Written by Scotty
When visiting The Stanley Hotel, it is difficult to leave without seeing The Shining once or twice. Knowing that this is where Stephen King got the inspiration for his great story, it is fun to try and find what might have happened to spark his imagination. The story goes that King came up to the hotel for one night, as the hotel was closing for the season. With only three people left in the hotel, including himself, King was able to sit at a vacant bar and talk with the bartender Lloyd Grady for hours on end about all of the reports about ghosts. Returning to his room, he found that his bag was unpacked and everything was put away for him. This was not his doing or anyone else’s doing, but the ghost that has been known to haunt his room.
It seems like a different idea to bring a hotel to life, even in a book, but The Overlook Hotel has become a name that many people have come to know and fear. Changing the history of the hotel to meet with his readers standards, King was able to bring this old building to life and make it haunt the dreams of people for years to come. The Overlook Hotel was the most happening spot back in the 1950’s, being the prized location for everyone that was anyone.
Bringing in the highest class members of society, it also brought in gangsters that were trying to escape their wars. The hotel is full of people that have died while staying, if it was suicide, murder or dying by normal causes, the hotel is full of ghosts and has the power to bring them to life. With none of the guests ever wanting to leave this lavish estate, the party continues in The Overlook Hotel and everyone is always invited. Now could it just be the winter time when the hotel is empty that brings the hotel to life, or would it do it when guests are present as well?
Dick Hallorann knows about everything that the hotel can bring up, but since he stays away from the hot spots of activity, he and the hotel seem to be on good terms with one another. Although he has seen things, bad things, he is able to put that aside to do his job and take care of his guests. The year before this story takes place, Delbert Grady was the caretaker of the hotel and snapped killing his wife and kids for no reason. The hotel management has tried to push this under the rug, saying that it was the isolation of the hotel, but Dick knows that it could happen again, it only takes the right person to show up.
When the Torrance family arrives, it is seems to be a match made in heaven for all of the parties. Jack will have time to do minimal work and complete his writing. Wendy will have all kinds of together time with her family and young Danny will be able to run amuck and be a kid for the winter. The only concern that the family has is that Jack will not be able to make it to his AA meetings when the roads close, and young Danny will not be able to see a doctor if he starts having his seizures again. You are left asking yourself why a family with so many problems would be chosen to take over the winter duties of the hotel. Did the hotel have a say with who was hired to take care of it for the season?
My opinion on this, is yes. I believe that the hotel has the power to manipulate the decisions that are made about its future. Although not everyone believes in the power that it wields, since not everyone is privy to seeing what is happening behind the scenes, it knows what it wants and will stop at nothing to get it. With so much power, The Overlook is hungry for more and the gift that young Danny has, he would be a great addition to the always growing population and make the building in a sense, unstoppable.
Wanting more powerful spirits inside of it seems to be what makes the hotel happy, but is there an endgame for it? With the focus in all three renditions of the story being about the hotel's lust for Danny and his gift of shine, it is not openly said what it would do with the power. My thought, The Overlook is a spirit collector and always looking for new guests that will never leave again. With the extra power of the shine being added to its collection, the hotel might be able to manifest more easily and take control of its own fate.
Every living thing wants to have control over its destiny and The Overlook Hotel is no different. Being able to show some people certain things, while lying dormant for others, it is trying to become a living, breathing entity that everyone will have to answer to. Having the power to manipulate what its caretakers are seeing or doing is one thing, but becoming powerful enough to not even need the living to look after it seems to be what it wants the most.
It is just my opinion of what the stories have shown me over the years of enjoyment. The Overlook Hotel should have been the main character listed in the credits for the movies as it plays more of a role of what is happening than anyone else. The Shining is a great story and I would highly recommend it to anybody that has never read it or seen the movies based on it. It is easy to fall in love with the Stanley Kubrick version of the story, but it does not follow everything that the book covers, so the TV mini-series would be the one to watch to get more of the story. As always, Stay Scared!