Editor’s Note: This is a post full of spoilers, so don’t say you haven’t been warned.
Admit it: You were too busy watching the movie, waiting for Pennywise’s next incarnation, and all that jump fright, that you didn’t notice but a couple Easter Eggs.
It’s fine. That’s why we made the #ICYMI series. We go back more than once just to catch what Peter Cottontail has left behind. And, whenever you have a movie from the GOAT of horror authors, there are plenty hiding in plain sight in the fine, suburbia town of Derry.
Not for nothing, but Andy Muschetti is quite the fan of the pride of Bangor, Maine. He has to be in order to deftly drop these eggs and how…
Here are 10 of the best from IT: Chapter Two, you “losers.”
10. Love that Chinese Food
If you saw the miniseries featuring the great Tim Curry as Pennywise, you would have recognized the love for fried rice, chicken teriyaki, and a batch of eggrolls. There they are, all the Losers reunited at one of Derry’s Chinese locales and memories should be sharp. The scene is taken right from the book, as well as the aforementioned miniseries. Yeah, yeah, “Fortune cookie monsters.” I know. No lottery numbers here.
9. Fitted for a Turtle Neck
Alright avid King enthusiasts, say it with me: “Maturin.” In the novel, Maturin was this immense, almost prehistoric cosmic turtle who gives the Losers esoteric advice on defeating Pennywise.
While Maturin may have been too CGI-cheeseball for the film adaptation, Maturin Easter Eggs were in both movies: In the first, the losers are swimming and one of them says, “What’s that?” The reply is “Oh, that’s a turtle.” The sequel? In one of Derry High School’s classrooms, you can see one when Ben visits as he searches for his totem.
8. Me and Little Andy…
If Stan Lee can do, Andy Muschetti can too. Remember when Eddie revisits his past and he is strolling through the local pharmacy? If you go to see IT: Chapter Two again, look at the customer. Yup, that’s Andy giving some serious attention to a container of Mucinex.
7. …And Stephen King “2”
Stephen King is no stranger to dropping a dime or a cameo in his own movies. It’s the least the many directors can do since he provided the muse for the film. Like, that’s King in the It miniseries. So, did you catch him in It: Chapter Two?
Did you notice the cantankerous pawn shop owner when Bill walked in to find his childhood bicycle? Yup, that’s the horror auteur acting like a nutbar behind the counter. What’s interesting is he didn’t want to do it, as Muschietti tells USA Today:
“I love Stephen King and our relationship started after he saw the first movie,” says Muschietti, adding that he offered him a cameo during “Chapter Two” pre-production. “He said, ‘Yeah, but you know, you have to consider that I’m a jinx. Every movie that I’m on bombs.’ And I said, ‘OK, well, we’ll do it anyway.’”
Yeah. with $91 million, curse broken.
6. Bill’s Career
Here we go again. Barely anything is predictable in a Stephen King novel, except maybe his protagonist’s career — as a writer. Surely, King finds some inspiration there because he has taken his own life as a muse before.
Bill became a writer (with a dark past), just like his literary cousins like Thad Beaumont in The Dark Half, Mort Rainey in Secret Window, Secret Garden, Paul Sheldon in Misery, Ben Mears in Salem’s Lot, and the beloved Jack Torrance in The Shining.
If only the original author could write an ending, huh? (People who say that…you suck. Even King thinks you suck.)
According to Jake Kerridge in THE TELEGRAPH, I can’t write a good ending to save my life. If my life was at stake, I probably could. I’d just double space and write, “To his relief, he woke up and discovered it was all a dream.” That would probably work.
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) September 5, 2019
5. Paul Bunyan
You have to admire and fully appreciate a fan of the source material. Like a director is a serious comic book nerd making a CBM, Muschetti loves this book. Remember Pennywise flying over the mighty lumberjack of legend? There’s a statue in a Derry park and an image of him terrorizing Richie. Well, that fantasy oddball move actually came from the novel too. Blame King, not the edibles you sneaked in the theater.
4. Staying A-head of the Movie
When you saw the Stan’s head looking like a broken Pez dispenser chasing Bill, Eddie, and Richie, there should have been a soothing feeling of nostalgia for classic horror fans. As Stan’s ears sprout legs, it may have reminded you of a young John Carpenter.
“You’ve got to be f*ck!ng kidding.” Sound familiar? Palmer from The Thing reacts with those memorable words when Vance Norris’ noggin turns into a grotesque spider. That’s why Richie said what he did. A little salty-mouthed tip of the cap. Again, Muschetti is a fan of the forum. Nice.
3. It Shines in the Sequel
Granted, this wasn’t a well-hidden Easter Egg, but a large, candy-filled gem nonetheless. During the climatic face-off in the third act, Beverly is stuffed back in the toilet cubicle from school. Strangers are trying to break in (even Henry Bowers the Bully). And that’s where Henry decides to quote some lovely pop culture, “Here’s Johnny!”
No matter what. You can’t escape The Shining. Surprised Pennywise didn’t shout, “I’m not going to hurt you. I just want to smash your brains in.”
2. Mom. Wife. Toe-may-toe. Tah-mah-toe.
Another theme popular in Stephen King’s novels is that a bruised childhood never really heals. Take Eddie, for instance. He’s a true mama’s boy, not that there’s anything wrong with that, but with Eddie, there kinda is.
Di you notice Eddie’s wife, Myra? Think carefully. Did she look a little familiar? She is slightly tortured troll who can’t help herself but to torture those she loves…like Eddie. As a good (brainwashed) son, he ends up marrying someone just like her. Take a good look at her and his mama from the first film — both Myra Kaspbraks are played by Molly Atkinson,
So, he kinda married his mom. Right?! Eeeewwwwww!
1. The Bath of Blood
A while back, Jessica Chastain was in the middle of press junkets and sat on Jimmy Fallon’s couch on “The Tonight Show.” Remember what she said:
“I’m gonna say something and I think I’m gonna be in trouble but I’m gonna do it,” Chastain said. “It might be a spoiler, but in the movie there’s a scene that someone said on set that it’s the most blood that’s ever been in a horror film in a scene. The next day I was pulling [fake] blood out of my eyeballs.”
Welp, she was right. That was something else. Like a hemophiliac’s most vivid nightmare. I can’t help but notice the slight tip of the cap to King’s earlier work.
And if so, bravo.