What Is the Best Second Installment of a Horror Franchise?

Insidious: Chapter 2 is out this weekend, and we all have high hopes that it'll be as good as the original. With a lot of horror movies, it's easy to have low expectations for the sequel, but a lot of horror movies don't have the level of quality we saw in the first Insidious. And many that do have the goods aren't followed with a sequel that's from the same writer and director (that would be Leigh Whannell and James Wan here). Just think if Psycho 2 could have been made by Hitchcock or Jaws 2 by Spielberg or A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy's Revenge by Wes Craven. 

Because of the commonly large drop in quality from an original horror movie and its first sequel, we want to focus on second installments. What is the best "Part Two"? If we keep the scope narrowed down to straight scary movies, we might go with Final Destination 2 or Hostel Part II. If we go broader for some hybrid horror, Aliens. If we want smart reflexive types, Bride of Frankenstein and Gremlins 2: The New Batch. Consider all three categories and the 1978 Dawn of the Dead is just plain perfect.

There's also Evil Dead II, which pretty much everyone agrees is better than the original. And if you qualify The Silence of the Lambs as a sequel to Manhunter, then that's way up there, too. Let's not forget Friday the 13th Part II, as well, for turning the franchise's kills over to Jason Voorhees. With today actually being a Friday the 13th, I think we have to go with that answer or suffer some kind of curse.

Which of these or any other "Part Two" installments do you see as the best, and to which you'll be comparing the new Insidious follow-up?


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