Stephen King’s Influence Is Clear In Netflix’s “Run For The Money”

A contest with participants competing for prizes. Unsettling “hunters” tasked with finding them. A financial reward increases in value the longer they manage to avoid capture.

Run for the Money, a reality game show on Netflix appeared to be a new installment in the streamer’s current run of entertaining and highly stressful reality shows when its teaser debuted last month (hello, The Mole). But it will also sound highly familiar to Stephen King fans.

What’s Run For The Money About?

The idea is basic. Before a group of “hunters” are released, 29 celebrities are given a head start and released into a huge enclosed area somewhere in Japan—basically a small town.

These silent stalkers, covered in face masks, suits, and sunglasses, have just one job: to track down and capture each candidate. A player is eliminated from the game if they are tagged.

A countdown timer in the bottom right corner of the screen ticks down to zero while the competitors are hiding. And as time goes on, the amount of money they could win if they win the game grows.

What’s Stephen King’s The Running Man About?

Stephen King’s 1982 novella The Running Man which was written under the pen name Richard Bachman, is a dystopian tale about a man who enters a reality TV competition in order to win money for his family.

The laws themselves are simple “describes a character from the book’s opening. “For every hour you are still free, you or your surviving family members will receive $100. On the premise that you can elude the Hunters for 48 hours, we stake you to 48 hundred dollars in running money.

If you drop before the forty-eight-hour period has passed, the remaining balance is of course, refundable. You get a head start of 12 hours. You earn the grand prize if you persevere for 30 days. $1 billion in new money. Consequently, it is essentially a game show where you must avoid “hunters” in order to win cash prizes and the longer you are on the run, the higher the prizes become.

So What’s The Difference?

To be truthful, the structure of Run for the Money differs slightly from that of The Running Man. One difference between the two is that the latter involves two candidates who are free to travel anywhere in the world while the former involves many contestants in a constrained space.

The principle of Run for the Money is occasionally changed by adding tasks where contestants can increase the prize money by taking on more danger (however it does allow players to spy on each other’s positions, just like citizens do in The Running Man).

It’s also important to keep in mind that Run for the Money isn’t the only program to use this structure. It was itself a reboot of a 2004 series of the same name. The 2015 premiere of the British reality series Hunted had competitors attempting to avoid a team of “Hunters” (made up of police and military people) for a period of 25 days (as opposed to 30 days in The Running Man) in exchange for their share of a financial reward.

Maybe a game that was even more like King’s early 1980s nightmare would result from combining these two reality shows. We’ll always have that Arnold Schwarzenegger movie, though, in the meanwhile. You can watch Run for the Money right now on Netflix.

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