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Old November 21 2011, 03:11 PM   #1
23skidoo
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Has Stephen King run out of ideas

I'm not the biggest Stephen King fan in the world, but I've always admired his storytelling ability. But I couldn't help but be very disappointed when I discovered what his novel 11/22/63 is about.

(I suppose you could consider this a spoiler although this is the type of info you'll probably find in the dust jacket and it's being referenced in news stories and reviews.)

It's about a guy who goes back in time to try to stop JFK's assassination.

That has got to be the most unoriginal premise on the planet. This is the storyline Paramount rejected multiple times when Roddenberry tried to get it made as a Star Trek movie; Red Dwarf opened its 7th season with it; Quantum Leap devoted a 2-parter to it; when Doctor Who came back in 2005 the Ninth Doctor was placed there (and an earlier novel, Who Killed Kennedy, was also based on the event with the title pretty much telling the whole story). The idea of someone going back in time to stop an event has been done to death, too - heck I just saw an episode of Gerry Anderson's New Captain Scarlet based on the premise. And wasn't Seven Days based on the premise (as was, to a lesser extent, Crime Traveller)?

I'm sure it'll be a half-decent book, and of course it's coming out now so that there's time for them to make a movie out of it for November 2013.* I'm just disappointed that King would take on such an over-used premise. The only thing new here is that King usually doesn't do science-fiction (that's assuming some technology is utilized in the time travel; a Huffington Post story uses the term "time travel magic" which for King is quite possible, too.

Alex

* After typing that I see Jonathan Demme is indeed directing a film version that's going to go into production in 2012.
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Old November 21 2011, 03:23 PM   #2
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

Seems like you live to complain...

Who knows how long King has had the idea in his head? I've never read a King novel but now this one is on my radar thanks to your complaining.
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Old November 21 2011, 03:30 PM   #3
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

I think King has been out of ideas for a good 20 years now.
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Old November 21 2011, 03:37 PM   #4
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

Trekker4747 wrote: View Post
I think King has been out of ideas for a good 20 years now.
This. The last I enjoyed was Green Mile. Before that, I stopped reading him halfway through Cujo, which bored me to tears. I only read Green mile because my wife recommended it as "the first thing of his I've read in years that I actually liked."
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Old November 21 2011, 03:44 PM   #5
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

"The Langoliers" - 'Nuff said.
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Old November 21 2011, 04:46 PM   #6
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

Try reading this first... I gave up on King after Dreamcatcher... I just couldn't get through it despite several attempts...

However, I was intrigued with the storyline of 11.22.63 and gave it a shot.. I have to say I could hardly put it down.. It was a real page turner with a lot of action going on.. Is it scary in the traditional sense? No.. Absolutely not.. but the characters, settings and history are well written, as it the issue of time travel paradox complexity. Really one of his best.

BillJ, to answer your question, his notes in the book say he's been contemplating this kind of storyline since the early 70's, but felt at the time that the scars from JFK's assassination (along with RFK and MLK, I suppose) were still too fresh..
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Old November 21 2011, 05:30 PM   #7
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

Dreamcatcher was the "deal breaker" for me as well. Though I did back pedal and read the Dome.
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Old November 21 2011, 05:53 PM   #8
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

11/23/63 was a great read and way better than under the dome. king has a good hit and miss ratio. though I tend plow through them because I don't like having unfinished read novel.

and don't forget the twilight zone has done a episode dealing with kennedy as well.
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Old November 21 2011, 05:55 PM   #9
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

I'm the only person I know who actually likes "The Langoliers."
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Old November 21 2011, 05:56 PM   #10
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

Silvercrest wrote: View Post
I'm the only person I know who actually likes "The Langoliers."

the short story or the tv mini series?
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Old November 21 2011, 05:58 PM   #11
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

Both. It must be a weakness.
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Old November 21 2011, 06:03 PM   #12
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

^^ I liked the story, and enjoyed the mini-series.. But like The Stand, is has not weathered well over time for me.

The recent graphic novel version of The Stand, however, was awesome!

Based on my enjoyment of 11/22/63, I'm going to give Dome a try...
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Old November 21 2011, 06:06 PM   #13
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

make sure you read mile 81 first. as for the stand I loved the book plan to reread it now that I have it on my nook. as for langeliers I liked the tv mini series have yet to read it.
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Old November 21 2011, 06:32 PM   #14
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

Trekker4747 wrote: View Post
I think King has been out of ideas for a good 20 years now.
Gotta disagree. The novel Duma Key and the stories in Full Dark, No Stars are some of the best work he's done.
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Old November 21 2011, 06:39 PM   #15
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Re: Has Stephen King run out of ideas

Has Stephen King run out of ideas?

No. He hasn't.

Another Dark Tower book is coming out. 'nuff said.

Oh, and Duma Key is awesome.
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