Watching TV last night, I was flabbergasted to see a book trailer. A book trailer! On TV! It was a 30-second spot for Stephen King’s Under the Dome, and though it hints at elements of martial law and mass casualties, there’s not much to grab hold of. Notable for its placement on network TV, but little more.
Verdict: Surprised! I don’t recall seeing a book trailer on TV since Dianetics.
But then I did a little searching and found an alternate trailer centered up on an interview with King. Mostly I’ve avoided these kind of trailers in my BTT posts because, guess what? They’re boring. On the other hand, we’re talking about Stephen Freaking King here. The guy has screen presence. What, don’t believe me? Then perhaps you missed his nuanced turn in Creepshow as a country hick turning into a giant weed.
The point is, he’s great in this interview. Under the Dome is his return to the large canvas he manipulated so enjoyably in books like The Stand, It, and Needful Things. It’s also the third time he tried to write the darn thing; his first attempt in 1976 tanked, and another shot in 1979 under the title The Cannibals also self-destructed. King likens his third and final stab to “a baseball player saying, ‘I missed a really fat pitch and I’d really like to have another chance at that particular hanging curveball.”
Before you start thinking this is refreshing low-tech, I should mention that there’s three, possibly four, camera angles to this single interview and various computer-generated graphics. See, even with his a sit-down chat, King can’t help but go “big”.
Verdict: Engaging. I love watching King on camera. Even when he’s not turning into a weed.