Would you like to know when I first began reading Stephen King’s Children of the Corn? (To tell you the truth, Cheely, I really don’t care…) Great! I will tell you. It was two weeks ago. I read for a few minutes and then suddenly my eReader is telling me that I’m already 25% finished with the story. Read a bit more the next day and discover that I am over 80% done. So, I reread, trying to keep the experience going for as long as I can. Okay, done rereading, I’ll just progress a little further…Congratulations! I’m all done. Boo! I want more!
Okay, I went in knowing it was a short story. But this was like, really short. It was much darker and more wretched than the movie though. The two adult characters, husband and wife, that find themselves in the middle of nowhere in a small abandoned town surrounded by cornfields and killer children are obnoxiously sugar coated in the movie. The young childless couple, hero and heroine, are destined to overcome the supernatural force of “he who walks behind the rows,” escape the evil and thwart the plot of the meanie kids. They are awarded with two adorable children that they rescue from the kid cult. In the book they are flawed individuals struggling to save their rocky marriage. More relatable if you ask me.
Oh but the movie gives us memorable evil children like Malachi, the killer with long red hair and the younger Isaac with the unnerving squeaky voice who leads the pack! They are simply mentioned in the book. It takes a screen and a longer story to bring them to life.
So which do I prefer? Tough choice. I’ll go with the book (short story) for its commitment to dark storytelling. Maybe later I will flip a coin and let fate decide my preference. But not now.