Ted 2 and the Mixed Results of Comedy Sequels

When the first Ted movie came out three years ago it was a surprise hit. Seth MacFarlane’s Family Guy was a popular show but it was just as equally hated as it was loved. Ted was much more popular with the critics and it made a ton of money at the box office. Almost $550 million worldwide means there will be a sequel and now we have it.


Ted 2 came out today and has been much less well received. What’s the problem with it? Does the original idea lose its novelty the second time around? Are all the jokes just rehashes from the first one? Do these problems plague all comedy sequels? Let’s look at some other famous comedy sequels.

The Good

These sequels are good movies on their own and they fit well in the series. In order to be a good comedy sequel you can’t be noticeably worse than the original.

Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me

This is probably the best of the three Austin Powers movies. I introduced two of its best characters, Fat Bastard and Mini Me. This movie may not be as well thought of now but it’s still very funny and it’s not rated R.

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation


Some think this was better than the original Vacation. It’s not but it’s still really good.

22 Jump Street

This sequel was incredibly self aware that it was a sequel. Again, this was better than the first.

Gremlins 2: The New Batch

The first Gremlins was a horror movie that had some laughs.  he sequel was a straight up comedy. This movie gave us a smart Gremlin, a bat Gremlin, a transsexual Gremlin, Gremlins that broke the fourth wall, and even Hulk Hogan.

Shrek 2

Maybe animated movies shouldn’t count but Shrek 2 was genuinely funny, as was the first one. They didn’t need to make any more though.

American Pie and Harold and Kumar Series

These two recent comedy series don’t have the highs of other classics but they were solid all the way through.

The Bad

These movies are bad. There are movies in this list where the original is a classic and movies here where the original sucked just as bad. It doesn’t matter.

Dumb and Dumber To and Dumb and Dumberer

Dumb and Dumberer was awful. After seeing it we all wanted to see Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels return as Harry and Lloyd. Last year we finally got to and it was not worth it.

The Hangover 2 and 3

The Hangover 2 was incredibly disappointing. We all thought they would make it up to us with The Hangover 3 but it was actually worse. A movie added John Goodman and somehow it got worse.

Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey

The first Bill & Ted movie is a classic. They don’t even show the sequel on cable. There’s a good reason they don’t.

National Lampoon’s European Vacation

The only good thing about this movie is you probably haven’t seen it. We’re lucky it didn’t kill the franchise.

Airplane 2
Caddyshack 2
City Slickers II: The Legend of Curly’s Gold

I’m not sure I’ve seen any of these. I know they’re all trash though

Meet the Fockers


Dustin Hoffman and Barabara Streisand. What could go wrong? Everything.

Little Fockers

Let’s make a sequel to a movie nobody liked. Sounds like a great idea.

Blues Brothers 2000

One of the two main characters from the first one died. You didn’t have to make a sequel but you did. This one had John Goodman in it too.

Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo

The first Deuce Bigelow wasn’t good but Rob Schneider was coming off his incredible performance as the “You Can Do It!” guy in The Waterboy. This sequel is possibly the worst movie I have ever seen.

Evan Almighty

Let’s make a sequel but this time it will be starring the bad guy from the first one. Steve Carrell has gone on to do better things but this movie was no good. John Goodman was in this sequel as well. I love John Goodman but maybe we should stop adding him to our sequels.

There’s still so many more bad comedy sequels we didn’t even discuss.

The Forgettable

These movies weren’t bad, they might even be good. However, there is a big drop off from their originals. Most of the originals in these series are considered classics and their sequels were just disappointing.

Anchorman 2
Ghostbusters 2

These two are similar as both sequels are still really funny but the originals are two of the funniest movies of all time.

Muppets Most Wanted

The recent Muppets movie with Jason Segel and Amy Adams was fantastic. The sequel without either was still good jst not as good.

Wayne’s World 2

Mike Myers had two comedy sequels in the good category. He almost had a third.

This is 40

This movie was incredibly uneven. It had some very funny moments but was mostly annoying. It could have been better but it wasn’t.

Shanghai Knights

I don’t think anyone considers Shanghai Noon a comedy classic. I liked it better than Rush Hour though and I liked the sequel. This movie fits as it has definitely been forgotten.

Clerks 2

Another case of the original being a classic. Clerks 2 was funny on its own but it didn’t recapture the magic of the first one. There’s a third one being made now too.

Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls

Personally, I like this one more. I don’t think the public agrees with me though.

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