Stephen King's The Stand
  • PlopperPlopper
    Moderator
    Hey guys, thought I'd start the ball rolling with a topic about the master of horror himself (well for me any way), and I've been E-Mailing Vince about this so thought that we'd have more fun here.

    One thing I'd like to ask any of you guys over there in the US that would have originally seen it transmitted (if any) what was it like to watch at the time?  How well was it recieved?  And did you like it?

    Also on a techie note, can anybody tell me what the back of the DVD cover may be relating to when it says "THIS PROGRAM MAY HAVE BEEN EDITED FROM IT'S ORIGINAL NETWORK VERSION"?

    So far I've watched 2 of the 4 episodes and I'm really enjoying it, I'd forgotten I'd actually seen some of it before, and I can't for the life of me remember where and when that was.  Thankfully I can't remember the end (of the show that is, I've read the book so know what happens and all).
  • vincentvincent
    Member
  • vincentvincent
    Member
  • vincentvincent
    Member
  • JayneJayne
    Moderator
    My recollection of The Stand was that King fans watched it and liked it, but ABC, the station that broadcast it, was getting a reputation for the doom-and-gloom network, having shown such feel-good fare as "The Day After" and "Amerika." Granted "The Day After" was shown a decade earlier, but it was pretty shocking for the time.  I recall as a little kid my elementary school sending home warnings to parents advising them about that movie and suggesting that they not let us watch it.   That sort of thing sticks with a population.   I vaguely remember some reviews in TV Guide or something similar making comparisons...

     

    I watched it on and off.  At the time, rotting bodies really bothered me, so I didn't get as into it as someone without that aversion.  I also found that the last chapter was really overly sentimental, given all the stuff that had gone on before.  It felt like it went from a typical ABC television "We all gonna die!!" production to a Lifetime TV movie.

     

    The most outstanding memory I have is the scene near the end when Lauren San Giacomo throws herself off the building so she wouldn't give birth to Flagg's spawn (if I'm recalling correctly).  I think it's because I've never really liked her.  Her face reminds me of the face I make by making a fist and drawing on the side of my hand (you know, where you use your thumb to work the jaw/mouth of your hand puppet, and your index finger knuckle becomes his hat)?  I know that's probably pretty mean to say, but she irked me and I thought her "I been aged by da evils!" make-up sucked. 

     

    More recently, Jim picked up an issue or two of the graphic novel, which is much grittier and truer to the novel than the TV series.  The Stand, IMO, would make for an excellent animated series on HBO, up there with The Dark Tower series.  It's easier to pull off the supernatural stuff with good animation, and IMO, it can be way more affecting that watching real actors going through the same motions.  It's like another version of The Uncanny Valley.  This time, instead of cartoons looking real enough to be disturbing, it's life action looking fake enough to have the same effect on the viewer.
  • Thanx for all the info guys.

    Been looking about a bit, and as far as IMDB goes, it was transmitted in 6 one hour episodes, NOT like the 4 one and a half hour episodes on the DVD?

    So it's just about as I had expected on the reception of the series originally in the US.

    Another question, for the time was the series perceived as cutting edge?  Watching it how I was surprised at the quality of some of the digital special effects, especially some of the Times Square shots showing the devastation just before the 2 NY survivors left the city.

    Dan, your right about Landis he's only in one short scene were Tom almost gets caught, M O O N, that spells caught!!!

    Vince you are right about the other 2, and the other name I instantly recognised when looking at the IMDB page was this one!!!

    Kareem Abdul-Jabbar as the Monster Shouter!
  • That would have been 2 hours with all those adverts through wouldn't it?  That sounds about right for the 6 hour running time of the DVD.

    I was the never wrong IMDB that told me that, should have known better!!!
  • vincentvincent
    Member
  • Thanks @vincent for sorting that out for me. But yeah, there were definitely better TV special effects at the time. 8)
  • Funny thing about their FX being compared... the guys I knew who did the FX work on The Stand went on to be the guys who did the FX on... The Matrix. Ka-Ching!
  • Everyone has to cut their baby teeth somewhere. ;)
  • Actually the miniature work in The Stand is REALLY good as were all of the in camera effects, it's just some of the CGI to some people doesn't look so good now, but considering the NONE sci-fi TV of the time I was really impressed!

    It's not like today were even something like the Dr.Who spin off Tourchwood has Hollywood standard CGI at it's fingertips, back then I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't have to program the CGI themselves?
  • vincentvincent
    Member
  • Yeh! That's what I was thinking, one set had been re-mastered to compensate for the NTSC to PAL conversion and the other was not.

     

    I should be getting my own copy of the older version at the start of next week, so I'll run bits back to back to see if anything else has been altered!

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