MovieChat Forums > The Stand Discussion > How was Campion infected?

How was Campion infected?


I realize we're dealing with a fictional virus and artistic license here, but is it ever explained how the virus spread from a presumably underground and hermetically sealed lab to infect the security guard at the front gate in a matter of seconds? I doubt even air could travel that fast. Or did it have something to do with the crow/Flagg?

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Well, Satan shows up, so there's a lot at work here.

This isn't science fiction, it is fantasy and so magic could have been at play.

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Yeah, I guess it really is just the supernatural angle.

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I tried to read the book and found the descriptions of the "tubeneck disease" to be gross. However, I stopped because King is a bad writer and spent pages talking about a girl folding sweaters.

I was out.

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I tried to read the book and found the descriptions of the "tubeneck disease" to be gross. However, I stopped because King is a bad writer and spent pages talking about a girl folding sweaters.


I have read the book numerous times, and I agree that King is long-winded; further, he tends to a bit sloppy as well. However, I don't recall the thing about folding the sweaters, at least to that extent.

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It was some girl packing her things.

This was read soon after the book came out, so I don't remember the scene completely.

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I realize we're dealing with a fictional virus and artistic license here, but is it ever explained how the virus spread from a presumably underground and hermetically sealed lab to infect the security guard at the front gate in a matter of seconds? I doubt even air could travel that fast. Or did it have something to do with the crow/Flagg?


In the book, Campion (the guard) worked in the interior of the facility, and that is how he got infected. He then managed to get outside. Flagg had nothing to do with the virus' release. In fact we are told in the introduction to Flagg later in the book, that Flagg knew that something big was about to happen because he could now do magic, but that he didn't know what it was.

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Yes, as much as I liked the TV version of the book, the way Charles Campion was infected made absolutely no sense.

It's made very clear in the book that if the virus got loose, the doors would seal automatically. They didn't and that allowed Campion to make his escape before the doors finally locked.
Later on one character laments the fact, "If Charles Campion hadn't run..." The virus would have been contained underground and not spread.

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I think the imagery in the opening of the miniseries, showing all those vents and piping on the surface, are a clue as to how Campion and the rest of the base get infected.

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Forgot about that part of the opening! It's been years since i saw the miniseries. I found the opening scene on youtube. Yeah, you have a point about the pipes. The camera pans slowly across them. I suppose we are to assume that the virus escaped that way.

But as the OP points out, the underground facility was sealed. It would only make sense from a safety viewpoint that it was a closed system. Nothing would be vented into the outside world.

If the virus got loose, the doors would seal and the virus would be contained. But Charles Campion took advantage of the glitch in the system and escaped. Unfortunately he was already infected.

In the miniseries when Campion gets that frantic call to close the gates, it wouldn't have made any difference anyway. A flimsy metal gate was not going to hold back an airborne virus if it escaped so easliy that it could infect Campion in a matter of minutes. If he hadn't run, all the civilians that we see on the base would've been infected within a matter of days anyway.

The only positive thing if Campion hadn't run is that the virus would've been contained ON the base. I'm sure the military was mobilizing within minutes after the outbreak happened. The Army could most likely have prevented the spread of the virus if all the victims were in one place.
But there was Campion on the run! The book says that he started passing on the disease as soon as he stopped for gas or food. And he travelled through several states before he collapsed in Texas. He likely stopped for gas and food numerous times.
But having said that, the miniseries opening is a slam bang great one even if it does strain credulity.

As for the crow/Flagg being present, I don't think he caused it. He just took advantage of it. Satan does his best work, in fact his only work, by playing on the stupidity and sinful nature of humans, in this case, pride. Those scientists and the military were so proud of themselves and mistakenly thought that they had it all under control. Yeah, when humans play God, bad stuff happens.

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While watching the mini-series once more, I noticed something when Campion was running back to his house: he passed a ventilation outlet about five feet away from him. Could this have been how he got infected in the film?

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