Here's the deal - I tend to make lots of big predictions and dig in completely once I've formed an opinion, which are two very bad qualities to have. As a result, I wind up being publicly owned by myself a lot - loudly and repeatedly declaring things I am obviously on shaky ground on and then everyone realizing I'm a big wrong dumbo. It's gotten so bad that it's one of the things people associate with me most here at work (the other things being "very tired looking" and "has awful facial hair"). But in light of trying to better myself and own my failures a bit more, I now present to EVERYONE out there my three wrongest predictions ever:



1. Star Wars Sequels Would Never Happen

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When I was a young, headstrong lad starting here at Dorkly dot com, I decided to roll up my sleeves in my very first week and make a number of seemingly surefire predictions that were actually just hard truths that OTHER geeks needed to accept. I was the only one without blinders over my eyes - and it was my duty to lay out the world for what it was. First on my list? The Star Wars sequels we had all dreamed of - picking up after Return of the Jedi - would NEVER HAPPEN.

Here's what I had to say back in 2012:

This has long been a big dream for nerds, even if the prospect has faded considerably as of late: a new trilogy of films that would pick up where Return of the Jedi left off: the Empire has fallen, the New Republic has risen from the ashes, and Luke is about to restore the Jedi Order. The exciting thing about actual sequels (as opposed to the prequels) is that we wouldn't already know what happens (unless they used the many post-original trilogy books as inspiration, which they probably wouldn't). The reasons this dream is dead are:

  • No one wants to see George Lucas create three more mildly underwhelming (I'm trying to keep it civil, okay?) Star Wars entries.
  • George Lucas did not like the reception the prequels got, and has been quoted as saying he was done making Star Wars movies because he didn't want to go through that again.
  • George Lucas is not going to let anyone but him create canonical, live action films. For a while, it looked like Spielberg might direct one of the prequels - George squashed the idea quickly, refusing to let one of the best directors of our generation and his good friend even touch the series.

So maybe it's a blessing in disguise: we don't have to watch the internet get crazily worked up over new Star Wars films that would never live up to expectations no matter how good they were and we can always let "what happens next?" live in our imagination, which is probably better than whatever the reality would be. Plus, can you imagine Harrison Ford as a cranky, elderly Han Solo? I don't think anyone wants to see that. Then again, Mark Hamill could probably use the work.

Obviously, I was mistaken - my whole argument hinged on the idea that Lucas would never part ways with the franchise, and that he himself was too burnt out by the prequels to ever attempt another trilogy. What I did not see coming was Lucas (wisely) selling the franchise to Disney and letting them do whatever the hell they wanted with his creation.

was right about how the internet would react to them though.



2. Deadpool Would Bomb

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Okay, so...Deadpool is one of the most legitimately incredible box office stories of all-time. No joke. It blew me away so much I wrote a whole article explaining the multitude of reasons you should be impressed with Deadpool's box office performance, including but not limited to: it's incredible return on a very low budget, setting records for R-rated films, and being one of the highest superhero debut films ever. It made nearly $800 million worldwide, leaping from an expectations shattering $130 million domestic opening weekend.

...I had predicted it would make around $30 million. Maybe even a little less.

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My thinking was that Deadpool was a relatively niche character, who dealt mostly in wacky, random violence and nonsense, and relied HEAVILY on in-jokes and internet memes (in his modern incarnation, at least). This would be bewildering to broader, non-internet-obsessed audiences - coupled with the low budget and R-rating would equal a poor-performing movie that would wind up being classified as a "cult classic" but never gain any mainstream attention.

Also, as someone who spent a good portion of their lives on the internet, I had grown sick of Deadpool, since he'd become basically the equivalent of Minion memes for geeks. So I made a bet with fellow writer Tristan Cooper...

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To give some context: Pikachu is the name of my dog. That's him in my Slack avatar.

Needless to say, I was off. WAY off. About $100 million off. To be fair, Tristan was ALSO off, but FAR FAR LESS than I was. And as the box office returns rolled in, I came to realize what a fool I had been:

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I did wind up seeing Deadpool in theaters the next weekend - and I liked it! I also saw it with my grandmother-in-law, which was not a wise decision. She did not enjoy it, but she humored me nontheless and was a cool enough grandma to see Deadpool with us.



3. The Switch Was Trash and Would Fail the Way the Wii U Did (and also I would be better off holding onto my Wii U than buying a Switch)

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In case you hadn't picked up on the trend yet, I am pretty bad at predictions - so when Nintendo announced their big weird new console (the Switch) back in late 2016, I was skeptical. I'd been through this before - I was an early Wii U adopter, and I'd been disheartened at how poorly the console had been received, despite a bevy of great games (new Smash, Mario Kart 8, Super Mario 3D World, as well as lots of remakes 'n such). It felt like part of the reason it had failed was the awkward marriage of console gaming and tablet control being too strange for most consumers (and the name "Wii U" made it seem like an expansion to the Wii, because Nintendo doesn't think things through sometimes). The Switch felt like an evolution of the Wii U, but still awkward and weird.

Would people WANT to take console games on-the-go? The Wii U introduced that kind of idea with the Gamepad, albeit with more limited distance - and the PS Vita hinged on the idea of console quality games on a mobile device...and both consoles failed fairly spectacularly. It just felt like there was a precedent that had been set. Coupled with the fact that the launch lineup of the Switch seemed paltry at best: 1-2 Switch was certainly no Wii Sports, and the new Zelda game was originally designed for the Wii U and would be simultaneously released for the old console - so there was no incentive for Wii U owners to give up quite yet. At least, that's what I thought...

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And maybe I was right, regarding Wii U owners not having much incentive for giving up quite so early. But a thing to keep in mind (that I did NOT keep in mind at the time) was that the new Zelda would be SO. FRIGGING. GOOD. Like, one of the best game experiences in DECADES. And the Wii U install base was pretty paltry - meaning people who wanted to play the new Zelda had one clear option only: get the Switch.

It also helped that the Switch was a delight to play - the controls felt so much better than the Wii U Gamepad, the design was sleeker, the graphics improved, and Nintendo had shown off lots of promising things to come in the future - from lots of indies to a brand new solo Mario game.

The result? The Nintendo Switch was the fastest selling US console in history. And I thought it would flop - so much so that I was ADAMANT that it was smarter in the long term to hold onto my Wii U. In the end, I ended up playing Breath of the Wild on my Wii U before finally giving in and getting the Switch (and selling my Wii U). If I had just given in immediately and bought the Switch, I could've played the new Zelda on the obviously superior system (and still have my save file intact). Instead, I was a fool. And, uh, was desperately trying to convince people to buy a used Wii U to save money, since (in my mind) the only value in getting a more expensive Switch was to play Zelda, and Zelda would be just as good on the Wii U.

Again, I was a fool.

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Eventually I discovered how wrong I was - the Switch version looked better, the Switch handled better, the Switch had a future (while the Wii U was already as good as dead), and the Wii U was STILL GODDAMN BROKEN AS HELL (my Wii U was VERY particular about EVER connecting to the internet):

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I was wrong. So, so, so wrong. The Switch rules, the Wii U sucked, and I should never trust my gut on literally anything.