Sequels kind of get a bad rap. There are lots of sequels that go on to surpass the original in almost every way -- by now, no one cares about the first Mad Max, or the first Terminator, or Robert Downey Sr.
But then there are those sequels that seem like they were written by someone whose only knowledge of the original came from overhearing a drunk hobo explain the plot an hour before their assignment was due. Sequels so odd, the world has tried to bury their memory and pretend they never happened. But they did, and we're here to remind everyone about them so that this never, ever happens again.
5101 Dalmatians' Sequel: The Starlight Barking
The Hundred and One Dalmatians is the delightfully English children's story by Dodie Smith about a family of Dalmatians who are kidnapped by Cruella de Vil, the Hannibal Lecter of children's literature, who plans on skinning them along with a whole batch of other Dalmatians to make a coat from their fur.
"I get cold easily. What other options do I have?"
Originally written in 1956, the book was made into an animated movie by Disney in 1961 and a live-action one in 1996. Disney has produced a whole bunch of sequels to their 101 Dalmatians movies, but none of them were based on the original author's actual novel sequel: The Starlight Barking. Why? Because it's an insane acid trip that slowly mutates into a David Bowie rock opera with an alien dog messiah in it.
The Little-Known Sequel That Ruins It:
Smith's sequel picks up where the first book left off, with the titular 101 Dalmatians now grown and living on their Dalmatian plantation. And then things get weird. They wake up one morning to discover that every non-dog on Earth has fallen asleep. This includes their former nemesis, Cruella de Vil, who is featured only in a tiny cameo. Reasonably weirded out, the dogs also realize that they are telepathic and no longer need to eat. Also they can fly. Everybody can fly now. And they can open doors with their minds, because why not. The last time someone sat down to write this particular brand of crazy stream-of-consciousness story, the Church of Scientology was founded.
This cover is more accurate than you'd initially assume.
The main character is Cadpig, one of Pongo and Missis Pongo's children, who has moved up in the world and become the English prime minister's mascot. Since the prime minister is indisposed, she becomes prime minister herself and forms an entire cabinet of dogs.
Singing in the Rain
As dictated by actual British law.
All the dogs of Earth are then called to Trafalgar Square, where they are greeted by Sirius, a dog space alien from Sirius the dog star, with a grave warning. It turns out Sirius is behind the sleepy Earthlings, the flying, and the telekinesis. He's concerned about the possibility of nuclear war on Earth and extends an invitation for all the dogs to join him in space. They eventually say no, because even the dogs know that's a wack idea for a book.