www.horror-movies.ca has an interesting article titled, "10 Ways Stephen King’s Carrie Changed Horror."
1. Made horror literature viable again
Gwendolyn Kiste notes,"along came an English teacher from Maine to shake everything up. Carrie became his first foray into a genre with which he’s now practically synonymous. Today, he’s still one of the most recognizable names in popular fiction, and that’s not even specifying horror. Love him or hate him, he’s changed our world forever."2. Proved book-to-film adaptations can be great
3. Transformed adolescent milestones into horror tropes
4. Made a female character a strong protagonist (Never mind that Star Wars and Princess Lea came out about the same time)
5. Made a female character a strong antagonist
6. Dealt with bullying before it was a hot button issue (Well, there was Rebel without a Cause)
7. Gave us every single Stephen King book & film that’s come since
Kristie writes, " without Carrie, we might never have visited the Overlook Hotel in The Shining, learned to be careful where you bury your pets (and children) in Pet Sematary, or worried that undead kids might be floating outside our window a la Salem’s Lot."
Now here's a point I disagree with. The heart of Kriste's argument is that because Carrie did so well, it freed King to go on writing bestsellers. And I hear this sentiment quite a lot. But I take issue with it. If Carrie hadn't been King's break out novel, then Salem's Lot would have; and if not the Lot, then the Stand, or Cuo. It's not that the single story of Carrie was good; it's that he consistently turns out good stories. So he was bound to rush onto the American landscape. In this case, it's not the story --but he who tells it.8. Got horror nominated for major Oscars.
9. Showed us (more than once) that remakes are no good
10. Reminds us why we’re so happy high school’s over (I couldn't agree more!)