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The Running Man

Uploaded by NeoAnderson on Apr 04, 2002

The novel describes a science fiction utopia where market capitalism and television game shows have spiraled out of control. King establishes characters quickly, creating sympathy in the first few pages for Ben Richards—whose 18-month-old baby girl is suffering from a horrible cough, perhaps pneumonia. Not able to afford medicine, Richards enters himself in the last-chance moneymaking scheme of the Free-Vee games. The games include Treadmill to Bucks, in which contestants with heart attack struggle to outlast a treadmill, or the accurately named Swim the Crocodiles. After rigorous physical and mental examinations, Richards is assigned "Elevator Six"--the path of a chosen few--that leads to The Running Man game. In this game, the stakes and the prizes are raised. Success means a life of luxury. Failure means death. Unfortunately, few ever win the game.


The Running Man is a short book, tightly written to be read and enjoyed in a short period of time. The novel offers us a glimpse into King’s view of the future. From the book it doesn’t look so good.

People every where have been taken over by television, more accurately, television game shows. Shows like Treadmill to Bucks and The Running Man. In Treadmill to Bucks the contestant who is prone to heart attack has to run on a treadmill and answer questions correctly in order to get the most amount of money. If you fail the show, and most people do, you probably end up in the hospital with a minor problem that can be treated. If you are “lucky” enough to end up on the Running Man show and fail, there is no hospital in the world that can still save you. Loss always results in death.

Kings view of the future is now very distant from today. People in the future are all very violent and love to see people die on game shows. Also because of this addiction they are all glued to their TV’s most of the time. People today are increasingly becoming violent because of movies, especially small children, who watch these movies earlier in life than we do. Also TV is becoming very important in our world too. Most Americans surely have one in their house and watch more than 2 hours a day.

After reading the book you will probably wonder. What was his purpose for writing it? I think that is was written for the purpose of warning us. Just like...

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Uploaded by:   NeoAnderson

Date:   04/04/2002

Category:   Literature

Length:   2 pages (479 words)

Views:   1488

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