Sequel Hook

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
Jump to: navigation, search

Otacon: Well, Snake, I tracked down the Patriots' Wisemen Committee, but all I found was a note.
Snake: What does it say?
Otacon: "Buy the sequel! Coming soon!"

Snake: Damn you, Kojima!

A Sequel Hook is something in a work that suggests that there is a clear possibility for another story. The MacGuffins may come in threes, the Big Bad might be Not Quite Dead, or, more blatantly, as the story ends another adventure might be shown beginning.

The original work still has closure but, by leaving minor plot elements unresolved, the writer has made writing a sequel easier. If the audience demand is there, they'll be ready. In fact, this method is so common the audience will identify any unresolved plot element or any ending short of Happily Ever After or Kill'Em All as a hook. Sometimes the hook was just that, the writers are not sure which direction they would be going in the later movie.

Pretty much every film based on a comic book sets itself up for a sequel, and any movie that goes out of its way to establish a very expansive universe that has room for a sequel. In the case of adaptations their source is usually a medium known for making multiple storylines and, in most cases, have a decades-long Myth Arc to mine for ideas.

If the Sequel Hook revolves about a character other than the main character, it may indicate a possibility of Changing of the Guard.

Make note that a Sequel Hook is not a combination of a Mythology Gag you noticed and wishful thinking. This is where the movie takes a brief side glance to let you know that more is coming. This is recognizable to almost anyone watching/reading, not just the fans that notice a minor gag in an adaptation.

If the story is complex enough, there can be a fine line between this and an outright Cliff Hanger. And the two can overlap if the story concludes, everyone's happy and then a new problem shows up to put everyone in turmoil.

If a movie poses a Sequel Hook only for no sequel to ultimately be forthcoming, this can be the source of unintentional humour later on down the track.

Compare The End - or Is It?, Here We Go Again, The Stinger, And the Adventure Continues..., To Be Continued, Saved for the Sequel. Can occur as part of Inescapable Horror.

Examples of Sequel Hook include:

Anime and Manga[edit | hide | hide all]

  • Back in 2008, the slighly random Kamen no Maid Guy actually set up a serious storyline - at the very end of the series.
  • It had been made clear in Tokyo Mew Mew that Ichigo and friends had been de-powered because there was no need for them to fight. Then, we see everyone back at the cafe months later and, depending which version you're following, either their marks have reappeared and they transform, or Ichigo's Catgirl ears reappear and Berii looks in the cafe window.
  • A post-credits sequence in Strike Witches features Yoshika receiving a letter from her supposedly-dead father. But seriously, who saw the first two episodes and thought he was actually dead in the first place?
  • The ending of Petite Princess Yucie has all the lead girls inexplicably attend the Princess Academy once more, even though they all graduated already. Yucie also seems to be no different as a Platinum Princess. But it's especially clear that a sequel was planned when all the girls shout "see you again" in the last shot. This was in 2003 and there still is no sequel in sight.
  • Higurashi no Naku Koro ni, the end of the first season.
  • Subverted in Fatal Fury: The Motion Picture, when Geese shows up halfway through the film to show us his RAGING STORM... and then is absent for the rest of the movie. Sequel time? Nope, they never made another.
  • Bamboo Blade has Tamaki and a long-haired girl turn their heads to each other in the ending credits. Les Yay aside, this could mean that there is more in store.
  • The 6 years later epilogue of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha A's, which has everyone talking about being reunited after a long time, the three Aces on their way to a mission, the brief introduction of Reinforce Zwei, and the scene cutting away just before said Aces reveal their new Barrier Jackets. All a hook for the A's to StrikerS manga to follow-up on around half a year later.
  • Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann ends the series with a delegation led to a convention of most of, if not all, of the Spiral races in the galaxy. Considering the fight of the last episode, it's unlikely, but if anything can top Gurren Lagann, it will be Gurren Lagann. Not to mention the fact that the fate of practically all the secondary characters other than Rossiu, Leeron, Gimmy, and Darry is left unknown. Controversy rages about a sequel; if it would ruin the series or not. However, the series has gone on to produce many parallel works in manga, and in fact has a manga serialization ongoing, as well as a parody manga that features the main cast in a modern high school.
  • Giant Robo has possibly one of the most sadistic, but not because of any fault of the writers'. The final OVA episode ends with the Earth decimated but able to recover, the IPO gutted of several of its top men, and Smug Snake Koumei informing the Magnificent Ten that all is according to the plan of Lord Big Fire, with Operation BR about to begin, suggesting that Big Fire is about to launch a true operation to conquer the world after Genya's plot both crippled their major opponent and simultaneously made sure the world would survive to be ruled over, leaving it ambiguous as to whether the entire operation was masterminded by Koumei or Big Fire himself. However, the sequel was unable to be made due to funding problems, so several critical explanations and Koumei's presumed come-uppance were never actually made, much to the frustration of the OVA series' many fans.
  • Witchblade is practically BEGGING for a sequel. Due to its cliffhanger ending, canon incontinuities, and the fact the title artifacts parents (Angelus and Darkness) never got a role pretty much leave this show somewhat unresolved. If the comic writers give a shit about their canon (and the anime IS PART OF IT), they should bloody well rectify this.
  • The last Slayers light novel ends with Lina and Gourry traveling to Lina's homeland, Zephilia. Cue loads of Will They or Won't They?. There's also the fate of Zelgadis and Amelia, considering that they were left to their own accord after the eighth novel (their replacements were Killed Off for Real in the last two novels), and Zelgadis' side story takes place after that time.
    • The second anime season ends with Sylphiel running off with the heroes, but she's nowhere to be seen in the third (being replaced by Filia), so this is a subversion. Also, the last season has more of this than the third did, with Zelgadis riding on a boat contentedly sticking out among them.
  • Blatantly lampshaded in Baccano!, when the two Meta Guys Carol and Gustav argue over why some plot threads are left untied (such as a scene in the first episode that never gets referred to again. At least in the anime...). Carol's answer? Sequel Hook.
  • The second season of Hayate the Combat Butler ends with a new semester beginning for the cast, as well as a very brief shot of Athena during the final credits.
  • For Heroman, Kogorr is defeated, and everyone is happy as the episode ends, fading to black. But, then it fades back in to show a prison island, with lights blazing and alarms shrieking. The prison's guards get decimated by Veronica, who frees Those Two Guys, and breaks down the wall to a certain cell, filled to the brim with equations and formulas, as well as drawings. A pencil is spit to the floor as the cell's inmate turns around: Dr. Minami. Cue To Be Continued. We even see a question mark afterwards.
  • Pokémon Special would always use this at the end of an arc. It may seem a little silly, as the release of a new Pokémon generation already indicates a coming sequel, but it is often done to show either the new Big Bad, the direction they'll be heading with the next chapters, or just a way to explain how one arc leads to the next, chronologically.
    • Red/Blue/Green - Averted. It makes sense for the first chapter, though, as there's no way they would've known that a new Generation of Pokémon would even exist (Yellow was out at the end of this arc, not Gold and Silver.) or if they would even continue with the series.
    • Yellow - As part of the story, it's revealed that Yellow's journey had been engineered by Blue (The girl). While her reasons are not revealed, she's shown on her Poké Gear calling someone, discussing that she hadn't found what she needed through Yellow's adventure. The next we see is Silver, the rival of Pokémon Gold and Silver, hanging up, and a shot of Johto with a group of Generation II Pokémon as the chapter ends.
    • Ruby and Sapphire - HUGE. After the battle, the Red Orb and Blue Orb used to maintain Groudon and Kyogre shatter into pieces. A shadowy figure shows up and picks up the pieces. Holding two red and blue shards, he says, reciting what comes across as a prophecy, "Creation of the new world order lies in thy hands." Next we see Giovanni, standing there with the shards, where his last words at the end of the chapter are "...And it has already begun."
      • Especially shocking as this occurs after a Happily Ever After ending, where almost every loose end is tied up.
    • FireRed and LeafGreen - Arguably larger than Ruby and Sapphire's. After the Big Bad is defeated and the characters all get their just endings, Sird shows up as Mewtwo flies away, using the last amount of energy she could attain for one last attack... Which turns the Pokédex holders to stone. And with that, the arc ends.
    • Emerald - Crystal, looking back at the photographs from the battle, recalls Archie's last words when she confronted him about the origins of his suit of armor. She asks him who gave it to him, but he can only get out the beginning of the word before dying, as his last word is: "Galac..."
    • Diamond and Pearl - So Cyrus has been defeated, Dialga and Palkia are peaceful again, and Platinum has finally achieved her goal of making the Berlitz family crest. Everything should be back to normal now, right? WRONG. She then states her intentions of rescuing her original bodyguards, then a weird scientist suddenly shows up, Byron and the researchers stop him, but they accidentally manage to open up a black hole, where a large claw swoops down and sucks in Dialga, Palkia, and Cyrus. The scientist just grins, tells Platinum his name and about the Distortion World, and escapes. Dia manages to take his notebook from him, which reveals information about the legendaries. Flash forward to Flint and Volkner having a conversation, where Flint reveals that he's in the Battle Zone. Another flash forward two weeks later, where Platinum's mother is on a cruise ship, and she and her daughter have a talk about the Distortion World.
  • An episode of Pokémon that took place near the end of the Kanto arc ended with a shot of Mewtwo destroying the Team Rocket base and flying away, therefore setting the stage for Pokémon the First Movie.
  • Panty and Stocking With Garterbelt ends with what is basically an Up to Eleven version of this trope, with sudden, completely nonsensical plot twists thrown out left and right just after everything has been resolved. Basically, Stocking pulling a Face Heel Turn and slices Panty into 666 pieces, and Big Bad Corset pops out of Brief's penis (It Makes Sense in Context, I swear) to tell Brief that if he wants to save Panty, he must follow the pieces to the next town and unlock the hellgate there. Your typical Gainax Ending, as it were, but taken to eleven.
    • Also, the whole thing may actually just be a parody of this trope; the creators have been very coy about a second season, and it's quite possible they have no intention of making one and came up with an Ass Pull sequel hook just to troll the fans.
      • It's also quite likely that, knowing them, they will make a second season but completely ignore the cliffhanger.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam 00. Both seasons. Season one: Setsuna's line: "As long as the distortion continues to exist, I will continue to fight... Alongside my Gundam." Also, Tieria's "This is the Gundam that will change the world..." while we see a container saying "GN 00 00 GUNDAM". In season two, Tieria's "The true goal of the Aeolia Plan was to prepare Humanity for the dialogues to come." And after the Credits, we see a 15 second teaser for the movie, which ends with the text: "2314: The Childhood of Humankind Ends." If those don't practically say "There'll be another season" and "We're planning on making a movie", I don't know what does.
  • The last episode of Puella Magi Madoka Magica, especially The Stinger. The director has stated that he wants to do a second season- though it's unknown whether he wants a genuine sequel or a Spin-Off.
  • The Fullmetal Alchemist manga and Brotherhood anime both avert this to the point where it seems like the writer was literally trying as hard as possible to prevent any possible sequel or need for a sequel. The first anime on the other hand ends with Ed getting ready to do another transmutation to get Al back by sacrificing himself. The Conquerers of Shamballa movie fittingly picks up a short time after the hook, with Ed stuck in the "real" world after his transmutation was successful.
  • The creators of Death Note have themselves admitted that they are undecided whether The Death Note that Aizawa was holding at the warehouse was real, or if Light's bluff about it being fake was true. They claim that if the book was a fake, the real one is still out there somewhere, meaning "Ryuk could return somehow..."


Comic Books[edit | hide]

  • A comic book example is found in the six issue Marvel Boy limited series from 2000. At the end, Marvel Boy ominously tells the government agents that in five months, the super prison he is in will become the capital for the new Kree Empire. After that, the caption advertises Marvel Boy 2:001!!!, a title that will likely not see the light of day, since Marvel Boy's next appearance was during the 2006 Summer Event Civil War.
  • P.R.O.J.E.C.T.'s "Superman 2" vault at the end of All-Star Superman.


Fan Works[edit | hide]


Film[edit | hide]

  • Back to The Future: Doc Brown whisks Marty and girlfriend Jennifer away at the end of the first film. The writers merely intended it as a closing gag, and later had to work out why he whisked him (and her) away.
    • The ending of the first one was meant to just be a gag and there were no plans to actually do anything with it. (Word of God states that they would have not put Jennifer in the car if it was planned as a sequel hook, note that she never does anything but be unconscious.) The ending of 2 is both a sequel hook and a Cliff Hanger. 2 and 3 were filmed as essentially 1 movie with a division between the stories. Part 2 actually ends with "To Be Concluded..." and a preview of Part 3. Not too bad on a DVD where you just pop the next disk in but a bit annoying on theatrical release.
    • That repeat of the end scene of part 1 at the beginning of part 2, while looking like a continuation picking right up at the Sequel Hook, was actually a re-filming of it with a minor Retcon, so that the new actors could match up with the footage to follow, and so that they could subtly insert a moment in which Doc has a new reaction to Marty asking whether he'll become an asshole in the future that is more appropriate to what Part 2 portrays. (In the original version of the first film's end scene—the one from the first film—he immediately brushes off the question with a sincere-sounding reassurance that "both you and Jennifer turn out just fine". In the re-filmed version of the scene at the beginning of part 2, he says the same line, but this time hesitates first with some hems and haws and an "oh shit, I wish he hadn't asked me that" look in his eyes.) A rare case of a Sequel Hook actually going against itself.
      • Also, the "To Be Continued" at the end of the first film was not added until the video release, after the studio had already greenlit a sequel. The original theatrical cut did not contain it.
    • The second movie uses the 1955 'end' of the first as a hook; as soon as Marty's gone back to the future and Doc Brown's celebrated his good work, the Marty from slightly later in the future appears and tells Doc that he's "back FROM the future!"

Doc Brown: Great Scott. * faints*
Marty: Doc? Doc?! DOC!!

  • Mortal Kombat concluded with victory and ended on a cliffhanger, as Shao Kahn, the Man Behind the Man of the movie's Big Bad, shows up and announces he's come to take their souls. Raiden's response: "I don't think so."
    • Which makes it all the more awkward if you, like me, saw the sequel soon after on video and therefore found it all the more obvious just how utterly different the blatantly human, normal-sized Shao Khan it portrayed was compared to the CGI monstrosity with several arms filling the sky and speaking in a booming, demonic voice.
  • Superman is a rare case of a film having a sequel hook at the beginning; General Zod, Ursa, and Non are banished to the Phantom Zone in the film's opening scenes, and are not seen again until they return as the Big Bad and Dragons in Superman II.
    • That's because Superman 1 and 2 were originally filmed together. After the entire project fell behind schedule and over-budget, the studio called Richard Donner up and told him to finish up the first film and leave the sequel for later. Still a hook, but not necessarily a dangling one.
  • X-Men: The Last Stand, despite being the final chapter in a trilogy, has a potential sequel hook in its final seconds; the de-powered Magneto, homeless and alone, sits at a (steel) chessboard in Central Park vainly trying to make the pieces move; one pawn wobbles, almost imperceptibly, in the instant before the shot cuts to Brett Ratner's director credit. There is even a second hook after the credits, showing that Xavier survived in the Chekhov's Gun. (eww.)
  • The Garbage Pail Kids Movie, of all things, had one with the titular kids escaping and hitting the road. Thankfully, it flopped at the box office and no sequel was made.
  • The 1998 American remake of Godzilla ended with a shot of a single left-over Godzilla egg preparing to hatch. The film was intended as the first chapter of a trilogy; as it bombed, however, no sequels were made (at least, not in America). The hook did figure into the premise of the Animated Adaptation Godzilla: The Series, however.
  • A very similar "single left-over egg hatching" sequel hook is the final shot of 1982's Q – The Winged Serpent. The film didn't do well enough to merit a sequel.
  • Species 2 completely ignored its predecessor's hook: a rat eating the corpse of one of the aliens, and getting possessed from doing so.
  • The 2007 Transformers Live Action Adaptation had four hooks; Optimus's message to other Autobots at the end, Megatron's corpse dropped in the Laurentian Abyss, Starscream leaving the planet during the credits and Optimus picking up a fragment of the movie's MacGuffin.
    • At the end of the sequel, Megatron and Starscream grudgingly pull a Villain Exit Stage Left, at the latter's suggestion ("Sometimes, cowards do survive"). It also has this line about Optimus Prime and the Transformers in general:

Lennox: If God made us in His image, then who made [Optimus]?

  • The 1980 Flash Gordon movie had someone pick up Ming's ring after the story ended; since the movie was a bomb, nothing came of it. Possibly in homage, the third series of the revived Doctor Who ended with someone picking up the Master's ring and laughing evilly.
  • The original ending of National Treasure was thought to be a Sequel Hook by test audiences, so the filmmakers shot a new ending and put that one in the movie. (You can see the original ending on the DVD.) Ironically, the film made so much money that it got a sequel anyway.
    • Ironically, played straight in the sequel, Book of Secrets. At the end of the film, the President asks Gates to look into the mysterious Page 47 of the titular book. Though the contents of the page are never mentioned, Gates describes the information contained within as "life altering".
  • The Matrix ends with Neo making a call to the machines and telling he's going to show the people within the Matrix the truth of the world, followed by a shot of him flying into the sky.
    • With Reloaded and Revolutions being filmed at the same time, like Back to The Future, Reloaded contains one in the last shot: an unconscious Neo in the Hammer infirmary...and an unconscious Bane-slash-Smith on another bed.
  • Biggles Adventures In Time finished with our American time-traveller getting zapped in to help Biggles escape from a cannibal cooking pot. It may even have finished "To Be Continued..." The film bombed and no sequel was made.
  • The 1998 film version of Lost in Space does this as well: all is well and the villain has been spared and is still aboard, but suddenly a Negative Space Wedgie threatens the ship. The only option is to hit the button that randomly zaps the ship to another point in the galaxy (why do they even have that button?) to who-knows-what adventures. We don't know what adventures: the film bombed and - you guessed it...
  • Manos: The Hands of Fate not only ends with "The End?", but also conspicuously allows Torgo to escape.
  • Another Mystery Science Theater 3000 subject, Space Mutiny, ends with the main bad guy proving to be Not Quite Dead. Naturally, Mike and the Bots are Genre Savvy enough to see this one coming:

"Aaaand his Eyes Open."
"His eyes open!"
"Hurry up and show it!"

  • Blade Trinity: The audience is led to believe that Blade died fighting Drake/Dracula, but just before the credits roll, Drake is still alive, and the audience sees Blade riding away on his motorcycle, set to fight again another day...
  • XXX: State Of Union ends with Gibbs entering an elevator while discussing with his anxious attendants who he has in mind for the next candidate for the xXx position.
  • From the Marvel Cinematic Universe:
    • Iron Man has at least two, and possibly three hooks. James Rhodes looks at the older Mark II silver-and-grey armor and says "Next time, baby", an obvious foreshadowing of his becoming War Machine (ironically this is not to be, at least for Rhodes' actor). The name of the Asian terrorist group, "The Ten Rings", was mentioned, which indicates that the Mandarin will eventually be appearing. And the brief after-credits scene involving Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury declaring the existence of other superheroes and the "Avenger Initiative" is about as blatant as a Sequel Hook can get without being a Cliff Hanger.
    • The Incredible Hulk had at least three as well; Hulk not killing Abomination, Samuel Sterns turning into Leader, and Tony "Iron Man" Stark making a cameo announcing that they're putting a "team" together.
      • While it isn't a Sequel Hook per se, the Super Soldier formula used by Blonsky during the middle of the film comes from a canister labeled "Dr. Josef Reinstein". The same man who created Captain America (comics). This doubles as Foreshadowing for Captain America: The First Avenger.
      • Don't forget Bruce attempting a controlled transformation with an ambiguous smile on his face. According to the DVD commentary, whether the smile indicates that he'd actually gained control or not would depend on which came first: another Hulk movie (where Banner wouldn't be in control) or The Avengers (where he would).
    • After Agent Coulson got called away in the middle of Iron Man 2, The Stinger shows that he was sent to a strange alien hammer that landed in the middle of the New Mexico desert.
    • The Avengers itself ends with the Other lamenting the Chitauri invasion has failed as humans are "too unruly", and claims trying to take them on again would be "courting Death." Cue The Reveal of Thanos, smiling at the thought.
      • Also...Tony making some modifications to the Stark Tower, to perhaps accommodate his fellow Avengers should they ever be needed to assemble once again.
  • Batman Begins: "Take this guy: Armed robbery, double homicide. Has a, taste for the theatrical, like you. Leaves a calling card."
    • This is a Shout-Out to Batman: Year One, which ends exactly the same way.
    • The Dark Knight Saga itself has a huge sequel hook, edging into Cliff Hanger territory: The series can't very well end on Batman being demonized and hunted, so how will he atone for Two-Face's crimes and regain Gotham's trust? Yet that ending is so organic and un-gimmicky it takes a minute to recognize it as a hook.
  • Alien vs. Predator: The PredAlien chestburster at the end prompted an immediate reaction of "Well, they've set up the sequel nicely then..." and sure enough, said sequel opens on the same scene, even. Reshot, admittedly, but recognisably meant to be identical.
    • The Sequel ends with a Sequel Hook of its own. At the very end, Colonel Stevens puts the predator's gun in a box saying that "This isn't for our world, is it Ms.Yutani?" and it ends just like that. Unfortunately, due to the poor success of the first 2, they probably won't make a third one.
  • Played with in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: the last scene has Mutt about to pick Indy's Nice Hat (which a gust of wind blew off its rack and towards him) only for Indy to grab it right before he has a chance to put it on..
  • Star Wars: A New Hope had Darth Vader's ship fleeing after the destruction of the Death Star. The Empire Strikes Back blurs the line between Sequel Hook and a Cliff Hanger, as the primary goal of escaping the Empire was concluded, but Vader's revelation and Han Solo being taken to Jabba the Hutt meant there was plenty of story for the sequel.
    • Each film of the prequel trilogy had a Sequel Hook as well: The other Sith still hidden from the Jedi at the end of The Phantom Menace, the start of the Clone Wars at the end of Attack of the Clones, and Obi-Wan, Yoda, and Bail Organa making their plans for the future at the end of Revenge of the Sith (the last one, of course, leading up to the original trilogy).
  • Particularly blatant (and incontinent) one in The Last Starfighter. The Dragon, having been deposed and arrested on orders from his Man Behind the Man overlord, kills his two guards with his flicknife sceptre (which he has already shown off to everybody) and escapes.
  • The dire and dismal Hawk the Slayer has this one on its list of crimes. Hawk's evil brother, Voltan, appears to Hawk and Co. to be acting alone, but the audience can see that he is just a subservient Dragon to the shadowy, hidden Big Bad. He gets killed, but the final scene sees his corpse being borne away from its burial chamber by said Big Bad for resurrection. Fortunately, it didn't happen.
  • Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle Go to White Castle ends with the title characters planning a trip to Amsterdam...
  • Spoofed in Kung Pow (as most things were in that movie), both when Wo claims to meet the Chosen One again... "many times... in the sequel". There is also a clip of a "sequel" at the end of the movie, but this is comprised almost entirely of scenes that got left on the cutting room floor.
  • The trope image is from Mac and Me, which ended with the eponymous alien and his family becoming U.S. citizens and driving off in a car with a sign on the back with a big pink bubble showing up at the end saying "We'll be back!". Thankfully, this was not followed through with due to the movie's box office failure. Mind you, this is the same movie that shamelessly featured product placements up the wazoo.
  • The Neverending Story:

Narrator: Bastian made many other wishes and had many other amazing adventures before he finally returned to the ordinary world. But that's another story.

Holmes: Case re-opened.

  • Eragon ends with Eragon and his dragon defeating the forces of evil. Then shortly before the credits roll, the film's Big Bad slices open a large tapestry to reveal his own Dragon, which would presumably do battle with Eragon in the sequel. Luckily, Eldest (the next book in the series) was never filmed.
  • Slither ends with a post-credits scene of the alien Not Quite Dead and infecting a cat. Sadly, the film didn't do well enough at the box-office to get a sequel.
  • Star Trek II the Wrath of Khan was not expected to have a sequel, but Spock's mind-meld with McCoy was added just in case.
  • Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest: "So tell me.... what's become of my ship?"
    • Curse of the Black Pearl had one too, Jack the Monkey returning to the chest and taking out a coin, becoming undead again.
    • Then there's another example from Dead Man's Chest: the former Commodore entering Lord Beckett's office with the heart.
    • At World's End has Jack stealing the map from Barbarossa that mentions the Fountain of Youth.
    • On Stranger Tides ends with Angelica finding the voodoo doll of Jack that was thrown off the cliff earlier in the film.
  • At the end of Ip Man 2, we are introduced to young Bruce Lee, who Ip tells to come back when he's older.
  • Anybody remember the Super Mario Bros? Princess Daisy bursts into Mario and Luigi's apartment armed with a BFG, proclaiming "Guys... you're not going to believe this". Then everyone follows her out the door and the movie ends. There was no sequel, but nearly 20 years later, graphic novel sequels are planned.
  • At the end of the John Hughes movie Baby's Day Out, baby Bink picks out a book entitled "Baby's Trip to China", but due to the movie's gratuitous Tastes Like Diabetes moments, as well as Hughes' untimely death, the sequel never came.
  • Parodied in The Simpsons Movie, where the family is watching the credits at the end. Maggie's first word is "Sequel."
  • "Machete... Will Return in... Machete Kills! And... Machete Kills Again!"!
  • The Fast and the Furious franchise:
    • Tokyo Drift: Dom shows up in Tokyo
    • Fast and Furious: Dom's escape from the prison bus, revealed at the beginning of Fast Five
    • Fast Five: Agent Eva Mendez: "Do you believe in ghosts?"
  • Maverick. When Maverick only hides half of his winnings in his boot, allowing Annabelle to steal the other half, he admits that he did it intentionally because it will be fun to get it back.
  • Dylan Dog: Dead of Night has a sequel hook where it is implied that Dylan and Marcus will have more adventures and fight new monsters (with a new monster appearing in the last shot). It is also revealed that Gabriel survived the vampires' attack against him. However, the film's poor reviews and box office will most likely prevent a sequel.
  • The Other Guys ends with the Big Bad still at large and rather ominously telling us that "soon, Lendl will be everywhere!" (Lendl is the corporation she runs). It's difficult to say if this was an intentional sequel hook, but it certainly makes for a good jumping-off point for a sequel.
  • Mystery Team ends with the trio meeting meeting a nameless man holding a photo of him having sex with a panda in a secret lab, and finally realizing that he had been castrated
  • Merlin and the War of the Dragons ends with Merlin killing the evil wizard, Uther is proclaimed King of the Britons, general rejoicing and then Nimue resurrects the evil Wizard. The moie was made in 2008, I haven't heard of a sequel yet.
  • Fu Manchu Hammer horror movies always end with him saying "The World shall hear from me again."
  • Toy Story has "wow, a new puppy!" Toy Story 2 has "worried about Andy?" The third installment avoids this though.
  • Predators has the survivors watching a new bunch of people being brought into the deathworld to be hunted.
  • The Three Musketeers 2011; Buckingham manages to rescue Milady de Winter from falling to her death, and announces that he's going back to France. Cut away to a shot of a fleet of British warships, with a fleet of air-ships overhead.
  • Waxwork ends with the wax museum of the title burning down and Mark and Sarah escaping, but the still animate hand of a wax zombie also escapes. Although it's not really the main conflict of the story, Waxwork II: Lost in Time picks up immediately after that sequel hook, with the main characters trying to stop the hand from wreaking havoc.
  • Splice: At the end of the film, Elsa is pregnant with Dren's baby, and the boss thanks Elsa for her readiness to carry on with "phase two" of the project
  • The Adventures of Tintin combines this with The Adventure Continues, when Tintin shows Captain Haddock the scroll he discovered in the globe where Sir Francis kept his treasure, leading to the rest of the Unicorn's treasure.

Tintin: How's your thirst for adventure, Captain?
Haddock: Unquenchable, Tintin!

  • Parodied in Men In Black 2. After the big finale J notes that there's no way anyone didn't notice everything that just went down and no real way for the government to Hand Wave it away. The dialogue heavily implies that the events of the movie will cause the Men in Black to become public knowledge. Cue K using a large scale Denerualizer hidden in the Statue of Liberty to erase the memories of the night of every single person in New York who isn't an MIB operative.
  • Innerspace ends with Jack Putter jumping into and spinning off in a convertible with the intention of stopping the now-miniature Victor Scrimshaw and Dr. Margaret Canker from harming the newly-married Tuck and Lydia.
  • James Bond will return...
  • The live-action version of Kuroshitsuji ends with showing that the evil conspiracy is still there and reveals that there is a mole in Shiori's household. However, it is safe to say that there will be no sequel.

Literature[edit | hide]

  • Jurassic Park ended with one of these where Dr. Grant, being kept in Costa Rica by their government who was still investigating the Isla Nublar incident, is approached by an agent of the U.S. government about a path of destruction being carved through South America by a group of 'strange reptiles' that are swarming farms and devouring plants with lysine, the amino acid Hammond had all the dinosaurs bred to be dependent upon. Unfortunately this hook was ignored and the follow up book was a sequel to the movie.
  • Rendezvous With Rama: After a mysterious alien object passes through the solar system, the book ends with the portentous sentence, 'The Ramans do everything in threes'. (Whether or not a second Rama, let alone a third, is presented in the sequels at all is debatable.)
  • After the Philosopher's/Sorcerer's Stone is destroyed at the end of the first Harry Potter book, Dumbledore says that there are still other ways Voldemort can return. Voldemort spends the rest of the series proving Dumbledore right.
    • Some fans really hope that the controversial epilogue is one of these, despite the author saying that it is not.
      • It's practically an anti- sequel hook, since it seems to only exist to assure us that they all lived Happily Ever After.
        • It could be a sequel hook in the sense that it introduces a new generation of characters: Albus Potter, Rose Weasley, Scorpius Malfoy, Teddy Lupin, Victoire Weasley, et al. But it doesn't set up any kind of continuing plot.
  • Believe it or not, JRR Tolkien adjusted The Hobbit in a later edition to help it be the prequel of The Lord of the Rings. Which would make it a Retcon Sequel Hook. In the first edition, the Gollum was honest in the riddle game and showed Bilbo the way out of the caves in recompense when he realized he could not give him the ring.
  • Each book in J.R. Ward's crack-like Black Dagger Brotherhood series features a Sequel Hook embedded as the B- or C-plot of the current book. You'll be fiending for the next book before you've even finished the one you're on.
  • Thursday Next is full of these, but they're so tongue-in-cheek and playful, they don't even seem like marketing gimmicks. One happens at the end of First Among Sequels, when Thursday discovers that since someone has been trying to get rid of literary serials, there's a serial killer loose in the Book World!
  • Terry Pratchett's Moist von Lipwig Discworld novels (all two of them) have thus far contained sequel hooks. In the first, Going Postal, the Patrician Lord Vetinari is seen making an offer to one Reacher Gilt to reform the Royal Mint as the Post Office had been in the book. This task was eventually undertaken by Lipwig in Making Money, and at the end of that one Vetinari muses how useful an asset Lipwig has proved to be and also how the City's tax system is in dire need of reform.
    • One of the next Discworld books is indeed rumored to be called Raising Taxes.
  • The epilogue-like last chapter of Ender's Game is titled "Speaker for the Dead," and was written to set up the identically-named sequel to the book.
  • The last chapter of the first book of The Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy is essentially an advertisement for the Restaurant at the End of the Universe. The place was encountered in the radio series immediately after the episodes adapted into the first book; the second book was indeed named The Restaurant at the End of the Universe but did not reach the Restaurant until the middle.
    • It's been claimed that the last chapter was added on by the editors to wrap up the completed pages after Adams missed his deadline.
  • The Death Note novel Another Note: The Los Angeles BB Murder Cases has a note by the narrator in the final chapter saying that, if he had more time, he would write about two other stories L told him. A pretty blatant set-up for more novels like it.
  • During the course of James Swallow's Warhammer 40,000 novel Red Fury, Fabius Bile obtained some of the "sacred vitae" from the Blood Angels. During the Denouement, Dante informs Rafen of this, and sends him after it.
  • Dale Brown has various hooks in his book-endings. For example, Battle Born ended with the Dreamland staffers offering Rebecca Furness command of a new unit, while Air Battle Force ended on the then Russian president threatening another war with the Americans.
  • Older Than Feudalism: In The Odyssey, the prophet Tiresias tells Odysseus that he must make another journey after returning home, but this was not followed up on by Homer. That journey only appears in the lost Telegony, the last epic of the Trojan Cycle.
  • The hook involved with the Kang's Regiment books is rather unusual in that it's not only in the second of the existing books (that number itself implies a third volume, because Dragonlance multi-part novels almost always come in groups of 3) but in the ending of the War Of Souls trilogy. In Draconian Measures, the city Kang is trying to reach so he can found a Draconian civilization is named Teyr. The readers know from material set chronologically later that Teyr is a Draconian city, and there's an interesting bit in Dragons of the Vanished Moon where a bunch of Draconians from Teyr show up and fight against Takhisis and her forces (keep in mind, Kang starts out as a faithful servant of Takhisis, so this is a Heel Face Turn for him). Two unnamed but familiar Draconians appear among the collection of enemies Takhisis magics to her to watch the moment of her triumph, as well.
  • On the last page of Foundation and Earth, Isaac Asimov sets up a sequel (in a way that is somewhat difficult to summarize briefly or without massive spoilers). Unfortunately, he didn't actually have any definite ideas for that sequel and he died before he could come up with one.
  • Quite prevalent in The Dresden Files:
    • Changes had Harry getting shot and dying as the last scene in the book.
    • Ghost Story has Harry set to head to the Sidhe Court as the Winter Knight to do as Mab bids, leaving his friends not knowing that he did not die.
  • Percy Jackson and The Olympians has a not so prominent one at the end of the last book, when the new resident Oracle spouts another prophecy. Though it is almost immediately Handwaved with a "who knows when it could happen or if it's even about you guys" speech, it's pretty obvious that it will lead to a sequel series, which it has.


Live Action TV[edit | hide]

  • A television show can do this with it's story arcs; alerting you that just because the episode ends, the plotline will continue. Take the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Q Who". The Enterprise has narrowly escaped The Borg by the skin of their teeth. As Captain Picard and Guinan discuss their near-defeat, Guinan points out that humanity was never supposed to encounter them (the Borg) that early. But since they have....

Guinan: Of course, now...they know of your existence.
Picard (with understanding dawning): They're...coming...

  • After Hiro Nakamura defeats Adam Monroe, he's shown trapped in a coffin, still alive; a clear indication that the character would return to menace the Heroes at some point later.
    • Also, Sylar's body disappearing at the end of Season 1. Heroes loved this trope.
  • Stargate SG-1 specifically left the door open on the Ori threat in its final episode, for the express purpose of setting up the follow up movie The Ark of Truth.
  • Doctor Who loves doing this in the new series with its season enders. Doomsday set up for The Runaway Bride. Last of the Timelords set up for Voyage of the Damned (and indirectly, for Time Crash). The End of Time set up for The Eleventh Hour (though in a sense any regeneration episode except Time and the Rani is a de facto Sequel Hook), and Steven Moffat has already said that The Big Bang sets up for the entirety of the next season (though the final lines, with the Egyptian Goddess on the Orient Express In Space is apparently a Noodle Incident). Oh, and Blink and Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead? Set up for the run of River Song episodes this season.
    • After the Master's dead body is consigned to the flames in an attempt to prevent him from ever regenerating, Doctor and Martha go. Then we see a woman's hand pull the Master's ring out of the ashes.
  • At the end of the Red Dwarf episode Polymorph, after the crew defeats the eponymous creature, it is revealed that a second one has made it on board. Subverted in the remastered version, in which on-screen text reveals that this one, much less intelligent than the first, took up residence harmlessly in Lister's underwear drawer and eventually died of old age. Doubly subverted by the episode Emohawk: Polymorph II three series later in which they meet another one.


Theater[edit | hide]

  • Henry IV, Part 1 ends with news that Northumberland and Archbishop Scroop are arming for war.
    • You'd think the "Part 1" in the title would kind of give away that a sequel was intended as well...
  • Henry VI Part 3 ends with Richard of Gloucester's (the future King Richard III) monologue where he talks about how he'll do anything to gain control of the crown- setting up for "Richard III".


Video Games[edit | hide]

  • King's Quest V Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder's ending. Cassima is freed from Mordack and goes back to her homeland, Alexander mentions that he wants to visit her in the Land of the Green Isles, and Cassima mentions her Vizier who was the one who introduced her to Mordack. This sets up the plot of King's Quest VI Heir Today Gone Tomorrow.
  • Every Quest for Glory game except for Dragon Fire ended like this.
    • And for Wages of War, which ended on a blatant (and very effective) cliffhanger with the Not Quite Dead Ad Avis taking possession of the protagonist.
  • Renegade Ops: We get told that Natasha and Inferno are working for some great power, who or what that is, we don't get to know.
  • Destroy All Humans! ends with a sequel hook in the form of Silhouette informing Crypto that there are branches of Majestic all over the world... however, the sequel subverts this, as it takes the plot off in an entirely different direction, and the possible sequel plot left open by the hook is resolved in the space of a single mission.
    • Destroy All Humans! 3 Path of the Furon ends with a large sequel hook. Before beginning the final boss fight, Crypto enthusiastically states "Destroy All Bosses and set up for the next sequel!" Also, after defeating the boss, Pox states "There will always be a reason to Destroy All Humans!" And after Pox takes the throne and Crypto prepares to leave for Earth, Crypto tells Pox "See ya in ten years! You'll like the future, I got a feelin' big hair's gonna be in style again!"
      • Unfortunately, with Pandemic losing the rights to the series, not to mention a few studios shut down during production, leading to Americans only getting the 360 version, as well as the Play Station 3 version only available from Europe...
  • Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance ended with some plot elements unresolved, namely the identity of the Black Knight, the behavior of the Rider Bertram, and identity of the person Sothe was looking for. This, combined with the enigmatic final words of Begnion's prime minister Sephiran, left fans hoping that the next game in the series would continue the story. The sequel, Radiant Dawn, does resolve the unresolved questions.
    • Fire Emblem: Blazing Sword provides an interesting inversion - the closing scenes of the epilogue, fifteen years later, introduce Roy and Lilina and demonstrate a now-adult King Zephiel's first encounter with Jahn. Of course, these are all things to do with the events of Sword of Seals, an already-released game to which Blazing Sword is a prequel.
  • Sly Cooper ends with one of Clockwerk's eyes lighting up on his disembodied head.
  • The GBA port of Donkey Kong Country has a different ending to the SNES original. K. Rool returns on the Gangplank Galleon just before the credits sequence and threatens to blow up DK Island. The Kongs jump off the ship into the water as it sails away, and Cranky effectively lampshades this trope.

Cranky: Call that an ending? Looks like a cheap stunt setting up the story for the sequel!

  • Eternal Darkness plays a twist of this one by showing a screen claiming you beat the game, with a promotional poster of "Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Redemption" at the end of a chapter (as part of the game's devotion to messing with the player directly).
    • A more direct example is the presence of a fifth, unknown Ancient which has been confirmed by Word of God.
  • Pretty much every single Resident Evil game ends this way.
  • All the Halo games have ended with sequel hooks: the first had 343 Guilty Spark scooting away from the destroyed Halo, the second ended on a Cliff Hanger, and the third showed the presumed-dead Master Chief and Cortana drifting through space toward an inhabited planet. Halo Wars even has an achievement called "Ready for the Sequel." Also ironic, due to Company Existence Failure.
  • Following the ending credits of EarthBound, Ness receives a taunting message from Porky, who is somewhere in time and space. This is followed with a "The End?" on the screen. The Japanese version however had a more unsubtle "To Be Continued..."
    • Subverted in Mother 3. You get the "The End...?" message, but try walking around...
    • MOTHER 1 was sort of odd about this - the English prototype/Japanese Compilation Rerelease had a definite sequel hook with Ninten being contacted by his father, saying something else had come up... except the actual sequel, EarthBound didn't have anything to do with Ninten, his family or anything else left unresolved in the game (Giygas aside, but his actions in MOTHER aren't so much as hinted at).
  • Banjo-Tooie ended with Gruntilda swearing that she'll get her revenge in Banjo-Threeie.
    • That's nothing. The ending of Banjo-Kazooie revealed that its sequel was named and several special features (such as Stop 'N' Swop) were being developed on it, which were revealed in the end. ("Mumbo's jaw dropped in awe," remember?) Not that any of them amounted to much in the end until the Xbox Live Arcade was invented, but Banjo Tooie was a good game.
    • Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts ended with Grunty working in a video-games factory, plotting to make her own devious game. Seeing as you can go into games in the new Banjoverse...
  • Grabbed By the Ghoulies ended with Cooper and Amber walking towards the town of "Ghoulsville in the Gloom," and right before the final fade-out the silhouette of Baron Von Ghoul in his tiny biplane lurched across the sky after them, indicating he survived being thrown out of his window and may want a rematch.
  • Conker's Bad Fur Day's original ending involved Conker committing suicide, but it was changed to leave the possibility of a sequel. Thanks to Microsoft, there'll never be one.
  • Diddy Kong Racing's ending cutscene showed Wizpig, after he's been defeated, flying on the island with his ship laughing. The ending credits, also, featured a "To Be Continued" at the end. Rare was indeed working on a sequel named Donkey Kong Racing, but they cancelled it when they've been bought by Microsoft. Donkey Kong Racing's DS remake didn't feature "To be continued".
  • The prequel Perfect Dark Zero, like Star Wars, ends with Joanna Dark being an agent of Carrington Institute, and she has her first real mission in the original game.
  • Jak and Daxter ended on a Cliff Hanger, while Jak 2 ended with a power struggle in the city. Jak 3 only had Jak say, "I'm done with adventuring for now." How often does that hold up?
    • Especially since they still made another game.
  • House of the Dead, at least from 2 and up, always had the best ending possible show a limping man lamenting either humanity or how the Big Bad for that game could not finish off the protagonists, and how this same man still had plans despite such failures.
    • OVERKILL ends with a recorded message from Papa Caesar, revealing that Isaac Washington's father is still alive.
  • Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath featured this after a double plot twist in the end sequence. After defeating the Big Bad Sekto, you find out that "Sekto" was really the demon you heard about at the Grubb temple earlier in the game, and that Sekto was really the old guardian of the Grubb Tribe, having been brainwashed by a face hugging parasite. When it looks like Sekto is dead, and everything is back to normal, you see the octopus-like Sekto swim down the newly restored river, apparently looking for a new host. Sadly, Oddworld Inhabitants dropped out of the video game business after Stranger.
  • The PlayStation port of Chrono Trigger had new animated sequences that featured Lucca finding a baby out of nowhere, and the lost of the Masamune, all to link the game to its then upcoming sequel Chrono Cross.
    • The DS port gives us Dream Devourer which is presumably the Time Devourer from Chrono Cross. It also has Magus losing his memories which is a reference to a plot line in Chrono Cross that was abandoned during the making of the game. Which seems to imply that they may make a port for Chrono Cross for the PSP that redoes Guile's plotline to reveal him as Magus.
  • Final Fantasy X ends with a fairly noteworthy one: Tidus, having performed a Heroic Sacrifice, finds himself in a giant, empty pool of water and swims for the surface with a grin on his face. The International version has an additional bonus movie that more directly sets up Final Fantasy X-2.
    • Final Fantasy X also has an in-universe inverted subversion. Tidus' father Jecht had a move called Sublimely Magnificent Jecht Shot Mark III. The reason for the Mark III? To draw crowds expecting to see Mark I or II, which don't exist.
  • Final Fantasy IX also has one Kuja's "death" has not been confirmed canon.
  • Many of the Kingdom Hearts games features these, even going so far as to integrate them into gameplay so that the player has to finish certain tasks to get them.
    • Particularly annoying in the second game. The game always ends with a letter from King Mickey being opened and read, but not showing the player the contents and the bonus movie you can unlock as before shows a ludicrously vague explanation of the plot for the prequel. Yes, a prequel hook.
    • Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep turns out to have a Distant Finale that is probably the biggest sequel hook we've seen yet, and that Distant Finale is a continuation of the second game's sequel hook, which pretty much refers to the other 3 games made after Kingdom Hearts II (coded, 358/2 Days, and Birth by Sleep. Combine their hooks and you get a massive sequel hook for Sora's new journey in a possible 3rd game to Reconnect Kingdom Hearts.
    • Re:coded gets a big one as well, revealing that Xehanort is due to return now that Sora has taken out both Xehanort's Heartless and Xemnas, his Nobody. Furthermore, Yen Sid is going to hold a Master Qualification Exam for both Sora and Riku in order to prepare them for the upcoming battle.
    • It's already safe to say the (as of now) unreleased Kingdom Hearts 3D will have one as well, since it's going to lead directly into Kingdom Hearts III.
  • All three main Metroid Prime games feature Sequel Hooks as part of their Segmented Endings, unlocked via 100% Completion. Yes, even Corruption, though it's supposed to end the trilogy. In the first two, the Big Bad reveals that she's Not Quite Dead, and in the third, a mysterious ship follows Samus's to parts unknown.
  • Mega Man X had one after the end credits: Sigma shows up on a screen and taunts X, saying that his spirit still lives on, which turned out to be a hint about Sigma's true nature as The Virus.
    • Much later on in X8, the Final Boss whacks Axl in the head, leaving an ominous-looking shard in the wound.
  • Portal ends with a run through an industrial-like mass of corridors and vents until we see a room holding the promised cake, a buffed-up Companion Cube and some spheres in the background. Suddenly, their "eyes" glow a bright orange one by one, before a claw arm puts out the cake candle and floods the room in darkness. Then her Villain Song plays...
    • A recent update modifies the video shown of outside the facility near the end. An off-screen robot or android now says "Thank you for assuming the party escort submission position" before dragging the player backwards.
  • Of all the games in the world, Limbo of the Lost ends with a sequel hook, showing Fate and Destiny about to pick another mortal pawn for their game and starting the whole process all over. Considering that the game was grounded for being bad and a major example of video game Plagiarism...
  • The victory cutscene at the end of the main story of Guild Wars: Eye of the North ends with a brief glimpse of a gigantic dragon-like creature awakening in the chamber where the player characters have just defeated the Great Destroyer. Sure enough, Arena Net have confirmed that Guild Wars 2 will be set in a world dominated by ancient, reawakened dragons.
  • Metal Gear:
    • The MSX2 version of Metal Gear ends with Big Boss swearing his revenge on Snake.
    • Metal Gear Solid ends with a phone call between Ocelot and his true employer, Solidus Snake, the President of the United States and the third clone of Big Boss.
    • Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty ends with a certain fact about The Patriots identities coming to light. Confusingly.
    • Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater ends with a call between Ocelot and his true employer the CIA Director.
    • Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops ends with another phone call, this time between Ocelot and "the Man with the same codename as Null" (Zero, hoping to invite Big Boss to form the Patriots.)
    • Metal Gear Solid Peace Walker ends with Naked Snake finally accepting the title of Big Boss and forming Outer Heaven, bringing the series to full circle (assuming there won't be any more prequels or remakes of the MSX2 titles).
    • The only games not to end with sequel hooks were Metal Gear 2: Solid Snake and Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots. The former (which itself was an unplanned sequel) ended with no intention for another sequel, while Metal Gear Solid 4 is the Grand Finale.
  • Mass Effect has one near the end, with Shepard saying there's still Reapers in Dark Space, and that they still need to be defeated. Shepard runs off, and... game ends.
    • Though of course, it was revealed that it was planned as a trilogy before the game came out.
      • So, naturally, Mass Effect 2 with Shepard (or Joker, if Shepard died) studying the Collectors' data on Harbinger while the thousands of Reapers out in Dark Space prepare for their invasion.
      • The final DLC for Mass Effect 2, "Arrival," has Shepard blow up an entire solar system, but slow down the Reaper armada by several months. Hackett confronts the Commander on this and informs Shepard it won't be long before s/he's brought to Earth to stand trial for what s/he's done.
      • No matter what decisions you make in Mass Effect 3, the final shot is always the Normandy crash-landing in the middle of a jungle on an unidentified world. Every ending provides minimal closure or resolution to the status of the galaxy, leaving a gaping hole for future games or DLC content to use.
      • Also, if you have a ridiculous number of War Assets and pick the Destroy ending, then after the ending, you get a shot of a soldier in N7 gear lying in rubble, and then hear him/her take a breath. This has given rise to a massive number of fan theories.
  • Many of Telltale's episodic games (Sam and Max, Strong Bads Cool Game for Attractive People, Tales of Monkey Island) end with a hook to the next episode.
  • Hostile Waters has two. Not only does the ending cinematic reveal that your Heroic Sacrifice might have spawned something even worse, The Stinger suggests it was in vain.
  • Gears of War. After blowing up the Locust tunnels with the Lightmass Bomb, it is revealed just before the credits that they are Not Quite Dead and will continue fighting until they win or die. Gears of War 2 continues the trend by leaving some unresolved issues and including a mysterious message after the credits.
  • Carn Evil ends with the main character using the token to summon Carn Evil all over again. Unfortunately, this was never actually followed up on.
    • Of course it was! "You beat the game! Play again?"
  • Ecco the Dolphin: "Do you think the Vortex are destroyed?"
    • Ecco: The Tides of Time: "Instead of destroying the time machine, Ecco used it, and was lost in the tides of time." You were also given a "secret password" obviously meant for the sequel. Sadly, neither hook was ever followed up on.
  • The first Baldur's Gate ends with one of these, showing that there aren't just one or two Children of Bhaal but HUNDREDS...
    • The second one does it by having an Omniscient Council of Vagueness monitor your progress. They turn out to be the Children of Bhaal the hero has to face off against in the expansion pack.
  • Assassin's Creed ends the past story suddenly, but the Framing Story ends with the protagonist developing Altair's Eagle Vision, and discovering that the stark clean Animus chamber is a Room Full of Crazy marked up by the previous test subjects with conspiracy theory wit-large. In blood.
    • Along the same line, Assassin's Creed 2 ends the past story suddenly as well: the Precursor talks directly to Desmond, using Ezio as the spoken-of prophet to communicate their message - that the earth is facing a global disaster soon, and Desmond must find the other Vaults and stop it using the power held there. This is right after you've beaten the crap out of the Pope and found all the glyphs, which show Adam and Eve as two people of this old society stealing the Apple of Eden. They were not created by God, but by the Precursors who were seen as gods. Naturally, this sequence ranks right along the lines of any good Metal Gear Solid game in Mind Screw territory, and Desmond's reaction is the one that most people had when the sequence was over. In addition, the Templars discover their location, and the Assassins are forced to make a quick escape to a cabin out in the woods.
    • With Desmond beating the crap out of several Templar mooks on the way out.
    • Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood ends with one: Desmond has collapsed on the floor after stabbing Lucy, and two unknown voices can be heard, ordering that Desmond be put back in the Animus. That and the whole End of the World being imminent.
  • The first two Thief games end with these. The third game ends with what could be considered the exact opposite: a Book Ends.
  • In the ending of Blackthorne, after the credits have finished, there is a cutscene showing the same place on Earth where Blackthorne got teleported to Tuul from in the opening cutscene, and an orc teleports in, and laughs. The game was released in 1994, and there is no sequel yet, so there will probably never be a sequel. Meanwhile the company that made Blackthorne got busy making a little game called Warcraft...
  • Rather than Overlord's cryptic The End - or Is It?, the Expansion Pack Raising Hell ends with a fairly straight sequel hook. The Overlord you were just playing is trapped in the Infernal Abyss, possibly forever, but his Mistress is pregnant. Unsurprisingly, the sequel involves you playing as the Overlord's son, trying to undo the Happily Ever After that ensued in the absence of a legitimate force for evil.
  • The true ending of BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger's story mode is basically a non-ending that introduces the series' Big Bad, whereas The Stinger flat out states the storyline of one of the two new characters in Continuum Shift (namely, Tsubaki's).
  • A secret ending in Mega Man ZX Advent shows Master Thomas preparing to continue what Master Albert originally set out to do. The former even recruited the enemy MegaMen to do his bidding.
  • Sonic Heroes ends with Shadow and Omega looking over the corpse of Metal Sonic and Shadow contemplating his revival. Although the hook for Shadow the Hedgehog was obvious, the fact that Sega set up the ending to keep Metal Sonic alive for a later game and not utilize him since then outside of the Sonic Rivals games is a bit baffling.
  • Beyond Good and Evil, after the closing credits, shows a short cut-scene of one of the Dom'Z erupting from Pey'j's hand.
  • The Conduit ends on a very abrupt sequel hook, with the Big Bad apparently conferring with his superiors.
  • Diablo II's original (pre-expansion) plot ended with one of these. The whole story has been set in flashbacks told by a crazy man in a madhouse named Marius who tells the Archangel Tyrael about how he travelled the world with Diablo himself and saw the three Prime Evils rise to power. Eventually he gives up the soulstone of Baal, Diablo's younger brother, to his visitor so all of it can finally end... TWIST! It wasn't Tyrael at all, but Baal in disguise. He kills Marius and takes his soulstone back and leaves to pursue unknown plans.
  • Exit Fate, in addition to leaving several small parts of the plot unexplained, keeps the eventual fate of some main characters rather wide open and ends with a dark screen and text that can only be described as foreshadowing of some sort.
  • Viewtiful Joe, being a videogame about adventures that takes place inside movies almost invokes this trope at the end of the games.
  • The arcade version of Super Contra ends with an alien offspring flying off the final boss' head. The Famicom version of Contra also had a sequel hook that was removed from the American version.
  • The PC88 and MSX2 versions of Snatcher ended after the death of the Benson Snatcher, with the mystery of the Snatchers still unsolved. This was not an intentional sequel hook, but a cut-off point before the third and final act, which was not included in those versions due to time constraints. The later remakes for the PC Engine and Sega CD added the missing act to the game.
  • Endless Frontier ends with hooks that could lead to a sequel, or even bringing the characters or setting into the rest of the Super Robot Wars series: A possible war between the Rubdor and Ezel, the exploration of the rest of the Mal Tierra (possibly leading to the discovery of full-sized Personal Troopers), and a hook in Original Generation Gaiden leading to Endless Frontier itself.
    • There is now a sequel, called Endless Frontier Exceed, and it adds two new lead characters and the story revolves around them, even with the return of the entire playable cast of the original title. Of course that means it'll probably explain the fates of Reiji, Xiaomu, and KOS-MOS considering they'll somehow still in the Endless Frontier.
  • Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII has one in the form of a secret ending obtainable by collecting three MacGuffin. Genesis picks up Weiss, who is apparently Not Quite Dead, and explicitly says, "It is not yet time for slumber. There is much work to do, my brother."
  • Command & Conquer: Tiberium Wars has three words for ya: Earth Will Fall!
  • New Super Mario Bros. ended with Bowser Jr. dragging his father (who attempts to get up momentarily) across the floor of the castle, with the former turning his head to the screen to laugh. This seemed like a typical open-ended Mario ending at the time, but come New Super Mario Bros. Wii, they indeed came back—and with familiar reinforcements...
    • Similarly, at the end of Super Mario Galaxy, once you defeat Bowser at the end of the game's final level with all 121 Power Stars, we actually get to see Rosalina thanking Mario for saving the Mushroom Galaxy and bidding him farewell, but after we see her fly away in her spaceship, it's revealed that she accidentally left one of her Lumas behind on Earth. Also, considering the fact that the entire timeline had to be rewritten as a result of the universe being destroyed and reborn, everyone's all now back at square one, and as a result Bowser now wants to take over outer space again, which leads to...
    • "Accidentally"?
  • X-Men Legends ends with Apocalypse viewing the outcome through a monitor.
    • The Spiritual Successor to that series Marvel Ultimate Alliance ends with a shot of Galactus plotting his revenge on Earth's heroes for stealing his planet-eating devices, and The Stinger revealing that Black Widow was The Mole after all. These all end up being subverted in the sequel: the Galactus incident is said by Thor to have occurred offscreen between the two games, and the second hook appears to have been completely forgotten when you meet the character in question.
  • Valve have had and continue to have an illicit affair with this trope. The first Half-Life ends with Gordon being saved by the mysterious GMan he sees at several points in the game, put into storage for "future assignments", as does Half-Life 2 (the latter of which resulted in much fandom rage). Episode One ends with Gordon and Alyx caught in a gargantuan explosion, Episode Two ends just before an expedition to the arctic (and just after a devastating Player Punch) and it is all but certain Episode Three will end similarly. Coupled with the Portal example above, it could be they do it just to troll everyone.
  • In BioShock (series) 2, there's a audio log entry that has a scientist expressing the need to add some mental conditioning to their Big Daddies, because they aren't properly defending the Little Sisters like they were supposed to. The reason for this? At least one of these unconditioned Big Daddies just wandered off. A type of Big Daddy with weaponry, plasmids, and no emotional connection to a Little Sister. I wonder what use that could be for?
    • You sure it wasn't leading up to Minerva's Den?
  • In the latest Alien vs. Predator game, you get three hooks for the price of one! first, you see Number 6 (the Alien) take over a Weyland Yutani ship and become a queen (future setting?), but you also see evidence that both the player character's Predator AND Karl Bishop Weyland are gunning for the Alien Homeworld as their next destination.
  • Batman: Arkham Asylum contained a Sequel Hook in an extremely well-hidden Easter Egg: hidden in Warden Sharp's office is another office, detailing what he plans to do if he wins the mayoral race - turning Gotham into a gigantic asylum, which lines up perfectly with the Spirit of Arkham message.
    • Batman: Arkham City, which did indeed result from said Hook has the following: The introduction of Hush and Harley being pregnant with the recently-deceased Joker's child.
      • Also: Azrael's prophecy of Batman's destiny for Gotham.
  • At the end of God of War 2, Kratos goes back in time to the War of the Titans, gathers them all up and brings them forward in time so they can collectively get revenge on the Gods for royally screwing them over. Kratos, holding onto Gaia, screaming up to the Gods, all while holding the Blade of Olympus: "Zeus! Your son has returned! I bring the destruction of Olympus!" The camera pans back to unveil countless Titans climbing up Mount Olympus, ready and raring to get a piece of the Gods. Talk about a... cliffhanger. Hah.
    • God of War 3 starts at that exact moment. Zeus repeats his speech to the other gods, abit with a few slight changes. Kratos also repeats his final line before all the action starts.
    • The finale to the God of War trilogy also applies: Kratos fights his inner demons and forgives himself for slaying his family, using the power of Hope to defeat Zeus. Instead of giving said power to Athena, he kills himself, releasing it to the world. After presumably dying right before the credits, an additional scene is shown after the credits. A trail of blood leads from the scene of Kratos' death to the edge of the cliff he plunges off of at the beginning of God of War. But of course, none of this matters because it's confirmed by the creators that God of War 3 is the end of Kratos' saga. At least, if you don't take the whole "Platinum Trophy Secret Website" thing into consideration.
      • Not quite true. That "secret website" was just for promoting Ghost of Sparta so that wasn't a Sequel Hook but rather a Prequel Hook...or maybe more like a Spin-off Hook.
  • The end of Psychonauts has the campers all going home and Raz and Lili sadly separating...only to suddenly reveal that the head of the Psychonauts (revealed to be Lili's father has been kidnapped by a dangerous enemy, and both kids fly off with Sasha, Milla, and Oleander to rescue him. Despite the obvious hook, the creator is unsure if there will be a sequel, given the first game's poor sales but cult status.
  • The end of Space Quest II had Roger Wilco defeated Vohaul and destroyed his base. Wilco, having escaped the base using an escape pod, he has no idea where he is and the pod's depleting life function. All he can do is to hibernate in the cryo bed only to be resolved in Space Quest III.
  • Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney: Justice for All unusually has its sequel hook in the middle of the game: at the end of the second case, Morgan Fey, one of the conspirators in the murder, vows revenge. Said revenge plot is put into action in the last case of the third game.
  • Splinter Cell Conviction has one, though it might take some Fridge Logic to notice: Reed's plan may be foiled, but Megiddo is still out there.
  • The Xbox 360 action title Ninja Blade has the hero Ken Ogawa's father cryptically tell Ken to "save your mother" around 3/4ths into the game. After the final boss, Ken mentions to his handler that he has "something to take care of" and is then shown disappearing somewhere in the city... implying that he's off to discover and save his mother whilst explaining nothing.
  • Final Fantasy XIII ends with no less than the Dawn of an Era, along with Hope's question of "will we ever see them again?"
    • A sequel has already been announced.
    • And Final Fantasy XIII-2 has an even bigger hook: one of the main characters dies, the timeline collapses, the bad guy wins, and the final shot is of a crystallized Lightning as To Be Continued flashes on the screen.
  • Star Wars The Force Unleashed II: Did you honestly think that Darth Vader is going to remain captured?
    • Unfortunately, Executive Meddling led to the third game being cancelled, so it's possible and likely that we will never know.
  • Axelay. Dear god, Axelay. After (finally) beating the Harder Than Hard mode, you get a message saying "see you again at Axelay 2". Too bad it never came out at all.
  • Simon the Sorcerer 2 ended with Simon still trapped in Sordid's body.
  • Golden Sun: Dark Dawn ends with Matthew, Karis, and Tyrell coming back home, only to find that the Mourning Moon has returned and ravaged their home, with their parents nowhere in sight.
  • The Italian graphic adventure The Big Red Adventure, itself a sequel of sorts to Nippon Safes Inc., ended with the three protagonists on a camel in the middle of the desert, with a "The End" written in faux-Arabic font instead of the faux-Cyrillic used throughout the game. No sequel was ever made however.
  • The ending of the original Doom has our hero escaping Hell and returning to earth only to find that the demons he's been fighting have already invaded, setting up Doom II: Hell On Earth.
  • Mortal Kombat 9's ending reveals that Shinnok is ready to perform his act in Mortal Kombat 4 after the timeline has been altered, and generally, the heroes' side have been in a worse condition.
  • A slightly more obscure example in Tachyon the Fringe, which can be missed if the player does not pay attention to in-game news reports. One of these near the end of the game announces the invention of Tachyon Wave Generators, which will eventually allow gates to send ship throughout the galaxy. Unfortunately, Novalogic never made a sequel.
  • The last line of the Interactive Fiction game The Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy is, "You set one single foot on the ancient dust -- and almost instantly the most incredible adventure starts which you'll have to buy the next game to find out about." Alas, the sequel never even came close to being released.
  • The Golden Ending of The Reconstruction drops massive reveals about the true nature of the plot that put everything in a completely different light. However, not a whole lot is actually explained about the circumstance or context of these reveals—you'll have to play the prequel if you want to know that.
    • Then there are a few actual sequel hooks -- the council of "greater shra" in Moke's sidequest and the final +ii emitter, among others.
  • The ending text of Deadly Towers hints that a new adventure might begin "about 1000 years" later, with "the coming of the Iron Age, and the revival of the Devil of Darkness." Of course, the game had no sequel.
  • The Trail of Anguish ends with something happening to your character that will allegedly be explained in the sequel. That was in 2001...
  • The Legend of Zelda Oracle Games have a sequel hook to a previous game: Link leaves on a small sailboat, setting the pieces for the plot of The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening.


Web Original[edit | hide]

  • Kate Modern special "Precious Blood" ends with "Precious Blood: 10:30PM", which shows that Terrence is still alive and has killed the Watcher.
    • At the end of "The Last Work", Julia swears revenge on the K-Team, and some of them say they still want to fight.
  • The Lonelygirl15 Grand Finale "The Ascension" is followed by a short surprise video revealing that Lucy is still at large.
  • Subverted in the Homestar Runner cartoon, DNA Evidence. In the end, it turns out that Strong Sad had the DNA Evidence all along, and then laughs maniacally... and then it turns out that Homsar was there, watching him. Somebody unfamiliar with Homestar Runner would guess he'd tell everybody the news, right?


Webcomics[edit | hide]


Western Animation[edit | hide]

  • Subverted in Superman: Brainiac Attacks; after Superman finishes pummeling Brainiac's body into scrap, the chip that remains of the original Brainiac is seen ominously blinking amidst the wreckage... until Superman's fist comes down on it, smashing it to pieces.
    • Played straight in Superman: Doomsday, though: Lex Luthor, having been seemingly killed by the Superman clone earlier in the movie, turns up in a body cast at the end, musing over whether or not Superman is really impossible to destroy.
  • The Family Guy Chicken Fights all end with the battered, mutilated, frequently shredded chicken opening one of its heavily blackened eyes. Even after it's been sucked through a jet engine, or pounded into submission with a saucepan, or...
  • (Hopefully) Zuko's question at the end of the Avatar: The Last Airbender Grand Finale: "Where is my mother?"
    • It did technically lead to Sequel Series The Legend of Korra... but it takes place over 70 years in the future and all (or at least most) of the former cast is dead. The first episode even trolls the audience about the hook, with a character asking about it and the explanation being cut off.
    • There's also Avatar: The Last Airbender - The Promise a graphic novel Interquel trilogy set one year after the end of the War; in first installment, we discover the end of the conversation started by the above hook - which answers absolutely nothing.
  • Kung Fu Panda seems mostly free of these, despite there being one sequel in the works already (and supposedly four more), with the end credits mostly being just shots of village life and Po interacting with Shifu and the Five—even the last image of the new peach tree growing is more a call-back to Oogway and Po's future as a kung fu warrior. But with the movie and characters structured the way they are, sequel hooks almost aren't needed; the kung fu genre in general lends itself well to episodic campaigns—i.e., Po and the Five fight Big Bad or Monster of the Week to rescue this or that artifact. The only possible Sequel Hook (which is debatable) is if in the climactic battle, Tai Lung was actually killed/vaporized by the Wuxi Finger Hold, or just KO'd. Only time will tell whether this scene was meant to imply a sequel or not.
  • Subverted in Danny Phantom with the episode The Ultimate Enemy, where the Big Bad is shown to be contained, but not entirely defeated, as he was trying to bust out... But he never showed up again. (This was the result of Executive Meddling, canceling the show before they could go through with their plans to bring him back.)
  • Justice League set up its second season as possibly the last, so they ended it in a truly epic finale with the watchtower base being destroyed. At the end and after Hawkgirl resigns from the League, Superman asks what they are going to do now, which Batman replies with "We rebuild." This leads into Justice League Unlimited, but was enough to be considered And the Adventure Continues....
  • Batman: The Animated Series did this all the time, particularly in any episode introducing a new villain. There would always be a line at the end in which Batman suspects he hasn't seen the last of the new foe. Perhaps most blatant is the ending to the Ra's Al Ghul two-parter, in which Ra's falls into the Lazarus Pit and is presumed dead, but the final shot shows a hand rising up out of the pit while maniacal laughter is heard.
  • At the end of Teen Titans season four, Big Bad Trigon has been defeated and the apocalypse averted, but Robin makes a point of reminding Raven that Slade, who'd been acting as The Dragon, is still alive and on the loose. This is never really followed up on, however as Slade only gets a cameo in the next and final season (though Word of God is that he was supposed to successfully become The Starscream to the new Big Bad, but it was scrapped for time constraints).
  • Freddie as F.R.O.7 had a huge one at the end with Freddie's evil aunt escaping and him getting called over to Washington D.C. There was in fact, already a sequel in the works, but it got shelved when the movie didn't do well and the American release cut half the hook out.
  • Invoked at the end of The Rescuers where the child in distress at the end of the film is actually implied to be from Australia.
  • The Lion King has Simba and Nala giving birth to Kiara.