When will creators of famous and beloved franchises realise that no fan in the history of fandoms has wanted the sequel with the new generation to have higher stakes and more angsty drama than the original.
A Fan: Wow, can’t wait to see the heroes’ children living in a world that has been made better by the original heroes, having a loving and respectful relationship with the hero I loved and respected as a child, and dealing with their own adventure that might not be as high stake as saving the world, but is important for their own personal journey.
A creator: How about the world is ending again, the new generation hates the heroes, who have become major assholes for no reason, and everything is bigger and goes more boom.
Hobbit/Lord of the Rings is the SINGLE exception to higher stakes sequel
and you know why? it’s bc nothing in lotr undid what happened in the hobbit
the hobbit was a lower-stakes story about bilbo helping some dwarves reclaim their ancestral home, and in lotr (the book at least) tolkien goes out of his way to talk about how bilbo lived for a long time rich and famous and happy, and that erebor and dale are prosperous and successful. the threat is something that bilbo brought home with him, but if bilbo hadn’t found it, it would have fallen into worse hands.
the reason why higher-stakes sequels are so often disappointing is bc it’s a betrayal of the original work, and undoes its premise and its victory. in the hobbit, they were never setting out to save the whole of middle earth, so the fact that the whole of middle earth ends up in peril during lotr doesn’t feel like a betrayal. terrible things happen in lotr, but they are better than they would have been in the hobbit hadn’t happened, and that’s why it works
#Middle Earth #meta #interesting