- "Oh, yes...they float, Georgie...they float...and when you're down here with me...YOU'LL FLOAT TOO!"
- ―It (to George Denbrough)
It (Referred to as IT) is an ancient alien/eldritch monster and the title character and main antagonist of the 1986 novel the same name (and subsequent television and film adaptations). It is a shapeshifting creature known as a Glamour and is billions of years old. Although it lived on planet Earth for many years, it originated in a void/dimension outside the regions of space known as the Macroverse. Since its true identity is unclear, due to its shape-shifting abilities making its real name and species unknown, the creature is just named IT.
It can morph into any other person, animal, or object (including combinations thereof). This ability is useful for A) appearing as the target's loved ones or friends to lure them into a trap or B) appearing as the target's fear. However, It’s favorite and most common form is that of a circus performer named "Pennywise the Dancing Clown". It’s real name (if indeed, it has one) is unknown. Although, several times in the novel, It calls itself by the name Robert “Bob” Gray. This may be an allusion to real life child cannibal Albert Fish, who reportedly used the name "Robert Gray" as an alias.
It’s primary goal is to feed on humans, generally preferring children than adults since they were easier to scare and manipulate. According to the creature, frightened flesh tastes better.
No one knows the true form of It since it exists in an inter-dimensional realm referred to as "deadlights". Bill Denbrough comes close to see the "deadlights", but defeats It before this happens. The true form of the "deadlights" exists outside the physical realm. Any living being that sees the "deadlights" goes insane almost instantly. Bill comes dangerously close to seeing the deadlights and the shape behind the shape for a brief moment. He described It as an endless, crawling hairy creature made of orange light.
Throughout the novel, It is generally referred to as male, however, late in the novel, the characters come to realize that It is most likely female, due to its true form, in the physical realm, being that of a giant pregnant female spider. This revelation prompts Audra Denbrough to say "Oh dear Jesus, IT is female." This, however, is not It's real true form, it's just the closest representation of it in our universe. Due to it’s pregnancy, it’s very possible that a male of the same species as It existed at one time.
It is not a well understood entity in that what it truly is.
The reasons behind Its actions is that it eats for its own survival and satisfaction and then it goes dormant usually after a year's worth of feeding. It is a deadly predator that primarily hunts for food. But only if it can scare its prey before feasting on it.
The novel explains that Its only goals are to eat and sleep.
The core crux of the story is It, as Pennywise, hunting the "Loser's Club". Rather than killing them quickly, it prefers to frighten and taunt them (which ultimately leads to its downfall). It is psychologically adept, knowing what emotional vulnerabilities to provoke for any person.
While feral-minded and instinct-driven, It is more than capable of acting in any manner needed to lure prey, from subliminal influence to promising desires. Its energy keeps the town prosperous in exchange for the complacency of adults to keep it from being discovered.
The form of Pennywise provides a disarming personality and appearance, especially towards children. As Pennywise, It is merry, charming, and funny, politely offering others the chance to visit his circus and eat free food.
This succeeds in bringing Georgie close enough to a storm drain to kill him. Henry Bowers also falls for Pennywise's commands. He kills his own father, his friends, and is later used, as an adult, to murder the grown-up "Loser's Club".
It can also control minds. It is shown in the novel, miniseries, and film that the creature has the adults in the town of Derry, Maine under a mind control where they don't seem to care about the children that mysteriously go missing in the town. They also seem to not have any care of when something truly terrifying or cruel is happening, even if it's happening right in front of them. It looks like they just ignore it.
In the novel, It describes itself as the superior being (only the turtle spirit being close and Gan being his only true superior) and humans as mere "toys" that exist only to be messed with and eaten. But, when continually defeated by children, It acts surprised and begins to question if it really is as superior as it had thought. However, it never feels that the individual children are strong enough to defeat it.
By the looks of it, It seems to be a natural eating machine, due to the inborn impulse of its species. It’s instincts are to eat for survival, and also for its own pleasure, as it seems to almost always feel hunger when being awake.
It's favorite meal on Earth are human beings. However, It prefers to kill and devour children rather than adults, mainly because children's fears are easier to interpret in a physical form and thus fill with terror. Fear "floods the body and salts the meat", according to It. It can devour someone even if they aren't feeling afraid, but It chooses not to, because the person will not taste well to It.
It's unknown what It was feeding on while living in the Macroverse, before arriving on Earth. Though given its self-proclaimed status as "The Eater of Worlds", it most likely lived a nomad and interdimensonal parasite, draining one world after another of it's resources to fuel it's enormous apetite and leaving nothing but lifeless worlds in its wake.
Despite being a fearsome creature, It was certainly not fearless. At the first sign of being overpowered, it would always quickly retreat. It had been shown begging for mercy and bargaining for its own survival in its true physical form. The novel also explains that, during the summer of 1958, The Loser's Club made It fear them. It also had thoughts later on in the novel about not being as powerful as it had always thought.
In the newest iteration of the character, it is implied that It actually needs its prey to fear it to be able to kill and eat them while previous versions just needed it to make the meat taste better. When confronting Beverly, It left her alive but paralyzed because she did not fear It. It is also implied that its loses some of its power when it cannot frighten its victims as the Loser's club actually manage to physically and brutally beat it into a corner despite only being children and It having previously demonstrated superhuman strength was unable to overpower them.
Also unlike It's previous adaption, It is barely able to pass for human or even act human when in its Pennywise form as while trying to lure Georgie, he laughs with him at first before suddenly stopping and staring blankly and drooling with barely contained hunger, which unnerved Georgie enough that he was about to leave before It quickly remined him about the Boat and managed to snatch him.
It originated in an undiscovered void containing and surrounding our entire Universe, another universe referred to as the "Macroverse." (A concept related to Todash Darkness from The Dark Tower Novels).
Other evidence from this series suggests It is the creation of a separate omnipotent creator referred to as "the Other" (who may be the entity Gan). This "Other" helps the defeat of it at the end, and may also be responsible for the creation of "The Turtle", who is IT's natural enemy. In It the novel, the Turtle refers to It as his "brother".
It's possible that there are other creatures of the same species as It, due to the fact that it is revealed to be pregnant.
It arrived on Earth in a massive cataclysmic event similar to an asteroid impact, landing in a location in North America that would eventually become Derry, Maine.
Once people settled over this location, It adopted its usual pattern of a 27-30 year hibernation, waking to kill and eat. Each awakening and return to hibernation is sometimes marked by a violent act, such as a mass murder or weather event. In the period between, a series of child murders occurring in Derry are never solved. It is outwardly explained that a series of murders, no matter how gruesome, don't get reported if they happen in the small town. However, the real reason is that the influence of It prevents anyone investigating too deeply.
- 1715 – 1716: IT painfully awakes.
- 1740 – 1743: IT starts a three-year reign of terror that culminates in the disappearance of over three hundred settlers from Derry Township (similar to the lost Roanoke Colony, which was founded as a logging town.
- 1769 – 1770: IT awakes again.
- 1851: IT awakes when a man named John Markson poisons his own family, then commits suicide by eating a white nightshade mushroom, causing an excruciating death.
- 1876 – 1879: IT awakes, then returns to hibernation after murdering a group of lumberjacks who were later found near the Kenduskeag Stream.
- 1904: IT awakes when a lumberjack named Claude Heroux murders a dozen of men in a bar with just one axe. Heroux was promptly pursued by a mob of townsfolk and hung.
- 1906: IT returns to hibernation when the Kitchener Ironworks explode, killing 108 people, 88 of whom were children at an Easter egg hunt.
- 1929: IT awakes when a group of Derry citizens ambushes and kills the Bradley Gang, a group of robbers and murderers. The town, including it's police chief, pretends it never happened. However, a witness later recounts the tale to Mike Hanlon, including seeing a clown in farmer's attire participating in the slaying.
- 1930: IT returns to hibernation when the Maine Legion of White Decency, a Northern counterpart to the Ku Klux Klan, burns down "The Black Spot", a nightclub known to cater to African-Americans at the nearby army base[note 1]. IT appears at the location as a giant bird with balloons on it's wings.
- 1957: IT awakes when Dorsey Corcoran is beaten to death by his stepfather, Richard Macklin. In October, Georgie Denbrough dies from blood loss, when his arm is torn off by Pennywise. This prompts Bill Denbrough (Georgie's older brother) to investigate, leading to the discovery of IT. He, along with several other victims of IT's torment, performs the Ritual of Chüd, which wounds IT and forces it to return to an early hibernation.
- 1984: IT awakes when three bullies assault Adrian Mellon and Don Hagarty, a homosexual couple. The bullies throw Mellon off a bridge and IT, in the form of Pennywise, attacks and kills him.
- 1985: IT is finally killed (presumably) in another Ritual of Chüd by the adult Bill, Richie, Beverly, Eddie, and Ben.
In the 1990 adaptation, events occur slightly later, with Georgie's disappearance occurring in 1960 and IT's death in 1990.
Timeline (2017 film)
- Derry starts as a beaver camp until 91 people vanish. The rumored cause is plague or slaughter by Indians, but there are no signs of an attack. The only evidence is the presence of bloody clothes at the Well House.
- 1908: IT awakens after the Kitchener Ironworks explosion, where 102 people die (88 kids and 14 adults).
- 1935: IT awakens after the Bradley Gang shootout.
- 1962: IT awakens when the The Black Spot is burned down by a cult.
- 1988: IT awakens to eat kids for a year before going into hibernation. Georgie Denbrough dies by Pennywise biting his arm off and dragging him into the sewers. Bill Denbrough (Georgie's older brother) and the Losers' Club investigates, which culminates in his (and other victims of IT) finding of its den and forcing IT to go back into hibernation when the monster falls into a deep well. The Losers' club learns from Beverly about the future and they swear that, if IT will return one day, they will come back to destroy it once and for all.
Powers and Abilities
- Lower-tier Omnipotence-- IT has an immense amount of power with only Maturin being its equal and only Gan its superior.
- Shapeshifting -- IT can transform into any kind of being, including forms that may not be physically possible or exist in reality. This ability is not restricted by space or uniformity, as IT can appear in multiple places as multiple beings. When transitioning forms, its body becomes an orange amorphous goo. Shapeshifting appears to exert energy, as when IT is injured, it reverts to a giant spider. However, this form is only the closest the human mind can understand to its true one and not exactly what the children see. IT also has limitations on its appearance depending on who is seeing it and how afraid they are. For example, when Bill and Richie enter the house on Neibolt Street, Richie sees IT as a werewolf while Bill sees it as Pennywise, instantly realizing that "this is the clown that killed Georgie".
- Illusions -- IT seems to have no limit to what illusions can be created, but primarily uses them to instill fear, which means they must be realistic enough to do so. These illusions are physical (they can be touched and last beyond any given amount of time) and can include smells (such as popcorn or rotting corpses). Also, IT can make its illusions visible only by certain people. Sometimes, when the victim sees through the illusion, they will cease to exist (although this may be the will of IT). However, one must see through the illusion perfectly.
- Invisibility -- IT can appear (usually as Pennywise) to only certain people and stay invisible (in both sight and sound) from others. This is seen in a few instances, like when adult Beverly encounters Pennywise at her former home or when adult Ben Hanscom encounters it in the public library. This suggests that either A) only those aware of IT's existence are able to see them when invisible or B) IT can control who to appear visible by will. When it helps Henry Bowers escape Juniper Hill, one of Henry's cellmates and a guard witnessed it being next to him.
- Invulnerability -- While IT is clearly not invincible, it can heal at superhuman levels, but the rate tends to vary for unknown reasons. In the 2017 film, IT is stabbed through the head with an iron spike. This disorients but hardly kills it, as it is able to retreat into the sewer. In the novel, when IT manifests as a bird, Hanlon hits the bird's eye and feet with broken tiles, the bird retreats. When Bill and Richie encounter IT as a werewolf, it can almost instantly regenerate after being shot in the head with a handgun. IT is not a true physical entity, thus cannot be killed or harmed by conventional means. The Ritual of Chud is the only known way to truly harm and kill it.
- Telepathy -- IT can detect emotions and memories of an individual, though apparently not thoughts. It uses this ability to exploit fears, but also to implant thoughts. IT can also communicate through the mind, as seen with adult Richie Tozier (in the library) or adult Henry Bowers (at Juniper Hill in the novel).
- Psionics -- IT can steal people's souls and entrap them within the "deadlights". At the end of the story, a psychic storm nearly wipes out the town of Derry.
- Mind Control/Possession -- IT can control the minds and actions of a person or several people simultaneously. This is demonstrated by affecting the minds of Derry citizens (at least those with weaker wills) to make them indifferent about any terrible events that they see. Evidence suggests that this control does not extend beyond Derry. The text also suggests that IT can erase memories or knowledge. Also, IT takes control of Norbert Keene's body to get Eddie to leave Derry.
- Teleportation -- IT can teleport to any location within Derry. However, it cannot seem to leave the city. This may be because, as Bill says "Derry is IT" and "IT is Derry."
- Chlorokinesis (plant manipulation) -- When IT, in the form of a leper, encounters Eddie, it touches several plants and causes them to die. This is not an illusion as the effect persists long after.
- Telekinesis -- IT can make inanimate objects fall, float around, and or behave supernaturally without touch. This includes locking doors and adjusting electronic devices.
- Weather Control -- IT may be able to affect the weather in Derry's region. On more than one occasion when the Losers face it, the weather changes into a thunderstorm (most notably at the final confrontation which actually results in the devastation of Derry's downtown region).
- Superhuman Strength -- IT can tear the heads and limbs of human bodies with extreme ease, either with arms or mouth (as Pennywise or any humanoid form).
- Superhuman Speed -- Bill notes that IT can move at extreme speeds, claiming that it was way faster than an "express train".
IT underestimates and scorns all of mankind. In many cases, it leaves an open escape route for victims and lets them run away. Because of this narcissism, IT makes mistakes and does illogical things.
Given that it feeds on fear, it makes sense that courage and heart can overcome it. Once the Losers are united, their strong shared will and love for each other successfully overpowers IT. This allows them to form a psychic connection and "send power"to each other, even across distances.
IT can be taken by surprise and can be physically assaulted if the attacker demonstrates no fear of it. Additionally, "belief" can affect IT, such as the use of silver (which is a fictional weakness of supernatural entities) and an inhaler believed to contain battery acid.
The novel states that IT must obey the laws of its form. This means that IT possesses the vulnerabilities of whatever form it take, such as a vampire's vulnerability to sunlight or winged leeches obeying physics of flight.
During times of hibernation or healing, IT may be vulnerable to surprise attacks. However, other books in the Stephen King universe (such as the Dreamcatcher and Hearts in Atlantis) imply that IT may still be alive at the end of the story. Other beings like Gan, who is superior to it, and Maturin, who is its equal, could kill it.
IT assumes twenty-four forms in the novel.
- Pennywise the Dancing Clown - IT's the main form that the creature takes and is said to be its favorite form too. Pennywise wears a baggy silk suit of silver with red pompoms and a collar ruff. He has a white face and a bald head, with red hair on either side. His mouth has a red clown smile. He wears large white gloves and is usually carrying a bunch of balloons. Stephen King based his appearance on Ronald McDonald, Bozo, Clarabell and John Wayne Gacy.
In the 1990 mini-series, the outfit is more colorful with orange pompoms, blue sleeves, and a yellow body. In the 2017 movie, Pennywise returns to having a silver suit, similar to Italian opera clowns, and orange hair. His face has two red lines starting above his eyes, streaming down the cheeks, and ending at the corners of his mouth. His nose is not fake but painted red. Most often, his eyes are orange, but It can change them to appear more familiar. They also are often looking in different directions.
The form of a friendly and funny clown is the easiest to invoke a sense of safety and comfort without needing to know anything personal about the victim, thus why It uses it so often.
- George Denbrough IT appears as Georgie to Bill throughout each adaptation in various places.
- Dorsey Corcoran: Eddie Cocoran's brother, who was murdered by his abusive stepfather for climbing on a ladder in their garage.
- The Creature from the Black Lagoon This form scares Eddie Cocoran, a classmate of the children, when he is afraid to go home and show his dad his report card.
- Betty Ripsom: One of IT's victims (in 1957), her voice is overheard by her parents through a drain.[note 3]
- A Giant bird Resembles a combination of a crow that attacked Mike Hanlon as a baby and Rodan, a giant Pteranodon featured in a 1956 Japanese monster movie.
- The Werewolf from the 1957 horror film I Was a Teenage Werewolf. IT takes this form during the encounter with Richie & Bill while in the mansion on 29 Neibolt Street. (It is even wearing a Derry High School blazer.)
- A leper/diseased vagrant, when Eddie first encounters IT under the porch of the house on 29 Neibolt Street. Eddie assumes the man has leprosy when it is, in fact, untreated syphilis.
- The Mummy from the 1932 Boris Karloff film. Ben Hanscom recalls seeing a mummy in Pennywise's clown costume walking towards him on the frozen canal, carrying balloons that float counter to the wind.[note 4]
- The Crawling Eye, from the Hugh Beumont film, when encountering the children under the city.
- Alvin Marsh, Beverly's abusive father
- A swarm of winged leeches, when attacking Patrick Hockstetter.
- A school of piranhas, when Eddie is frightened of crossing the stream.
- The shark from Jaws, seen by a boy named Tommy Vicananza in the Derry Canal in 1985.
- Dracula, seen by Ben in the Derry library in 1985. IT does not look like any traditional variations but resembles Kurt Barlow from Salem's Lot (written by Stephen King). He is very old and has sharp razor blades for teeth. He asks Ben "What did Stan see before he committed suicide?" then chomps down on his own mouth, causing his lips to split open and bleed onto the floor.
- A Paul Bunyan statue (referred to as the Giant), encountered by Richie outside of town.
- Tony Tracker, the manager of a trucking depot which had a baseball field behind it during the Losers' childhood, seen by Eddie at the trucking depot in 1985.
- Greta Bowie, a female classmate of the Losers who died in a car crash a few after 1958, seen by Eddie at the trucking depot in 1985.
- Patrick Hockstetter's decomposing corpse, seen by Eddie at the trucking depot in 1985.
- Reginald "Belch" Huggins's decomposing corpse, seen by Eddie at the trucking depot in 1985.
- Frankenstein's Monster, from "I Was A Teenage Frankenstein", when encountering Henry Bowers and his cronies, Victor Criss and Belch Huggins in the sewers under Derry.
- A Doberman Pinscher, when appearing to Henry Bowers in Juniper Hills Mental Institution. This breed of dog is the animal the guard on duty fears the most, so IT turns into an eight-foot-tall version.[note 5]
- A ghost-moon while convincing Henry Bowers to do its dirty work.
- Victor "Vic" Criss, to convince Henry Bowers to help it.
- Jimmy Donlin's mother, dead and eaten, appears to one of the inmates at Juniper Hills.
- The head of Stan Uris, full of white feathers inside Mike's fridge. Appears again as a jack-in-the-box when Henry fights Mike in the library. Mike sees Stan's head before it changes to Belch's head, while Henry sees Victor's head.
- Mrs. Kersh/Witch from "Hansel and Gretel". Beverly Marsh visits her former home and finds a woman named Mrs. Kersh living there. Mrs. Kersh then transforms into the witch, revealing that she is actually IT.
- Decomposing children's corpses perceived by Stan Uris as he enters the Standpipe and remembers the tale of kids who drowned in the water tower's reservoir.
- Reginald "Belch" Huggins in zombie form gives Henry Bowers a lift to the Derry Town House to murder the remaining Losers' Club members in 1985.[note 6]
- The deadlights, when Henry Bowers and the Losers encounter IT. This is as close to its truest form as can be explained.
- Giant Spider, which is the true physical form of IT on Earth. In the 1990s miniseries, it appears as a spider/crab monster.
Forms Appearing Only in the 2017 film
- Headless child - While Ben Hanscom is reading a book detailing the history of Old Derry, he sees a black & white photograph of the aftermath from Kitchener Ironworks explosion, where many children were killed during an Easter Egg hunt. On close examination (possibly provoked by It), a child severed's head can be seen a tree. Almost immediately afterward, Ben sees a smoking egg that leads him downstairs to the library basement. When he hears footsteps coming downstairs, he sees the body of a burnt child with no head. The headless child chases him through the maze of shelves, later morphing into Pennywise.
- A woman in Painting/Judith - Stan Uris is afraid of a woman in a painting (credited as Judith) in the office of his father, Donald Uris. The woman, depicted in the style of Italian painter, Amedeo Modigliani, is rendered with an elongated face and fingers. This woman leaves the painting and frightens Stan into leaving the office.
- Charred Hands - Mike Hanlon sees his burning parents and other fire victims trying to escape from behind a padlocked door.
- Richie Tozier (doll) - When Richie look at the coffin and his missing paper with the blood paint "FOUND", he pulls the body bag and see a doll version of him with bugs eating it and closed the coffin until IT came out.
- Eddie Kaspbrak - In the Neibolt Street house, IT appears to Bill and Richie as Eddie's head emerging through an old mattress. He asks them if they "want to play loogie", then spews caustic blood before disappearing back in.
- Alvin Marsh - While the Losers are beating up IT, it attempts to scare Beverly with her father, but she placed a rod into its mouth.
- Infected Leper - Eddie's fear was infections, IT became a leper to chase Eddie. When it was beaten up by the Losers', IT became a leper once more and vomited on Eddie causing him to kick it.
- Betty Ripsom: A female classmate of the Losers and Henry's gang. She is killed by IT in the form of Pennywise on December 26th, the day after Christmas. In IT 2017, Betty was not shown to be killed by Pennywise.
- Veronica Grogan: Beverly Marsh tells the Losers that a friend of hers, Veronica Grogan, was killed by Pennywise in late June 1957.
- Patrick Hockstetter: In late July, while disposing of animal corpses, Patrick is attacked by IT in the form of several winged leeches which makes large holes in his body. He falls unconscious due to blood loss and shock. When he wakes, IT has already started eating him. In IT 2017, Patrick went to the sewer to pursue Ben Hanscom until discovering zombie kids and attempting to escape before being trapped and devoured by IT as Pennywise.
- Edward "Eddie" Corcoran: On June 19th, 1957, while sitting on a bench, IT (in the form of his brother's reanimated corpse) grabs Eddie on the ankle and chases him. Afterward, IT changes into the Gill-man and tears off his head. He is killed on June 19th. In IT 2017, Stan discovered Eddie's right arm was chewed up on the standpipe.
- Georgie Denbrough: A younger brother of Bill Denbrough and youngest child of Zack and Sharon Denbrough. He was killed by IT by biting off his right arm and (in It 2017 film) being dragged into the sewers as the first victim.
- Matthew Clements: His corpse was discovered on a constructed roadway in late April. It was his death that enthused and pressured chief Borton (one of Derry’s local sheriffs) in developing a strict curfew for the rest of adolescents around the town.
- Esther Sinclair
- Reginald "Belch" Huggins: After killing Vic, IT pursues Henry Bowers but Belch defends him. IT easily overpowers him and mutilates his face. (miniseries)
- Victor "Vic" Criss: Killed by IT in the form of Frankenstein's Monster, which decapitates Victor. (miniseries)
- Adrian Mellon: A homosexual male who was assaulted by three youths, John "Webby" Garton", Steven Bishoff Dubay and Chris Unwin. Adrian was thrown over a bridge and killed by Pennywise while Chris and Adrian's boyfriend, Don Hagarty watched.
- Laurie Anne Winterberger (little girl on a tricycle): She was attacked between the 7th and 14th of February 1985, seven months after the death of Adrian Mellon.
- John Koontz: A guard at Juniper Hill mental institution, killed when IT turns into a giant Doberman Pinscher and mauls him to death.
- Tom Rogan: The husband of adult Beverly Marsh. When he arrives in Derry to kill Beverly, Pennywise hypnotizes him. He convinces Tom to capture Audra Phillips and bring her to his lair beneath the city. Upon seeing IT's true form, Tom drops dead in shock.
- Edward "Eddie" Kaspbrak: During the final fight, Eddie uses his inhaler (which he imagines as battery acid) on IT, which frees Bill and Richie from its "deadlights". In response, IT tears Eddie's arm off. He dies of shock and blood loss not much later (miniseries).
- Frederick Cowan: IT kills this boy when emerging from a toilet.
- It (novel)
- It (Mini series)
- Gray Matter (mentioned)
- Dreamcatcher (mentioned)
- The Tommyknockers (possibly a hallucination)
- 11/22/63 (mentioned)
- Insomnia (mentioned)
- Christine (hallucination)
- The Shining (Related Characters)
- NOS4A2 (Mentioned)
- Mr. Mercedes (Mask)
- Dark Tower (2017 film) (Fairgrounds Gate)
- It (2017 film)
- It: Chapter Two (2019 film)
- Mom (Mentioned)
- Will and Grace (Mentioned)
- "Everything down here--floats."
- ―IT to Georgie
- "There was a clown in the stormdrain. The light in there was far from good, but it was good enough so that George Denbrough was sure of what he was seeing. It was a clown, like in the circus or on TV. In fact he looked like a cross between Bozo and Clarabell, who talked by honking his (or was it her?--George was never really sure of the gender) horn on Howdy Doody Saturday mornings--Buffalo Bob was just about the only one who could understand Clarabell, and that always cracked George up. The face of the clown in the stormdrain was white, there were funny tufts of red hair on either side of his bald head, and there was a big clown-smile painted over his mouth. If George had been inhabiting a later year, he would have surely thought of Ronald McDonald before Bozo or Clarabell."
- ―IT's first appearance in the novel
- "Then the clown’s face changed. And what little George Denbrough saw next was terrible enough to make his worst imaginings of the things in the basement look like sweet, angelic dreams; what he saw destroyed his sanity in one clawing stroke. And George knew no more..."
- ―Georgie's death
- "Tell your friends I am the last of a dying race. The only survivor of a dying planet. I have come to rob all the women... rape all the men... and learn to do the Peppermint Twist!"
- ―IT to Beverly Marsh
- "You have no power. This is the power; feel the power, brat, and then speak again of how you come to kill the Eternal!"
- ―IT to Bill Denbrough in the Macroverse
- "I am eternal. I am the Eater of Worlds."
- ―IT to Bill Denbrough when the two meet on another plane of existence
- "Let me go! Let me go and you can have everything you've ever wanted; Money, fame, fortune, power! I can give you these things. I can bring your wife back! I can do it, only I. She'll remember nothing, just like the seven of you remember nothing. I can't give you eternal life, but I can touch you and you will live long, long lives. 200 years, 300, perhaps 500! I can make you gods of the Earth if you let me go! IF YOU LET ME GO. IF YOU LET ME-"
- ―IT bargaining for its life
1990 Mini series
- "Hiya, Georgie. Aren't you gonna say hello?"
- ―IT's first words
- "Oh, yes... They float, Georgie... They float... and when you're down here with me... YOU FLOAT TOO!"
- ―IT's final words to Georgie before killing him.
- "Say hello to your friends, Beverly! You'll die if you try to fight us, Beverly. You'll die if you try! You'll die if you try to fight us, Beverly. You'll die if you try. You'll die if you try. You'll die if you try. You'll die if you try..."
- ―IT to Beverly
- "Take your pick, B-b-b-Billy boy. Oh, except for the one on the end, that's already taken. Sorry."
- ―IT's first appearance to Bill, at Stan's funeral, standing in front of seven freshly dug graves
- "Sorry I'm late! Well, let's see who's here! [to Bill] Ba-Ba-Ba-Ba-Ba-Ba-B-B-B-Ba-Billy Boy! [to Richie] Richie! You still here? We never expected you to stick around! Nice nosejob. No one would ever suspect. [to Ben] Haystack. Puttin' on a little weight, huh? [to Beverly] Speaking of dads, Bevvy, yours isn't worried about you anymore. He loves your choice in men. [to Eddie] Wheezy! How's your sex life?... what's your sex life? [to Mike] Well, Mikey, you did it. You got us all back here. I guess it's cause it's the only way you'd ever see us since you're so lame, you'd never leave this town. I finally made it, guys! I'm in the deadlights now! And you know what? It's true what they say--we all float down here. And you will, too. In fact, they ALL float! *THEY ALL FLOAT!*"
- ―IT appearing as Stan's head in a refrigerator
- "Excuse me, sir. Do you have Prince Albert in a can? You DO? Well, you better let the poor guy out! A-ha! A-ha! A-ha!"
- ―IT distracting adult Richie in the library
- "Silly boy! You still think you can see "me". Ha ha. You can never see me, you can only see what your little mind can allow! Go! Now! For if you stay, you'll lose your little mind, in my deadlights. Like all the others. Like all the others."
- ―IT to Bill
- "I'm every nightmare you've ever had. I'm your worst dream come true. I'm everything you ever were afraid of."
- ―IT to the children, appearing in a photo book
- "Let go. Be afraid. You all taste so much better when you're afraid."
- "We all float down here, Henry! We all float! When you're down here with us, you'll float too! Kill them all! Come visit, anytime. Bring your friends!"
- ―IT, in the form of the moon, speaking to Henry Bowers
- "Kill? Me? Oh you are priceless, brat! I am eternal, child. I am the eater of worlds, and of children. And you are next!"
- ―IT to Bill, Beverly and Stanley
- "Hiya Georgie."
- ―IT greets Georgie
- "Here, take it... Take it Georgie..."
- ―IT, when taunting Georgie with the paper boat
- "What a nice boat. Do you want it back?"
- ―IT asks Georgie if he wants his boat back
- "Where are you going Eds? If you lived here, you'd be home by now. Come join the clown, Eds. You'll float down here. We all float down here. Yes we do."
- ―IT to Eddie
- "I lost it Billy. Don't be mad. It just floated off... But, Bill? If you'll come with me, you'll float, too.You'll float, too. You'll float, too. You'll float, too. You'll float, too. You'll float, too! You'll float, too! You'll float, too! You'll float, too! YOU'LL FLOAT, TOO! YOU'LL FLOAT, TOO! YOU'LL FLOAT, TOO! YOU'LL FLOAT, TOO! YOU'LL FLOAT, TOO!"
- ―It as Georgie
- "Beep beep Richie!"
- ―IT to Richie
- "Time to float."
- ―IT to Eddie
- "Tasty, tasty, beautiful fear."
- "This isn't real enough for you, Billy? I'm not real enough for you? It was real enough for Georgie."
- "Step right up, Beverly! Step right up! Got change? Come float! You'll laugh, you'll cry. You'll cheer, you'll die. Introducing Pennywise the Dancing Clown!"
- ―IT's introduction music box
- "You will be."
- ―IT to Beverly
- "I WILL KILL YOU ALL!!"
- ―IT during the final battle
- "NO! I'll take him! I'll take all of you! I'll feast on your flesh as I feed on your fear... Or... you'll just leave us be... I will take him. Only him, and I will have my long rest and you will all live to grow and thrive and lead happy lives, until old age takes you back to the weeds."
- ―IT seizes Bill and offers a bargain
- ―IT's last words before disappearing into the sewer
Though IT is believed to be dead by the end of the book and mini series where IT was killed, the first line in the book implies that IT could have possibly survived. This seems likely as Pennywise is referenced to in a few of Steven King's other novels. These could set up for a sequel, however in a recent King reddit QA, he claims he doesn’t have any plans to write one.
- One instance is in Tommyknockers (1987) when Tommy Jacklin goes to Derry on a supply run and thinks he sees a “clown with shiny silver dollar eyes” watching him from the sewers.
- Another instance is in DreamCatcher (2001) when Mr. Gray sees the plaque meant to remember the victims of Derry when the water storage standpipe was destroyed. Spray painted over the plaque are the words “PENNYWISE LIVES”.
- ↑ Dick Halloran, the caretaker of the Overlook Hotel in The Shining is present and survives this
- ↑ One can then assume the sequel will take place in 2016, which would be twenty-seven years later
- ↑ In the 2017 film, Beverly is the one to hear her voice, along with Matthew Clements, Veronica Grogan and Patrick Hockstetter. Her shoe is also found by Bill Denbrough
- ↑ This form appears briefly in the 2017 adaptation of It during the final fight.
- ↑ In the 1990 Mini series, IT appears to the guard as a clown with a Rottweiler's head.
- ↑ The car they drive is a 1958 Plymouth Fury, the same demonic car in King's novel Christine.