The first "Ted" was a pivotal moment for Seth MacFarlane. It was his first live-action project, and it was a chance to see if he could successfully launch a whole new empire, one that stood separate from "Family Guy." While I didn't love "Ted," I thought it was a solid step for MacFarlane as a filmmaker. His second live-action film, "A Million Ways To Die In The West"? Less so.
I'm already ambivalent about MacFarlane, so adding the extra pressure of my belief that comedy sequels are almost uniformly unsuccessful, and I didn't have very high hopes for "Ted 2" at all. I can report that it is pretty much exactly what I thought a "Ted" sequel would be, complete with a larger canvass and diminishing returns on some of the laughs. Like most comedy sequels, it is too long and too indulgent in calling back to the original film. There are several scenes in the film that got me to laugh, but there are plenty of scenes that simply follow a mechanical formula that is enormously familiar to anyone familiar with his work with co-writers Alec Sulkin and Wellesley Wild. If MacFarlane is anything, he is the master of the Strange Little Thing That Behaves Inappropriately.