There’s one indisputable fact about Stephen King. He has scared and scarred the imaginations of three generations of readers and movie fans. Well, there’s another fact that is almost as indisputable as the first: IT is King’s masterpiece.
It is fitting that we have an extensive selection of Pennywise figures in our collection, because like all true horror fans, we are crazy about IT.
Whether you are just a book lover, or you are a fan of either adaptations, you probably have your own reasons for wanting to immortalise Derry, Maine’s carnivorous clown. Here are the top five reasons that we’re crazy about IT!
It combines the coming of age with terror
Stephen King always had a fascination with the struggles of growing up. It seems that some of his best work involved growing up. Stories like Stand by me, The Body, have always explored the adolescent crossing the threshold into adulthood. However, few authors traverse this ground by mitigating the horror of growing up with the terrors of adulthood.
King entered the literary world with Carrie. Much shorter and more explosive than IT, Carrie explores the pitfalls of menstruation and womanhood. IT manages to deal with everything Carrie set in motion.
And so much more.
This monstrous tome is a masterful discourse on growing up and the repression of painful memories, as well as one of the greatest supernatural thrillers ever written.
It has created its own mythology
There is so much to know about Pennywise. He’s not just a predatory shapeshifter; nor is he merely a psychopathic clown that murders children. Like the Cthulhu stories by H.P. Lovecraft, IT comes complete with it’s own creationist backstory and intergalactic mythology.
There is a whole sprawling mythology created that explains the existence of IT (a spider-like demon) and Maturin, a giant turtle that had stomachache that caused his to vomit out the mainstream universe.
And that’s not where it ends.
For Stephen King fans you will recognise the continuance of this mythology in his later works The Dark Tower series.
The tapestry woven in IT ripples through King’s career, and throughout the entire horror genre since.
It reinvents the fairy tale
Consider for a minute the folkloric elements that a woven throughout the entire story of IT. The monsters that are hiding in the dark; haunted and abandoned houses; and the adventures that are shared and undertaken by each member of the Losers’ Club.
Stephen King is retelling fairy tales.
He admitted, on his website, that IT is a rewriting of A Billy Goats Gruff. He said: “Sometime in the summer of 1981 I realized that I had to write the troll under the bridge or leave him—IT—forever.” But that isn’t where it ends.
IT is littered with fairy tales. Beverley’s own journey can be read as a macabre Red Riding Hood, as she navigates the adolescent maelstroms between innocence and sexual maturity.
This is a dark fantastic fairy tale for adults, and it explores the same ground as those ancient folkloric tales.
IT is genuinely scary
The one problem with the horror genre as a whole is that it has become far too predictable an formulaic.
How many kids need to get trapped in the deep wilderness of America? How many inbred communities need to go rogue? We have pretty much, over the last few years, seen different variations of the same horror story over and over again.
And when a new concept is created, they do ten sequels which all become a moving catalogue of imaginative ways to kill someone. At the risk of sounding like a geriatric, but the horror genre seems to have passed its best.
Where is Candyman? Where is Hellraiser?
IT, is genuinely original and actually feasts upon your fears. You can’t help but be frightened by IT.
So yes, here at Figure Collectors we have a veritable growing shrine to the Pennywise, the most frightening beast ever to wear a clown suit. And why wouldn’t we? He has intrigued and frightened people of all ages.
Everyone engages with King’s masterpiece in their own way.
Some people like the book and not the films. Some people hate the 2017 adaptation but will watch 1990’s Tim Curry scrabble around with his balloons on repeat.
Asking our team which is the best only devolves into riotous violence. We are all agreed on one thing, however.
We are all crazy about IT.
What is your opinion? Let us know in the comments below.