Tuesday, 12 May 2009

The Stand: Part 2

If part 1 was about the plague and its impact on the world Part 2 is about “The Dreams”. We join Stu, Larry, Nick and Fran as they make their way through a suddenly empty world. But they all dream, dream of an old Woman “Mother Abigail” who urges them to join her in Hemingford Home, Nebraska. We also encounter some more of “The Dark Man” who we discover is named Randall Flagg, an innocuous name but to those that know Kings work one that sends shivers down the toughest spine. As he states himself “Pleased to meet you, hope you guessed my name.” He is also gathering souls, some directly and some through dreams and where some people seem to be led to their final location others are getting conflicting dreams, a choice between the two opposing groups. We also expand on some of the persons already seen and add some new characters to the mix.PDVD_005

Lloyd Henried who we last saw getting arrested after a failed liquor store holdup is freed by Flagg to become his second, to revenge those that put him there.

Harold Lauder is still infatuated with Fran (who isn’t!) and as joint survivors see’s it as a sign that they should be together.

We meet “The Trashcan Man” a pyromaniac who is high on Flaggs list of devotees. A dangerous man who will soon have a dangerous position.

Nadine Cross is encountered by Larry in the ruins of New York, she dreams of Flagg and knows she can escape him and her eventual destiny simply by sacrificing her virginity.

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We also meet Tom Cullen who teams with Nick, Tom is retarded so obviously there are communication difficulties until they meet Ralph Brenter on the road. For want of a better term “A good old boy”

Stu meets up with Glen Bateman, Kojak the dog and eventually Fran and Harold who takes and instant dislike to Stu.

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Of course the real gem is Mother Abigail herself. Her scenes are truly magic and the old lady act which can often be so hard to capture is perfect.

There are a few things that niggle me in this episode however.

The portrayal of Nadine is awful, it is hampered by two factors for me. One is the bastardisation of the character into a combination of another character from the book that dies of drug overdose and the other is that the actress just doesn't do it for me. She is wooden and stilted and what should be a vivacious, slightly shy and sexy school teacher just comes across as slightly manic.

Another niggle is the sudden appearance of what are essentially main characters, I know it is to expedite the story and the cast is already huge but these people will be important later and they seem to just appear with no real explanation.

They make their way to Boulder where society will be rebuilt or to Las Vegas where it will be reforged.

It’s time to pick a side.

Its time to Stand.

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