With the release of It and The Dark Tower (and, hell, even Geraldā€™s Game), more and more casual Stephen King fans are hearing tell of the ā€œdark universeā€ that connects so many of his books. Pennywise and the Losersā€™ Club, for example, not only appear in It, but are also either referenced or seen in King books like The Tommyknockers, Insomnia, 11/22/63, Dreamcatcher, and more. A new video essay, however, shows how a reference in It to yet another King book could provide some insight into what makes the children at the heart of the story so special.

In It, a side story details The Black Spot, a club that burned down in Itā€™s hometown of Derry, Maine, years before the events of the book. One of the tragedyā€™s few survivors is a character weā€™ve seen in a previous King novel: The Shiningā€™s Dick Hallorann, the character who essentially introduces the concept of having ā€œthe shineā€ (some level of psychic ability) into the King universe. As the above essay points out, Hallorannā€™s mention in It is subtle, yet telling, as it not only shows that oneā€™s ability to shine exists within the world of It, but also points to the possibility that what binds the Losersā€™ Club together is their communal ability to shine like both Hallorann and young Danny Torrance in The Shining.

The essay provides numerous examplesā€”many plucked from the bookā€™s second half, so, you know, spoiler alertā€”as it posits that itā€™s the shine that wonā€™t allow Pennywise to knock off our protagonists in the same way he does other kids in the story. The question lingers, then: Is the shine the one thing that terrifies this demonic clown? Itā€™s fascinating stuff for King fans, and a fine primer for just how intensely deep the myriad connections between Kingā€™s books go.

It doesnā€™t quite explain how this happened:


But maybe King can explain that crossover in whateverā€™s he working on next.