5 reasons why I heart Stephen King

 

To scale...no seriously

 

5. Hollywood can’t get enough of him, but he’s not a snob about it

As I mentioned in my previous post Top 10 Campy Horror Films, there have been over 80 film adaptations of King Stephen’s work.  That doesn’t just include literal adaptations like Carrie or The Shining, but less obvious ones like Stand By Me and Shawshank Redeption (a personal favorite) both based on short stories.  He pops up in pop culture when he feels like it and on his own terms and isn’t afraid to criticize or make fun of himself.  He relishes in cameos and guest appearances that have significance for him like The Simpsons and Fever Pitch (he’s a die hard Red Sox fan – I’m looking at you Troi) while rooting for the up and comers in his “Pop of King” column in Entertainment Weekly. And it’s not just film and television that has a hard on for Stephen, Marvel Comics took The Dark Tower and ran with it.

Pop quiz, bitches: Who is Stephen King’s favorite Superhero?

 

 

For my sister-in-law Troi, also a die hard

 

4. He takes a lickin’ and keeps on tickin’

Everyone knows that Stephen got hit by a car while walking down a rural road near his house back in 1999.  I’m sure we all had a vision or daydream (or 10) of his wife Tabitha going all Misery on him.  It’s pretty much miraculous that he can walk.  While recovering, he wrote my favorite of his novels, Dreamcatcher.  He also felt thankful that he was rich and wouldn’t have to worry about his medical bills.  Then he realized that a lot of other writers aren’t rich so he created the Haven Foundation, an organization that helps freelancers who can’t pay for their medical bills.  I’m always happy to see nerds helping people so I gladly tip my hat to Mr. King for that one.

Pop quiz, bitches: What kind of accident did Stephen King witness as a child that many believe served as inspiration for his novels?

 

3. Fuck yeah he’ll write a 1500 page, 19 lbs. book and I dare you to tell him he can’t

He has an ability to make grown ups want to sleep with the lights on (if they can even sleep at all) and worry about their pets going all Cujo on them.  I can understand why people would think twice about crossing him.  Remember that guy that hit him with his van?  Yeah, he died on Stephen King’s birthday.  Stephen-King-by-Rembrandt--44598So when a book publisher gets word that an author is writing a behemoth of a book, he’s probably going to freak out a little.  Unless that author is Stephen King and people have a tendency to DIE ON HIS BIRTHDAY.  Following in the footsteps of War and Peace and Sacajawea, Sir Stephen wrote a book of epic proportions with Under the Dome.  Oh the tangled webs we weave but none weaveth like the Kingeth.  For a complicated web of characters and plots, Under the Dome was surprisingly easy to read and a TV mini-series produced by Steven Spielberg is already in the works.

Pop quiz, bitches: Where did Stephen King get the name for the character Jim Rennie in Under the Dome?

 

2. He says what’s on his mind and all others be damned

Stephen King just doesn’t give a damn about what other people think of him.  He does what he wants and he makes no apologies for it.  He has never been secretive about his past with addiction and even admitted basing the character of Jack Torrance in The Shining on himself at his alcoholic worst.

His view on people is such:  “I think that we’re all mentally ill. Those of us outside the asylums only hide it a little better – and maybe not all that much better after all.”

He has insulted the writing ability of Stephenie Meyer, questioned the literacy of the US Army and been very outspoken against the war in Iraq, all without fear of those who would challenge him.  He has a quick wit and a mass of minions who are ready and willing to heed his command to tell opponents to shut up.  I might not always agree with him but he’s got balls and that I respect.

Pop quiz, bitches: What was the name of Stephen King’s student newspaper column at the University of Maine?

 

Hot Nerd Gril Hugging Stephen King

No. You can't have him. He's mine.

 

1. He writes for people with a sense of humor, not for snobby elitists

He once called himself “the literary equivalent of a Big Mac and fries.”  An author who focuses on emotion rather than intellect even though his writing is very, very smart.  He started out as a high school teacher and it is my belief that he writes for them as opposed to the book critics.  He uses profanity with sophisticated relish, a talent that brings great joy to me and my love for a well placed f-bomb.  He delights his most loyal readers by connecting people and places throughout his novels.  Richard Tozier, for example, appears in Dreamcatcher, The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon, Duma Key, and It.  His loyalty lies with his fans and his fans are extremely loyal in return.  I heart you Stephen King.  I even heart your cell phone zombies.

Pop quiz, bitches: Who is the author that most influenced Stephen King?

stephen king - very demotivational

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“I recognize terror as the finest emotion and so I will try to terrorize the reader. But if I find that I cannot terrify, I will try to horrify, and if I find that I cannot horrify, I’ll go for the gross-out. I’m not proud.”

– Stephen King

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Answers to Pop Quiz…. bitches….

Steven Kind Pop Quiz Answers

My Top 10 Campy Horror Films

In honor of Halloween, or Samhain, or however you choose to refer to it, here is my list of the most awesomely cheese-stastic and hi-larious horror flicks of all time.

10. Anything based on a Stephen King novel

Stephen King

"That's right. I'm seducing you.... with my EYES!"

From Carrie to The Mist I counted 82 (!!!) film adaptations of Mr. King’s work.  That’s no small shit.  Some of them are the best horror films of all time like Misery and The Shining.  Some are cheese-tastic wonderlands like It and Pet Cemetery.  They’re all pretty freaking scary.  Mr. King gets on the list, if for nothing else, than for the sheer volume of work based on his novels.

9. Tales of the Crypt: Bordello of Blood

A vampire brothel being run out of a funeral home.  Corey Feldman finally getting his turn at vampire glory.  Dennis Miller running a private detective business out of a porn theatre.  Angie Everhart as the mother of all vampires.  What more do you need?  Besides some sunblock that is.

8. The Rocky Horror Picture Show

Rocky Horror Picture ShowSome people will argue with me about whether or not this counts as a horror film.  It’s my list and I say it counts.  So there.  Besides, it’s got “horror” in the title.  I don’t feel that I need to explain any further.  It’s got music and dancing and sci-fi and Tim Curry in drag.  In 2005 it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by non other than our own Library of freakin’ Congress and was declared “culturally and historically significant.”  How many musical horror comedy rock operas can say that, hmmm?

7. Child’s Play

Childsplay

Coincidence? I think not.

When I was a kid we had a doll that came from some family member long gone and had been passed down through the generations.  This doll was kept in a pillowcase in the far reaches of my closet because I was the girl and Lord forbid my brother have a doll in the back of his closet that no one will ever see.  I got curious one day and pulled down said doll in pillowcase.  I remember seeing the back of the head first.  That in itself was pretty creepy.  I turned the doll around and her eyeballs had fallen out of their sockets and were rolling around in the back of her head.  They suddenly stopped rolling and were staring straight at me.  Needless to say, I have never and will never look upon the face of that doll again.  Dolls are creepy.  Period

6. Gremlins

What child of the 80’s didn’t want a mogwai as a pet when they were a kid??  This movie contained enough unforeseen violence that it helped convince the Motion Picture Association of America to reform its rating system.  Drops of water, not great but manageable for a while.  Food after midnight.  Baaaad.  The main lesson gleaned from this film: never buy anything in Chinatown.

5. The Lost Boys

Oh, the horror that is teen angst.  I’m pretty sure “Santa Carla” is supposed to be Venice, CA.  Gang-ridden or not, how many coastal cities in California do you know of that would let an earthquake crumpled hotel just sit there instead of building something else on the property?  Just sayin’.  It’s a bunch of brat packers running around looking cute and causing trouble long before Stephenie Meyer ever dreamed up her saccharine covered Twilight vamps.  My favorite character is Grandpa.  I may be a vegetarian but I can appreciate some good taxidermy.  He gets the last word: “One thing about living in Santa Carla I never could stomach…all the damn vampires.”  Grandpa’s been around the block a few times.

4. From Dusk Till Dawn

from-dusk-till-dawn

"Hey.... wanna make out?"

Personally, I love Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez (when he’s not making stupid kiddie films).  They are rather good at satisfying my desire for action, gore, and lewd comedy.  I think that sometimes people forget that George Clooney was even in this movie…what with the Cary Grant Junior image that has been built up around him…something I’m sure he finds hysterical.  Hot Mexican vampire strippers.

I’m sorry, do I need to say anything else?  Didn’t think so.

3. Drag me to Hell

Drag Me To Hell

"WHY DID YOU SCREW UP MY CAFE LATTE!!! IT'S NOT THAT HARD TO MAKE!!!"

I hear the theatrical version of this movie fell apart at the end.  Luckily I didn’t see it in the theatre and instead rented the Director’s Cut.  This is not a movie for those with weak stomachs but if you can handle your gore and an ungodly amount of disgusting fluids going into a pretty girl’s mouth, then this is the movie for you.  It stars Alison Lohman as a really sweet girl who really pisses off an old gypsy woman the first time she tries to be tough at her job.  I really hope I never piss off an old gypsy lady.  The demon, Lamia, tortures you for three days before doing exactly what the title entails.

2. Elvira, Mistress of the Dark

Elvira

And we have found cleavage even I am jealous of.

This was one of my very favorite movies as a kid.  So much so that I actually dressed up as Elvira for Halloween one year.  Talk about goth done right.  It’s hard to believe that Cassandra Peterson was 37 years old when this movie came out!  The moment that will be with me until the day I die?  When Elvira chucks her stiletto high heel and it lodges in her Great Uncle Vincent’s forehead.  Brilliant.

1. Evil Dead series

Evil DeadMy explanation for this need only go as far as the name “Bruce Campbell” but for those who haven’t seen it I will explain further.  Horror and comedy together (intentionally) is Sam Raimi’s genius.  Inspired by low-budget horror films at drive-ins and HP Lovecraft, he created an epic trilogy of awesomeness centered around Ash (Bruce Campbell) and a series of deadites created by Ex-Mortis.  Watch all three (Evil Dead, Evil Dead II and Army of Darkness) in a row and it will be the best Halloween you’ve ever had.  My favorite lines: “Honey, you got reeeeaaal ugly!” and “Good. Bad. I’m the guy with the gun.”

Groovy.