Thursday, March 7, 2013

Changes In Stephen King's The Stand 1978-1990 Part 9

The first thing that stands out about Chapter 19 of The Stand is that it has a picture in it.  The 1990 edition has several illustrations by Bernie Wrightson (or Berni; the spelling of his first name seems to vary), perhaps best known as the co-creator of the comics character Swamp Thing.  Wrightson had collaborated with King before on Creepshow and Cycle of the Werewolf.  Strangely, these illustrations are dated 1984 and 1985, suggesting that the revised Stand had a long gestation period.  The first one is of Larry taking care of his dying mother. In general, the illustrations don't add much to the novel, but they're a nice touch and a nod to the old tradition of novels with illustrations which had mostly died out in the 20th Century.

Beyond the inclusion of the illustration, other changes in this chapter are minor.  One interesting one is that King dropped a complaint from Larry's mother about the hospital emergency room being "full of Puerto Ricans".  One might suspect that the more politically correct times of 1990 made that 1970s ethnic complaint a bit taboo, but since he leaves in some of Alice Underwood's other ethnic and racist slurs in the text, it's probably just a result of his fiddling with the text.  The man is a thorough reviser.

I'll pick up next with Chapter 20, which appears to be a new chapter.  

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