Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Which is Better? 11/22/63

I definitely tried to do a weekly thing with the comparison of the TV show and the book, I really did. However, as the show progressed, I found myself disliking it immensely to where I stopped watching it. I didn't catch up, nor did I watch the finale. I saw all that I needed too.

It blew. 

To be fair, adaptation of King's books don't really do that well as TV shows. Other than The Shining and IT, I don't even think movies do a good job either. My husband really enjoyed it, but he also read the book four years ago, so he was a bit hairy on the details.

What I really disliked about the TV show is the fact that they glossed over a lot of really good plot points, and focused on making time travel spoooooky. What King does really well in this novel is the ability to make things creepy without it being over the top. In the first episode, Jake Epping calls... someone, I think his parents? and a car crashes into the telephone booth moments after Jake hangs up the phone. The dead woman says something creepy about Jake being not wanted there.

Which... ugh. It would have been way more effective to actually just follow the book and show Jake going through, do all the things with the Dunning family (which by the way, Josh Duhamel was an excellent choice for Frank Dunning), then go to 2011 with Al Templeton, and discover that alternating time didn't really do much for Harry Dunning. This would have shown that time has a funny way of doubling back and righting itself. Then could have been a montage of him going back to that time and shooting Frank Dunning at the grave site.

I also hated the fact that the show made up a male character to basically his sidekick, instead of Sadie, because apparently a woman can't be both his accomplice and his on screen romance. Nope, she has to be the innocent love interest and not be scarred by anything. Also, this same male character, (What's is name, George?) also wants to rescue Marina, Oswald's wife. What I found so fascinating about the book is the length Jake Epping is willing to go too in order to succeed at his mission. Allowing Marina to be beaten on the reg by Harvey to ensure the timeline isn't altered is morally ambiguous, which is something the writers just blew past by having George agonize over Marina and Harvey having sex. Ugh. Boring and overdone. via GIPHY

I also thought they blew past the Yellow Card Man, which scared the crap out of me when he went back and found him dead. I was curious to know what that meant and how Jake's actions would affect the timeline. Nah. Just had a weird scene where the Yellow Card Man was almost ran over by Jake when he's driving.

I know a lot of people had problems with James Franco playing Jake Epping/George Amberson (Or Jake Amberson), but I thought he wasn't the problem. I liked him... it's everything else that was the problem. If the book was cheesier, or I just didn't enjoy the book that much, I probably would've enjoyed the show more. As it stands, though, don't bother watching the mini-series. The first episode was cheeky because there were lots of montages of James Franco walking through the 50's time period... but after that? Totally sucked. 

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