YMMV / 11/22/63

  • Alternate Character Interpretation: Does Al have a good plan in theory or is the idea that saving JFK would prevent the Vietnam War from going as badly as it did extremely biased and blindly optimistic?
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: In the series, after Johnny has been killed and Sadie has been taken to hospital, a cop insists to Jake that he has to take a statement, even though Jake is traumatised and distraught. Jake has just been made to resign from his teaching job, after Deke Simmons has heard from Sadie that he has surveillance equipment in his basement. Then Simmons turns up, tells the cop that he remembers him from his high school football days, puts a comforting arm around Jake and walks him to a car to get him to the hospital.
    • Followed by another one in the hospital, where the cop finally does succeed in taking Jake's statement. Jake tells the truth, except that he makes out that it was he rather than Sadie who shot Johnny. Then he tells the cop that if he has to arrest him, so be it. The cop simply says "No need," closes his notebook and walks away.
    • In the pilot, Jake attends a speech by then-candidate John F. Kennedy and is clearly moved by seeing a man he's only read about in history books like and in person.
  • Flanderization: In IT, Mr. Keane is a civilized man with just a bit of a nasty edge to him, exemplified by him telling Eddie the truth about his supposed asthma but at the same time seeming to enjoy the distress this causes Eddie a little too much. In his appearance in this book, he's an all-out Jerk Ass. The same can be said to have happened to the city of Derry as a whole, with the subtle wrongness from IT having turned a great deal more overt.
    • This could be accounted for by the POV characters in IT being Derry residents, thus used to the place. It wouldn't seem as bad to someone who's lived there for a decade as it does to an adult experiencing it for the first time.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: While telling Jake about the horrific history of alternate!2011, Harry mentions that "four of the Japanese islands are gone" due to the Earth's increasing seismic instability. This may or may not count as a "Funny Aneurysm" Moment, since most of the book was completed by the time of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake, but the actual quake is later mentioned in the story. Speaking of the Japanese disaster, also worth mentioning is how in the alternate timeline a nuclear meltdown in Vermont irradiates much of New England.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: In The Langoliers, it's mentioned that because of the way the time rip works in it, you can't, say, go back and stop the Kennedy assassination. Then this book happened.
  • Hollywood Homely: Sadie in the miniseries. Sure, her face is scarred by her ex, but it doesn't look nearly as hideous as was described in the book.
  • Jerkass Woobie: Oswald is depicted as a somewhat sympathetic character, especially in the miniseries.
  • Narm: Jake punching Sadie's ex with a cry of "This is for the broom!" While it's true that denying your partner sex is considered a form of emotional abuse in some cases, this is after the guy has kidnapped Sadie with the intention of killing both her and Jake himself, making the righteous outrage over that particular thing seem... misplaced.
    • In the miniseries, all mentions of Sadie being horribly disfigured, needing surgery to look good again etc. In the book she had been sliced from eye to mouth, giving her a big Glasgow Grin but in the series it's on the side of her face and hardly even visible if she just applies a bit of makeup to it. Not to mention it heals into a very nice looking scar in just a matter of weeks, rather than the years it would actually take. In other words she doesn't look disfigured in the slightest in the miniseries and several times you can't even see the scar, yet she apparently needs to have surgery to fix this horrible disfiguration.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Despite being shot in the arm and face, Harry's father keeps on moving. The man in general is just... chilling.
    • The brutal beating Jake is subjected to. Not only reading about it from his first-person perspective but the long-term effects it has, including memory loss and chronic pain.
    • The Bad Future Jake ends up creating by saving Kennedy. Without LBJ, the Civil Rights Act was never passed and the movement degenerated into violence after MLK's assassination. After Kennedy's second term, George Wallace and Curtis LeMay were elected and resolved the Vietnam war with a nuclear strike on Hanoi. The changes to the timeline have also caused near-constant earthquakes, some strong enough to sink whole islands, like Hokkaido. As a result, the world suicide rate skyrocketed and fundamentalism of all types took hold. India and Pakistan underwent a limited nuclear exchange, the Iranian Hostages were all slaughtered, Russia collapsed and began selling nuclear weapons to Al Qaeda, the Middle East went up in flames, Vermont Yankee suffered a meltdown and spewed radiation across New England and Southern Quebec, another terrorist set off a suitcase nuke in Miami, a suicide bomber at a Beatles peace concert killed 300 spectators and blinded Paul McCartney, and the world is set to be destroyed sometime around 2080.
  • The Woobie:
    • Harry Dunning. Not only does his essay move Jake to tears (and help inspire his journey), the universe shafts him in all three timelines; in the normal one his dad murders his entire family and cripples him (Harry) for life, in the next one he's killed in Vietnam, and in the final one he's left paraplegic in the war.
    • Sadie Dunhill as well. She was married to an abusive lunatic who later returned to cut her face severely, and almost killed her, and its implied her mother enforced this relationship just to look good in front the lunatic's family. Her current boyfriend, while nice, spouts unusual nonsense and she dies trying to stop Lee Harvey Oswald. Luckily her life in the normal timeline is full of civic achievement.