Stephen King’s The Stand is taking on new significance in light of the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, James Marsden, who is one of the stars of the upcoming TV adaptation, previously commented on how real and reel life had mirrored one another during filming. Now, King is offering pandemic-related knowledge by sharing a chapter from The Stand.
For those unaware, Stephen King’s 1978 novel tells the fictional tale of a highly contagious and deadly influenza strain. After accidentally getting released, the biological weapon wreaks havoc as it is not responsive to the usual interventions. In light of recent events with the coronavirus, Stephen King pointed his Twitter followers to Chapter 8 in audio form via a YouTube video. Check it out:
In his caption, Stephen King reminded Twitter that COVID-19 (a.k.a. the coronavirus) is not as “lethal” as the “superflu” described in the book. Still, King seems to believe that the info in Chapter 8 of The Stand could be useful in the current atmosphere.
Chapter 8 of The Stand begins with a man believing that death is far from near. It turns out that he has been exposed to the lethally-designed influenza while filling up his car with a tank of gas. An innocuous enough task that has ominous consequences. That is just the first 43 seconds of the chapter, so you can listen to learn even more.
Production on The Stand TV series started in the fall of 2019. Whether people will still want to tune in as readily given how the pandemic is playing out in real-life remains to be seen. For now, Stephen King is offering a chance to have his fictional work have an impact in the real world.
The coronavirus outbreak has seen quite a few high-profile celebrities test positive for it. As for Stephen King, he is not the only one trying to do their part amid the pandemic. Doctor Who’s Jodie Whittaker has given a quarantine message to fans in-character as the doctor. Meanwhile, in the industry, precautionary response to COVID-19 has led to many TV shows entering delays and early endings.
Over 40 years after The Stand was published, Stephen King could probably not have imagined that it would take on such meaning. Will people take the opportunity to learn from the lesson taught by King’s novel? The YouTube video has over 27,000 views, so that is a start.
A premiere date for CBS All Access’ adaptation of The Stand is still to come. While waiting to learn when the latest work inspired by Stephen King gets released, check out this spring’s premieres.