The Dark Knight: How Do You Measure The "Best" Sequel?

The Dark Knight is widely regarded as one of the best movies of its kind. It is officially a sequel to Batman Begins, but unlike most sequels, audiences don’t really need to watch the first movie to understand or enjoy the plot of the second. The only major plotline that continues between the two (apart from Bruce Wayne Being Batman, of course) is Bruce and Rachel’s relationship ("If there is ever a time when Gotham doesn’t need Batman, we can be together.")
Does the stand-alone nature of this movie make it a better sequel? Or a worse one? What metrics do you use to measure the quality of a sequel? We don’t determine the quality of a horror movie by how much it makes us laugh, for example. Do we determine the quality of a sequel by how much it depends on the story of the first movie?
Compare to Terminator 2, Rocky 2, John Wick 2, Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back, and other movies considered some of the best sequels of all time.

  • Godfather 2, Aliens, Toy Story 2, Logan as well. – Sunni Ago 1 year ago
  • I think it's important to remember the difference between this sequel and the other's you named-- source material. I'm not saying it lacks originality, I adore THE DARK KNIGHT but there were characters and relationships that we as a culture were familiar with before the first film even released too. Might be interesting to explore the effect it had – hudsonmakesmovies 1 year ago
  • Also Back to the Future Part II, Shrek 2, Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, X-Men 2, Spiderman 2... – noahspud 1 year ago

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