Over the past couple of weeks, we've had the Jackson 5, Led Zeppelin, and Guns 'N Roses all threaten to return with new tours and/or albums. One of the truisms of rock 'n' roll is this: every band on the way down is a band on the way up. What does that mean? Just as soon as your favorite artist becomes cliché, cheesy, and dated, you can be sure they'll return to remind everyone why they mattered in the first place.

But is this always a good thing?

Frankly, some bands don't ever need to come back (that means you, Asia). Some bands forget what a true comeback is. (Hint: if you leave half the band at home, it's not a comeback.)

Here's our list of the year's most ill-advised returns. While these bands are out touring, I'll be at home listening to their albums.

Led Zeppelin

Robert Plant got it right. He agreed to play one gig for the late, great Ahmet Ertegun, the founder of Atlantic Records who'd signed Zep to the label. The gig was a success by all accounts, and Plant went on to tour with Alison Krauss in support of their insanely beautiful roots record, "Raising Sand." Meanwhile, the rest of Zep say they want to keep playing and that they'll find a new singer to fill in for Plant. WHAT? Hasn't anyone told Jimmy and John Paul about that Journey reunion without Steve Perry?

Smashing Pumpkins

Billy Corgan invites the drummer, leaves everyone else at home, and calls it a reunion. Sorry, we call it self-indulgence.

Jackson 5

Does anyone need to see the Jackson sideshow on parade again? Not even Michael has the courage to go through with it.

The Cure

There should be a rule. Dudes over 25 can't wear mascara and lipstick. In the '80s the look was sensitive and cool. Now it's just creepy.

Mötley Crüe

Their recent "Saints of Los Angeles" comes nowhere close to their late-'80s alcohol-fueled heyday, but I give total props to guitarist Mick Mars. Battling a hip replacement and a degenerative spine disease, he's still able to play punishingly loud. That's gotta count for something.

New Kids on the Block

What's worse than a teenaged, bubblegum Boston boy band? A middle-aged, bubblegum Boston boy band. Life is hard enough without this sad display.

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