Written by Mr. Mouseburger 14th Jan 2007
Kindly submitted by Pyro
Arguably one of the most terrifying scenes in the film adaptation of Stephen King's novel comes when the night of the execution of Eduard "Del" Delacroix arrives.
His gentle nature and his compassion for a rather intelligent mouse he named Mr. Jingles would make some doubt his ability to commit a murder (the one man he accidentally killed described as "the only crime he ever had in him"), but he wouldn't be here otherwise. He entrusts Mr. Jingles to the care of John Coffey, a massive inmate whose kind nature belies his imposing appearance, Del is escorted down the hall to the execution chamber, where crowds have gathered to observe.
Percy Wetmore, a spoiled and abusive guard with family ties in high places allowing him free reign to abuse the inmates and his co-workers, and not to mention have his request to run this particular execution approved, eagerly awaits this moment. Now it is required to place a damp sponge on the headpiece of the electric chair to insure the electricity goes straight to the brain to kill the inmate quickly. Percy seemingly does this before strapping it over Del's head, claiming that it is now fully set up and the electric chair can be switched on.
However, the head security guard, Paul, notices a rather curious absence of water around the bucket used to soak the sponge, and he realises too late that Percy has secretly sabotaged the execution by leaving the sponge dry! The chair switches on, and immediately the crowd and guards alike can see something very wrong is going on. Instead of shaking wildly for a few seconds and falling dead, Del emits a horrible scream of pain as electrical sparks begin flying out of his clothes. Then the crowd begins to notice the smell of burning flesh...
Meanwhile back in the cells, sociopath "Wild Bill" can hear the screams and can tell something is very wrong, and he begins laughing and singing in amusement while Coffey cries out in horror as he somehow both senses and feels Del's pain.
Del's torment still does not end, as the sabotaged chair overloads and blasts violent electrical currents all through his wracked body, causing his body to burst into flames, terrifying the crowd.
Percy looks on in shock at the effects of his sadism (although he still doesn't seem especially guilty).
Finally, flames begin to erupt from Del's eyes and mouth, burning away parts of the hood and revealing his now horribly burnt features beneath it as the electricity continues to fry him to death. At long last, his charred remains collapse in the chair and it is promptly switched off.
Paul is furious with Percy and, not believing his claims that he didn't know he was supposed to dampen the sponge, orders him to extinguish the flames as this horrible event reaches its end.