Author Topic: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction  (Read 3197 times)

talonmalon333

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Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« on: June 24, 2014, 09:49:20 PM »
We all know that with movies, books, video games, and so on, sequels and continuations are a very common thing. However, sometimes people don't like to accept these later sequels as canon to a certain franchise (for example, one might not consider Terminator 3 and Salvation as canon), for one reason for another. For me, I frequently consider the original intent of a story as very important, and if a later sequel disregards that, then it simply can't be canon.

For this thread, I'm curious what you guys' opinions are with canon in certain franchises. In many cases, what's canon really doesn't matter a whole lot. Sometimes it's just a little thing, where you just prefer to accept certain parts of the fiction as canon, and others as non-canon. First, I will give my opinions, and why I think so.

Terminator

Every movie after Terminator and Terminator 2 is non-canon. And this isn't entirely about quality, either. It's about, as I said above, intent. A very important theme of 2 was preventing Judgement Day and changing the future. The characters did exactly that by erasing every little thing that had anything to do with Judgement Day. However, Terminator 3 missed this theme by saying "Judgement Day is inevitable". That, in my book, disqualifies it and Salvation as canon.

DTV Disney Sequels

Most, if not all, DTV Disney sequels are non-canon. For one thing, Disney themselves doesn't seem to care about them or acknowledge them. So why should we? Not to mention, they frequently clash with story elements from their predecessors (Scar having an entire lion tribe in The Lion King 2, everything that happens in Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas, etc.). To me, the only canon Disney sequels are the theatrical ones. And I'm pretty sure that means only The Rescuers Down Under.

Halloween

Michael Myers is the boogeyman (he even literally disappears at the end of the movie). And you can't kill the boogeyman. In Halloween II, they humanize and then kill him. So how can it or any other sequel be canon? As far as I'm concerned, at the conclusion of the Halloween arc, Michael Myers is shot down, then disappears, and the story is essentially left on a cliffhanger. He's still out there, somewhere, and that's it. He's not Laurie's brother, he doesn't get burned to death in the hospital, he doesn't come back several times, and he certainly isn't related to a druid curse.

Rosemary's Baby

The sequels to this story are such an unbelievable atrocity, that fans unironically believe the author literally lost their mind.

Friday the 13th

Just the first four films are canon to me. Together they cover an entire story arc that concludes with Jason's indisputable death. They are stylistically all very similar, and feel very connected compared to later sequels. The fifth movie is so bad that even the film makers themselves cut it out of the canon and picked up from 4's ending when them made 6. As for the rest of the movies, they claim that Jason was always a supernatural being who died at the bottom of the lake and then was revived, but we know from 2 that he survived the drowning. So 6 and onward can't be canon in my mind, either (even though I liked 6, so I just consider that to be like a nice fanfiction movie). Later sequels are especially non-canon as they completely start to ignore any semblance of continuity.

A Nightmare on Elm Street

Well, New Nightmare makes it clear that the entire series of Nightmare on Elm Street movies are just films within another universe. So Wes Craven himself perfectly spelled out how the canon goes, and I really can't complain about it, as even the bad movies are just that, movies.

If I think of more, I'll comment on them. For now, what do you guys think?

Dr. Ensatsu-ken

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2014, 09:55:04 PM »
Alien franchise:

Everything after Aliens is non-canon. As for Prometheus, I could buy it being canon, but the one major problem I have with that is how the technology in that movie clearly looks far more sophisticated than anything in the first 2 Alien films. Granted that, Prometheus (the ship and it's crew), is funded by a very wealthy businessman, whereas the crew in Alien are just simple contract workers, and in Aliens it's just low-level military personnel. That said, seeing as how the Alien films supposedly take place over a hundred years after Prometheus, it's still tough to swallow the more dated looking technology.

Spark Of Spirit

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2014, 09:57:24 PM »
For me, I frequently consider the original intent of a story as very important, and if a later sequel disregards that, then it simply can't be canon.
I think that's the way I judge it. I always consider the intent of the original piece as the standard to judge the series and the rules it puts in play. That's why I can't accept Alien 3 as canon, but can accept Matrix Reloaded despite not really liking it.

At a certain point it just feels like the studios are making their own fanfiction (Terminator 3) and we're supposed to just accept it.

And then, there's Star Wars. Oy vey.
« Last Edit: June 24, 2014, 10:09:17 PM by Spark Of Spirit »
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talonmalon333

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2014, 10:06:31 PM »
SpongeBob SquarePants

SpongeBob's continuity really doesn't matter. We all know that. But still, in my mind, I just like to think of this as the canon.

Season 1 ---> Season 2 ---> Season 3 ---> The Movie

There's just something about it I like (probably because season 4 onward is so much weaker). This continuity is actually what Hillenburg intended. He made the first three seasons, then intended for the entire series to end with the movie. Plus, the movie is just a nice ending for the series, isn't it? I also can't get it out of my mind that the final episodes of season 3, SpongeBob Meets the Strangler and Pranks a lot, take place not very long before the movie's storyline begins. Season 4 onward can't happen after the movie because it has SpongeBob as a regular fry cook again and the Krusty Krab 2 is nowhere to be found. Some say the movie takes place after every future episode. That's better, but I still don't like it a lot because those episodes are not only weaker, but they feel so different from the earlier seasons. The movie is very similar to the first three seasons in terms of tone, so I find it jarring to suggest it happens after all those weird later episodes. I love seasons 1-3 and they are special to me, so I prefer they are the only episodes that are canon.

What order the episodes happen in really doesn't matter, so I just assume they happen in the order they were made. The only two expections I can think of are that the Krusty Krab Training Video happening near the beginning of the continuity (because that's when SpongeBob gets his fry cook training), and Band Geeks happening near the end of the continuity (as it's just a nice conclusion for Squidward).

Yes, I just spent two paragraphs talking about SpongeBob's canon.

Spark Of Spirit

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2014, 10:13:02 PM »
SpongeBob SquarePants

SpongeBob's continuity really doesn't matter. We all know that. But still, in my mind, I just like to think of this as the canon.

Season 1 ---> Season 2 ---> Season 3 ---> The Movie

There's just something about it I like (probably because season 4 onward is so much weaker). This continuity is actually what Hillenburg intended. He made the first three seasons, then intended for the entire series to end with the movie. Plus, the movie is just a nice ending for the series, isn't it? I also can't get it out of my mind that the final episodes of season 3, SpongeBob Meets the Strangler and Pranks a lot, take place not very long before the movie's storyline begins. Season 4 onward can't happen after the movie because it has SpongeBob as a regular fry cook again and the Krusty Krab 2 is nowhere to be found. Some say the movie takes place after every future episode. That's better, but I still don't like it a lot because those episodes are not only weaker, but they feel so different from the earlier seasons. The movie is very similar to the first three seasons in terms of tone, so I find it jarring to suggest it happens after all those weird later episodes. I love seasons 1-3 and they are special to me, so I prefer they are the only episodes that are canon.

What order the episodes happen in really doesn't matter, so I just assume they happen in the order they were made. The only two expections I can think of are that the Krusty Krab Training Video happening near the beginning of the continuity (because that's when SpongeBob gets his fry cook training), and Band Geeks happening near the end of the continuity (as it's just a nice conclusion for Squidward).

Yes, I just spent two paragraphs talking about SpongeBob's canon.
I don't even think it really matters. Nothing post-season 3 has any real effect on the movie. You can stop watching after season 3 and it's not like you'll be missing any story.
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talonmalon333

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2014, 10:59:50 PM »
For me, I frequently consider the original intent of a story as very important, and if a later sequel disregards that, then it simply can't be canon.
I think that's the way I judge it. I always consider the intent of the original piece as the standard to judge the series and the rules it puts in play. That's why I can't accept Alien 3 as canon, but can accept Matrix Reloaded despite not really liking it.

At a certain point it just feels like the studios are making their own fanfiction (Terminator 3) and we're supposed to just accept it.

That's why I won't accept it with things like Terminator 3. I see them just as you describe them, as fanfiction.

And then, there's Star Wars. Oy vey.

At least those movies are just bad. They don't destroy that many, if any, themes from the original movies (at least, not that I can think of).

I don't even think it really matters. Nothing post-season 3 has any real effect on the movie. You can stop watching after season 3 and it's not like you'll be missing any story.

I know. I mentioned in that post that it doesn't really matter. I just kind of like to accept only the Hillenburg era as canon. Just one of those things I can't explain, but I have always seemed to like.

Also, post-season 3 episodes contradict the movie in that they exclude the Krusty Krab 2 and make SpongeBob a fry cook again. And Plankton doesn't have the formula.

Spark Of Spirit

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #6 on: June 24, 2014, 11:04:38 PM »
I think they said that the movie is the technical series finale of Spongebob and every episode takes place before it, so it doesn't make much of a difference. Plus, I think the new movie is a sequel to the first movie, so that might push that idea further.

Also, with Star Wars, I didn't just mean the movies. I mean EVERYTHING. It's not like we can just pretend Timothy Zahn's material is canon when Disney went out of their way to make his works less important than the prequels by keeping those canon and not all the stuff he did.
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gunswordfist

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #7 on: June 24, 2014, 11:05:26 PM »
I thought the new movies fucked up a lot, according to the fans.
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talonmalon333

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #8 on: June 24, 2014, 11:09:22 PM »
I think they said that the movie is the technical series finale of Spongebob and every episode takes place before it, so it doesn't make much of a difference. Plus, I think the new movie is a sequel to the first movie, so that might push that idea further.

But like I said, the later seasons feel so different in terms of style. So to me, it feels really jarring putting them before the movie. Also, I have a feeling the next movie will have nothing to do with the first movie, if only to make it it's own self-contained SpongeBob story. The fact that they are using CGI makes it seem even more disconnected. It probably won't affect anything in terms of story.

Also, with Star Wars, I didn't just mean the movies. I mean EVERYTHING. It's not like we can just pretend Timothy Zahn's material is canon when Disney went out of their way to make his works less important than the prequels by keeping those canon and not all the stuff he did.

What is his material?

I thought the new movies fucked up a lot, according to the fans.

What movie?

gunswordfist

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #9 on: June 24, 2014, 11:11:37 PM »
Star Wars Episode I-III
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talonmalon333

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #10 on: June 24, 2014, 11:13:55 PM »
Star Wars Episode I-III

I thought most people say they are just bad movies. I mean, they just cover a story arc that we knew existed since the original movies. In fact, the entire final battle of Episode III was apparently thought up by Lucas back when they first made Empire Strikes Back.

gunswordfist

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #11 on: June 24, 2014, 11:15:54 PM »
Again, IDK myself, I just hear people say that Lucas has shitted all over the continuity with those 3 movies.
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talonmalon333

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #12 on: June 24, 2014, 11:19:08 PM »
Also, apparently the Clones Wars shows make it worth stomaching the prequels as canon.

gunswordfist

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #13 on: June 24, 2014, 11:20:29 PM »
Amen. I still can't compute bringing Darth Maul part...as an android.
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talonmalon333

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Re: Opinions on Continuity in Fiction
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2014, 11:24:44 PM »
Didn't he, like, die? As in, was sliced in half and then knocked into a dark hole to never be seen again?