The CBS Under the Dome adaptation of Stephen King’s novel of the same name has launched itself skyward as the pilot episode of the summer show grabbed over 13 million views which is, as The Los Angeles Times points out, very respectable for 2013 viewing figures.
In Under the Dome, the good townspeople of Chester’s Mill have a giant invisible shield comes down out of nowhere with enough force to chop a cow in half. People under the bubble can see through it, but they can’t hear through it, and they can’t communicate with the outside world. Phones, power and internet are all gone with a capital G.
The locals must figure out where the dome came from and how they can get out from under it before their supplies and time run out.
This summer mini-series looks to be a winner on the BBQ circuit of summer fare. Stephen King fans will no doubt watching to see how faithful the show is to their favorite horror writers book. The same fans will be on Twitter and Facebook to complain if the TV version strays too far off topic. If it deviates as far as say, Salem’s Lot, the Twitter whale may do some overtime.
It will be interesting to see how long the “non-cable” company produced show will hold out against the other dramas on offer from the cable networks who have a much bigger budget. If Monday’s viewing figures are anything to go by, Under the Dome should do just fine.
With Stephen King’s Under the Dome grabbing over 13 million viewers (the actual figure is 13.14 million) the show will do more than just “hold its own” against the competition.
The setting of Under the Dome is a typical Stephen King one. It is the town as microcosm with all the peccadilloes that hide so effortlessly in everyday life only to come zooming to the surface in trying times. Like other King settings, the town’s people are a flawed lot. In Chester’s Mill, the small town folks aren’t friendly, not to strangers and not to each other.
This is a small town that harbours grudges which run just under surface on a normal day, now that things have changed so drastically, the masks will start coming off.
Everyone in the town seems to have a score to settle or relies on good old fashion graft to build their fishbowl empire. The only true “outsider” is Barbie. He is tolerated, but only just. He is the guy who was just passing through who took a little too long to do so. Now he, and his mysterious past are both caught up in the prison that the dome has become.
Apparently, despite the fact that Brian K. Vaughan (Lost) has deviated from the story a good bit, King has come forward and said that he approves of the changes made. That has to mean something to the fans who have already complained that the adaptation is “nothing like the book.”
The news is good overall though. The pilot showed that same attention to detail that makes King’s books so good. Regardless of the complaints, 13 million viewers can’t be that wrong, can they? With the Under the Dome pilot grabbing that amount of viewers, we don’t think that Stephen King or Brian K. Vaughn will be too worried about the competition.
By Michael Smith