The Stand 2020: Episode 5 – Fear and Loathing in New Vegas

“Standing there, looking out, was the shape of a man.”

(SPOILER WARNING – FOR THE BOOK AND BOTH VERSIONS ON TV!)

It was a first in this week’s ep of this new adaptation of The Stand – everything happened in the narrative of the present, with none of the previous disjointed flashbacks skipping merrily around the characters’ pasts. Scene-setting presumably done (though I’m betting we get a few more flashbacks before we’re through), the writers went hell for leather on the Epic Supernatural Struggle they’ve obviously prioritised over all other aspects of the novel.

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The Stand 2020: Episode 4 – The House of the Dead

“… she took his hand.
And Harold Lauder succumbed to his destiny.”


(SPOILER WARNING – FOR THE BOOK AND BOTH VERSIONS ON TV!)

In Stephen King’s first non-fiction examination of his writing, Danse Macabre, he talks at some length about the process of writing The Stand. A large part of his inspiration, he says, came from George R Stewart’s classic 1949 post-apocalyptic novel Earth Abides. Stewart’s novel lengthily examines the realistic aftermath of a pandemic that nearly wipes out humanity, tracking the redevelopment of society and its evolution over the following decades.

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The Stand 2020: Episode 2 – Pocket Savior

“There’s something in you that’s like biting on tinfoil, Larry.”

“Mister, if you’re real, then… I think you’re the Devil.”

(SPOILER WARNING – FOR THE BOOK AND BOTH VERSIONS ON TV!)

The second episode of this new version of The Stand carries on in the template set by the first – a non-linear narrative skipping through the book, to focus on a couple of the major characters. In this case, it’s Jerk With a Heart of Gold singer Larry Underwood, and no-good but slightly pathetic convict Lloyd Henreid. Just as last week, this is one character who ends up on the side of the goodies, and one who ends up on the side of the baddies, and their stories intertwine throughout the episode.

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