While Stephen King might be best known for some of his spooky, supernatural villains, the best-selling author could predict President Trump’s electoral win just by flipping through the pages of his impressive oeuvre. In “How Do Such Men Rise: First a Joke,” King’s story on the 45th president for The Guardian, King introduces a fictional dialogue with imagined Trump supporters by explaining the connections he sees between Trump and two of his more ordinary antagonists who wielded extraordinary destructive powers. The first is the good-humored door-to-door salesman Greg Stillson in The Dead Zone:
“[Stillson] is laughed at when he runs for mayor in his small New England town, but he wins. He is laughed at when he runs for the House of Representatives (part of his platform is a promise to rocket America’s trash into outer space), but he wins again.”
While this unexpected rise to power might not sound so bad, the novel’s precognitive hero (played in the 1983 film adaption by Christopher Walken) can see that in the future Stillson will become president and start World War III. So, not great. King keeps the unflattering comparisons going by also drawing similarities between the commander-in-chief and Under the Dome’s car salesman Big Jim Rennie:
“[Rennie is] a crook, a cozener and a sociopath, the worst possible choice in a time of crisis, but he’s got a folksy, straight-from-the-shoulder delivery that people relate to. The fact that he’s incompetent at best and downright malevolent at worst doesn’t matter.”
Read King’s story here.