Stephen King Donald Trump story

Photo via George Koroneos (Licensed)

Stephen King compares Donald Trump to 2 of his famous book characters

This proves why he's the king of horror.

 

Josh Katzowitz

Internet Culture

Published Apr 3, 2017   Updated May 24, 2021, 6:40 pm CDT

Famed author Stephen King is decidedly not a fan of President Donald Trump, and really, you only have to spend 30 seconds on King’s Twitter account to know that (or look at this Trump-inspired three-tweet horror story).

(And those tweets are just from the last 17 days.)

But in this story for the Guardian, King is a bit more verbose about what he thinks about Trump. Actually, King can see similarities between Trump and two of his past book characters.

No, we’re not talking about Pennywise from It, Randall Flagg from The Stand, or Cujo from Cujo. No, he can see bits of Trump in The Dead Zone’s Greg Stillson, a door-to-door Bible salesman, and car salesman Big Jim Rennie from Under the Dome.

In his newspaper piece titled, “How do such men rise? First as a joke,” King explains the comparisons:

[Stillson] is laughed at when he runs for mayor in his small New England town, but he wins. He is laughed at when he runs for the House of Representatives (part of his platform is a promise to rocket America’s trash into outer space), but he wins again. When Johnny Smith, the novel’s precognitive hero, shakes his hand, he realizes that some day Stillson is going to laugh and joke his way into the White House, where he will start world war three.

Big Jim Rennie in Under The Dome is cut from the same cloth. He’s a car salesman (selling being a key requirement for the successful politician), who is the head selectman in the small town of Chester’s Mill, when a dome comes down and cuts the community off from the world. He’s a crook, a cozener and a sociopath, the worst possible choice in a time of crisis, but he’s got a folksy, straight-from-the-shoulder delivery that people relate to. The fact that he’s incompetent at best and downright malevolent at worst doesn’t matter.

The Dead Zone was published in 1979 and Under the Dome first appeared in 2009, before King witnessed Trump’s rise to power, but he says the formula looks the same.

First, they’re seen as a joke. Then, they’re seen as presenting something different than the status quo. Finally, they’re elected even though they’re “headstrong, self-centered, and inexperienced.”

Wrote King: “Such men do not succeed to high office often, but when they do, the times are always troubled, the candidates in question charismatic, their proposed solutions to complex problems simple, straightforward and impractical. The baggage that should weigh these hucksters down becomes magically light, lifting them over the competition like Carl Fredricksen in the Pixar film Up. Trump’s negatives didn’t drag him down; on the contrary, they helped get him elected.”

Then, King invents six fictional characters who are Trump supporters—none of whom are “stupid, venal or evil”—and he injects them with his own brand of truth serum. Wrote King: “Because they are fictional—my creatures—they all agreed to this.” Then, King has a conversation with those characters that could be construed as very real.

Take a look at why these made-up characters loved Trump and why they disliked Hillary Clinton.

King is one of the most popular horror writers of all time. As such, there’s little doubt his story might end up scaring the shit out of anybody who doesn’t love Trump.

H/T Vulture

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*First Published: Apr 3, 2017, 5:20 pm CDT