The Institute: Stephen King Tackles Kids Vs. Evil Again

author img
BY September 4, 2019

In less than a month, Stephen King’s IT is going to get its second film adaptation from Andrés Muschietti. IT Chapter Two is going to cover the Losers as they return to Derry after Pennywise the Clown returns to finish what he started. Fans of Stephen King’s books are often a little let down from film adaptations. For every Shawshank Redemption the film fan, there is a Shawshank Redemption the novel fan who will point out why the book is superior. The author’s latest book, The Institute, seems like it’ll likely fit well on screen.

King’s novels are enjoyed more than their film adaptations. It’s not surprising. That’s the case with most books. Muschietti’s IT Chapter One, however, stood out as a great adaptation. While the book hops back and forth between the Losers as kids and adults, the film felt true to the source while sticking with their youthful years. Now, King is set to take on another story of kids versus evil, and it’ll come just weeks after IT Part Two’s September 5th theatrical release. 

The Institute – King’s Newest Novel

On September 10th, King’s newest novel, The Institute, returns the author to one of his strengths: writing child characters. In stories like IT and The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon, we see kids do things that would be incredible even for adults. Yet, like the wonder children have for the world, readers experience great wonder as King’s young characters take on everything from supernatural evil to the dangers of everyday life. I’ve always thought King wrote younger characters better than adults, and I’m happy to see his next novel stars a group of children again, just like IT. 

Image Credit: Simon and Schuster

Escape from The Institute? Easier Said than Done

The Institute stars Luke Ellis, a child with a keen knack for telekinesis. One night, mysterious people enter the Ellis household and kill Luke’s parents. The intruders shove Luke into a black SUV. When he awakes, it appears that he’s back home. He starts to notice little differences, like the window missing. Plus, he starts remembering what has happened. Where exactly is he, if not home. It’s actually The Institute, a building housing other kids with telekinetic powers like Luke’s.

After talking to fellow kids, he learns that nobody leaves The Institute. Mrs. Sigsby, director of The Institute is ruthless, and looks to use these children’s abilities for her ends. The novel is set up to pit these extraordinary kids against Sigsby and her staff, invoking some One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest vibes. If you enjoy King’s work and “good versus evil” narratives, this sounds like a read for you.

Adaptations and King’s Work

From the basic plot, it sounds like The Institute would make a great series or movie. A lot of things Stephen King touches or inspires is doing well right now. For example, Stranger Things takes a lot from King.  Likewise, IT Chapter Two is earning a lot of anticipation. It’s far too soon to tell, but an adaptation of The Institute sounds plausible, if not inevitable. If it’s like King’s other works, we can’t wait to read the novel on September 10th. We’ll be doing a piece on King’s essential reads soon, so keep an eye on Comic Years! If you love gaming, comics, or pop culture, then Comic Years needs to be bookmarked on your computer, phone, and tablet!


Pop Culture

Leave a comment


MoviesPop Culture
I Just Watched 2001: A Space Odyssey for the First Time: My Reaction and the Impact of the Film 51 Years Later

There are films out there that you never have to watch to feel like you know what they’re about. Whether it’s from parodies in other media, or word of mouth, movie-talk spreads. But, no matter how much you think you know about 2001: A Space Odyssey, there’s a good chance that you’re wrong. After spending my […]

BY Meghan Hale September 29, 2019
MoviesPop Culture
James Gunn Brings Nathan Fillion To ‘The Suicide Squad’; Is His Clout Back? 

With casting one of his best friends in ‘The Suicide Squad’, is writer-director James Gunns back to his previous industry standing?

BY Shah Shahid August 30, 2019
Pop Culture
Baby Yoda Breaks The Internet

If you’ve been watching The Mandalorian on Disney+, then you know all about Baby Yoda. But, if you’re like me, and haven’t been watching The Mandalorian on Disney+, then you also know all about Baby Yoda. Why? Because Baby Yoda has broken the internet. Not only is he the current meme format of the week, but he’s adorable enough […]

BY Meghan Hale November 23, 2019
Star Wars Battlefront 2 Celebration Edition is Jam Packed with Content

There’s nothing like a good redemption story. We see it all the time in comic books. A villain suddenly sees the error of their ways, turns good, and we love them for it. We don’t see it as much with video games, and no, I don’t mean characters. If a game is cast aside as […]

BY Taylor Bauer December 4, 2019
Super Mario Maker 2 Update – What’s New?

When it comes to popular Nintendo Switch games, Super Mario Maker 2 has been huge. The game is still seeing a ton of players daily, months after its release. The developers at Nintendo working on the game are ready to send more content to the game as well. In an update coming on December 5th, […]

BY Taylor Bauer December 2, 2019
Ring Fit Adventure Shortage in Japan Sparks Apology from Nintendo

It seemed a little like a joke at first, but Ring Fit Adventure is a hit. The Nintendo published fitness game for the Switch is huge all over the world. Of course, Japan took to the game quite fondly. Even here in the United States, people are really into this game. Essentially, you track movements and […]

BY Taylor Bauer December 1, 2019
RuneScape Glitch Almost Destroyed the In-Game Economy

RuneScape is a historic MMORPG with a fervent player base to this very day. For nearly 18 years, the game has brought 200 million accounts into its fantasy world. For a lot of people, a few hours on RuneScape is a part of the normal daily routine. There is a new version of the game, […]

BY Taylor Bauer November 27, 2019


Wheel of Time Casting News: The Gleeman and an Ogier Join The Party

Casting news for The Wheel of Time show on Amazon Prime has been steadily rolling out. The first season is currently filming in Prague, but fans have been wondering who was going to play certain major roles. This week’s #WOTWednesday brought us the actors who will play the the gleeman Thom and the loveable Ogier named […]

BY Emily O'Donnell December 6, 2019
Zack Snyder Confirms Snyder Cut Exists In New Photo

After 2 years of back and forth, theories, assumptions and presumptions, Zack Snyder confirms Snyder Cut is very real and it exists.

BY Shah Shahid December 6, 2019
The Foundation Show on Apple TV+ Casts New Faces

An adaptation of Isaac Asimov’s Foundation series is coming to Apple TV+ and is rapidly adding cast members.  Jared Harris (Chernobyl) will play Hari Seldon, “a mathematical genius who predicts the demise of the empire.” This week brought more casting news, some of which may be surprising to book readers. Several major characters will gender-swap, […]

BY Emily O'Donnell December 6, 2019
First Look at Lucifer Season 5 Ladies Night and Episode Titles Released by Netflix

Lucifer on Netflix has deep roots in comics, even if the series is miles away from the source books. In fact, the rescued murder procedural performed so well on the streamer, it extended Lucifer’s final season by six episodes. Thanks to Aimee Garcia, who plays Forensic investigator and all-around sweetheart Ella, we get our first […]

BY Joshua M. Patton December 6, 2019