Nuke the fridge is a phrase used to refer to the moment in a film series that is so incredible that it lessens the excitement of subsequent scenes that rely on more understated action or suspense, and it becomes apparent that a certain installment is not as good as a
, due to ridiculous or low quality storylines, events or characters. Simply, "to nuke the fridge" means to essentially disappoint fans of a series by making a poor quality installment.
This phrase is derived by a scene in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull when the hero miraculously survives a nuclear blast by getting inside a lead-lined fridge and being blasted miles away.
The original Batman franchise really "nuked the fridge" when they casted Arnald Swartzenager as Mr. Freeze and gave him a billion ice-related puns.