I’m a Highlander fan.
There. I said it.
I loved the first movie with a passion that doesn’t make a damned lick of sense and it’s one I come back to on a regular basis. Yesterday was Highlander day for me. I have a few thoughts on the franchise.
The first film is really something special. It’s a kind of magic (shoot me). It’s an action movie with an epic scope, a surprising amount of heart, some wonderful performances and a lasting mystery that never gets resolved. That’s where the rest of the franchise stumbles. The mystery.
With “Highlander II: The Quickening” we find that the romantic concept of immortals trying to last until the end was actually a poorly thought about punishment by an alien war lord. Or a war lord in the distant past if you prefer the renegade cut. The point is it tried to explain something both couldn’t and shouldn’t be explained. That would be the origin of the immortals.
They’ve tried to hint at it off and on through the television series and following films but they always get caught up in their own mythos (not the immortal, the backstory) so much that they choke on it. The most loved sequel was the anime. You know. The one that chucked trying to explain everything and just had a couple of immortals in an eternal duel until, well, there can be only one? Yeah.
I think the problem is the first film was a one off concept that didn’t really leave room for a sequel. It ended. Connor won the Prize and basically became a mortal god. The end. The series kinda fixed that. Kinda.
The series of course decided that Connor killed the Kurgan and got a huge f’ing Quickening but the Game continued. Then you can have other immortals and thus a series continues. It wasn’t a bad show. Well, the first few episodes are, but all series struggle to find their footing. The part where I balk is the constant finding of new immortals. This smacks of trying to tie in the second movie and “born at different points in history” garbage.
I think the only thing that really makes sense for the franchise to stay afloat is the upcoming reboot. Not that I’m terribly happy about it, but maybe it can work. And maybe I’m a soviet jet pilot. Let’s face fact. There shouldn’t have been sequels, reboots, or series. Just the first film because, in the end, there can be only one.