Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs was one of the best surprises of 2009, an animated film based on a slim children's book that developed an insane, constantly inventive humor all its own. Of course, if you've seen last year's 21 Jump Street that wouldn't surprise you at all-- directors Phil Lord and Chris Miller are incredibly skilled at balancing absurd humor with strong storytelling, and rightly have moved on to bigger things than an animated movie that jerks like me assumed would be terrible.

Of course that means that with the arrival of Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2, we have to wonder if Lord and Miller's absence will guarantee a sequel inferior to the original. You can start to judge for yourself now with the film's first trailer, which debuted online today:

I'm inclined to give this the benefit of the doubt, since after all I hugely underestimated the original only to find myself loving it. But despite the great imagination that went into creating this island that's been completely overrun by living food, the jokes aren't grabbing me the way I'd like. The original Cloudy had its share of food puns, but it also relied on a lot of weirdo humor that doesn't seem to be evident here. Then again, a lot of those jokes would be really, really hard to explain in a trailer. Which brings us back to the whole benefit of the doubt thing.

Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 is coming to theaters September 27, and you can click here for everything we know about it so far.

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