* ''Franchise/ANightmareOnElmStreet''
** The first two films are much darker and more serious than the later sequels. Before [[Film/ANightmareOnElmStreet3DreamWarriors the third film]], Freddy Krueger was very much a monster, and he wasn't [[FauxAffablyEvil the least bit humorous]]; when he did speak, it was meant to scare his victims rather than have a laugh at their expense. The early films also have some strange quirks of their own:
** In [[Film/ANightmareOnElmStreet1984 the first film]], the characters and the credits identify the killer strictly as ''Fred'' Krueger (he's only called "Freddy" in the IronicNurseryTune), he only kills four people, and it wraps up with a GainaxEnding that raises the question of just how much of the film was real versus what was in Nancy's head.
** The second film, ''[[Film/ANightmareOnElmStreetPart2FreddysRevenge Freddy's Revenge]]'', is even weirder. The plot revolves around Freddy possessing a teenage boy (complete with a BodyHorror-filled [[TransformationOfThePossessed transformation scene]]) in order to re-enter the real world, something that never comes up again in later films. It also has mountains of HomoeroticSubtext in the protagonist Jesse's character, his "relationship" with Freddy, and some of the kills (most infamously the gym coach's death).
* For a monster that is now-infamous for its blinding-fast speed, the first ''Film/{{Alien}}'' is shown almost exclusively moving slowly and ominously. We only see it move quickly for brief instants when it strikes, just before the shot cuts away. Later films in the series establish the aliens hustling about.
* The first ''Film/AustinPowers'' was slightly darker in tone than its sequels, parodied ''Film/JamesBond'' tropes more directly, and had those short segments with Austin dancing to music in-between scenes.
* In the first ''Film/BackToTheFuture'', Marty's central personality flaw in the sequels--his habit of submitting to peer pressure when people call him "chicken"--isn't anywhere in sight. Indeed, the one time we see him being verbally taunted--when Biff's gang makes fun of his jacket--he easily ignores it. His motive for confronting Biff later is entirely a sincere desire to protect his mother; there's no evidence that he cares what they think of him. HandWaved by WordOfGod, who claims that the new timeline created a Marty with a more privileged background, causing the personality change.
* ''Film/TheBourneIdentity'' feels very different in tone to its sequels. ''Film/TheBourneSupremacy'' and ''Film/TheBourneUltimatum'' are contiguous to the point that there is no time-cut at all between the last scenes of the second film and the first scenes of the third film (not counting the Bourne-in-New-York-scene, a ''Supremacy'' note which is "also" tied up in ''Ultimatum''...). But when you have recently seen ''Supremacy'' and/or ''Ultimatum'', it can come as a bit of a shock to rewatch ''Identity'' and realise how different it is, though it was setting up all the Bourne tropes the later films played on. Notably, the soundtrack is a very different beast, employing techno-ish and poppy background music. Damon's Bourne is also surprisingly chatty and smiley compared to his later silent stoicism. The editing takes a different approach completely, and the camera work is free of the JitterCam that defined the sequels. Most of this change in tone has to do with the first film being made by a different director to its sequels, and the fact that there was several years' gap between its release and the release of its first sequel.
* Creator/BusterKeaton didn't invent his famous deadpan "[[TheStoic Great Stone Face]]" persona until breaking out as a star of his own films in TheTwenties. Viewers of his early work, such as his fourteen films with Creator/FattyArbuckle, may be surprised to see a Keaton who smiles, laughs, cries, and mugs for the camera. See ''Film/ConeyIsland'' (1917).
* ''Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger'' can be dark at times, but in general is much campier and LighterAndSofter than its first sequel. The first movie is also more of a straight-up superhero film with a military backdrop, while the sequel had a much bigger emphasis on espionage and political elements. Basically, ''The First Avenger'' feels like ''Film/TheRocketeer'', while ''[[Film/CaptainAmericaTheWinterSoldier The Winter Soldier]]'' feels more like ''Film/TheBourneIdentity'' or ''Film/ThreeDaysOfTheCondor''.
* Creator/CharlieChaplin:
** His first feature film, ''Film/TilliesPuncturedRomance'', not only does he not wear the Tramp costume, he's the bad guy. A partial explanation is that this film was directed by Mack Sennett for Creator/KeystoneStudios, and Chaplin would not gain full artistic control of his career until he left Keystone not long after.
** A similar example from Chaplin's time at Keystone being the short ''Mabel At the Wheel'' (starring and co-directed by Mabel Normand) in which Chaplin not only plays the ''villain'' but in contrast to his "Tramp" persona is seen wearing a top hat, frock coat and goatee-like beard (apparently in imitation of Ford Sterling, whom he'd been hired to replace).
** The Tramp's first appearance on film was ''Kid Auto Races at Venice'', where the Tramp does not display much of his trademark personality. He's simply a bystander at a race who wants to get on camera and keeps wandering into the shot.
** In ''MabelsStrangePredicament'', TheTramp was more of a lecherous drunken jerk than a lovable, {{Adorkable}}, innocently mischievous hero we all know and love.
* Among DreamWorksAnimation's first films, ''WesternAnimation/ThePrinceOfEgypt'', ''WesternAnimation/TheRoadToElDorado'', ''WesternAnimation/SpiritStallionOfTheCimarron'' and ''WesternAnimation/SinbadLegendOfTheSevenSeas'' had 2-D animation instead of the now-omnipresent CGI. Also, ''Prince'' and ''Spirit'' were serious dramas, and ''Prince'' and ''Road'' are Disney-style musicals, both in stark comparison to the zaniness they developed by ''WesternAnimation/{{Shrek}}'' (even if later franchises like ''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda'' and ''WesternAnimation/HowToTrainYourDragon'' showed that they could still be a litle more serious when called for).
* The original ''Film/DeathWish'' is a gritty, realistic, look at urban decay and out of control crime in major American cities during the era. The movie was such a hit largely because it embodied the feelings of many honest citizens at the time. In the end there is no dramatic showdown with the men who killed his wife and raped his daughter, they simply disappear into the city and Paul will never know who they were. There's little graphic violence, but what there is is very disturbing. Nothing in the movie could be defined as gratuitous. When the schlocky production company Creator/CannonFilms bought the rights eight years later, they began releasing sequels that were more or less exploitation and dumb 1980s-style revenge fantasy action films.
* The original ''Film/TheEvilDead1981'' is more a {{Gorn}} horror film, rather than the horror comedy of ''Film/EvilDead2''. Also none of the other cabin members besides Linda is mentioned in the other films. Ash is far from the CatchPhrase spouting, BadAss and JerkAss we see in the sequels, instead being a rather bland FinalGirl played by a guy. The Necronomicon doesn't have that name and the look of it is completely different from the other films. And lastly, in a subtler example, the Deadites (which aren't named as such until the second movie) are originally just pissed off that the teenagers awoke them from their eons-long sleep, whereas in the sequels they implicitly want to TakeOverTheWorld.
* The original ''Film/FinalDestination'' includes some more overtly supernatural elements that were left out of the sequels. Among them are an implied psychic link of sorts between Alex and Clear, the foreboding presence of gusts of wind from nowhere right before a death scene, a smoky black shadow that appears on reflective surfaces when Death is coming for someone, and a shot of Death supernaturally "covering its tracks" [[spoiler:after Tod slips on the water leaking from his toilet, causing his death; the water impossibly recedes under the toilet to "hide" itself and make it look like a suicide.]] The last point is a rare example within the film itself. Filmmakers had planned for Death to cover its tracks throughout the film, but after the first death they changed their minds to simply have the rest as accidents.
* The long-running ''Franchise/FridayThe13th'' series has plenty of this:
** In the original ''Film/FridayThe13th1980'', Jason not only [[spoiler:isn't the killer, he doesn't even appear save for a dream sequence]]. He doesn't get his trademark hockey mask until ''[[Film/FridayThe13thPartIII Part III]]''. Also, in ''[[Film/FridayThe13thPart2 Part 2]]'', he's considerably less physically imposing than subsequent movies.
** In the original films with Jason as a killer, he was alive rather than the indestructible undead human of later films. In the second and third films, he would run after his victims, back away if someone came at him with something dangerous, and would sometimes even grunt in pain. Surprisingly, despite not yet having his undead killer status yet in ''Film/FridayThe13thTheFinalChapter'', his behavior is actually closer to as it is in the later films.
* ''Franchise/{{Halloween}}''
** The [[Film/{{Halloween 1978}} original film]] is noticeably different from its sequels and [[Film/{{Halloween 2007}} remake]] in a couple of ways; there's much less blood and killing, and it focuses far more on suspense. Starting with ''Film/HalloweenII1981'', Michael's kills were bloodier and more elaborate to more closely match the numerous slasher movies the original had inspired.
** In the [[Film/{{Halloween 1978}} first movie]], Michael has no apparent motivation; he's just "pure evil" and kills on instinct. In ''Film/HalloweenII1981'', it's revealed that [[spoiler:Laurie, his main target in the previous film and that one, is actually his sister.]] From then on out, every movie he appears in includes an element of him specifically stalking a family member. Taken to its illogical extreme in the [[Film/HalloweenTheCurseOfMichaelMyers sixth movie]], which reveals [[spoiler:Michael suffers from a druid curse that requires him to kill off his entire family.]]
* ''Film/HarryPotter''
** Throughout the films, [[GeographicFlexibility more and more areas are added to Hogwarts]], making the Hogwarts of the first film almost a kind of bare-bones version with, for example, nothing between the back of the castle and Hagrid's hut but a field of grass.
** In the first two films, Professor Flitwick is an [[http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20100114172044/harrypotter/images/thumb/7/73/Charms_Master_Flitwick.jpg/200px-Charms_Master_Flitwick.jpg elderly-looking midget]]. From the third onward, he became a [[http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20100410144823/harrypotter/images/thumb/f/f3/Copia_de_uhpfilius9it%282%29.jpg/180px-Copia_de_uhpfilius9it%282%29.jpg small man with brown hair and moustache]]. It was so unexpected that quite a few people joked that he now looked like Hitler. (the story is complicated: as Flitwick wouldn't appear in ''Prisoner of Azkaban'', actor Warwick Davis was instead offered a cameo as the chorus conductor - credited only as "Wizard"; through RetCon, that guy became Flitwick in the fourth movie). Combined with that is the fact that Creator/JKRowling wasn't entirely happy with Flitwick's original appearance. The original movie Flitwick looked, in her opinion, a bit like a Goblin, while she had always pictured him as just a very small man.
** Filch. In the Columbus films, his characterization was very much in keeping with his book counterpart; from the fourth movie onward, they used him as comic relief.
** There's also a drift away from on-location shooting and towards soundstages. At the start of the series, they couldn't afford to build every room in Hogwarts, so there were only a few purpose-built sets and most of the Hogwarts interiors were filmed at various castles, cathedrals, and universities. As the series went along, they built up more and more sets, which was coupled with improvements in CGI technology. ''[[Literature/HarryPotterAndThePhilosophersStone Philosopher's Stone]]'' was filmed at locations all across Britain, while ''[[Literature/HarryPotterAndTheDeathlyHallows Deathly Hallows, Part 2]]'' was filmed almost completely at Leavesden Studios. Some places that were originally filmed on location were reproduced as sets later in the series, often accompanied by changes in design -- compare the hospital wing in the first movie to the hospital wing in the second movie onwards.
** In the first movie, the students wore pointed hats with their uniforms during formal scenes in the Great Hall (you'll recall these hats being tossed in the air when Gryffindor won the House Cup). The hats disappeared in the second film and were never seen again. This is probably due to infrequent mentions of hats being part of the school uniform in the books. Doubtlessly, they were dropped because they looked ridiculous.
** In the first film, emphasis is put on the fact that the staircases can change path, and this does have an effect on the plot. In the second and third films, this is relegated to background scenery, and by the fourth they seem to have gone altogether.
** The first movie puts a lot more focus on Harry's life with the Dursleys, probably to help get a feel for how much Hogwarts improves him. In the later films, since the audience already understands, they only make up the first ten-fifteen minutes... if they're even present at all.
** Also in the first movie, the Dursleys were portrayed as somewhat over-the-top antagonists, with practically no redeeming features who seemed to take almost sadistic pleasure out of torturing Harry. While no more likeable in the later films, the Dursleys (at least the parents, Dudley always remained a bit of a jerk) became a bit more human in their portrayal.
* ''Film/TheHungerGames'' had a much different look for District 12 and the Capitol than we would see in later installments. For instance, 12 was portrayed as much more rural and barebones, while ''Catching Fire'' would show far more mechanization.
* ''WesternAnimation/IceAge''
** The first film featured humans and portrayed all of the animal characters more realistically (they walked like the actual animals always, and could not speak to humankind). In the sequels however, the tone turned LighterAndSofter, all of the humans are written out of existence, and all of the animals are now the main inhabitants of the world.
** The original movie had DavidNewman to compose the score, while JohnPowell composed the score for all the sequels. As a result, this makes the original movie's soundtrack stick out from the sequels like a sore thumb.
* The 1954 film ''Film/{{Gojira}}'', which kick-started the ''Franchise/{{Godzilla}}'' franchise, is a surprisingly dark (and seriously scary) horror film rather than a campy monster movie. Because Godzilla is the only monster appearing in the film, the focus is on the humans' response to his rampage rather than on a battle between opposing monsters. Also, Godzilla is a metaphor for the horror of nuclear weapons and is unambiguously presented a villainous monster incapable of reason or sympathy, rather than the NobleDemon and defender of humanity that he evolved into as the series went on.
* ''[[Film/IronMan1 Iron Man]]'':
** The first entry into the Franchise/MarvelCinematicUniverse had a few issues which would be retconned out in later films, mostly regarding SHIELD. Agent Coulson introduces himself as being from the "Strategic Homeland Intervention Enforcement and Logistics Division," then saying they're "working on shortening the name." This suggests that it's a fairly new organization but was likely to ease in moviegoers who were unfamiliar with SHIELD, as later installments would show that SHIELD has been around for decades.
** It also claims Tony Stark is only in his 20s. Later films would establish him to be at least a decade or more older than that.
** Terrence Howard plays Lt. Colonel Rhodes, while Creator/DonCheadle would take the role for later Marvel films.
* The ''Film/JamesBond'' films:
** If you watch ''Film/DrNo'' after other ''Film/JamesBond'' films, it'll be a shock: it's a hard-boiled detective story instead of a spy action thriller - mostly because the budget was low. The fight scenes and car chases are rare and short; the only gadget per se is a mook's CyanidePill (Q - here, Major Boothroyd, and not played by Desmond Llewellyn - only appears to change Bond's gun). Even the ''[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Q9QyChJeNU opening sequence]]'' is all wrong. It starts with a series of weird electronic beeps, and the familiar theme doesn't play until Bond shoots the gun barrel, and it starts on the wrong cue (the big dramatic part of the song, instead of the actual intro). Then the barrel wiggles down to the bottom of the screen and the opening scene wipes in from-- oh? No, it moves on directly to the opening credits while still playing the Bond tune, over some colorful dots appearing all over the screen. Then it jarringly switches to some upbeat salsa music (not a theme song including the movie's title) over some colorful silhouettes of people dancing for a minute or two, when it again suddenly switches to a salsa rendition of "Three Blind Mice" over the silhouettes of the title mice, which then fade into the actual opening of the movie. To call that opening schizophrenic is being a little too kind to it. In fact, the music-video Bond titles didn't appear in their best-known form until ''Film/{{Goldfinger}}''.
** Both ''Dr. No'' and ''Film/FromRussiaWithLove'' featured Bond flirting with Sylvia Trench early in the film before being called away for the mission. This was intended to be an ongoing RunningGag, but was dropped after the second film. The romantic tension would then shift to Bond and Miss Moneypenny.
** Creator/RogerMoore in his [[Film/LiveAndLetDie first outing]] as Bond is much colder and darker than the comedic tone he would be remembered for.
* The first film in ''WesternAnimation/TheLandBeforeTime'' series films is actually the only one that is not a musical. It also has significantly higher animation quality and a much darker tone. ''Creator/DonBluth'', anyone?
* The first ''Film/LethalWeapon'' movie, before the series embraced its comedic elements, is much darker, with moody sax music, and a bit of a FilmNoir vibe.
* The first ''Film/MadMax'' movie is very different from those that followed. It is not postapocalyptic, and Max spends most of it as a happily married family man with wife, child and job rather than the lone nomadic warrior of the wastelands he later becomes. The film is also very [[ToneShift different in tone]], relying more on slowly building suspense with only occasional, brief action sequences.
* ''WesternAnimation/{{Madagascar}}''
** In the first film, Melman the giraffe is slightly less neurotic than he is [[{{Flanderization}} in later installments]]. He also speaks with a slight [[BigApplesauce Brooklyn accent]], and in some scenes even shows hints of [[DeadpanSnarker a Brooklyn attitude]].
** The three penguins that aren't Skipper are clearly different from each other in the first film, but as a whole act more as goofy slapstick secret agent parodies. It wasn't until the second film that their personalities started to get fleshed out more.
** The first film had a dramatic moment near the end, but overall focused much more heavily on fast-paced humor and pop culture references than the (somewhat) more emotional later films. Also, it takes place in Madagascar.
* The original ''ThePinkPanther'' from 1963 was written to be about the thieves rather than Inspector Clouseau. It was in the sequel, ''A Shot in the Dark'', where [[BreakoutCharacter the series shifted to focus on Clouseau]], and the recurring characters Cato and Dreyfuss were introduced.
* The original ''Film/PoisonIvy'' was a character-driven thriller with A-Lister Creator/DrewBarrymore in the title role, and (here's the kicker) no female nudity at all. The following three sequels were a [[InNameOnly loosely connected]] series of erotic dramas starring B-List actresses, known for their gratuitous sex and nudity...and not much else. In an odd subversion, though, the original is probably the most well-known of the four.
* The original ''Film/TheProducers'', being Mel Brooks' first movie, is a bit straight-forward compared to his later comedies.
* ''Film/RaidersOfTheLostArk'' has several differences with its successors:
** It's the only Indiana Jones film without the name "Indiana Jones" in the title. Though recent boxsets and home releases label the film as "Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark."
** While it does have its share of gags (such as the famous shooting-the-swordsman scene) and one-liners ("It's not the years, honey, it's the mileage"), it is overall a lot more serious in tone than any of the later films, which feature outright slapstick and screwball elements.
** It goes much further than any of the later films in imitating the look and style of 1940's serials and adventure films such as ''The Spy Smasher''.
* The ''Franchise/{{Rambo}}'' films are known as popcorn action flicks about a OneManArmy named Rambo mowing down armies of DirtyCommunists with a heavy machine gun. The first film, ''Film/FirstBlood'', is an anti-war film about the dehumanization of soldiers, which involves a ShellShockedVeteran named Rambo becoming a fugitive from the law after being mistreated by lawmen in the country he served, tormented to the core by his traumatic experiences fighting the UsefulNotes/VietnamWar. This Rambo goes out of his way to ''avoid'' killing, slaying three police dogs in self-defense because he had no other option, and subduing the rest of his pursuers non-lethally because he just wants them to leave him alone. The only person to die is an AssholeVictim who is killed completely by accident, and whose death has major plot significance unlike the {{Mook}}s of later films. When he's brought into TranquilFury / UnstoppableRage by an explosive attempt to kill him and gets a heavy machine gun, Rambo uses it to destroy property and disable an enemy but ''still'' doesn't use it to kill anyone. The one time he seems ready to kill someone, he is met by his former commander who successfully talks him down. It ends on a famous two-part speech about the trauma and mistreatment of veterans delivered by a Rambo who suffers a mental breakdown midway through and starts crying. That's not even mentioning that the film is [[TheFilmOfTheBook based on]] [[Literature/FirstBlood a book]] that's not only more violent than the film is but has a much less sympathetic take on Rambo than the film does.
* ''[[Film/RoadTo Road to Singapore]]'' is a fairly typical adventure-comedy movie, and doesn't do much in the way of BreakingTheFourthWall.
* ''Franchise/{{Saw}}''. In the first two films, Jigsaw is a brutal SerialKiller with an interesting MO. Also, the [[Film/SawI first film]] contains very little gore, and the [[Film/SawII second]] only contains a lot of blood, but nothing too explicit beyond that. The TorturePorn that the films became known for didn't really start until the [[Film/SawIII third film]], at which point Jigsaw was toned down considerably into a very deranged man with a tragic past, but [[FromACertainPointOfView with his heart in the right place.]] While still a psychotic villain, he is no longer like the first two films. [[spoiler: That role, instead, gets taken over by his apprentices, especially Hoffman.]]
* Creator/WCFields became famous for his portrayals of bitter old misanthropes who hated children. But in early starring vehicle ''Film/SosYourOldMan'', he's a loving, if bumbling, husband and father. Additionally, he's quite a bit thinner and more nimble than he was in later films, and he sports a bushy mustache in this film.
* ''Franchise/StarTrek''
** ''Film/StarTrekTheMotionPicture'', in contrast to [[Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries the original series]] AND the successive films, featured Starfleet officers wearing [[SpaceClothes very drab, colorless pajama-like uniforms]], with most of its action taking place on a plainly lit bridge. The movie itself was criticized for being rather [[LeaveTheCameraRunning slow and plodding]], and for lacking any human or humanoid antagonist. In the following Star Trek movie, ''Film/StarTrekIITheWrathOfKhan'' and in the original cast movies that followed, Starfleet officers were given crisp, bright red uniforms, and the Enterprise bridge was lit in a more visually exciting way. One could even argue that Trek producers [[BroadStrokes even pretended that ST:TMP never even happened in later movies]]; for example, the Enterprise is shown as being newly renovated and retrofitted in ST:TMP, and then again just seemingly a couple years later in ST:TWOK. ([[StockFootage mostly scenes taken from the original]])
** ''Film/StarTrekIIITheSearchForSpock'' was the first ''Franchise/StarTrek'' production to feature the full Klingon language, and so a lot of the word pronunciations are different to how they would sound in TNG onwards -- for example, listen to how Kruge says ''Qapla''' (with a more phonetic sound) just before Torg's boarding party leaves for the ''Enterprise''. The most common explanation for this among fans is that Kruge just has an odd regional accent.
* ''Franchise/StarWars: Episode IV - Film/ANewHope'' has a number of elements that can seem strange in comparison to the series as a whole.
** The film has a number of plot elements that were changed or outright retconned in the later canon, with Anakin and Vader as different people, the Jedi and the Force being widely considered a myth, etc. A video showcasing all this exists [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hhdk0YOrVCg here]].
** Darth Vader showed far more emotion when delivering his lines than he would in the sequels - he actually showed anger and rage when tearing through the Rebel ship and later showed amusement when Force choking an uppity Imperial during a meeting.
** The lightsaber battle in ''Franchise/StarWars Episode IV - Film/ANewHope'' is quite stiff and awkward compared to the more dramatic and gymnastic swordfights in later installments. According to Creator/MarkHamill, the original lightsaber props had motors to rotate the "blades," making them too heavy and dangerous for any impressive {{flynning}}. Also, Obi-Wan's lightsaber "flickers" in mid-battle, while most subsequent lightsabers do not.
** Darth Vader's {{leitmotif}}, "The Imperial March," does not appear until ''Film/TheEmpireStrikesBack''. The first film has more generic fanfare.
** Carrie Fisher's infamous trans-Atlantic accent ("slip through your fingers") as Princess Leia, which she seems to drop halfway through the first film.
** There is also a {{leitmotif}} for the Death Star, which is not used in ''Film/ReturnOfTheJedi''.
** Jabba the Hutt wasn't a slug monster in the original screenplay, he was supposed to be a furry creature like Chewbacca, and the only scene in the original movie where he appears was cut. It was restored in the Special Edition, but Jabba appears much more mobile and less bulky in his CGI form than his puppet form from ''Film/ReturnOfTheJedi''. This is because he was inserted into the footage over the stand-in actor, who was much shorter than Harrison Ford. Han calls Jabba a "wonderful human being," a sentiment that seems quite odd when said about a slug (although most viewers of the Special Edition assumed that Han was just trying to be sarcastic). Additionally, "Hutt" was not intended as a species name but a title, much like a mafia boss would be called Don.
** Vader's suit was dirtier in the first movie and the metal part on his chest was behind the two cloth strips instead of in front of them. The eyepieces on his helmet were also tinted a very dark red before switching to solid black in ''Empire'' and beyond.
** In the original cuts of Episode IV, conventional English script could be seen, most notably when there's a closeup of a control panel showing the Death Star's tractor beam power dropping to zero (the words POWER and TRACTOR BEAM are clearly visible). In Episodes V and VI more care is taken to use alien-looking script, and the remastered versions of Episode IV substitute the visible English with this same alien lettering.
** Obi-Wan refers to Darth Vader as "Darth" during their fight rather than "Vader", as if it was his first name instead of a title.
** While the scene where Owen buys C-3PO from the Jawas suggests that the droid is multilingual, it is not until ''Empire'' that he claims to be "fluent in over 6 million forms of communication."
** In Episode IV, [[MonochromeCasting there's not a single woman, non-white character, or alien as part of either the Empire or Rebel Alliance]] (except Princess Leia, who isn't in the military). This is particularly jarring since the later movies and TV shows all had very prominent minority (Lando, Mace, Sabine, Finn and Poe), female (Mon Mothma, Padme, Ahsoka, Hera, Sabine again and Rey) and alien (Yoda, Admiral Ackbar, and too many others to count) characters on the good guys' side. The subsequent movies, TV shows, and novels set around the time period of the Galactic Civil War (such as ''Literature/StarWarsAftermath'', ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsRebels'', and ''Film/RogueOne'') all paint a much more diverse picture of both the Rebel Alliance and the Empire than the original movie did.
** When Obi-Wan cuts off an alien's arm during a bar fight, you can see blood drip out of the limb. In other movies, lightsaber wounds are instantly cauterized by the blade, keeping blood from flowing out.
* The original ''TeenageMutantNinjaTurtles'' movie (1990) is a good deal grittier than its sequels, with an overall more serious tone and fewer comic-book gimmicks. Yes, there is plenty of humor, but it is there only to underscore the brooding nature of the piece rather than to exist for its own sake. Also the jettisoning of most supernatural elements: Master Splinter and the Turtles themselves have a supernatural origin, but their allies and enemies are all ordinary human beings. Not until ''The Secret of the Ooze'' (1991) do we get to see used as villains the bizarrely mutated beasts for which the cartoon series and the original comics had become famous.
* The first ''Franchise/{{Terminator}}'' film is really weird compared to the ones that follow. Chief amongst the differences is that it's a Horror-Action hybrid with much greater emphasis on the Horror. It also has a much lower budget than the rest of the films, making it look somewhat dated in special effects. And finally, the TimeTravel plot mechanic uses a very closed and fatalistic StableTimeLoop while the rest of the movies run amuck with the TimeyWimeyBall.
* Film/TheThreeStooges started their long and successful run at Creator/ColumbiaPictures with ''Film/TheCaptainHatesTheSea''--a feature film in which they are background players as the band on a cruise boat, and only Larry has a line. Afterwards they'd become stars of their own series of comic shorts.
* Watching ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory'' 15 years after it was originally made, while the composition of the elements is still impressive, it is noticeable how certain textures (hair and fabric) are left rather ambiguous and that the faces of human characters other than Sid are often out of frame. This was due to the technology not yet being at point where it could render organic things realistically: it wasn't until ''WesternAnimation/TheIncredibles'' that they took the plunge and made a film about people. The film is also remarkably low-key compared to the bombastic flourishes of later films in the series.
** On the subject of Pixar, ''Toy Story'' doesn't have their VanityPlate shown before the film (although it does appear after the credits). Instead, the Walt Disney Pictures logo, rather than fading to black, actually transitions into the movie proper, by having the camera pan away from the castle until it fades into the wallpaper of Andy's room.
* ''TransformersFilmSeries''
** ''Film/{{Transformers}}'' is a more straight-forward story with a relatively short number of robot characters (SequelEscalation and SerialEscalation were ''heavy'' in the two movies that followed). Also, while Bumblebee drops Sam and Mikaela out of his vehicle mode before transforming into his robot mode to fight Barricade, the sequels have the transformations fast enough to safely eject any passengers and quickly convert into robot mode in one quick go.
** The first film had Cybertronians bleed blue-green AlienBlood (most likely meant to be Energon). The sequels replace it with a red substance that may or may not be ''real'' blood (they're [[MechanicalLifeforms alien robots]], remember).
* If your knowledge of ''{{Literature/Twilight}}'' comes from PopCulturalOsmosis, you'll find the first movie awfully strange. It's essentially a low-budget indie ([[SleeperHit a very successful one]]) and it feels like it. There are only the most basic special effects and it generally just feels "small". In contrast, the sequels had higher budgets, so they feel bigger and have a blockbuster "sheen" which the original lacked.
* Kitty Pryde (Shadowcat) appears in all three ''Film/{{X-Men}}'' films, is notably discussed in the US Senate in X1 and referenced by Xavier to the President of the United States in ''Film/{{X2|XMenUnited}}'', but her on-screen appearances are very brief, almost cameo-sized, and she's played by different actresses in each. In ''Film/XMenTheLastStand'', she finally becomes a main character with whole sequences from her perspective, and is portrayed by Creator/EllenPage. The first film also features a different actor as John Allerdyce (Pyro) in a brief cameo. John becomes a main character with a different, lasting actor for the next two films.
* In ''Film/XMenFirstClass'' Michael Fassbender's Magneto alternates between sounding ambiguously British and Irish in various scenes. Essentially Fassbender's NotEvenBotheringWithTheAccent. The film was envisioned as a ContinuityReboot, unconnected to the previous ones. In the [[Film/XMenDaysOfFuturePast next film]], which features CanonWelding with the series, Fassbender matches his accent with that of Ian [=McKellen=]'s Magneto.
* The first ''Film/MissionImpossible'' film: Despite the movie being the TropeNamer for MissionImpossibleCableDrop. which in turn would set the bar for the high concept scenes and stunts of the sequels, the first film is VERY different in tone from them. There's very little in terms of action scenes until the end - even the titular MissionImpossibleCableDrop scene is more tension than action or complex stunts. Ethan's character doesn't have that "larger than life" reputation and presentation the other films give him. It's a much more quiet and psychological film whose tone does clash with its sequels, who would become more known for their action and stunts, when watching the series back to back.
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