top of page

In the late eighties and early nineties, while other kids were playing softball, Emily was sporting a Pink Ladies jacket, perfecting Michelle Pfeiffer’s “Cool Rider” choreography from Grease 2, and wearing out the VHS player.  Comfort Sequels: The Psychology of Movie Sequels from the ‘80s and ‘90s tells stories from Emily's life, through the movie sequels of their childhood. When a film touches us, makes us deep-belly laugh, and has that feel-good spirit, we want more of it. We want the continuing story. We want the same story even, just recycled and offered in a slightly new way. What felt so good about the original can come back twofold and be the same, but different. Comfort Sequels examines the psychology behind what makes certain movie sequels memorable, safe, predictable, and comforting. These sequels are more of the universe we love—exploring something new while maintaining that which is familiar. 


Comfort Sequels is a sneaky memoir, celebrating the campiness and nostalgia that these films evoke. Every chapter is a love letter to a specific movie sequel. As a licensed psychotherapist and psychology professor, Emily interprets characters, story arcs, and major themes in a unique voice from a unique perspective while sharing fun and random behind-the-scenes facts about each film.


Featuring interviews with Muppeteer Steve Whitmire (creator of Rizzo the Rat from The Great Muppet Caper),  Christine Ebersole (My Girl 2), Stuart Pankin (Mannequin 2: On the Move), Peter Mosen (Ghostbusters II), Christopher McDonald and Leif Green (Grease 2), and the “Cool Rider” himself, Maxwell Caulfield (Michael, also from Grease 2).


Comfort Sequels covers the following twelve comfort sequels; Grease 2, Gremlins 2: The New Batch, My Girl 2, Karate Kid: Part II, The Great Muppet Caper, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2: The Secret of the Ooze, Ghostbusters II, Batman Returns, Dream a Little Dream 2