The impending release of Avengers: Infinity War means one thing: it’s time to see a movie that will almost immediately be succeeded by another movie. The as-yet-untitled next Avengers movie already has a release date (don’t make any plans on May 3, 2019!)
So what’s the point? There’s always going to be another film or five (the current number of in-the-works or planned MCU movies) just around the corner. So how can there be any stakes, or any real innovation, when the sole purpose of any one film is just to set the stage for the next one?
Sure, you will have good ones in the bunch. Critics rightly fell all over themselves for Thor: Ragnarock and the latest incarnation of Spider Man—not to mention the phenomenon that was Black Panther. But the sheer number of movies being pumped out lets you know that the MCU continues to expand for commercial reasons far more than artistic ones. I mean, does anyone really need a second Ant-Man film?
The MCU is far from the only violators. Star Wars came back from the dead not simply to add a final trilogy of films, but to pump out prequels, sequels, and spin-offs forever. The Fast and Furious films look to be getting faster and furious-er every year for the rest of eternity.
Even the universe continuations that are generally successful, like Creed, are short on new ideas. Creed’s storyline mirrors that of its predecessor, including the original film’s he-loses-the-fight-but-proves-his-worth-in-the-process ending; and the film’s sequel looks to similarly copy Rocky IV, with Rocky’s protege fighting Ivan Drago’s son. Everywhere you look, you see movie franchises that exist only for the sake of existing.
Well, I’ve had enough. Here are six movie franchises, listed alphabetically, that should just die already. Note that inclusion on this list does not mean that I dislike the films in the series. In fact, I think many of them are wonderful. That’s all the more reason not to let their legacy go up in smoke as more and more (and more, and more) mediocre films get made that muddle up the themes, change canonical characters, or re-invent key plot points just because they can.