You want a review of Stephen King’s short story, Battleground? No problem. Head over to Netflix or Showmi or Hulu or whatever video-steaming site in en-vogue this month and watch Small Soldiers. Then, mentally edit out any connections / ripoffs of Toy Story. There, that’s Battleground.
Battleground tells the story of a man being attacked by the small green soldiers that used to be the height of childhood play, the same little guys brought to life in the aforementioned Toy Story (with a little help from a Baby-Monitor).
The little toys are surprisingly resilient, and is the man, as they spend the majority of the story duking it out in one way or another. It progresses and escalates until the man comes up with a plan that he — and the reader — is sure to win, until the toys break out their secret weapon: a scale-replica of a nuke.
This is probably the best example of an Oh Henry ending I’ve seen from King yet. Battleground is less a story than it is a very, very long anecdotal joke with a semi-political punchline. On that political front: King is notoriously anti-nuke. It’s not a bad thing, and it doesn’t color the ending. The ending is basically a giant “wua wua wuuuuua” sound effect, right out of vaudeville.
And yet, that didn’t stop them from making a TV movie out of this. Nothing can after all.
Battleground is a fun story that doesn’t require much thought. It’s inoffensive and well written. I can neither discredit nor recommend it — it comes into the middle of all things. The best and worst thing I can say about it is that it is decidedly average.
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
“Battleground tells the story of a man being attacked by the small green soldiers that used to be the height of childhood play, the same little guys brought to life in the aforementioned Toy Story (with a little help from a Baby-Monitor).”