If you’re reading this website, chances are very good that you’ve seen the 1990 miniseries adaptation of Stephen King’s classic novel IT, or are at least aware of its existence. To call Tim Curry’s performance as Pennywise the Clown iconic would be an understatement, with his work helping to nurture a life-long case of coulrophobia in quite a few viewers.
However, what many iHorror readers may not be aware of is the fact that India once created its own adaptation of IT, and the results are quite bizarre, at least when viewed through western sensibilities.
For example, here is India’s version of the scene where Pennywise lures in and kills Georgie (named Rohit here), albeit done from within a swimming pool instead of inside a sewer grate:
If you’re wondering why the effects and location look so cheap, it is because India’s adaptation of IT was not done as a feature film. Instead, India’s IT was a 52-episode(!) TV series entitled Woh. As one might imagine, the story was altered significantly during its translation between cultures, and was also added to greatly in order to fill the 52-episode length. One big change is that Pennywise’s Indian counterpart is called The Joker.
Still, many scenes were clearly based on scenes from the American miniseries, such as the following clip where the Indian equivalent of Ben Hanscom sees his dead father, who is of course The Joker in disguise:
Or this gender-swapped take on the Bev meets Mrs. Kersh scene:
At this point, many of you are probably wondering how you can watch the entire Woh series, and bask in the oddness of it all. Well, there’s good news and bad news. The good news is that all 52 episodes are available in full on Youtube. They’re even handily collected in a playlist here.
The bad news is that the episodes are presented in their original Hindi language, and no English subtitles are available. For anyone brave enough to try and follow along regardless, a rather detailed English-language written recap of the episode’s events can be found below each video. If you manage to make it through the whole series, The Joker may just give you a balloon.