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5 Stephen King Stories Hulu Should Produce Like 11.22.63
Finally, the world has found a story-telling style that fits Stephen King stories perfectly — the one-season mini-series. Hulu’s production of “11.22.63” has proven to be a perfect way to delve deeper into King’s tales, while not becoming overdone with too much backstory, like a TV series over the course of several seasons would.
You might notice that there are a ton of very bad Stephen King movies out there, based on Stephen King’s stories that have already proven to be successful. The problem with movies about his books is that they’re unable to develop the characters enough, so you don’t really love/fear those characters the way you do when you’ve spent hours reading about them.
With “11.22.63,” we’ve been able to learn more about Jake Epping’s task in going back in time. If this were done as a movie, so much would have to happen so quickly, you wouldn’t really care about the dilemmas faced by the protagonist.
I thought we could find several other Stephen King stories that Hulu might do well to produce in a whole Stephen King series of shows. (I actually mentioned this as one of the ways Hulu could catch Netflix.)
5 Stephen King Stories Ready For Hulu
I’m not putting King’s “The Dark Tower” series on this list because it sounds like that’s either going to be made into a full-fledged series of movies, starring Idris Elba and Matthew McConaghey. While there might be a chance at a TV series to connect some of the movies, my guess is that HBO will snap that up quickly.
Also, “The Stand” is expected to be made into another set of movies or mini-series, so I excluded that story from this list.
So here are five other Stephen King stories I think are ripe for Hulu to produce.
“The Talisman” and “Black House”
“The Talisman” is a story I’ve been waiting to see produced for a couple decades now. About a decade ago, King and Peter Straub (who paired together to write the first one) got together to write the sequel, “Black House.”
The first season of this series should be based on 12-year-old Jack Sawyer, who finds himself on a journey across the country in hopes of saving his cancer-ridden mother. Jack has the ability to go back and forth between our world and “the Territories,” which is a parallel world with a medieval feel to it. Some characters in the book have “Twinners” that are their equal in the other world, set in different circumstances, of course.
“Wolf,” who becomes Jack’s innocent-minded sidekick, is one of my all-time favorite Stephen King characters – and I need Hulu to make him real.
“Black House” can be the second season to “The Talisman,” although, it will be with a completely new cast of actors/actresses, since this takes place when Jack is an adult. He’s a grown-up lieutenant in the L.A. police department, and this book is about his attempt to solve some mysterious murders – that have a connection to “The Territories.”
Yes, this was already made into a movie – starring Ed Harris and Max Von Sydow. It got a 26 on the Rotten Tomatoes meter, but I think it would work better as a long-run mini-series on Hulu.
The story is set in Castle Rock, Maine, as many of King’s stories are, and an old man named Leland Gaunt has opened up a shop that sells a little bit of everything. As a matter of fact, the shop always has that one very special thing that someone really seems to want, whether it’s a special old baseball card or a piece of wood believed to be from Noah’s Ark. The prices are more than reasonable, although, Gaunt will ask the buyer to play a little prank on someone else in the town.
Did we mention that Leland Gaunt is either a demon or the devil?
As you can imagine, things start to get out of hand as the town quietly turns in on itself, but not before we get to watch good people slowly turn bad – for a trinket they treasure.
Sheriff Alan Pangborn tries to calm the town down, while hoping to figure out the root cause of all this malice.
“Under the Dome”
CBS’ “Under the Dome,” which got canceled last year, overshot the story completely. The first season was actually really good, but then it came undone in Year 2 and couldn’t recapture itself in Year 3. The problem? They went away from King’s original story in order to stretch it out into several seasons, more than just what he wrote about. And I mean they went waaaaaaaay away from the book.
With that said, if Hulu got hold of the rights to “Under the Dome,” which they won’t, since it’s a CBS show, they could do the one-season treatment on it and stay true to King’s original tale. That would’ve been amazing – but we can only hope.
The book is about a town that suddenly finds itself completely cut off from the outside world after a see-through dome has dropped over it completely out of the blue.
Now imagine this town is one that’s dealing with a corrupt town selectman, a crystal meth production house and a troubled young man that’s killing people.
This was a novella that King wrote in the collection, “Different Seasons,” easily one of my favorite books with King’s name on it.
Along with “Apt Pupil,” that book also has three more great novellas, two of which became the movies, “Stand By Me” and “The Shawshank Redemption.”
At any rate, “Apt Pupil” is a great story about a young man that finds out he lives next door to a former Nazi war criminal from World War II. So he parlays this information into forcing the old man to regale tales of all the horrible crimes the Germans did during the Holocaust. Both characters slowly go over the edge, as one is wishing to put everything behind him and the other has become the new bad guy that can’t get enough of it.
Stephen King Short Stories
King has a long, long, long list of great short stories and novellas. They’re all mostly too short to become movies, but they could easily be adapted into one-hour TV shows.
Much like TNT did about a decade ago with “Nightmares and Dreamscapes,” these stories could be told unconnected to each other. Think of a one-hour “Twilight Zone” series, with a different story each week.
Some of my favorite novellas and short stories from King include “The Long Walk” and “Rage,” both of which were published under his darker pseudonym Richard Bachman. The first story is about a dystopian society where 100 teenage boys compete in an annual contest called, “The Long Walk.” They walk until they can’t walk any longer with the winner getting set up for life – and the losers – not.
“Rage,” on the other hand, is about a teenage boy that snaps and decides to take his high school class hostage. For obvious reasons, this story probably won’t be made into a show or a movie, considering the number of school shootings that have happened in the past few years. King himself allowed the story to fall out of print because of its alleged association with shootings in the ‘80s and ‘90s.
Another novella ripe for one-hour treatment is “1922,” which was published in the “Full Dark, No Stars” collection. The story revolves around Wilfred James, who convinces his son to murder James’ wife, in hopes of gaining full control of her land and livestock company. It sounds boring, but things really don’t go as planned!
That’s just a handful of Stephen King stories I think would work well on Hulu in a one-season mini-series, with anywhere from eight to 12 episodes. Are there some stories you think I forgot?