5 Sequels That Completely Ignored The Originals (For Better Or Worse)

5 Sequels That Completely Ignored The Originals (For Better Or Worse)
Image credit: Universal Pictures, 20th Century Studios

A good sequel should refresh the concepts of the original, but these five gave fans much more than they bargained for.

Keeping a long-running movie franchise entertaining is no easy task, which is why some of them try to refresh the tired concepts by offering a completely new take on the familiar formula, resulting in a drastic change in tone compared to the previous films.

But sometimes it only takes a second movie to become almost unrecognizable in terms of atmosphere, so let's take a look at five sequels that completely changed the tone of the story, for better or worse.

Rambo: First Blood II (1985)

Despite the fact that John Rambo remains one of Sylvester Stallone's most iconic roles to this day, some fans feel that none of the films in the five-part franchise came close to the first one.

This isn't too surprising, considering that the 1982 film First Blood, based on the novel of the same name by David Morrell, was a much deeper story that delved into the harsh themes of PTSD and the treatment of veterans.

Changing the ending of the original novel, where John dies, and the huge success of the movie led to the creation of a sequel that completely ignored the ideas of its predecessor and was just another action movie with a gun-toting protagonist.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)

Hailed as one of the best sequels of all time, Terminator 2 was actually a surprise to many fans upon its release due to how much it changed from the original film.

1984's The Terminator was an incredibly dark story that almost resembled a horror movie, thanks in no small part to Arnold Schwarzenegger's brilliantly disturbing performance as the titular killing machine.

The sequel not only completely changed the main characters, making the T-800 a much more compelling figure who learns human emotions and turning Sarah Connor from a damsel in distress into a badass warrior, but also had a much more hopeful vibe that gave a whole new flavor to the essentially same setup.

The Chronicles of Riddick ( 2004)

Fast & Furious may be Vin Diesel 's most famous franchise, but many fans still hope that the actor will one day return to the role of Richard B. Riddick, a criminal with distinctive surgically enhanced eyes who has already been the subject of three movies.

The first, Pitch Black, was released in 2000 and was a sci-fi horror in which Riddick and other survivors of a crashed ship try to escape a planet full of flesh-eating monsters.

The sequel, released in 2004, unexpectedly put Riddick in the center of a much bigger event, gave a lot more information about the world and was a sci-fi action movie, which wasn't to the liking of many fans, so the third movie was oddly enough practically a remake of the first one.

Aliens (1986)

Speaking of turning horror into action, after the success of 1979's Alien, there wasn't much mystery left about the creature at the center of the story that made the Xenomorph so unique and terrifying in the first place.

With this in mind, James Cameron, who directed the 1986 sequel, decided to go a different route, making the movie much more action-packed and almost completely leaving behind the slow and excruciating suspense of the original, which ultimately proved to be a great move.

Mad Max 2 (1981)

Almost everyone is familiar with the Mad Max franchise by now, but few remember that the original 1979 film was a far cry from the post-apocalyptic mayhem of the later installments.

Set in a dystopian future, it revolved around a conflict between the police (Main Force Patrol) and a gang of bikers, but the 1981 sequel took things to the next level and felt much more like the Mad Max we all know and love.