2017 is a great year for Stephen King adaptions. Not only do we get to see The Dark Tower on the big screen for the first time, but we also have remake's of It and Gerald's Game to look forward to. Spike have recently released the first trailer for their upcoming adaption of King's The Mist, and certain plot details have revealed that the TV series might have more in common with the 2007 film than we originally thought.
Many have pondered how the 134-page novella will be made into a serialized show; luckily, executive producer Christian Torpe has shed some light on the matter. Torpe suggests that we should think of the adaption as a "re-imagination" of the source material and the 2007 movie, which followed a similar plot to the short story. Speaking to TV Guide, Torpe said:
"Internally, we talk about it as doing the Fargo approach, where the movie and the TV show is the same, but it's different. It's like a weird, twisted cousin to the original source material. Fans of the movie and of the book and of Mr. King's work will certainly see elements from it. ... We also, in order to develop it for TV and turn it into an ongoing series, took our own little detours here and there."
Torpe also praised Frank Darabont for the controversially changed ending in the 2007 movie — an ending where the protagonist murders his fellow survivors, moments before the US Army arrive. #StephenKing loved the dark nature of this conclusion, and even preferred it to his own. Speaking of the movie, Torpe said:
"I personally love Mr. [Darabont's] ending, I thought it was a stroke of genius. We are playing around in that territory and we also know, of course, Mr. King's ending. And I know Mr. King actually preferred Darabont's ending And so I think we came up with our own spin on a very original and surprising ending."
TV Guide has also shed some light on the plot and characters:
"Alyssa Sutherland will play a mother who gets trapped in a mall with her daughter and her daughter's rapist; Morgan Spector will play the father of Sutherland's daughter who is stuck in a different location from the rest of his family; Okezie Morro will play a man with amnesia struggling to find allies; and Frances Conroy will play a woman whose ideas regarding the origin of the monstrous mist will lead to great conflict within her small community of survivors."
So What Should We Expect?
From what we can gather, #TheMist will be The Walking Dead meets Cloverfield. The first series will follow groups of fragmented survivors who are trying to survive the dangers that lurk in the mist. It's Spike TV's first scripted show, so they probably want to make impact. While the novella and 2007 movie were both set almost entirely in a supermarket, the locations in the series should (hopefully) explore the scale of the mist — will the whole world be effected, or just one small town in Maine? The Mist looks like its taking cues from The Walking Dead, exploring the breakdown of humanity, and how other factions interact with each other in a desperate effort to survive.
The novella also introduced us to some excellent characters such as David Drayton, his neighbor Brent Norton and the fanatical Mrs. Carmody. None of these names appear on the character list, which further indicates the series's wish to distance itself from the source material and expanding the universe — as Torpe said, a "weird, twisted cousin." Which is awesome.
Zombies, Monsters, And Destruction, Oh My!
Spike recently dropped their most brutal trailer yet, showing King fans that they're not afraid to tackle some of the more horrifying aspects of the plot. We see glimpses of eyeless (potentially reanimated) people, and how a lack of food, water, and everything else has a psychological impact on the population of the town. It also shows us that the TV adaption is looking to be far darker than the 2007 movie, and offers us an entirely different — albeit just as terrifying — atmosphere.
The Mist premiers on Spike Thursday, June 22 at 10 pm ET/PT. Personally, I cannot wait to see what kind of monsters hiding in this mist — and in the characters themselves.