In Fahrenheit 451, twice Montag's being on the run is referred to as "a game for him to win."
How does Stephen King transform and expand this idea in the future of The Running Man?
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It is clear from the way that Montag's "death" is described at the end of Bradbury's novel that the pursuit, capture and execution of such deviants and criminals has become popular entertainment for this dystopian society where the media has become transformed to a debased entity where the poverty of people's own lives is expressed through the substitute lives and forms of entertainment that are shown on television screens. Note what Granger tells Montag about his own "death":
They're faking it. You threw them off at the river. They can't admit it. They know they can hold their audience only so long. The show's got to have a snap ending, quick!
Incidentally, this need for a "snap ending" to satisfy the low attention spans of the viewers is something that plays into Montag's favour, allowing him to escape. Bradbury therefore presents a world in which the realms of all moral decency have been obliterated and where the death of humans has become part of entertainment, much in the same way that gladiators were an excellent form of entertainment for the Romans. In The Running Man, Stephen King takes this to its logical extension, where the pursuit of humans is the most lucrative form of entertainment possible and where people are forced into risking their lives because of their poverty. In both novels, media is depicted as a force that has become so powerful that it challenges human dignity and morals.
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