Season two of the hit TV series “Mr. Mercedes” started filming on February 12, in Charleston, South Carolina. “Mr. Mercedes” is based on Stephen King’s murder mystery and suspense thriller series known as the “Bill Hodges Trilogy.”
Season one of “Mr. Mercedes” was adapted from the first novel (obviously) in the series, titled (you guessed it) “Mr. Mercedes.” The 10-episode series aired in 2017 on the Audience network, owned by AT&T.
Audience? Yes, I was confused at first too, but I found it and it was totally worth it! The show is not only one of the most accurate adaptations of a King novel, but everything about it was superb.
“Mr. Mercedes” garnered an 8.1/10 rating on IMDb and an 85% on Rotten Tomatoes. Those are both really good numbers in case you didn’t know.
The show is directed by Jack Bender who has worked on the shows “Lost” and “Game of Thrones” (yeah nothing big). David E. Kelley adapted the story for television, and Stephen King himself co-produced the show with Kelley and Bender. King even makes a little cameo in one episode.
“Mr. Mercedes” is a dark and twisted thrill ride. A psychopath drives a stolen Mercedes through a group of people waiting in line to get jobs, killing 8 of them and injuring countless others.
Retired Detective Bill Hodges played by the one and only Brendan Gleeson, decides to come out of retirement when he receives threatening emails from the “Mercedes Killer” aka Brady Hartsfield, played by Harry Treadaway. The emails contain the wacky smiley faces you have seen and will see.
Brady, clearly mentally unstable, but extremely smart, taunts Hodges into a manhunt. Hodges enlists the help of his young neighbor Jerome Robinson, played by Jharrel Jerome, and Holly Gibney, played by Justine Lupe. Holly is a relative of the women whose Mercedes Brady stole. Together, the three gather clues and attempt to find Brady before he can kill again.
Book two of the Bill Hodges Trilogy, presumably what season 2 of the show will be based on, is titled “Finders Keepers.”
In “Finders Keepers,” another psychopath (see a theme?) named Morris Bellamy, kills a famous author he was obsessed with, (a little reminiscent of King’s famous novel and movie, “Misery.”), and steals money from the authors safe as well as notebooks of unpublished novels. Bellamy buries the money and notebooks in a chest underneath a tree but before he can reap the rewards of his heist, he gets arrested and placed in jail for a different crime.
Years later, Pete Saubers finds Bellamy’s chest and uses the money to help his family recover from the financial hole they were in after Pete’s father was injured during the Mercedes Massacre (from “Mr. Mercedes”).
Bellamy gets released from jail and returns to dig up his chest, only to find it missing (Obviously he’s not happy). Meanwhile, Hodges, Holly and Jerome have started a private investigation company called Finders Keepers. They are called upon to help protect Pete and his family from Morris, who wants the contents of his chest back.
As I said before, filming for season two just started, so it is not yet known who will portray the new characters. Gleeson, Jerome, Lupe, and Treadaway are all set to reprise their roles, and Bender, Kelley and King are all producing/directing/writing season two as well.
Book three, and the final novel of the “Bill Hodges Trilogy” is called “End Of Watch,” (maybe, hopefully, there is a season three in our future?).
In the previous two novels, King surprised fans with a lack of anything supernatural, opting instead to thrill the readers with suspense, amazing and deranged characters, and intense storytelling.
In “End Of Watch,” however, we see King comfortably and seamlessly insert supernatural aspects and marry them with what worked for the previous novels. Brady Hartsfield has developed the ability to transfer his consciousness into other humans and electronic objects.
The members of Finders Keepers; Hodges, Holly and Jerome, are back and investigating a series of suicides around the (fictional) city of Bridgton, Ohio (where the previous novels also took place). The trail leads the three to a final showdown that has readers on the edge of their seats throughout the entire novel.
The final novel in the “Bill Hodges Trilogy” has a different feel from the first two, because of the supernatural aspects, but King is still able to keep it as intense and believable as he did with the first two… and book three may even bring a few tears out of you.
Anyway, before I get into too many spoilers, read the books! There are only three, and they aren’t even big! You will tear through them, I promise. After you read them, watch Mr. Mercedes season one and then get yourself ready for season two, and hopefully season three in the future! Remember, “The books are almost always better than the movie.” Or in this case, show.
Here are the books you will need:
“Mr. Mercedes” (2014) (436 pages)
“Finders Keepers” (2015) (431 pages)
“End Of Watch” (2016) (429 pages)
Enjoy and stay tuned for updates on season two! And as always, feel free to leave some comments, and be sure to hit the follow button!