The Ghostbusters Ultimate Gift Set Doesn't Include Ghostbusters 2016 And That's A Huge Problem

Jason Reitman and Gil Kenan's "Ghostbusters: Afterlife" is one of the most polarizing releases of the year, with plenty finding the film to be a love letter to their childhood favorite, and others seeing it as nothing more than an empty shell filled with nostalgia. Regardless of how anyone feels about the film as a final product, it's brought home over $173.6 million worldwide, an impressive feat considering how many people are still avoiding the theater as the pandemic rages on. Those who aren't willing to risk a theater trip won't have to wait long to get their ghost bustin' goodness, as "Ghostbusters: Afterlife" is coming to Blu-ray and 4K Ultra HD on February 1, 2022. On the same day, a 3-film standard Blu-ray including "Ghostbusters," "Ghostbusters II," and "Ghostbusters: Afterlife" will be available, as well as the 8-disc "Ghostbusters Ultimate Collection" box set, complete with a copy of the book "Making Ghostbusters."

While there's not been a proper press release to itemize out all of the special features of the box set, there's one glaring omission from both of these special releases: Paul Feig's "Ghostbusters." Look, I know a lot of people vehemently despise the 2016 "Ghostbusters" movie and I'm not here to try to convince anyone to feel a certain way about it, but omitting the film from a box-set called the "Ultimate Collection" is factually inaccurate, straight-up disrespectful to everyone who worked on that film, and is one hell of a problematic act of blatant erasure.

"But Ghostbusters 2016 is A Different Universe!"

Since the announcement of the film's omission, social media has been filled with people going for the gold in mental gymnastics trying to justify why 2016's "Ghostbusters" shouldn't or doesn't deserve to be included, and all of those people need to jump in the pond if they're gonna keep acting like a silly goose. The biggest reason that has been brought up as a way to deflect from their blatant erasure has been that the film takes place in a different universe and therefore isn't "canon." When in the actual hell has "canon" ever mattered when it comes to a box set? The complete "Halloween" box set not only includes sequels that retcon previous entries and turned following the canon into an MXC style obstacle course, but also includes "Halloween III: Season of the Witch," a film that doesn't even include Michael Myers (but rules, for the record).

It's also ridiculous to exclude 2016's "Ghostbusters" under the guise of protecting the "canon" considering "Ghostbusters II" isn't really a part of the "Ghostbusters: Afterlife" story at all, whatsoever. Cool, Ray's Occult Book Store makes an appearance, but there's no reference to the Statue of Liberty coming to life or the friggin' Titanic sailing into the New York harbor, both events that should have come with as much news attention in the world of "Afterlife" as Gozer and the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man. If the argument on excluding 2016 is centered on canon, it's an argument dripping in weak sauce.

"But Ghostbusters 2016 is Bad!"

For those arguing outside of the canon, the other common justification has been that the 2016 "Ghostbusters" film is bad. Cool, I hear you, but that's just like your opinion, man. Whether or not a film is "bad" is completely subjective. Going back to our "Halloween" box-set comparison, there are more people out there than not that believe "Halloween 6" is a bad movie, but if you even breathe that sentence into the universe, /Film's own Anya Stanley will appear like Candyman and hit you with a 10,000 word argument to prove otherwise. Omitting a film from a collection based on an arbitrary value of which there is no genuine metric to prove is like hearing a child say they don't like sharing toys with their sister and deciding the only way to combat the feeling is to pretend they never had a sister in the first place. And before anyone tries to bring up critic's ratings, "Ghostbusters" was review bombed so hard by toxic fans before the film even hit theaters, it's next to impossible to figure out how the general populous actually feels about the film.

Fans of 2016 Are Allowed Good Things Too

Based on the replies to my own spicy box-set take on Twitter, there are a lot more people who like "Ghostbusters" 2016 than many of us realize, and plenty have been relegated to celebrate in silence or risk inviting the vitriol of people who will happily tell them to "unalive" themselves for liking a movie. One of the biggest complaints made about "Ghostbusters: Afterlife" was that many felt it was a way to placate the abusive adult toddlers who cried about their ruined childhoods over the mere existence of "Ghostbusters" 2016, and the omission of the film in this Ultimate Gift Set feels like just another form of rewarding toxic behavior. "Ghostbusters" 2016 is a "Ghostbusters" movie no matter how much you don't want it to be. If horror fans can make sense of the busted canon of "Halloween," people can learn to accept an alternate universe where some of New York's finest ghost catchers are women.