The other day I finished reading book seven of the Dark Tower series. This marks my second time through the entire series, and I must say that it got even better this time around. I have a feeling this is going to turn into a rambling mess about the final book, which people complained about, so if you have not read the series, I apologize, you should tune in later for another post or something.
Things I Loved
The deaths. Yes, that sounds morbid, but each death of a main character is moving and we get to see how they helped changed Roland for the better.
-Eddie’s death comes early in the book, and it’s actually kind of shocking by how abruptly it happens. As Roland travels along, he continues to use phrases that Eddie often used.
-Jake’s death was the saddest. He gives his life to save Stephen King. Roland thinks of him as his son, which is a huge change from the first book, where Roland considered him “the boy” and decided to let him fall. I do believe that Roland would have given his life to save Jake, which is as close to Roland giving up the tower as possible.
-Oy’s death was the most heroic. The one time we see Roland truly vulnerable, he falls asleep with no one capable to keep watch against Mordred. The spider-boy attacks, but Oy steps in and gives his life to save Roland (or as Oy would say Olan). The sad part was, how regretful Roland is about the way he treated Oy before he died. Roland would have considered Oy’s death to be a sacrifice for the tower, or for his own survival (as with David the hawk), yet now he mourns his friend’s death like it were any member of the ka-tet.
-Walter/Randall Flagg: I know many people disliked the way “the man in black” met his end (being eaten by Mordred). They claim that it was just a way to set up how powerful Mordred is and that it did not live up to the hype of the showdown between Flagg and Roland.
For me though, it reminds me of how in Lord of the Rings, you keeping thinking that at some point Sauron and Aragorn will have this great sword fight, yet it never happens.
The only more fitting death for Walter, would be if Jake would have shot him with the Ruger (since it seemed to scare Flagg in book IV). I think Jake killing him would have really been a nice touch, but instead Roland’s other son does the deed. I love how Flagg thinks his thinking cap can block Mordred, which it does not.
I also loved the ending, well both endings. The first ending is great because Roland opening the door to the tower is the perfect ending. I love that King also lets the reader know that you can stop there. I love though, how we get to go along with Roland as he travels towards the top of the tower. When he gets there he realizes he has done it before and that he is going to start over. There is a lesson in there about wanting things so badly. I wonder if Roland will break the cycle now that he has the Horn of Eld?
I also wonder if the reason characters seemed to get those odd premonitions (such as Jake saying that the rose in the vacant lot is the universe, or all universes, and not knowing how he knows that) is because they have been locked in this cycle as well…something to ponder I suppose.
A TV Series
As most people, J.J. Abrams bought the rights for $19 (or so I have read a few places). This makes me hope they will make the series into a TV show, especially on HBO or something.
I have spent the last few days thinking about how awesome this show would be. Hell, I have even started breaking down how each season should go. I would post all that stuff, but I am sure only one person is going to read this.
I have also heard that Christian Bale would be a good Roland, and all I can say is…NO. I just do not picture Bale when I read the books. Bale does not seem to fit the description of “old long, tall, and ugly.”
Obviously, a young Clint Eastwood would probably be perfect, unfortunately my time machine is broken. I would say going with unknowns would be the best bet, maybe a semi-star for Roland. Who would you cast? And do not give me any names like Johnny Depp, Matt Damon, Brad Pitt…absolutely not.
Here is an old mock trailer someone did. I actually love the idea for Pere Callahan…