The Stand - Original vs. Uncut?

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The Stand - Original vs. Uncut?

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1Pierced_Phoenix
Editado: Abr 6, 2011, 5:50 pm

Hi. I am new to the website and the group. I have a question about "The Stand". I read the Original Version about 6 months ago. I recently picked up his "Complete and Uncut" version. Are there any huge differences between the two where i should read that version as well, or shall i be content on having read the original version and possibly just read the Uncut edition after i get through all his book. I currently own ever single novel and story collection (99.9% of which are in hardcovers, with about 25 first editions, the exception being "The Colorado Kid" (paperback)) I have been reading all of his books in order, and am currently reading "the Talisman", with about 150 pages left I love it.
Thanks for all your help in advance.
Read on fellow King fanatics.

P.S. Any technical term for a King Fan? i cant seem to figure out what to call myself. lol

2Bookmarque
Editado: Abr 6, 2011, 6:53 pm

I prefer the original published version...it's more focused. Way too many ratholes in the uncut version. The editor wisely cut that crap in the first place.

Oh and welcome aboard.

3Morphidae
Abr 6, 2011, 8:54 pm

Whereas I liked all the additional characterization. So, your mileage may vary.

4Pierced_Phoenix
Abr 7, 2011, 1:13 am

#2 Thanx for the tip. maybe once i get through my collection ill go back to it. Hopefully will have The Talisman done by the weekend, Then on to Thinner.

5quartzite
Abr 7, 2011, 11:31 am

I am with Bookmarque -- I prefer the original. The uncut had a lot more paranoia about the government trying to cover up what was going on, and the way all government employees and agencies were in lockstep on that made me laugh --in-fighting , turf battles, leaking, whistle blowing, and blame-laying would be way more likely.

6BuffaloPhil
Abr 7, 2011, 1:04 pm

I have only read the Uncut version, but that ranks as my favourite SK book (and one of my favourite books full stop.)

I believe that the original version doesn't include Trashcan Man's episode with The Kid, which is a great part of the book IMO, so just for that I'd look into the uncut version.

I'd probably suggest you leave it until you've finished the others though, having read the original.

7cal8769
Abr 7, 2011, 1:12 pm

I have only read the uncut version and loved it.

8Svartalf
Abr 7, 2011, 4:44 pm

>6 BuffaloPhil: yes that is correct the original editions lacks the Trashcan-man and the Kid episode. It's pretty good. A bit sickish (sodomizing Trashcan-man with a pistol...ehh...) but all so captivating.
I've read both and I prefer the uncut. After all, that was they way it was intended to be by the author.
The pacing is defiantly slower, but you get more out of the story.
So in the end i think it all really comes down to time. If you haven't read the book, its best to go with uncut. If you did read the original then might as well stick with that and go on and read something else. I mean King has a pretty hefty collection to chose from which should keep you occupied for a few years.

9Pierced_Phoenix
Abr 7, 2011, 4:55 pm

#8- thanks for the spoiler. LOL. and as far as his collection keeping me busy for a few years.... I am actually on pace to have the entire collection done by this time next year.
And thank you everyone for your input.

80 pages left of The Talisman at this point, hope to have it finished tonight or tomorow night :)

10Humblefish
Jun 12, 2011, 6:08 am

I only read the uncut version and found it extremely long. It dragged on and on...

11sonofyork
Jul 29, 2011, 1:35 am

I had read the original paperback (900 + pg.s) for the first time in '83, then once again a few years later...how many pages does the uncut version sport?

12Pierced_Phoenix
Jul 29, 2011, 1:40 pm

the uncut version is 1152 pages

13LJZ
Ago 8, 2011, 6:59 pm

I highly suggest the uncut version. Then you get to read the book for what it was meant to be! after all, stephen didn't publish all 1152 pgs in the first place due to the binding back then. He had to take off approx. 400 pgs so the book just would'nt fall apart! Thus, it resulted in the cut version.

14Bookmarque
Ago 9, 2011, 7:41 am

well considering the art of binding was perfected over the centuries, I doubt that was the reason. Actually it was probably cost first and bloat second. Sometimes an editor is worth their weight in gold and I think the editor on the original stand is such a person. The length and breadth of the ratholes King went down in the uncut version were sophomoric at best. I've read both and prefer the version where a seasoned editor helped a fledgling writer hone his craft.

15busxgamer
Ago 21, 2011, 4:13 am

Just to clarify from earlier posts: Stephen King edited this book himself, uncomfortable with letting someone else chop that much out of his book.

As for which version to read: There are about 150,000 words cut, about 500 pages (depending on the page size of the version you're reading) worth of story is missing from the edited version. However, like I said, King himself made the edits so the original published version is still all King's own and is very good by itself.

I've heard arguments for both versions, and it basically ends up just a matter of opinion. If you're a major King fan, I would definitely read the uncut version as well, since there is so much missing. There are whole pieces of the story, even whole characters, missing from the original version. But that doesn't mean you have to read it right away.

16beatles1964
Editado: Ago 26, 2011, 7:39 am

Well, I've read & own both version of the book. And I definitely prefer the longer uncut version. Then again I love to read very
long books. But my opinion to people is to read both versions of the book so they can judge for themselves which one they
prefer. I do love the 8 hour 4 Part Mini-Series version of The Stand. Originally, people read the original version first because like busxgamer said King preferred to do the Editiing to his book himself instead of leaving it in the hands of one of the Editors. So it wasn't until the 90s that the Uncut version was Published. And we didn't realize what we had missed in the original version until people got the chance to buy & read the Uncut version. So when I eventually go back to re-read The Stand I'm gonna start with the original version then go on to read the Uncut version. But then again that's just me.

Beatles1964

17tjm568
Ago 29, 2011, 1:28 am

You know, I read the original The Stand way back when and loved it. When the unabridged version came out my Mom bought me one of the original, limited edition copies (since lost) and I loved that too. If you really like King's voice, reading the longer version will be right up your alley. If you are just in it for the story, which is totally cool, the basic story does't change and you should go for the shorter version. It is a great book either way...obviously. He wouldn't have been given the opportunity to rewrite it if it wasn't great. To make a long post even longer, find whatever version you can and read it. if you really like it, let a few months go by, and read the other.
TOPIC SHIFT
It's strange, I have become more aware of King's political stance as I have gotten older, and I often disagree with it. However, he writes such a nice sentence and story, I keep reading him. This is not true of other authors. I am not a very political person, but sometimes books bring so much politics into the story that I stop reading. Do political leanings by authors bother anyone else?

18AnnieMod
Ago 29, 2011, 2:23 am

I've read both and I honestly prefer the Original version -- and I wish someone had forced him to cut some of his latest novels as well. Not that the uncut version does not have some good pieces in it. But the book is good without them... pretty good actually.

Don't get me wrong - I will probably buy and read even his grocery list but... sometimes he gets on a tangent for way too long.

>17 tjm568: Do political leanings by authors bother anyone else?

Not really. As long as they are not writing their works just to promote their political view... It's a question of balance. If it reads like a political manifesto wrapped in a story - I usually hate it. If it is a good story with way too much politics in it -- it is still a good story.

19Zoe_Lang
Set 22, 2011, 12:53 am

I finished the Uncut version last week. Parts of it did go on forever, I felt. But I can also see how some elements would be lost otherwise (I cheated and checked the Wikipedia page to get a sense of what was in the original and what was in the uncut). I found updating the time frame a bit weird, particularly with respect to Trashcan Man and the fact that he had been 'treated' via frontal lobotomy. This made a lot more sense in 1977 and less in 1990....or he was older than I imagined him to be.

20jseger9000
Editado: Set 23, 2011, 7:15 pm

I have become more aware of King's political stance as I have gotten older

I'm noticing that a lot more in Insomnia. I happen to agree with his politics, but in that particular book, I'm thinking "C'mon Steve. It's too much."

Do political leanings by authors bother anyone else?

I want to be high-minded and say 'no'. I have read Ayn Rand and Heinlein, both of whose politics are very different from mine.

But then I heard about Orson Scott Card and some of the things he's said and it has kept me from reading his work.

I'd say it shouldn't keep me from reading their work, but I guess really it helps if they are dead.

21tjm568
Set 24, 2011, 2:03 am

I guess really it helps if they are dead

That really made me laugh.

What the hell did Orson Scott Card say?

By the way, how do you do that cool italics thing with copied text?

22jseger9000
Set 26, 2011, 11:05 pm

By the way, how do you do that cool italics thing with copied text?

I have to use HTML. I don't know how to show you without it doing it, but to open italics you type 'less than sign' (above the coma), the letter 'i' and then the 'greater than sign' (above the period). To close the italics, type 'less than sign' (above the coma), '/i' and then the 'greater than sign' (above the period).

What the hell did Orson Scott Card say?

He has a website (http://www.ornery.org/index.html) where he discusses his personal views. What gets my goat is his discussion of homosexuality. That he disagrees with it is his business. But he says foolish things like "The dark secret of homosexual society -- the one that dares not speak its name -- is how many homosexuals first entered into that world through a disturbing seduction or rape or molestation or abuse, and how many of them yearn to get out of the homosexual community and live normally."

That irked me and showed me that in some cases he was willfully being ignorant.

But what's stopped me from reading his work is that he's on the board of directors of the 'National Organization for Marriage', a group that seeks to prevent the legalization of same-sex marriage.

In that case he's actively participating in something that has caused problems in the lives of people I know and care about. Jerk!

Like I said, I know I shouldn't judge the art by the artist. I'd tut-tut others that did. But man, I just can't get behind reading Ender's Game (which I do own). I will. Eventually. Maybe.

23tjm568
Set 27, 2011, 2:48 pm

I think sometimes it is impossible not to let the artist influence your view of the art. When you feel very strongly (good or bad) about someone it has to bleed over into how you judge what they produce. Why do we hang our child's crude drawings up and wonder if maybe they are a genius in the making? Why did the rather unremarkable paintings created by John Wayne Gacy fill many with loathing and disgust? Obviously these are examples that are extreme almost to the absurd, but I think we are all somewhat susceptible to the influence of our feelings toward an artist.

Personally, I am willing to admit to myself that I am guilty of that weakness, and just don't read stuff by authors I don't like, and tend to cut some slack and even half-heartedly defend a subpar work of an author I really like. What can I say; I am flawed and I can live with that.

24srboone
Editado: Mar 31, 2013, 7:18 am

I prefer the original.

My least favorite King book is The complete and uncut version of The Stand. I realize that this is the version that King wants to be remembered and the only one a lot of people have read, but it is a travesty compared to the original 1978 story.

The sacrifice of Larry, Glenn, and Ralph is cheapened by the reappearance of Flagg in another country (and supposedly another world); nothing of real value is added, except for the scene between Frannie and her dead father before she buries him; the scene between the Kid and Tom Cullen adds nothing to the story except an unecessary gag reflex (though it is fun to contemplate whether or not the Kid is The Colorado Kid); and King does a sloppy job of updating the story from the 80s to the 90s--he gets the large story points, but leaves little details from the 80s that just don't jibe with the 90s storyline.

And while it supposed to be in synch with the DT series, it really isn't. In W&G, Roland and his ka-tet travel back to Topeka in the aftermath of The Stand--in 1986, not 1996!

I tell myself that I need to go back through the C&UC version and catalog all the discrepancies therein, but I have no desire to read the book a second time. (I've read the original 4 times and will likely read it again at some point.)

25St._Troy
Abr 7, 2016, 4:01 pm

Uncut as King intended, but if you've recently read the original, no hurry required.

I read the original and the uncut version almost back to back a few years ago. The Stand is a large tale with lots going on in the backdrops of society and the military etc. and really benefits from the restored material.

As for editing, there are those (not pointing fingers at anyone here, just a general comment) who think no novel need exceed 400 pages, and since there is much material in King's longer works that technically could be cut (but which adds to the world he's building), he's always a target for this type of comment. I happen to love what others call "bloat" (try to remove one word from It and things will get ugly) and believe the "cut" crowd would be better off finding something else to read, as this type of background material is intrinsic to King's work (I'm not saying "love it or leave it" so much as "manage your expectations").

For comparison, Under The Dome was very long and had lots of events that didn't necessarily factor into the resolution, but the problem there (IMO) was the total disconnect between the ultimate cause, the resolution, and everything that happened in between (it was, to me, the ultimate "stuff happens!" novel). You could make the argument that an aggressive editor might have cut it down to an 800 page book that I liked, but unless the editor actually changed what happened it wouldn't have helped me. But then, some people loved it, so do what you like and happy reading. Lots to enjoy in the King universe.

26St._Troy
Abr 7, 2016, 4:09 pm

As for King's politics (which I don't always share), they generally don't distract me in his writing, although when Barlow started ranting against Americans in Salem's Lot, I got to the point where I expected him to conclude with "workers of the world unite!" I found it strange and amusing, but not bothersome.

27artturnerjr
Abr 7, 2016, 7:04 pm

I thought I had already posted here, but apparently not. FWIW, I prefer the uncut version.

PS If you're a fan of the novel (either version), make sure you check out King's short story "Night Surf", which is sort of a trial run for The Stand:

http://www.isfdb.org/cgi-bin/title.cgi?40747

28Raymond-Dean-White
Maio 27, 2016, 8:08 am

I've read both versions and cast my vote for the original. The Stand is still one of the absolute best apocalyptic books I've ever read--and I've been a fan of the genre since reading Andre Norton's Star Man's Son when I was ten.

29MillieC
Jul 23, 2016, 2:15 am

Yes! I am not reading the book for their political opinions or ideas, I am reading it for the story. For t his same reason if a movie star I like is on a talk show, I do NOT watch, because nine times out of ten they prove how stupid they are or think their opinions matter more than anyone else's opinions, just because they are famous. Once they open their mouth and insert their foot, I can never take their acting seriously again. I don't want to know!

30Tanith1120
Jul 18, 2018, 9:47 am

Reading this thread has inspired me to go back and read the original version again. I have a copy of the 1990 version and have re-read it several times, but I don't think I've read the original for decades.