Mark Wahlberg doesn’t consider himself a big sequel guy. In his 25-plus-year acting career, the actor has made just three sequels: “Ted 2,” “Transformers: The Last Knight” and “Daddy’s Home 2.” “I always like to find the next new thing to do, and I always want to do the complete opposite of the last thing I did,” he says.
With his new Netflix action-comedy “Spenser Confidential,” though, the franchise question rises to the fore. Available via streaming, the film has Wahlberg taking on the role of the late author Robert B. Parker’s flinty Boston private eye Spenser, a much-loved character who, since his introduction in 1973, has appeared in nearly 50 books, the 1980s ABC series “Spenser: For Hire” and a number of made-for-TV movies.
“Spenser Confidential” ends with a classic tune-in-next-time cliffhanger, as Wahlberg’s PI, having successfully cracked one conspiracy, catches whiff of the next mystery to solve. Watching a TV in a seafood shack with his newfound sidekick Hawk (Winston Duke), pal Henry (Alan Arkin) and girlfriend Cissy (Iliza Shlesinger), Spenser sees a news report about the arrest of a Boston fire battalion chief — with whom he went to high school — in connection with a suspicious deadly church fire, and the gears clearly start turning.