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12 Stephen King Universe Fan Theories That Make A Surprising Amount Of Sense

Updated May 6, 2020 21.9k votes 4.7k voters 347.9k views12 items

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Stephen King is one of the most beloved and prolific writers of our time. His celebrity and astonishing output of work, both extremely rare for a writer in this day and age, often obscure the fact that King is nothing short of a master storyteller. Like any virtuoso of his craft, King creates multilayered tales that may not seem to have much in common on the surface but one can dig a little deeper and find a vast and interconnected universe. In fact, there are countless theories of how Stephen King books are connected.

Many of King's works have been adapted into motion pictures or television series, which give fans a whole new avenue to look in for clues, Easter eggs, and other signs that harken back to King stories. Take movies like The Shawshank Redemption, or shows like Castle Rock. While some of them may sound like crazy theories about Stephen King and his canon of work, there is ample evidence to back up most suggestions. From clear-cut links to ideas requiring a bit more imagination, Stephen King universe fan theories are everywhere.

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  • 5

    Andy Dufresne From 'The Shawshank Redemption' Worked With The Central Character In 'Apt Pupil'

    Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption (filmed as The Shawshank Redemption in 1994) also ties into Apt Pupil. In the latter work, Denker says that a man named Dufresne once helped him buy stocks under a fake name. Dufresne, a banker, went on to kill his wife and was sent to prison. 

    How many Dufresnes worked in banking and were sent to prison for murdering their spouse in a small-town Maine locale? Likely only one: Andy Dufresne from Shawshank. If that's true then two more of King's works are connected.

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  • 6

    'The Dark Tower' Is Connected To Pretty Much All Of Stephen King's Other Works

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    The Dark Tower series could easily be considered Stephen King's masterwork. There are currently eight volumes in the series, telling an epic tale of science fiction, fantasy, gun-slinging, mystery, and horror. Because of the vast nature of his work (4,250 pages total), King has plenty of opportunities to reference his other tales; the Dark Tower is filled with allusions.

    The places and characters referenced come from a number of sources, including It, 'Salem's Lot, The Stand, Cujo, Dreamcatcher, Hearts in Atlantis, and Cell, to name just a few.

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  • 7

    Father Callahan Appears In Both 'The Dark Tower' And ''Salem's Lot'

    Father Donald Callahan is a figure in many of the Dark Tower novels. But he appears in other King works, too, most notably in 'Salem's Lot. There he is a drunkard who cannot reconcile his faith with his experiences in the very evil world. Father Callahan's story doesn't end with 'Salem's Lot, though. He pops up in at least three of the Dark Tower books.

    He appears to continue drinking and contemplating faith in all of those novels.

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  • 8

    Jack Torrance From 'The Shining' Wrote The King Novella 'Apt Pupil'

    There are several notable differences between the book and movie versions of The Shining. One of them is that we never see exactly what Jack Torrance is writing while losing his mind in the film adaptation. The novel does tell us: Jack is writing about his past teaching experience at a prep school and his run-ins with the sadistic headmaster Denker. The Nazi war criminal in King's novella Apt Pupil is also named DenkerApt Novella centers on Denker's odd friendship with a psychotic high school student.

    Is this a coincidence? With King at the helm, probably not.

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