Follow TV Tropes


Fridge / It (2017)

Go To

Fridge Brilliance

  • The Rock War is scored by Anthrax, and one of Bowers' gang is seen wearing an Anthrax shirt. The members of Anthrax are huge Stephen King fans, basing at least two of their songs off his book ("Among The Living" is inspired by The Stand and "Skeletons In The Closet" is inspired by Apt Pupil). Guitarist/lyricist Scott Ian was thrilled with the shout-out.
  • The scene where Pennywise murders Georgie is horribly drawn out compared to the same scene in the miniseries — whereas in that adaptation Georgie was simply a Horrible Judge of Character when it came to the Monster Clown hanging out in the sewer, in the new film Georgie is clearly upset seeing this freakish stranger in the sewer with his boat. That this Pennywise barely makes an effort to assuage his fears — and in fact spends a bit of time toying with the boy — makes absolute sense. IT wants Georgie to be scared. And as mentioned in Fridge Horror below, despite being mortally wounded Georgie is allowed to squirm away from IT's grasp just long enough to have hope... before Pennywise literally reaches out to snatch it (and him) away.
    • This is a minor example, but if you look at Pennywise's eyes in that scene, you'll notice that they're blue, even though they're typically yellow. The color blue is typically used in visuals to calm someone, especially if you're trying to earn their trust (also, they seem more "naturally human"). And then fear is associated with the color yellow...
    • Advertisement:
    • It's also explained in the book: Georgie Denbrough has blue eyes, like all the Denbrough family does. The book explains that Georgie sees the bright orange animalistic eyes looking at him, and immediately gets scared... but then he sees the eyes are changing to blue, and it must've been his imagination, because the eyes are EXACTLY like the eyes of his brother, his mother and his father, and he loves ALL of them, meaning these eyes are OBVIOUSLY trustworthy too. You can even see Pennywise's eyes changing in the film, appearing at first as orange-yellow, then changing to blue as he steps into the light
  • The fact that Beverly sees the bathroom covered in blood when IT is tormenting her takes on a new context when you remember the scene earlier where she's buying tampons. The blood isn't just there to be gross. Along with the hair (which she cut off earlier because her father liked it so much) coming out of the sink trying to strangle her, the blood IS what she's most afraid of — her own womanhood.
    • This might also be a sign that Beverly is already being molested by her father. Many children who are molested over a period of time experience an even more complicated relationship with thelphysical changes of puberty and maturity than the average kid.
    • Advertisement:
    • The incredibly creepy scene of Bev's father smelling her is a great Call-Back to a minor point in the book. When Bev thinks of her father she notes that between them, they made a sort of smell... He could also be sniffing her menstrual blood, like a dog, upping the creep factor.
    • Also note that when Beverly initially returns home after first meeting The Losers, you can hear that the television in the living room is playing the same Romper Room-esque TV show that It later uses to get Henry to kill his father. Was It influencing Beverly's father through the show, or did It have plans to coerce Beverly into patricide as well?
  • In the book, Patrick Hockstetter was killed by IT manifesting as a cloud of flying leeches, which devoured him while Beverly watched. In the movie, he died in the sewers after being confronted by a cluster of zombies. At first you can call it laziness, just putting in a generic scary image as opposed to something creative... unless you read the book, and you know that as a child, Patrick murdered his younger brother Avery and grew up a sociopath, killing animals and collecting dead flies in a pencil case which gave him a kind of sick glee. So what would Patrick's worst fear really be? Dead children coming back to life... just like Avery might do some day, and reveal what Patrick did to him
  • Eddie being killed if he tries the battery acid trick 27 years later makes a lot more sense when, in this movie, he finds out his inhaler is a placebo; he doesn't have any belief in it, so the method won't be as effective against IT.
    • He discovers it in the novel, too. He just chooses to keep living in fantasy, because of the safety it made him feel.
    • In the novel, it was more a matter of negotiation with his mother, who had just tried to cut him off from his friends when it mattered the most. "Okay, Mom, I will accept this ball and chain that you want me to wear forever if you let me have my friends back right now. Otherwise, we're through." Really sad and surprisingly mature of him. In the movie, he rejects it altogether. CMOA, but this is going to be interesting (or maybe very difficult) for the sequel, because the fact that the Losers got artificially stuck in kidhood for 27 years (same fears, same problems, no kids of their own) was part of why they were able to remember and deal with Pennywise, not just accept it like every other Derry adult, and it was still way harder for them. If they all grow up like normal, It may be able to kill/possess them at will. Empowerment for Eddie now, fridge horror later.
  • A possible reason why the kids manage to do so much damage against Pennywise is because they're so determined to kill it that its reality altering powers work against it.
    • Also a reason why Pennywise was never really able to outright kill any of the Losers may also be due to Maturin's subtle influence per the Lego turtle Georgie made and the turtle they found in the quarry water. He was always around in some form.
  • The librarian lady seems to be the only adult in Derry who isn't creepy, indifferent, or hostile towards the children and even encourages Ben to make friends. As someone whose job includes knowing about the town's history, it's likely she has some minor understanding of the 27 year cycle and the high fatality rate among children, and wants Ben to be safe by having friends as opposed to being lonely and easy prey.
    • Unfortunately, I don't think the librarian is really so non-hostile. I found the scene where Ben is in the library before the balloon floats by particularly creepy with the librarian lurking in the background and slowly moving closer to Ben each time she is on screen with a truly terrifying grin on her face as Ben comes across the photographs of the Ironworks explosion to be especially unnerving. This stands out because she does help Ben previously. It almost looks like It is influencing her and doing a little subtle showing off to make Ben even more on edge.
    • If you look closer, you can tell it is a different woman, but the idea that said grinning woman is in fact being influenced by IT, especially due to how Mood Whiplash her personality is, since she is minding her business one minute, wickedly smiling the next and the back to looking at books.
  • Bill being able to shoot IT in Georgie's form with the empty bolt gun. Since IT is the only thing affected by belief and intent, the bolt gun could only fire if Georgie was actually IT. Bill knew he hadn't killed his little brother because the gun went off.
    • The gun was actually loaded at that point. It was when Pennywise revealed himself that it was empty.
    • To add to the post in regards to Bill shooting IT in Georgie's form, there's another way Bill knew it wasn't Georgie. The last talk the two had were about boats, and Bill told Georgie boats are called by female pronouns. Since IT in Georgie's form didn't know this, this allowed Bill to realize this wasn't his brother, but IT preying on his guilt.
  • Why exactly was Pennywise able to get to Beverly? Remember, Pennywise is attracted to unbalanced and terrified minds, a fact he uses to full advantage to "recruit" Henry Bowers to IT's own side. He also needed his victims alone to use his full power against them. Beverly had just attacked her father in self-defense, apparently murdering him. She was terrified, unbalanced, and alone, and Pennywise already had a link to her from their other encounters; the moment she knocked her father out, she left that conduit open... and Pennywise walked right through.
    • Not to mention that both Henry and Bev make sense for Pennywise to go after as they're both abuse victims. As in, the sorts of people who live in a near-constant state of fear.
  • Why did that couple drive right past Ben and the bullies when they were holding him down and Bowers was holding a knife? When they pass, there's a red balloon visible in the back of the car. Pennywise was likely influencing them to ignore the kids.
  • In the novel and miniseries, Henry called Mike a "nigger" as much as he could whenever they encountered each other. However, in the newest adaption, Henry doesn't use the slur at any point to insult Mike. Why? Because the novel and miniseries takes place in the 50s (60s in the miniseries), where it was much common for a white man to call a black man a "nigger", whereas the 2017 version takes place in the 80s.
    • Well... that never really went out of style for some people if you want to get technical.
  • Edith's "cameo appearance" as the Flute Lady makes sense if you consider the fact that Mama is a kind of Foil for Pennywise. Mama wants to protect her children while Pennywise just wants to feed on children. Mama started out human and became an Eldritch Abomination while Pennywise came into being as one. Finally, Pennywise is methodical in his methods of frightening children while Mama does it unintentionally.
  • Ben at one point mentions how Derry has as much as six times the national average in regards to missing persons, particularly children, and the town's history with violent incidents. Given how much attention this would/should draw, especially given that a new spree of child disappearances had just begun in the town, Pennywise would have had to find a way of keeping his murders from getting out, and keep the town's adult populace rather complacent and ignorant. What better way to subtly influence the people of Derry than through television? To add on, and possibly crossing over into Fridge Horror, there's a blink and you'll miss it moment where the show (that Pennywise uses to connect to Henry in a later scene) says something along the lines of "They can find it in the sewers," just as the Club was about to head out to look for Georgie. Meaning he hasn't just been using it to placate the adults, but possibly lead the kids into traps.
  • Pennywise is irritated by Bill's refusal to believe he isn't real. Why would Bill's beliefs matter? Because he feeds off of fear, and if Pennywise isn't real, then there's no reason to be afraid.
  • Remember what Henry’s dad said about putting fear into someone? How it “makes a paper man crumble”? What does It start doing after it flees from the Losers in the cistern? Proves that It’s nothing more than a paper man as its head starts to flake away and disintegrate like rotten paper.
  • The house on Neibolt Street is filled with cobwebs. What's Pennywise's true form?
  • A common criticism of the movie is that the Neibolt House is too much of a stereotypical haunted house. But what if it's supposed to be? It feeds on fear, and the kids all express an uneasiness about the house, even when they're merely passing by it.
  • Why is Eddie walking home when he passes Neibolt Street when he's seen riding a bike in other scenes? Of course his mother wouldn't approve of him having one.
  • When Bill and Stan find themselves faced with three doors, the doors read "SCARY" "REALLY SCARY" AND "NOT SCARY AT ALL." At first it seems like blatant lies, considering they find a dismembered corpse behind the third mentioned door. However, when Bill gets the idea that the thing behind the door isn't real, the corpse disappears and they're able to leave unmolested. Pennywise wasn't lying.
  • During the storm drain sequence, when Georgie tells Pennywise he's not supposed to talk to strangers, which Pennywise resolves by giving Georgie his name and remarking "now we aren't strangers." He never said he and Georgie were friends...
  • After Pennywise's defeat, his victim's bodies slowly float down to the ground... hinting that his power is only diminished, not destroyed.
  • When Georgie—actually IT disguised as him—appears alive in the sewer, he's missing the arm that Pennywise bit off in the opening sequence. Why would this be? You'd think that, if IT is trying to deceive Bill, why not have his disguise as Georgie be whole? Because he's not just trying to trick Bill, he's trying to trick us, too! By showing Georgie apparently alive, but missing his arm, that plants the hint that maybe Georgie really is still alive for some reason in this version. No one ever found Georgie or his remains in-universe or saw what happened to him, but we the audience did—it would be even more obvious than it already is that this isn't really Georgie if he had both arms.

Fridge Horror

  • In all iterations of IT, Pennywise is indicated to awaken only every 27 years. The original mini-series came out in 1990. The film is out in 2017. Do the math...
    • Either Fridge Brilliance or even creepier coincidence, the film is actually set in 1989, meaning that the next coming of Pennywise in the sequel will be set in 2016; and with the crazy amount of horrifying clowns in the news that year...
  • After Bev knocks out her father after he tries to rape her, she's kidnapped by Pennywise. The horrific implication? It was Pennywise who was behind Bev's father attacking her (this would be true to the book).
    • Either that or Pennywise was attracted opportunistically by her fear, treating her absolute life-and-death struggle not to be raped like a tasty hors d'oeuvre before the main course.
  • Stan's attack and mutilation from the flute player would give him even more reason to kill himself in Part Two. He wouldn't want to suffer through something like that again.
  • The townsfolk shown to be pasting the missing posters of the most recent disappeared children over older ones, with the town preferring to pretend they have no massive missing children problem.
  • Beverly's vision of themselves in adulthood, fighting It, becomes this when you realize what she saw. Two of the boys are missing - she would know Mike is one, but have no way of telling whom the other one is, since they would have aged nearly three decades. And depending on at what point during the confrontation her vision took place, and how closely it follows the book, she might also have seen another one of the guys bleeding out from a torn-off arm.
  • Pennywise's actor, Bill Skarsgård, uses a trick he learned to up the unsettling nature of Pennywise by having his eyes wander independently. Eagle-eyed viewers may note that almost every time he does this in most promotional material, he is explicitly making sure at least one eye is staring directly at the camera.
  • Beverly kept the poem Ben sent her in her underwear drawer. Her father found it there. Did Pennywise even need to influence him to do this with his clear, disturbing lust for her?
  • Why would IT simply let Georgie crawl around the street, bleeding horrifically and crying for help? Georgie must have been absolutely terrified... Which is something that IT would enjoy, as it would make him taste better.
    • Pennywise tells Georgie "Bill's gonna kill you!" — did Georgie tell Pennywise Bill's name...?note 
      • Also note that Georgie never told Pennywise his own name, yet Pennywise seems to already know it...
    • Watch closely to the way Pennywise says the words "Bill's gonna kill you!" Even if Georgie managed to avoid his fate in the sewer there's a good chance that Pennywise would still kill Georgie but in the form of his own brother.
  • The director has said that IT's Pennywise form was likely based on an actual clown named Bob Gray/Pennywise that IT encountered at some point, likely around the time that the 1740s woodcut of Pennywise from the film (perhaps depicting this hypothetical human original) was made. Near the end of the film, Pennywise's stage is at the very bottom of IT's gigantic tower of centuries of kill trophies. We've seen what IT does to those IT just considers a light snack. What the hell would IT have done to someone IT was actually interested in?
    • Most of Pennywise's victims are food, and thus of little interest outside of what was necessary to terrify them. For someone he was personally interested in, he'd likely keep them around a long... long... time. And if you think that would be an improvement over being devoured, you don't know IT very well...
  • There is something creepily stalker-like in IT's interactions with Bill. IT's attempted manipulation to allow the others to go free if they leave and let IT take Bill. Because IT does not seem like Bill was of particular interest to IT over any of the other Losers. However, then you remember IT's fixation when trying to talk Georgie into bringing Bill to IT with bribes of popcorn, trying to lure Bill to the sewers through Georgie in the basement, the terrifying rage when Bill tells Richie that IT's illusions aren't real. It was a fixation that started long before IT even met Bill, and as with the above, when IT shows interest above just a food-source, it does not end well.
  • When Pennywise shows Beverly the Deadlights, several screaming voices can be heard as as she gazes into it. Possibly implying that Pennywise doesn't just eat his victim's bodies, but their souls as well.
  • This Pennywise keeps the bodies of its victims floating above its nest in the sewer. At the end of the movie, they all come drifting down around the Losers. How much would you bet one of the bodies was Georgie's?
    • It's possible IT used its Deadlights to paralyze Georgie and slowly eat him, all while using his still form as a way to torment Bill. On the other hand, there's a possibility he had long eaten Georgie.
    • The implication when Bill finds the tattered scrap of Georgie's yellow raincoat is that he's been dead for months, long gone, and that all that's left is a tiny piece of the yellow raincoat
  • When we see Henry and his goons at the beginning of the movie, Belch Huggins is the one driving the car. It's safe to assume that it's Belch's car, right? So why was Henry driving it at the end? Both Belch and Victor were there when Henry got his knife...
    • In an earlier scene, one of the kids mentions that it was Higgins' car, so this theory is a lot more plausible.
    • Not only that, but his face is covered in way more blood during his fight with Mike compared to when he kills his own father. "Where did all this blood come from?", you might ask... And where are Victor and Belch?
    • It's confirmed Henry killed them in a deleted scene.
  • Both brilliance and horror: At first, it seemed strange to gloss over how Bev leaves her father bleeding on the floor from her self-defense, only to be sent away to other family without much onscreen trouble, and no indication of an investigation. Why's that? Because, even though IT is forced into hibernation, IT's influence is still causing the town's adults to overlook any concerns, foreshadowing that IT is still alive and will return.
  • Similar to the books it is usually taken for granted by both the characters and the audience that whenever IT takes on the semblance of a former victim, or victims, that it is just another one of IT's disguises. What is never addressed is the implication that it could be more than just that.
    • Interestingly, IT manages to take Eddie's form for a short time in the Neibolt house - but only during a few minutes when the real person is knocked out. Maybe IT can morph into anyone it's been in contact with, so long as they're unconscious at the time. (Which means Alvin Marsh wasn't necessarily dead during the battle in IT's lair.)

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: