Saturday, May 1, 2010
Stephen King's IT (continued)
So since Thursday I've gotten a handle on why Stephen King is so great. Or maybe just an example of why he is so great. Whatever. Its nearly the same.
In IT, there are pretty much seven main characters. And I don't know about you, but sometimes, even when watching a movie, seven main characters are a little hard to get a handle on. But Stephen King is able to handle this pretty masterfully.
They're all kids, which might complicate the matter, but he gives each one trait that makes them stand out from the other kids. For example:
1. Beverly is the only girl
2. Eddie has asthma
3. Ben is extremely overweight
4. Bill stutters
5. Richie does impressions
6. Mike is the only black kid
7. Stan is the only Jewish kid
Bill and Richie are pretty easy, because you can tell by their speech who they are. Its an excellent marker. Beverly is easy, since all her descriptions are listed with "she". Ben gets a lot of descriptions of his pudgy belly. Eddie is constantly pulling out his aspirator. Which leaves Mike and Stan.
With Mike and Stan, its as though they know there must be something different about them, because they get treated so differently by people all the time. Stan isn't sure what his Jewish identity means. And Mike knows he gets treated differently and is constantly on his guard. The kids joke a lot about Stan being different, mostly because of the tension between him having to be different than them because he's Jewish, and the fact that he's not different at all. With Mike, there's less joking, but they accept him as one of their own against the fight of IT. They almost need Mike more, because before they were six, and they needed seven.
I'm still in awe how good the book was.
[Side note: its the 35th book I've finished this year!]