What You Need to Know Before Watching ‘IT: Chapter 2’

The long-awaited cinematic conclusion to one of Stephen King’s most memorable horror tales is finally here. IT: Chapter 2, the sequel to the movie adaptation of Stephen King’s novel of the same name, has finally floated into theaters.

In 2017, we met The Losers Club, a group of preteens who live in Derry, Maine. Together, they encounter a nightmarish monster, named Pennywise, that comes in the form of their worst fears. Nearly 30 years after the events of the first film, Pennywise returns to wreak havoc in Derry in IT: Chapter 2. The conclusion to this haunting tale is one of this year’s most highly anticipated cinematic releases. Before you get in line to discover how IT ends, check out this recap of IT: Chapter 1 and everything else you need to know before you see IT: Chapter 2.

Bill Skarsgård
Bill Skarsgård | Warner Bros. Pictures

Who are the kids in The Losers’ Club?

The Losers Club in Stephen King’s IT is one of the most iconic groups of kids in movies, next to the kids from Stand By Me and The Goonies. The quirky group of misfits is led by Bill Denbrough, who tragically lost his younger brother to Pennywise. The Losers Club is comprised of germaphobe Eddie Kaspbrak, tomboy Beverly Marsh, spunky Richie Tozier, shy Stan Uris, loyal Mike Hanlon, and new kid Ben Hanscom.

The group calls themselves The Losers Club because of their solidarity in the face of constant bullying and abuse both at school and at home. Pennywise isn’t the only threat to this group of kids. Henry Bowers, the sadistic leader of a group of bullies, constantly terrorizes The Losers Club, cutting Ben’s stomach and attacking Mike’s heritage. The Losers Club has bonded through shared experiences, trauma, and hardship, making their friendship genuine and strong.

Who is Pennywise?

The origin of IT is a mystery, but we know from Ben’s extensive research that the supernatural entity has been terrorizing the citizens of Derry for quite some time. People, especially children, have been disappearing at a terrifying rate. Every 27 years, tragic disappearances and deaths occur, and they all lead back to the sewer-dwelling creature itself.

IT, played by Bill Skarsgård, takes many forms, like a running headless child, a disturbing painting, and a decomposing leper. Most of the time, however, IT takes the form of a frightening creature called Pennywise the Dancing Clown. IT has the power to take on many appearances, particularly the appearance of what it’s victims fear the most. For instance, IT took the form of Bill’s deceased brother and Mike’s dying parents.

The creature’s powers go beyond transformation. IT can actually drive the citizens of Derry to do unspeakable things. Pennywise made Henry Bowers go completely insane and influenced him to murder his abusive father. More of IT’s powers and abilities will be revealed in IT: Chapter 2, which the cast has described as even darker than the original.

What happened in ‘IT: Chapter 1’?

Love triangles, losers, and long-lasting supernatural curses — here’s everything that went down in IT: Chapter 1.

In 1988, a young boy named Bill loses his brother, Georgie, to the monstrous killer clown, Pennywise. Convinced that his brother may still be alive, Bill convinces his friends in The Losers Club to continue the search for Georgie. Meanwhile, the kids are constantly haunted and terrorized by Pennywise. A love triangle forms between Beverly, Ben, and Bill. The kids decide to take matters into their own hands and venture to an old abandoned house to get rid of the clown once and for all. The attack fails, however, and The Losers Club is forced to flee.

Several weeks later, Beverly is kidnapped by Pennywise and the remaining Losers Club members return to the abandoned house to find her. Henry Bowers, under the evil influence of IT, follows them. When Henry tries to attack the group, Mike fights back and shoves Henry down a well to his doom. After venturing further into the creature’s lair, the kids rescue Beverly and find the bodies of IT’s victims.

IT offers to spare the rest of the kids in exchange for Bill, but the kids refuse and proceed to fight the clown and overcome their biggest fears. After defeating the clown, the kids vow to return to Derry as adults to finish the job should the creature ever return, opening the way for IT: Chapter 2.

James Ransone, Jessica Chastain, Bill Hader, James McAvoy, Jay Ryan, and Isaiah Mustafa
James Ransone, Jessica Chastain, Bill Hader, James McAvoy, Jay Ryan, and Isaiah Mustafa | Warner Bros. Pictures

Will there be a post-credits scene?

After such a thrilling final conclusion to one of Stephen King’s most famous horror stories, some fans of IT have speculated on whether or not there will be an extra scene after the credits to wrap up the story. There won’t be a post-credits scene, however, since Stephen King’s story will be concluded in the film’s two-hour and fifty-minute run time. However, we might not have seen the last of Pennywise the Dancing Clown.

When IT director Andy Muschietti was asked if he’d ever return to direct another IT sequel, he replied by saying, “Eventually.”

So, it’s possible that another reboot or perhaps, another chapter will float back into theaters within the next 27 years.

IT: Chapter 2 will hit theaters on September 6, 2019.