Why Are People Getting So Mad Over Megamind’s Sequel?

Megamind 2
Megamind 2

The trailer for Megamind vs. the Doom Syndicate, the direct-to-Peacock sequel to 2010’s Megamind, just released, and fans are not happy about it. Despite DreamWorks Animation having released numerous sequels, this is the one that has made people riled up, which is a little strange considering how Megamind is one of the studio’s lowest-grossing films. How did this sequel to a box office disappointment elicit such a strong reaction from animation fans?

2010 was filled with animated blockbusters like Tangled, Toy Story 3, How to Train Your Dragon, and Despicable Me, all films that made more than $500 million at the box office save for How to Train Your Dragon, which made an extremely close $494 million instead. Megamind’s gross of $322 million against a budget of $130 million didn’t make it a flop, per se, but in such a heavy year for animation and with DreamWorks titles usually grossing a lot more, it fell to the wayside and was predicted by most people to simply be forgotten as time went on.

That’s not what happened. Megamind garnered quite the cult following since its underwhelming theatrical run and has especially lived on through internet memes. Because of that, a Megamind sequel made specifically for little kids feels backward considering its fan base. It wasn’t young children that gave the film a second life, it was older audiences that appreciated the movie’s offbeat plot, likable characters, and punchy humor.

The trailer for the Megamind sequel, on the other hand, felt on par with the Disney direct-to-DVD sequels of the 2000s, ones that were made with no regard for quality and targeting parents who only want something to keep their children busy for 90 minutes or so. It genuinely feels out-of-touch for DreamWorks to seemingly not realize who is enjoying their films and why.

It’s also bizarre when you consider that, unlike Disney, DreamWorks has never been very interested in producing straight-to-DVD sequels for their films. It’s been mostly shows for them, and with the exception of Joseph: King of Dreams, a prequel to The Prince of Egypt, all of their follow-up films were released theatrically until the pandemic. Now that cinemas are back, though, DreamWorks has released theatrical sequels to Puss in Boots and Trolls, and will presumably do so for Kung Fu Panda, Madagascar, The Boss Baby, and Shrek.

DreamWorks deciding to release Megamind’s sequel directly to Peacock feels like the studio admitting how little they care for the IP, this being even more emphasized by how the film’s trailer was released only one month before its premiere. Now, there have been good kids’ straight-to-streaming films, and not just ones forced to be so due to the pandemic, but ones like Orion and the Dark and Chip N’ Dale: Rescue Rangers where it feels like genuine care and effort have been put into them.

Megamind 2, unfortunately, really does not look to be one of them. None of the original voice cast members are back, the animation looks terribly cheap, and the plot doesn’t even make sense in the context of the original film. Megamind began with the titular character as a baby, and we saw him grow up and become the villain that he is.

The sequel introduces the Doom Syndicate, a group of villains who supposedly were Megamind’s old friends. When could this have possibly happened if he’s been terrorizing Metro City since he was a kid? Why did nobody in the first film bring it up, considering the entire plot was about him finally killing the hero and taking over the city?

Again, this feels incredibly reminiscent of Disney sequels like The Fox and the Hound 2 and Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas, where they add nonsensical plot points to the original narrative just so they can create a new film. Another similarity is that this isn’t even a true Megamind sequel, not really. It’s the pilot to the Peacock show Megamind Rules!, much like The Return to Jafar was the pilot to the Aladdin show and Atlantis: Milo’s Return was actually three episodes linked together of a canceled Atlantis show.

Sure, other DreamWorks films also have their shows, but they’re typically seen as self-contained properties — you don’t need to watch the How to Train Your Dragon or Kung Fu Panda show to understand any of the films. Megamind vs. the Doom Syndicate is billed as a sequel film, and given how it’s not one of DreamWorks’ most popular properties, this could very well be the only sequel the franchise gets. Granted, the sequel has been penned by the writers of the first film so it could be good, but based on everything mentioned above, nobody’s holding their breath.

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