E.T. Returns For ‘Extra Tight’ 4-Minute Sequel (And 10 Other Sequels That Could Use This Alien Format)
Something unexpected happened on Thanksgiving. No, not that incident you’re thinking about involving the turkey baster (someone out there reading this knows what we’re talking about), rather E.T. came…or left home, again. The cross-dressing alien from Steven Spielberg’s 1982 classic E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial reunited with Elliott in a “Home for the Holidays”- themed commercial from Comcast Xfinity.
Soul-sucking agenda aside, when the advertisement aired, fans felt all warm and fuzzy in a way they hadn’t in nearly 40 years. The extra-tight sequel accomplished in four minutes what used to take two hours; slightly past the three-minute mark, E.T. is already in a basket, biking across the moonlit sky…had the commercial been five minutes long, it probably would’ve been too much. This got us thinking about other sequels that should never happen but if they did, would benefit from this miniature format (and with some added advertisement).
Cover Photo: Xfinity
'Ferris Bueller's Day Off'
It would just be nice to check in with our favorite motley crue of characters from 1986. Is Ferris skipping work now? Does he still have a kick-ass synthesizer? Did Ferris and Sloane’s relationship last? Did Cameron's father kill him? Actually, Matthew Broderick did briefly reprise his role as Bueller in a 2012 Honda CR commercial. However, it lacked the clarity of Comcast’s Xfinity’s E.T.
If there was ever a movie that has become more relevant over time, that movie would be Fight Club. For people familiar with Chuck Palahniuk’s novel, they know that the unnamed narrator woke up in a mental hospital at its end (surrounded by members of Project Mayhem). This ending was omitted from the film but two comic book sequels have been released since (continuing the novel’s story). Those sequels follow Tyler Durden (locked in the subconscious of our protagonist) as “the narrator” tries to live a normal life (as Durden craves chaos). Sounds like a great Nike commercial—just do it.
Sequels are all about unanswered questions; there are two questions people might have at the end of Pulp Fiction: what’s in the briefcase (which we should never find out the answer to) and what happened to Jules Winnfield? We picture a touching commercial about the tranquility of a technologically-enhanced life. After forsaking his life of crime (and walking the Earth), Jules married another walker and started a family. Lounging around on a Sunday in the suburbs, there’s one question Jules still craves an answer to: “Alexa, what does Marcellus Wallace look like?”
The end of Memento sets the protagonist, Leonard, up to continue searching for John G's/his wife’s murder (who is unfortunately him due his anterograde amnesia). The sequel will lack all of the original’s clever non-linear storytelling elements (that align with Leonard’s perspective). It will instead follow the unlucky strings of John G Leonard has tracked down and killed over the years—a violent and comical montage of madness. Citi Identity Theft Solutions can help get your life back.
Let’s just pretend Speed 2 didn’t happen; it’s time for a proper Speed sequel, one that shows Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock return to their above-50-mph form. The couple would be married and committed to actually staying below the speed limit—bad things happen when you drive really fast. As they slowly crawl down the street in a brown station wagon, a young girl runs by them on foot (really fast). Jack Traven notices her, turns to Annie and says, “pop quiz hotshot...”
“Enough with the speed jokes, Jack!”
A New Balance logo flashes on the screen.
Inception famously ends with the spinning top (Cobb’s totem) and cuts to black before we ever find out if the main character is really awake. Director Christopher Nolan has explained this ending as signifying the importance of Cobb’s choice: he has chosen that reality—real or not. A four-minute reality check sounds suitable; the totem does stop spinning, Cobb is seen taking the kids to school, dealing too much traffic. The next thing you know, he gets himself into a fender bender: can you afford not to be in good hands? That’s Allstate’s stand.
The four-minute sequel to Forrest Gump is a no-brainier; we find a now 30-year-old Forrest Gump Jr. at the very same bus stop we see Sr. sitting at in the original film—eating chocolates. Jr. looks at the woman sitting next to him and says, “My dad always said that life was like a box of chocolates, you never...” but before he can finish, the bus arrives. “Sorry, I have to run,” he says. After he departs, the camera pans to the woman on the bench. Jr. left the chocolates behind. Shaking her head, she says, "You never know what you’re going to get." Then we see: "Uber: travel on your own terms."
'The Shawshank Redemption'
After “crawling through a river of shit and [coming] out clean on the other side,” Andy Dufresne (and his jailbird buddy, Ellis Boyd "Red" Redding), end up on a beach in Zihuatanejo. The final scene of The Shawshank Redemption sees the two men embrace next to a boat Andy had been working on. Years later, on a nice sail across the Pacific Ocean, the two enjoy an ice-cold Bud Light. The tagline: "Sometimes being home for the holidays is overrated."
'The Breakfast Club'
P.S. Oh, and by the way Mr. Vernon, following up on that whole “write an essay telling you who we think we are” thing. We’ve decided to see you as you saw us: in the simplest terms, in the most convenient definition:
“Words hurt. Don’t be a part of it.” - Companies Committed to Kids
'Back to the Future'
Everyone would love to check in with Marty McFly and Dr. Emmett Brown; in fact we kind of have via the “extra-tight” format. A handful of Toyota commercials in 2015 featured Michael J. Fox and Christopher Lloyd. We see them at a diner discussing all of the technology (depicted in the Back to the Future movies) that hasn’t come to fruition. The commercial contains a handful of callbacks to the films but does not actually feature the characters of McFly and Dr. Brown; the actors play themselves. It would be amusing to see the characters actually return, confused as to why flying cars aren’t a thing.