While the popular new CBS series Under the Dome is attracting plenty of plaudits for its visual effects and storyline based on the Stephen King novel of the same name, the three words that continue to be thrown back at the author is the timeless phrase ‘Simpsons did it’.
Although the series has an interesting and fairly unique premise (enough at least to attract over 10m viewers on CBS to each of the first three episodes aired since late June (the premiere amassing almost 14m)), it has been ‘shadowed’ by factual suggestions that the plot point of ’town is trapped under a glass dome’ was predated with The Simpsons Movie in 2007.
King’s response to this is the claim that while his book was published in 2009 (two years after audiences would have seen or heard of The Simpsons Movie), the idea he had of a community being ‘cut off from the rest of society’ was in original unpublished versions of Under the Dome. However, he tries not to use this as his answer, instead suggesting that many other mediums had utilised the idea before his novel or the animated comedy film based on the long-running TV show.
King said of the comparisons between Under the Dome and Fox’s production: “I never saw it. I was just totally gob smacked and blindsided when people started to say, oh, ‘The Simpsons’ already did this. I’m thinking to myself, I’m so glad that I wrote my book beforehand or I kind of would have been kind of like down, but you know what, I saw the previews to that movie and I don’t remember Springfield being under a dome.”
For a man who writes so many detailed books, he was clearly victim to a glaring omission, as while the glass dome in The Simpsons Movie is only hinted at in the official trailer (see below), the second video couldn’t be clearer on the matter…
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