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Stephen King Swerves Too Close to Reality for Comfort


Kelly Lynch in the Audience Network drama “Mr. Mercedes.”

Brownie Harris/AT&T Audience Network

Stephen King’s 2014 novel “Mr. Mercedes” opens with a psychopath plowing a stolen luxury car into a crowd at a job fair. Later, there’s an attempted bombing at a boy band concert teeming with girls — all of which might sound too gruesomely familiar to relive as entertainment.

Take heart: The producers of the Audience Network adaptation (starting Wednesday, Aug. 9) have revised the concert scene because of similarities to the May 22 massacre in Manchester, England.

But this David E. Kelley-Jack Bender series retains that King shiver with Brendan Gleeson as Detective Bill Hodges, taunted out of retirement and into private-eye mode by the killer behind the case he never solved: the deranged Brady Hartsfield (Harry Treadaway), a computer technician and ice cream truck man whose mother (Kelly Lynch) loves him inappropriately. Mary-Louise Parker sparks as Bill’s first client; Jharrel Jerome, memorable as the teenage Kevin in “Moonlight,” is the Harvard-bound whiz who wants to be Watson to Bill’s Holmes.

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