Movie Series with the Biggest Continuity Problems

BKAllmighty
Just because a movie franchise has lasted for years and consists of multiple instalments, that's no guarantee that everything has gone smoothly along the way. Sometimes even one of the most important elements to a franchise, the continuity between films, can go astray. This, of course, leads to a lot of confusion regarding what's canon and what isn't. This list compiles the movie series that seem to have suffered the most where continuity problems are concerned.

The Top Ten

1 X-Men

Okay, okay, okay. Here's the timeline more or less explained :
X-men, X-men 2 : United, X-men : The Last Stand constituted the original franchise, with two Wolverine spin-offs that we're still trying to forget. There is a prequel, X-men : First Class, and it's sequel, X-men : Days Of Futur Past that thanks to some time travel timeline messing up managed to erase pretty much everything that happened in X-men 2 and X-men : The Last Stand. X-men : First Class and some of the Wolverine stuff however still exist, along with Deadpools 1 & 2. Although, all this time travel mumbo jumbo messed up everything so bad several alternate realities appeared, respectively X-men : Apocalypse and Logan. Dark Phoenix will be set 10 years after X-men : Apocalypse and to be honest, I have no clue what timeline The New Mutants or Gambit will be in. Albeit all these continuity issues, it's been a pleasure to get hopelessly lost in spacetime with our favourite mutants.

This series is so irreversibly-screwed when it comes to continuity that I'm not even going to try to explain it. So many things said and done in later films occur in direct violation of things that were previously-established in the series. The filmmakers even tried to fix it but only ended up making matters worse in the end. Good thing we're getting an MCU-flavoured reboot in the near future. - BKAllmighty

I didn't see anything wrong with it to be honest.

I liked X-men 1 and 2, and enjoyed Days Of Future Past. First Class was good even though I don’t remember anything from it. The Last Stand was okay, and Apocalypse was awful. Dark Phoenix looks pretty boring in my opinion. - RadioHead03

2 Halloween

It's not so much that the series has failed at maintaining a solid continuity. It's more that the series keeps wiping the slate clean and starting over. 1 and 2 felt like a complete story, but when 3 confused audiences by attempting to turn the franchise into an anthology series and failed, it jumped back into the Michael Myers story line and gave us an overly-complicated story arc in 4, 5, and 6. Then, it wiped those last three films out and made 7 and 8 the direct successors to 1 and 2. Then we got a prequel/remake of 1 and that film got a sequel that concluded the story. Now, we have an 11th film that pretends the remake series never happened, returns us back to the original series, and (while retconning 2 for the first time in the series) makes itself yet another direct sequel to the original. Whew. That's a lot. - BKAllmighty

3 Terminator

Things were going fairly well before 'Terminator Salvation' and 'Terminator Genisys' sort of stomped all over the franchise and it's continuity. Thankfully, 'Terminator: Dark Fate', a direct sequel to 'T2' that's being produced by James Cameron, is coming along to save the day! - BKAllmighty

Let's be real here, has anyone liked a James Cameron film since Titanic? Everyone thought Genisys was going to be a "return to form" just because it had the Terminator 2 theme placed into every single scene but instead, we got something on the level of T3 if it was made by the guys that thought up of T Salvation. Just give us a cheap direct to DVD knock off of the original. It would probably be better than anything Terminator Genisys was trying to accomplish in the first place. Also, I hope the John Conner curse finally gets its way to biting John-whoever-played-him. Schwarzy for Presdient

4 Alien

I blame 'Alien 3'. I never shy away from the fact that I hate that movie and everything bad about this franchise seemed to stem from that ugly, brown, hateful stain of a third instalment. It doomed 'Alien: Resurrection' before it was even made and led to the series' decline in popularity. That's probably what fuelled Fox to make the desperate-for-money 'AVP' movies (which have both been rendered un-cannon with the release of the two more recent prequel films). - BKAllmighty

After Aliens, the franchise was starting to go downhill. - RadioHead03

Prometheus was pretty good. - Not_A_Weeaboo

5 Godzilla

Don't even get me started...

This over-50-year-old franchise cares about as much about continuity as your grandmother cares about Fortnite (which I couldn't care less about either, for the record). - BKAllmighty

The continuity makes sense, it depends on what ERA your in, Showa-1954-1975, Heisei-84-95, Millennium-1999-2004. The showa continuity is loosely explained and connects in a loose way that makes sense IF YOU'VE ACTUALLY SEEN THE MOVIES, the millennium era is all essentially reboots, and the Heisei continuity follows a tight nit plot and characters through the movies. but what do I know, I mean, I have actually seen these movies - RustyNail

6 Transformers

Is it just me or did each movie seem to retcon the previous film's explanation of the history between humans and transformers? With the King Arthur and Nazi moments being among the oddest. I sort of stopped trying to follow the story. Thank goodness 2018's 'Bumblebee' officially rebooted the story. Mind you, I didn't know it was a reboot watching the darn thing in theatres so when they retold the origin AGAIN I almost threw up my arms in defeat. - BKAllmighty

7 Evil Dead

The second and third movies both devote a considerable chunk of intro time re-writing the story from the previous film. Somehow, everyone was cool with it, and the series is seen as a linear trilogy in spite of all the retconning. I guess continuity isn't too big of a problem when everyone loves the movies. - BKAllmighty

8 Saw

If you want to talk continuity problems and screwing over the timeline, there's no better place to look than the Saw franchise. Every new twist seems to make the timeline messier than the last, and the only justification one could possibly come up with is the Jigsaw Killer being an omniscient God that knows everything, and even that doesn't explain some of the ridiculous continuity errors that are continuously thrown around as the series hit its later installments. They're pretty hilarious though, so. - nerffan8000

9 The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Each subsequent film almost feels like it takes place with a different family in a whole different reality. They can't even seem to keep Leatherface's name straight in these films (yes, I know the reboots did that intentionally). That doesn't mean they're not still brainless, gory fun. - BKAllmighty

10 Wreck-it Ralph

"Don't die outside your home game; you won't regenerate! " Six years later: "Don't die outside your own game, you won't regenerate... unless the other game has a Mary Sue who being a Mary Sue will find a way around that."

The end of the original showed Ralph and Vanellope actually now getting along much better with the other characters in their respective games, they were good enough friends with Felix and the blonde sergeant to serve as best man and maid of honor at their wedding, and Ralph seemed to be friends with the other "villain" characters. All that was ignored in the sequel.

Vanellope declared herself president instead of princess at the end of the original. In the sequel she's considered a princess again just so she can encourage the actual Disney princesses to dress like a Walmart ad.

The first movie it said that the video game characters should never switch games and then in the second one Vanellope switches games.

1 Comment

The Contenders

11 Friday the 13th

Who doesn't like friday the 13th

This has over 10 sequels. Suff said. Overloaded as heck.
~ AlphaQ

12 The Land Before Time

Only the first film of the series had great continuity.

13 Highlander

Now, I've never seen any of the sequels but they're famous for being irredeemably-screwed, continuity-wise. - BKAllmighty

14 Batman

If you're talking about the Harvey Dent skin color change between Returns and Forever, then yes - xandermartin98

What is Batman wearing?!

15 James Bond

Even if you ignore the fact that Bond changes appearances every few movies, every movie taking place in the "present"-meaning the year they were each released-becomes a problem when said series goes for fifty years, and in turn brings up some questions about Bond's history and longevity.

16 Nightmare On Elm Street
17 Wizarding World

The issues weren't so glaring back during the original HP years. Sure, 'The Prisoner of Azkaban' conjured up a lot of visual discrepancies (the location and landscape of Hagrid's Hut, for example), but the story line seemed to keep itself safe from making chronological mistakes. It would appear, however, that the 'Fantastic Beasts' films don't care to keep that careful streak intact. From what I hear the second film is kind of sloppy in that regard. - BKAllmighty

18 Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha is a Japanese anime television series directed by Akiyuki Shinbo, with screenplay written by Masaki Tsuzuki, and produced by Seven Arcs.

As much as I love the Nanoha movies, I'll admit that the continuity that they follow can mess up a bit sometimes. - PerfectImpulseX

19 Star Wars
20 Dragon Ball

The Dragon Ball movies aren't canon to the main series. The whole T.V. series itself is a continuity problem, especially the dumb Super part of the series, which went against so many things that were mentioned in the Z part of the series.

21 Cars
22 Monsters, Inc.

This is just a 20th century monster joke... - Maddox121

23 Gundam Gundam

I know that there's lots of timelines but... - PerfectImpulseX

24 Superman
25 The Emoji Movie

I think a sequel would be The Meme Movie or would that be more of an adult movie.

Looks like a troll had come by and added an item - germshep24

26 Alvin & the Chipmunks

Ahh my carpet is red from the blood from my ears - oofoff

27 Norm of the North

Please see both parts of Mr. Enter's review of Norm of the North 2.

Enough said...

Yeah, I am an Enterbot, but not one who comes up with the same exact opinion as him even though I agree with most the opinions he has like Modern Nickelodeon was literal garbage and Classic Cartoon Network is full of admirable animation (pun partially intended). - The Ultimate Daredevil

28 Diary of a Wimpy Kid
29 DC Extended Universe
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List StatsCreated 28 Mar 2019
Updated 28 Jun 2019

29 listings
232 days old

Top Remixes (5)

1. X-Men
2. Saw
3. Terminator
iliekpiez
1. X-Men
2. Terminator
3. Halloween
htoutlaws2012
1. Halloween
2. X-Men
3. Godzilla
BKAllmighty

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