Laurie kisses Michael and knowing that's all folks, says "I'll see you in hell" and signs off by falling to her death.  Myers then clambers up and returns home.

So after all these years, he's finally achieved his goal of killing his sister.

His home is now the base for a live internet reality game show with would-be hotties challenged to stay the night and find out what led him to kill.

Michael has been living in tunnels below his home and on Halloween, Michael appears and of course he's really pissed as his me time is inconsiderately interrupted - cue more familiar carnage.

Ironically, the final scene with Laurie is good and that must be the easiest money Jamie Lee Curtis has ever earned as prior to this, her scenes can't last any longer than 10 minutes.

The internet game show idea is plain stupid but how Michael is brought back for this sequel wasn't just stupid, it's beyond stupid, it's really fucking stupid.

A tenth film is inevitably threatened at the end but never happened.

It thankfully may never happen as Rob Zombie gave his own take on Halloween in 2007 and made his own sequel to that in 2009.  The trilogy is teased but nothing as yet.

Carpenter advised Zombie to make the film his 'own' and would be foolish to ignore a master director so decided to try and answer why Myers was driven to murder as the original didn't really offer much explanation.

Although in the original series, 5 would reveal that the source of his evil was down to a mystical symbol....

This wasn't a bad idea as this allowed Zombie much more freedom and lots or original content.  So it was a prequel and a remake.

Its sequel while decent wasn't as good as the original and was a very decent film.

Apart from the characters of course, the famous and classic theme would be used in homage.  Nice move Mr Zombie.

Digressing to madness, the late Donald Pleasance portraying Dr Loomis makes no sense (even if in flashback form).  In the first sequel Halloween 2, in an attempt to destroy Michael, he voluntarily blows himself up by using a lighter in a gas-filled room.  But he would go on to feature in 4-6.

So many head fuck moments abound there then.

Totally different type of film now in Open Water, released in 2003.

This was loosely based on the true story of a couple who were accidentally left behind by a scuba diving team, due to a head count mistake.  Now stranded, they are now left to the mercy of the sea and its contents - mainly sharks and anything else.

Now to its sequel - Adrift in 2006 which was also apparently based on actual events.  It follows the exploits of people who go for a swim but somebody forgets to ensure a safe passage back to their vessel - a ladder.

Again the title - how would anybody know that this was a sequel to a film called Open Water?  It follows a similar premise, different circumstances but that doesn't cut it for me.

Its title just doesn't make sense, when I first heard about it, I thought it was a standalone film and why wouldn't I?

In 2010, there was The Reef, an Australian survival film featuring sharks.

This was a single, unrelated film but strangely, it would make more sense for this to be the sequel to Open Water and not Adrift as it was very similar to OW.

But even if history was changed, the title still points to a standalone film.

Just for fun, how about this was a tertralogy of films.  Overboard would start things off in 1987, starring Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell, its sequel would be Open Water, followed by The Reef and to complete the work - Adrift.

So to explain my clever theorem - Hawn and Russell, would go 'Overboard', be in 'Open water', come to 'The Reef' and ultimately become 'Adrift'.  Brilliant eh, but unfortunately that's when my logic becomes flawed.

It would also be chronologically impossible as the third film, The Reef, released in 2010 and the final film, Adrift was released four years earlier.  Awww, spoil sports.

This is of course crazy as Overboard was a rom-com but in title at least, fits the bill perfectly.  Even the writers/makers of Halloween: Resurrection couldn't pin it to relate to OW and/or Adrift.

So a unique and interesting slant to an unheard premise, drawn from my own fun-filled fantasy world.  You wanna play?  Come on in - the water's lovely.  I'm so funny, I don't even know it.

*A video gaming sex symbol (to some) is Lara Croft and she would make her appearance on the big screen with a true sex symbol in Angelina Jolie portraying her.

Still the film franchise have idiotic titles which I'll chat about in a mo.

Lara Croft Tomb Raider and Lara Croft Tomb Raider - The Cradle of Life.

Starters for ten, why did they feel the need to tell every man, woman and child that Lara Croft was Tomb Raider?

Whatever I think of the games, she is the most famous aristocratic explorer in the video gaming world so why would her popularity and status be any different in the film industry.

They must think we're all fucking idiots.

Another thing, where is the punctuation?

Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and/or Lara Croft - Tomb Raider; and
Lara Croft: Tomb Raider - The Cradle of Life and/or Lara Croft - Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life.

Or just Tomb Raider and Tomb Raider II and/or 2.

Perversely, even that could confuse somebody in the video gaming world.  Walking down Reality Avenue, that's of course impossible as anybody with a hint of intelligence will know that if my fictitious hope had come true that the film sequel came out in 2003 and the gaming equivalent came out years earlier in 1997.

Tomb Raider II starring Lara Croft reminded us all of its protagonist

So summing up, those titles leave me disorientated.*

We now move on to a list of sequels that have standalone titled films.  Apart from the original, they bear no resemblance to the original apart from always featuring its seminal character.

Who is it?  Why only 'Dirty' Harry Callahan.

So in 1971, Dirty Harry was released and was surely the precursor to many other cop genres.  Clint Eastwood was perfectly cast as a no-nonsense cop who basically flashed the V's at the very thing he was bound to obey - the law.

Possibly being most famous for the catchphrase, "I know what you're thinking..... etc etc" and ending with "Do I feel lucky?" Well do ya' punk?

It would be parodied many times and Ade Edmundson uses it in the second live stage show of Bottom, in which he taunts a robot parrot.  Iconic and funny respectively.

It also featured one insane villain, portrayed by Andrew Robinson (in his first feature film) known only as the Scorpio Killer.  His behaviour and sadism was heavily influenced by the Zodiac Killer.  His portrayal was so convincing that he received death threats after its release.

Despite his brilliantly deranged effort, it unfortunately led to him being typecast as only a 'psycho villain' and seriously limited his career as others were reluctant to cast him for 'goody' role.

Poor guy, proving that been brilliant in your debut film role can really fuck your career up.  He really was frightening as Scorpio and I found myself shaking my head nervously at his lunacy.

His only other notable film role would be as Larry Cotton, and later portraying his mental brother Frank (in the skin of Larry) in Clive Barker's adaptation of his novel, Hellraiser.

As Larry, it proved he could play other roles, as he was a nice guy, adored by his daughter Kirsty but ultimately used by his bitch of a wife, Julia.  He would of course get a bit nastier when he became Frank.

Thanks Mr Robinson, you've really made me digress there - only kidding but back to Dirty Harry.

So this would eventually lay to rest as a pentalogy but wow, how would you know unless you saw the posters and/or had some inside knowledge.  The answer is you wouldn't as some titles could have multiple meanings.

Magnum Force is one, okay Harry's signature weapon was a '44 Magnum but that's still not good enough as an explanation.

Let's face it, this could be any cop film or a film about a gang of baddies attacking people with tasty chocolate covered desserts.

The Enforcer involved bringing Tyne Daly as his partner (most famously portraying Lacey in TV cop show Cagney and Lacey) to bring down a terrorist leader.  I'm still not convinced.
 
Up there with the most confusing - Sudden Impact was next and was about a brutal gang of rapists.  It did however first feature the line "Go ahead, make my day", wrongly thought to be from the first.  This would also be the final film that Sondra Locke would feature in an Eastwood film.

This is when things start to get strange - taking out Eastwood's mug on a poster and not known anything about it, it could also be a disaster movie as the similarly titled Deep Impact proved in 1998.

Finally, The Dead Pool concludes the franchise and as the title suggests, focuses on a 'dead pool' game which involves guessing how celebrities might meet their demise.

Again, decent idea but still a standalone film.

In fact, apart from Dirty Harry, all could be standalone films, with each offering no hint that any sequel is connected to the first film.  Of course, all are but only in central character and not title.  Until you saw each and Callahan was mentioned - this was their only connection.

In a final thought, the 1977 film, The Gauntlet could indeed be another sequel (even though it's definitely not) to The Enforcer, as Eastwood also played a cop in a similar role (without the catchphrases) with that horrible woman Sondra Locke.

She would star in quite a few Eastwood vehicles in the 70s and 80s, only because she was then his partner during that period.  What he saw in her is anybody's guess.

As each film had a standalone title, why not eh?  Until that research is done of course.

Here are interesting and possibly unrelated future refs, following getting the better of a biker gang, Eastwood would later encounter some of the gang on a train and they beat him up.  He would also go on to beat up (albeit in a comical way) various biker members of the Black Widows in the much-slated Every Which Way films of 1978 and 1980 respectively.

I actually thought they were pretty entertaining with the totally useless and inept Black Widows (their theme too) and Eastwood's lovable orangutan, Clyde.

In The Gauntlet, they were the Noblemen gang.  In an attempt to save him, Locke voluntarily offers herself as a rape victim (she portrays a prostitute) and sure enough it works as they let Eastwood go to focus their intentions on her.  Eastwood intervenes before they can even really start.

In 1983, Locke would later go on to portray herself as a serial killer seeking revenge for a past rape in Sudden Impact.  A strange coincidence?

*Jurassic Park - big dinosaur blockbuster and a great film.  More inevitable than a Rocky comeback, it'd get sequels and those alone should be extinct - in more ways than one.

The Lost World - Jurassic Park.  Let's just swap things and words around.

Jurassic Park 2 - The Lost World; or
Jurassic Park 2.

Let's face it, either makes more sense than the meal already cooked up which was smellier than any dinosaur carcass.

Things corrected themselves with Jurassic Park III. 

*A royal fat and prime slice of cute bacon with antics of the talking pig - Babe.

There's only two films so how could they fuck it up - well easily.

Babe is the first and then, like so many others - the dreaded omission of number and the inclusion of subtitle rears its ugly head.

The sequel was Babe: Pig in the City.
Babe 2: Pig in the City is just an hallucination I'm afraid.

I say no more apart from I'm just off to stick a couple of rashers on the grill...*

*Ah, The Evil Dead, or some may just call it, Evil Dead.  Way before Drag Me To Hell and even years before his spider sense started tingling, Sam Raimi created a cult horror franchise with Bruce Campbell as embattled Ash fighting nasty demons.and going through all sorts of shit.

He'd even succumb to odd behaviour himself but amidst all this, he would take it all in good humour, attach a chainsaw to his arm and have a 'groovy' catchphrase.

So that's Evil Dead and there are currently three films.  The Evil Dead in 1981, Evil Dead II in 1987 (but in publicity material, Evil Dead 2: Dead by Dawn) who in the fuck knows why?

But I don't have a problem with the sequel's title, even though adding 'The' still would have made sense and it's basically remake of the original with a bigger budget.

But what I do have a fucking problem with is the title of the third.

The Evil Dead 3?  Evil Dead III: [Insert subtitle here]?  Only for publicity material - Evil Dead 3: [Insert subtitle here]?  Of course.... fucking..... not!

In 1992, the third was Army of Darkness.  Who, what, why, where and how?  Please tell me as I'm really, really fucking struggling?

It's standalone film time again folks.  What's perplexes me is the DVD front.

I quote, Bruce Campbell vs Army of Darkness.

Wait a mo, have we all missed something here, is that its proper, official long-winded piece of shit title and I've been calling it Army of Darkness all these years?

A big, over corpulent 100% no but it begs the reason why.

Bruce Campbell is the actor so why not use the character on DVD art so Ash vs Army of Darkness?  After all, did any other vs film use the actor's name?  Maybe they thought that nobody would know who the fuck Ash was?

Headshakes on me.

Allow me to be possibly amusing by using an example.

In 2003, as mentioned Freddy vs Jason was released so you know what's coming.

In another design, follow in the previous mental footsteps.

Robert Englund vs Ken Kirzinger.  C'mon, it's the same crazy principle.*

*Zombie maestro George A. Romero is the master of all things undead and although he made other classics, this is his rotting trademark.

Even the Zomfather would make some peculiar decisions.

The original trilogy is perfect as there was no need for numbers or subtitles.

Night, Dawn and Day of the Dead.

So that all follows nicely and it seems there's nowhere else to go...

But he did make another three sequels (so far).

Land, Diary and Survival would eventually follow.

Obviously there is no day to night transition element and just randomly titled bullshit.

Further to this, eyebrows were significantly raised with Diary as the DVD release came out after Cloverfield...

Romero rejected such claims as the shooting style was conceived before Cloverfield and if anything, The Blair Witch Project was more responsible.

So having considered that, it's just coincidence that they were released at a similar time.

It's never as bad as Dirty Harry as 'of the Dead' follows each new word and/or film but again you could argue that noobs wouldn't know that, w/o a little bit of research.

I'm a fun sort of a guy (apparently) so let's depart to silliness?

The original trilogy of the Dead:

Morning, Afternoon and Evening; or
Breakfast, Dinner and Tea; or
Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner; or
Tea, Supper and Takeaway; or
Sandwich, Baguette and Bap; or
Snack, Buffet and Feast; or
Nibble, Gnaw and Chomp; and
Brunch, Lunch and Munch.

I could go on or split them all up into single films and make them parodies a la Shaun of the Dead.

Then post them all off to Mr Romero's suggestion box.

Massive oversight, I forgot Twilight, Eclipse and Dusk of the Dead.*

Final Destination steps up to the frame and maybe was most normal of all, with 2 and 3, fairly straightforward with no sub-title but there was a fourth film.... and yes, although totally related to the franchise, was just fucking stupid.

The Final Destination was the curious title to the fourth and so I have to ask, why and what compelled that madness?  Just fucking call it Final Destination 4.

Sanity returned with the latest incarnation with Final Destination 5 but why return to normality?

Why wasn't it called The Road to Death: Inevitable Destination, then the sixth - Destination Final: Death Finally Cheats Itself.

*American Pie is everybody's favourite teen sex comedy and admittedly does serve up many funny slices of humour as Jim, his dad, Stifler and others get involved in all sorts of ridiculous and avoidable situations, with disastrous and embarrassing results.

Nearly as embarrassing are the titles of some of the official sequels.

I say official as the series did spawn four direct-to-dvd films which are definitely not direct sequels as the only thing they have in common with American Pie is that Presents: follows it.

They didn't boast cinema appearances for a reason as they were all terrible and simply attempted to cash in on the franchise.  I hope they all failed miserably.

To me, Bob Clark's Porky's in 1982 is the original teen sex comedy.  The scenes involving Cherry Forever, Tommy and Miss Ballbricker in the showers are moments of inspired genius.

Anyway, hand me a carving knife and let's cut this pie open.

Like with most, things start off perfectly - American Pie and its sequel, American Pie 2.

I haven't had to get my knife dirty yet but selfishly, I'll have to wash it as the third film appears.

American Pie: The Wedding.  What happened to the numbering, did they just forget or was they just purposely intent on pissing me off.  Was it so difficult to include the number 3?

Oh I know, they suffered from Triskaphobia.

So that's the third film served up and years later, there's a fourth and probably the last outing as the gang are clearly getting too old for this shit.
American Reunion is the name and pissing people off is its game.

Nothing more, nothing less.

What was the fucking thinking behind this bullshit?  Every other sequel managed Pie but oh fucking no, not this one.

I went to see it on launch night and it's definitely called what it is.

People can call it American Pie: Reunion, fine but that's in hope as the reality is rather different.

When it comes to DVD, they'll probably change its name to American Pie: Reunion to cover up this cringing cock up, but even if they do - it'll never be called American Pie 4 - Reunion.

Actually, that'd be even better as that would make the third have an even stupider title.*
Next on the red carpet of hallucinogens is Rocky.

Despite what some may think of Sly, few could deny he created an iconic franchise.

This nearly made it - starting with Rocky, then II, III etc and then the normality train hit an absurd switch-track in 2006 with the sixth and so far, final film. 

It was called Rocky Balboa - why?

This could easily be the first film and not the sixth.  Was it an awful attempt as a reboot and/or reimagining?  Obviously it been called Rocky VI would cause irreparable harm.

Whatever, he fucked up.

I know, before he collects his pension, the seventh is called The Italian Stallion? 

The Mummy and The Mummy Returns in 1999 and 2001 were entertaining if ridiculous action films and so if a third was made, the Mummy would again feature right?

Wrong - as the third instalment would feature an evil Chinese general who forces the resurrection of an Emperor in The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor.

Using 'Mummy' in the title doesn't even make sense as it has nothing to with 'Mummies' as fans would be expecting Imothep and his cronies again.

But as they insisted on refusing that logical mindset, just call it The Mummy 3 or The Mummy 3: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor.

I know using Egypt was exhausted more than a dehydrated desert dweller but instead of another sequel and departing from its classic setting, shock the world and reboot it.

*Bullet time, cool techno music, martial arts and Keanu Reeves in shades.  That's enough obvious hints as now I have The Matrix.

1999 saw the first been released and it didn't take long, in fact the next available opportunity would be taken to fuck things up.

In 2003, The Matrix Reloaded and in the same year, The Matrix Revolutions were released to complete the trilogy.  These are all based in chronological order so none are prequels so shoving 2 and 3 after The Matrix would have made things perfect but sadly, not be.

At least they didn't call the sequel The Matrix 2: Reloaded and then drift away with The Matrix Revolutions, I suppose that would be worse.  Still, no excuse.*

Quit cowering from behind the curtain - up next is the Alien franchise.

The sequel remains arguably best sequel ever made (T2 comes a very close second) and the first is an all-time classic.  Alien is possibly a better film but Aliens is a better film to watch.

The first film Alien introduced a host of classic characters, fine acting, intense atmosphere and a lethal alien killing-machine.  So a sequel was inevitable.

In 1986, Aliens appeared and I'm fine with the title.  Trust me, even if the title was bullshit, the film certainly wasn't.
So you'd expect more than one alien and could potentially contain several, as indeed it proved.

What follows is one of the main reasons I wish I had a DeLorean.

Alien 3 next and it was mediocre at best but it ruined Aliens as they killed off Hicks.  But as its title was the first to feature a number, if the next film was to exist, it surely would have to be called Alien 4?

Of course there would be a fourth and logic would again be defied, as it would be far too difficult to use the next number....

They didn't, and it came to pass a subtitle would be used for the first time, just like in the sixth Halloween film...

Alien: Resurrection, what the fuck happened here?  Well the plot was just bullshit from the start as Ripley would somehow feature.  How could this be as her suicide would guarantee she'd bask in the same fiery grave as the T-1000.

Ripped from T2?  Possibly, as it was made after it.

The ludicrous explanation would be that Ripley was reincarnated/revived (whatever) as a super human/alien hybrid clone to continue her ongoing argument against the multiple mouthed beasties.

The film would again feature more than one alien but the film was called Alien, so surely you'd only expect a solitary space beast?  Well obviously not.

As you probably know (and I'll be going to see it on day of release) the next film (actually billed as a prequel) is Prometheus which is based on the origins of Alien (but not directly related to it).  It's set in the same universe though and features some kind of extra terrestrial race.  Can't wait and it better be good Mr Scott.

Here's an incredible bit of information and I am 200% sure the coincidence is purer than a cave spring.

The crew of the above film are from the ship Prometheus but here's the crazy shit.  Way back in 1989, there was a Commodore 64 game exclusive called Project Firestart and guess what?  That project, also began on a research ship - the Prometheus.

Some may say incredulous but unbelieveably, it's true.

I think it's even more amazing as the word 'prometheus' is not really something that you'd say every day as it's also a Titan God in Greek mythology.

Project Firestart's aim was to produce mining labourers who don't ask too many questions and are able to work under extremely rare conditions to graft on asteriods.  They also must not be capable of replication or cloning.  But of course, things went badly wrong.

Promiveriates would unleash horror and chaos.

Just for shits and giggles (I like that expression), Firestart was an epic survival horror game based on a certain movie - Aliens.

Remember, you heard that first here as it'd be very difficult to know otherwise unless you knew about the game as doing a test prometheus google search, mainly only succeeds in bringing up Scott's 2012 film and/or the Titan God in Greek mythology....

*Macho petrol-heads rejoice as under starters orders, it's The Fast and the Furious.

This is gonna be good.

I don't care much for the films so unlike some, don't expect a synopsis for any.

The Fast and the Furious - 2001.
2 Fast 2 Furious - 2003.  Okay, trying to be clever with a play on words.  Maybe?
The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift - 2006.  Yes, the slippery slope has started.
Fast & Furious - 2009.  Now they're just getting plain fucking lazy and stupid now.
Fast & Furious Five - 2011.  Too late, damage has already been done.

So looking at those, they just occasionally decided to get rid of 'and', 'the', use figures instead of words, shove '&' in and just for shits and giggles, not use a number at all in the third and fourth films and shove a subtitle in the former.

Whoops, the simple essence of basic consistency does not apply here and bear with me while I get a second opinion by discussing it with my manager - oh that's me and nope, my opinion has not changed.*

Now a very good action franchise now with a wise-cracking, one man crime machine, in the form of Bruce Willis portraying John McClane, which in doing so, tends to Die Hard.

I always saw the first Die Hard as the main contender to Lethal Weapon.  The penultimate scene was a massive rip-off to how Lethal Weapon ended but I didn't really care that much.

It also featured an excerpt of Aliens music right near the end.  Most and many would steal from that epic film.

So it started off with Die Hard and next would be Die Hard 2, next Die Hard 3, whoah put on the brakes of the sensible train there as no, no, no and no again.

In true fucked up tradition, the third was Die Hard With a Vengeance, more accurately how about Another Sequel with a Stupid Title.  Die Hard 3 was too much to ask?

Following on, Die Hard 4.0 - words fail me.  The only thing I can think of in mitigation is that the idea for '4.0' was trying to be clever as it was about computers but nah, just call it Die Hard 4.

The as yet unreleased fifth is Die Hard 5.68 (only kidding) but Another Good Day to Die Hard...

*The owl spinning, innocent girl turned pea soup spewing, possessed demon now.  The demon in question that chose Regan was Pazuzu and not Satan or any other demon.  That's just in case anybody thought otherwise.

The Exorcist is one of the greatest horror films ever made and that only applies to the 1973 seminal original.  The naming of sequels and/or content also succumbed to possession as after these, you may need a cloth to wipe off your pea soup intake.

The Excorist, then Exorcist II: The Heretic, so in 1977 'The' was quickly exorcised, but things would still stay good in 1990 with The Exorcist III, so 'The' was back but I'm not miffed yet.  The third was an adaptation of Blatty's 1983 novel Legion.  I just knew you all wanted to know that.

Excorist: The Beginning in 2004 was a prequel to the original so now it couldn't do a Texas Chainsaw Massacre as it wasn't a remake of the original so it'd be wrong for it to start off its own set of films.  Well, I suppose it could but I don't even wanna go there.

Oh I'm not having a go at it with missing out IV because it's a prequel so that's permissible.  Believe me, if it needed IV, I'd let you know....

Amusing to think if the next Texas film was a prequel to The Beginning, Leatherface would have to be a chainsaw wielding fetus.

So the franchise is stuck now but if there was to be another film, it'd have to be a remake, reboot or reimagining for a fresh approach but the next film would even stun me as I thought I'd heard it all.

Are you ready, prepared and willing to take shelter from the shit storm that would follow and no, this isn't a fucking joke.

In 2005, they'd come up with this and get those expensive umbrellas up to shelter from this shower of diarrhoea, yes not shit, but the worst kind of shit - diarrhoea.

Dominion: Prequel to the Exorcist.  As mentioned, I'm really not kidding.

So taking a step back, let's analyse this.

Omitting Dominion, is it just me or do I feel as though the piss is been taken here?

I've already mentioned that The Beginning was a prequel to the original so what kind of fucking ridicule is this?

I mean really, what is going on here - do they think we're all fucking stupid or was The Beginning that good we needed another take on events leading up to the original?

Was it a prequel to a prequel?  Certainly sounds like it as it's called Prequel to the Exorcist but surely that's just going to far and can't be true.

Well actually it was.  I can't fathom it, how can you do this, I mean seriously, how can you?  I think that tops anything I've ever heard.

I can't even give it one of my alternative titles because you can't shove a number in there as prequels can't really have numbers.

I puff my cheeks out in disbelief as the bullshit never ceases to amaze me.*

Now we have the nasty Good Guy doll.

Before passing on, a serial killer and voodoo enthusiast transfers his soul into a previously innocent, albeit clearly already ugly looking child's doll.  It becomes known as Chucky, as it keeps calling itself it and so is named by its eventual adoptive owner.

The serial killer who performed this ritual was called Charles Lee 'Chucky' Ray aka the Lakeshore Strangler.

So that's the basic premise of how the slasher franchise, Child's Play came into being and Chucky would return many times.

I know this might be getting repetitive but I'm sure you're getting the picture that titles in a franchise start off pretty normal, escalate into chaos and the content of each getting sillier and sillier.

Also if the genre is horror, they also start off serious and then as sequels pop up - many fail to keep a straight face at their unintentional comedy.  Child's Play is no different.

Child's Play, then 2 and 3, yes and then the next....

It's time to shed that skin of normality and fuck it all up with Bride of Chucky and finally Seed of Chucky.  This is obviously a fucking joke as humour has took a hold of me again, but peversely, this is no joke.

So a killer doll gets married in Bride and then the outcome of their passion is the subject of Seed.  Were they really serious with this shower of the proverbial?  Oh dear!

I'm even going to pick on Jaws now, you can't really believe that after how much I raved about the original but remember this is about titles (but in this case)....

*"There can be only one"

Highlander had this rather clever tagline and after the first which was an entertaining load of bullshit, the films went down quicker than a two dollar whore.

So let's put on my hospital mask and perform a disection.

Regardless of how incredibly 'good' the sequels were, their quality is not my concern as the titles at least made sense.

Highlander, Highlander II: The Quickening, Highlander III: The Sorcerer and that's were the trend comes to a grinding halt...

Highlander: Endgame was the fourth and final film and notice something they became quickly nervous about....

Sleepy Hollow's tagline was "Heads will roll."

Well I reckon "Heads should literally roll for this."*

So Jaws, then its okay to decent sequel, Jaws 2 and Jaws 3-D which later would become Jaws 3, well that doesn't make sense - so which was it?  I'll try and explain.

Some genius decided to call the awful third, Jaws 3-D.  Its gimmick - only in cinemas, was to dish out those ineffective polarised 3D cardboard jokes so that in some sequences, gave the illusion that certain scenes would jump out of the screen.

Of course, the flawed idea behind this technique was doomed for home releases (I pity those who bought this piece of shit) as it could not be recreated for home viewing as that sort of television technology just simply didn't exist without incredibly expensive video disc hardware.  It simply wasn't worth the effort.

So inevitably, other 2-D releases were ultimately released on VHS (also later on DVD) and the name was changed to Jaws 3 to account for the un 3-D ness.  But wait, that almost makes the title eventually making sense and running on from Jaws 2, so could they really go the whole hog and complete the tetralogy by calling it Jaws 4?

Well what do you think?  Would it feature if it did?  Before I burst like a salad dodging balloon, the unfortunate answer is a big no, no yippee i no.

So the final instalment would thankfully follow suit and it didn't have a past dimension angle to hide behind either, that on home release would later save it with a forced rename.

Jaws 4-D?  No it was duh, duh, duh Jaws: The Revenge.  The revenge of what?  Bullshit film sequel titles or revenge of a sibling fish.

Incredibly, Ellen concludes this latest rubber beast apparently made itself a serial killer to finish off the Brody family.  Hang on a mo, that's factually incorrect as Martin Brody wasn't killed by a shark but was wrote out of this by conveniently dying of a heart attack.

The Mrs disagrees, as it was 'fear' that killed him.

I am not yet ready to move on as this faeces even dared to briefly feature scenes of the first film and even unfaithfully recreated a scene of the original.  Did the director really have no shame?

The third was truly awful but the fourth was an entirely different animal and deserves a juicy para in itself.

Revenge was not satisfied in just been truly awful, it was more than that, it was fucking horrendous; and then some - absolutely unforgivably, totally and utterly inconceivably in all other ways, an unscalable mountain in the shape of a huge steaming pile of bullshit.

Multiply my para by a googolplex and you're getting somewhere near it.

I can't sound off how 'good' this film was, it really was notorious for its 'brilliance'.  So much so, it was up there with been voted as 'the worst film ever made'.

*Mission: Impossible now and eventually they'd find fucking impossible to fight off the fucked-up title epidemic.

Commence Mission codenamed - 'how to fuck up a film title' and it was gratefully accepted - much to my despair.

So Mission Impossible would invade Final Destination territory and nearly be perfect, just like Rocky, but there's a fatal flaw boys and girls.

Mission: Impossible in 1996, II in 2000 and surely this can't go on with the third, yes it can with III in 2006.  In 2011, there was a fourth.

Mission: Impossible, add a fat question mark and let you take a guess, c'mon; just take a wild fucking stab in the curtain of night?

Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol, yes it's true so in this case, the numeral numbering broke down again, what is it with these people, can't they count past a certain numeral?

MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE IV - GHOST PROTOCOL.

Now how hard was that?  I suppose pretty hard, as scaling Everest naked with no climbing lessons from Gabe Walker is obviously easier and less dangerous.*

Horror again as now I introduce Pinhead who has such sights to show you.  Many heading atrocities would be committed but only for the displeasure or pleasure for others.

Great low-budget original, so-so sequel and then it'd go rapidly down hill faster than an enthusiastic slalom skier.

Hellraiser, then Hellbound: Hellraiser II.  Yes they quickly put the franchise's title to the back of the queue and replaced it with a sub-heading, but numerical continuity was actually used with Hellraiser III?  I don't get it.

Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth should have been the final film as it was getting staler than a two month slice of bread but they wouldn't take my advice and after which, is when the numerical incapability began.

Each subtitle would pursue Hellraiser - kicking off with Bloodline, Inferno, Hellseeker, Deader, Hellworld and most recent - Revelations.

Whoah, that's a whole load of subtitles and more difficult to digest than an old leather boot.

In Hellworld, Pinhead and co would even be the idea behind a MMORPG.  You'd of course expect this incredible turmoil, right?  What started as a serious horror film would be reduced to this.  Poor old Clive eh, powerless to prevent this shit.

So after the numbering ceased, we should of had Hellraiser 4: Bloodline, Hellraiser 5: Inferno etc etc or just ditch this subtitle bullshit and keep with the unethical trend of logic that began from birth - Hellraiser, Hellraiser II/2, Hellraiser III/3 etc etc.

None after III disguised themselves as a number and just used sub-headings.  Why does this happen time and time again, does the basics of mathematical sequencing become a more painful headache, eclipsing the agony far more excruciating than the aftermath of endodontic treatment?

The next noise I'll make threatens to scale the peak in the barrage of relentless nonsense.

The inevitable big money movie series of X-Men began in 2000 (later released on DVD was the virtually pointless 1.5) but whatever, was very good popcorn fun.

It was all entertaining stuff, but the future naming of each was quite the opposite.

So predictably, the sensibly titled X-Men kicked it all off but things would unnaturally descend into complete and utter bollocks.

X2 was next (?) but at least had a number but inevitably the numberless Halloween epidemic spread to the third; X-Men - The Last Stand.  I shake my head with despair.

The alpha was present but again the numeric departs.  Why?  Just call it, oh fuck it.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine was a prequel to X-Men and focused on the title's protagonist's early life and revealing Sabretooth as his half-brother.  I can sort of forgive this but I would become as unforgiving as a judge with a hangover for the next.

To pour further salt in the confusion wound - X-Men: First Class was a prequel to the original trilogy so not a reboot.  This focuses on the young Charles and Erik and how they fell out at school.

So what's the sequel gonna be? X-Men: Second Class or Pre-Class?  This is when they're toddlers - fighting over whose powers are greater and thus deciding, who controls the rattle.

I don't even wanna go there with Third Class unless it fast forwards to a retirement home setting.

*The penultimate sound I'll make in the franchise of bloodbaths features waxing on/waxing off and don't worry, I won't be 'waxing' lyrical about a title.

The Karate Kid was an 80s classic and part of my childhood.  A teenage Rocky if you will.  Brilliant stuff with Miyagi and his unique slave-driving which turns out to be teachings in disguise.  R.I.P Pat Morita.

The Karate Kid in 1984 and then Parts would be used - no problem there.  Part II in 1986, then Part III in 1989, that should have been it because it was getting too familiar and recycling old material, but it wasn't as there would be another.

Drum roll time, big build up and hold your breath in anticipation for The Karate Kid Part IV.

Err, not that's not right as that'd make sense and I wouldn't feature it.

The Next Karate Kid would definitely give a very clear hint that it was the next film and subtlely suggested that Daniel may not be in it.

He wasn't and a very young Hilary Swank would be indeed the next and even final Karate Kid, unless you count the Kung Fu kid  - yes I know that's not right either.

I know what they was getting at, but calling it the obvious?  Err, that's a negative!*

So this is it and we've reached the final act of lunacy.  I didn't plan for any particular order, just what my mind would allow, so Stallone - the final rung on the ladder of absurdity falls to you.

If you're expecting a happy ending, prepare to be disappointed.  But All Apologies.

My name is Rambo, John Rambo - push me and you'll regret it.  I will hunt you down and shoot you with my inventive arsenal of deadly weaponry and if I ever run out of magazines or projectiles, I'll deflect oncoming bullets with my rippling biceps.

This series would disorientate everybody.... and that's with a hefty supply of non toxic oxygen.

Okay the first, best and most realistic was just to be original, yeah the 'original' was First Blood.  That's it - plain and fucking simple, to the point - First Blood.  A good film in its own right.

Cool but then the sequel was Rambo: First Blood Part II.  So I'm missing something here, why add the name 'Rambo'?  We already know it's about a guy called 'Rambo' so why shove it in there? Vanity or an extreme form of narcissism?

Next was Rambo III, but no First Blood - did they fall foul to amnesia?  No, they just like pissing the fan base off, and then years later, there would be a fourth.

No 'Rambo', please don't hurt me after all I'm an American and not a Russian so I'm therefore immune to all your firepower and invincible to your muscular physique.

Rambo takes me out for a pint and a curry, annoyingly stating 'God bless America' after every sentence...

Oh excuse me, I wasn't been threatened by Rambo so why was I acting and pretending to be?

Well assuming you haven't already figured it out using the clue above, it really was just called Rambo.  Not content with revisiting First Blood, they just narrowed it down to just his surname.  Makes sense?

Actually no, it really doesn't.  Why not 'John' or how about something really sensible like Rambo fucking IV?

Rambo III was released in 1988 and Rambo in 2008.  Was this inspired by H20 but instead they waited 20 years until after the third film to release a new one instead of 20 years after the actual events of the original Halloween?

Right, let's just run system analysis (several minutes elapse) and after the complicated defrag and disk diagnostic, there would be a results window.  These results are what I would have called the series.

But remember, it's a dangerous and sick world we live in; and having something make sense for a change would be catastrophic and force a push on the universe's self destruct button.

It's probably for the best I'm not in charge otherwise the sequel-led film industry would make total sense and not a confused pile of horse shit.  NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!

Assuming that I'm guilty of complicity to all those preceding me.  Before sentencing, I beg the court to allow me my final description:

After the judge nods, it shall be known.

First Blood, First Blood: Part II, First Blood Part III and First Blood: Part IV; or
First Blood, First Blood II, First Blood III and First Blood IV; or
Rambo, Rambo II, Rambo III and Rambo IV; or
First Blood, Second Blood, Third Blood and Fourth Blood; or
Rambo, Rambo: Part II, Rambo: Part III and Rambo: Part IV; and

[Extended, bemused and never to be used....]

First Blood: They drew First Blood, Not me!
Rambo: Anti-Russian Saga Part 1 - Photographs? Humph, taking snaps is boring and not macho.  After all, I'm Rambo and not Kevin Carter.  Instead, let me riddle Russians with acquired firepower and prove my American worth!
Rambo: Anti-Russian Saga Part 2 - The Revenge - Stick fighting sucks, this time I will ride a horse and my Russian blood-lust must again be satisfied.
First Blood: Bloody, Bloodier and Bloodiest - I must try and shock the cinema world (w/o Trautman) with close-up gore shots in Burma.  Also, a certain Major Tint is going to have an argument with my machete, and lose.

So take your pick of whatever you prefer and I will guarantee your decision will be respected.

I have covered every franchise I have seen or know.  I'm sure there's more but I hope nobody misses the point as there are many great, good, brilliant or tolerable films listed but many and most cannot be excused with their ridiculous ramblings in title and/or content explanation.

After studying numerous musings, I am apoplectic at the path of randomness and therefore induce the condemnation to the fantasy bucket of normality.

My head certainly shakes when the numerical and subtitle takes a backwards precedent.

I fail to grasp why the ridiculous is preferred over the innocence of sanity.

*It's so frustrating as it can be done, yes unbelievably, it really can. But I have to thank so many franchises as w/o them, this maniacal rant would not exist.

Back to the Future, Robocop, Poltergeist, Lethal Weapon all managed it and apart from Lethal Weapon, these are all trilogies so they had ample time to fuck up.

The most amazing of all which managed to get it right is Police Academy with no less than 7 films.  Yes, no temptation to depart from numbering here.

So it's really that simple so why can't all my examples follow these examples, as these examples prove that following these examples, are the perfect example to follow.*

Who can say apart from those who choose to create this deplorable mess.

"This is Ripley, last survivor of the Nostromo, signing off."

"Come on cat."

57 years later....

"Are we gonna sleep all the way home?"
"All the way home."
"Can I dream?"
"Yes, honey.  I think we both can."
"Sleep tight."
"I-ffirmative."

- Final addendum -

"My mind, mass and matter are temporarily unable to connect; having run a scan - I ascribe this malfunction to a monumental posting effort.  However, after a successful battery recharge - I conclude this will allow me to return again which with a little bit of luck, can be discovered by others in about a week."

- End of transmission -

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