Experiment 626, better known as Stitch, is an alien created by Dr. Jumba Jookiba, and the main protagonist of Lilo & Stitch, its sequels, and its television series. He is voiced by Christopher Michael Sanders.
Throughout the course of the entire Lilo and Stitch franchise, Stitch is depicted as a character that is unlikable to many people except Lilo (on rare occasions, even she falls out with him, most notably in Lilo and Stitch 2, where she cries out at him that he is "bad, and always will be bad!") due to his destructive and temperamental behavior. It is interesting to note that people who are averse to Stitch, such as Mertle or Hamsterviel, describe him as "ugly and deformed", while people with an affection (like Lilo, Jumba, and Nani) for him describe him as "cute and fluffy". This reflects the basic idea behind Stitch and also his cousins: they do not correspond to many established criteria of good physical appearance, having an extra pair of arms, misshapen heads, or other odd features.
When Stitch is in his "evil" form (which is the true alien form), he is undeniably worrying as his somewhat botched physique underlines his at the time twisted behavior; in his "good" form however (the "dog" form, that is trademarked and the audience most often sees), Stitch's display of emotion at being rejected for his misbehavior and looks while trying to act good for Lilo are meant to make him seem more adorable to the audience. Despite his surface destructiveness, which does not go away even after he has become "good", Stitch is a complex character: according to his creator Jumba, Stitch as a destructive machine was not given a higher purpose in life. Since Stitch is trapped on an island where there are relatively few things to destroy, he has many occasions to reflect on other occupations than evil. It is implied that Stitch destroys only because that is what he is programmed to do; but since he has a personality of his own (a fact that only Lilo truly understands), he also has the choice, even will, not to do so.
Despite having superhuman strength and a high level of computer-intelligence, Stitch is emotionally fragile and has a childlike personality beneath his "monster" appearance. Lilo believes that one reason why he originally pursued his destructiveness was for similar reasons to her own naughtiness, that it was because he was emotionally scarred (for having been made as a monster by Jumba) but received little understanding or sympathy from others. Stitch becomes much more well-meaning after his betterment, but is frequently unable to control all of his impulses to anti-social actions. Fortunately for him, Lilo (and later Reuben and Angel) is always there to support him, and he returns her support willingly.
There is a common misconception from viewers that Lilo is dependent on Stitch for protection and support; if anything, it is Stitch who is more dependent on Lilo. Despite her having her own troubles to contend with, Lilo makes every effort to help Stitch in life, and as the story progresses he becomes more self-conscious and capable of the right decisions thanks to his friend. At the end of the series, Stitch has friends, family, love life and a purpose worth believing in.
Stitch was designed by his voice actor, Chris Sanders. Stitch is a blue alien genetic creation standing around 3 feet tall. He strongly resembles a koala, or a French bulldog, and is referred to as a dog throughout much of the franchise. He has a limited ability to change his physical appearance, as he can retract a second set of arms, his claws, his antennae and the three spines on his back into his body.
As revealed in Lilo & Stitch, Stitch was created by "evil genius" Dr. Jumba Jookiba, who called him "Experiment 626". Both Jumba and Stitch were captured and put on trial by the United Galactic federation.
626 is then sentenced by the Grand Councilwoman to life imprisonment on a desert asteroid and Captain Gantu (who despises him) escorts him. Stitch escapes and crash-lands in Kaua'i, Hawaii. Disguising himself as a dog to hide from his captors, 626 was adopted by a little girl named Lilo, who names him "Stitch".
Stitch is trained by Lilo to be good, using her idol, Elvis Presley, as a model for his behavior. Lilo's efforts prove to be fruitless at first, as Stitch is unable to suppress his destructive programming. Nevertheless, Lilo enjoys her new "puppy". Although at first he only wanted to use the girl as a human shield from Jumba and Agent Pleakley, whose mission is to capture the fugitive experiment, Stitch slowly develops feelings for Lilo, to the point where he saves her from Gantu. After his heroics, the Grand Councilwoman allows Stitch to serve his exile on Earth with Lilo as his warder, citing her dog adoption certificate (subsequently, Lilo seems to have become not only a best friend but also a sister figure to Stitch).
In Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch (set shortly after the first movie), Stitch is living with the exiled Jumba and Pleakley in the house Lilo shares with her older sister Nani. Although still hot-tempered and mischievous, he is reasonably well-behaved, but then begins to malfunction. Since his molecules were not fully charged after his creation, Stitch experiences periodic glitches that have him reverting to his original destructive programming, appearing to suffer from a "fit" or "seizure". Seeing this, Jumba strives to create a proper charging chamber for Stitch. Before Lilo goes on to perform her hula, Stitch scratches her, hurting her. Believing himself to be too dangerous, Stitch attempts to leave Earth for a remote planet, while Lilo, Jumba, and the others desperately try to have him return so they can recharge him. When Stitch crash-lands the ship, Lilo manages to get him into the fusion chamber and she pulls the switch too late. As Stitch dies, he says his last words: "Stitch sorry.". Jumba says that they're too late and there's nothing Lilo can do. But Stitch seems to be revived with his molecules fully charged by Lilo's love because she said Stitch needed her more than she needed him, he's Lilo's o'hana and she'll always love him, in accordance with her belief that love is more powerful than death and it turns out that he was put into the fusion chamber just in time.
In Stitch! The Movie, 626 discovers the remaining 625 genetic experiments locked in a crate, in the form of dehydrated pods. In order to rescue a kidnapped Jumba, a trade between Dr. Jacques von Hämsterviel and Jumba for the experiments is organized, but it instead results in the freedom of the experiments and the capture of Lilo and Stitch. Hämsterviel then tries to clone Stitch but he was rescued by Experiment 221 ("Sparky"). Stitch then rescued Lilo and landed Hämsterviel's spacecraft back in Kaua'i, where the Grand Councilwoman waited to arrest Hämsterviel.
In Lilo and Stitch: The Series, Stitch and Lilo have to capture Jumba's experiments, turn them from evil to good, and find them a home. Along the way, Stitch meets his match Experiment 627 who is tougher than him, and he eventually defeats him. He also is effected by three experiment powers: Amnesio wipes out his memory, Spike makes him goofy and Babyfier turns him into a baby. However, the powers wear off. He also meets Angel (Experiment 624) who is introduced as a love interest for Stitch. Over the course of the series, he and Lilo have also had adventures with Kim Possible, Penny Proud, Jake Long, and the kids from Recess.
After they have successfully captured all the remaining 625 experiments in Leroy & Stitch, The Grand Councilwoman offered Stitch the chance to become captain of the Galactic Armada and its new flagship, The BRB (Big Red Battleship) 9000. However, that would require Stitch to be separated from Lilo. Not wanting to make Lilo sad, he chooses to return to Kaua'i. However, Lilo tells him he should go. Before he leaves with Jumba and Pleakley, Lilo gives him a necklace with a tiki of the god Ku Tiki to give him strength. She also gives Pleakley a rock, and Jumba an Elvis record.
When Gantu breaks out Dr. Hämsterviel in an action of frustration, Stitch is sent on his first mission to capture the evil rodent once more. But when he arrives at Galactic Defense Industries, Stitch faces off against a new experiment - Leroy, who is an enhanced red doopleganger of Stitch. After Leroy is named, Stitch brusts into the lab and starts to fight against Leroy. Stitch fights well and is about to beat Leroy when Pleakley shows up unexpectedly, allowing Leroy to take advantage of Stitch's lapse in concentration and knocks him into a capsule and sent with Jumba and Pleakley heading towards a black hole, while Leroy disguises himself as Stitch. After they are sent towards the black hole, Leroy heads off towards earth to capture all of the other experiments for Hamsterviel. Later, Stitch, Jumba, and Pleakley escape from the black hole, and arrive on the planet Turo. There they rescue Lilo, 625 (now known as Reuben), and Gantu, and fly Pleakley's car pool van back to Earth to assist the other 624 experiments in the defeat of an army of Leroys. Now, with Leroy defeated, Stitch, Jumba and Pleakley return to Earth with Lilo, realizing family is more important than spaceships, laboratories, and prestige.
In the anime (confirmed non-canon by Sanders), Lilo left for college, and Stitch felt enough of a void in his life that he chose to leave Kauai and go back into space. He started reverting to his destructive programming, but years later, he would land back on Earth on Izayoi island, off the coast of Okinawa. Soon joined by Jumba and Pleakley, they make a new life with a young girl named Yuna and Stitch seeks the magic powers of the Spirit Stone, an object that can grant any wish he wants, in this case, wanting power. But the magic only works by doing good deeds and Stitch now faces the return of Hämsterviel and a once-again disgraced Captain Gantu along with various experiment threats. Eventually, Stitch reunites with Lilo again when she, now fully grown, visits Okinawa with her identical looking daughter, though things get tricky with Gantu and Hamsterviel use Morpholemew to take advantage of the situation. Stitch decides to stay with Yuna in her hometown instead.
A silhouette of Stitch is seen at the end of the film crawling on the wall in the theater. He bounces off Goofy, Rabbit, Mad Hatter, and Donald as he makes his way to his seat. Donald is heard quacking angrily as Stitch laughs at him.
Stitch appears in the third and fifth book in the saga. In Disney in Shadow, he is an Overtaker and along with some of the pirates from Pirates of the Caribbean, pursues Finn and Maybeck through Tom Sawyer Island. In Shell Game, he seems to have freed of the Overtakers, for he saves Finn from the rescue dummies at Typhoon Lagoon. This makes Finn get to the conclusion that Stitch was under a spell from the Evil Queen.
Stitch, alongside Angel and Scrump appear in the fourth UniBEARsity story OhanaBEARsity. In it, Stitch reads the UniBEARsity storybook and comes up with the idea of making their own teddy bears. His teddy bear, named Blue, is based on his likeness.
While explaining his creation to the Galactic Council early on in Lilo & Stitch, Dr. Jumba gives the following rundown of Stitch's powers: "He is bulletproof, fireproof, shockproof and can think faster than [a] super computer. He can see in the dark and can move objects 3,000 times his size. His only instinct - to destroy everything he touches!"
In the original Lilo & Stitch movie, Jumba claimed that Stitch's "destructive tendency was taking effect", and that he would be irresistibly drawn to large cities to "back up sewers, reverse street signs, and steal everyone's left shoe."
Although we rarely see Stitch shot at with a bullet, he does survive the crash of his spaceship with only a scratch, is only briefly stunned by a fall of several thousand feet, and has to be run over by three tractor-trailers in succession to be knocked out. As for fireproof, he does drive a tanker truck of gasoline into a volcano and ends up only a little singed. Weapons fire from plasma guns seems to cause him discomfort, although he can hold it in his hands long enough to throw the plasma back at his enemies.
Thinking faster than a supercomputer is harder to quantify, but he does escape from captivity fairly ingeniously, builds a model of San Francisco after only glancing at a postcard; grabs a crossword puzzle from the table and finishes it in about 7 seconds; builds a bomb out of a plasma-bolt, a doll and a roller skate; builds a "bucking bronco" out of a toaster, a vacuum cleaner, and a lamp; reads aloud a description of a display at a local museum at a remarkable speed; is able to understand he can use a human as a shield from Jumba, by Pleakley's presence; and generally picks up quickly on what is happening around him. Stitch can converse fluently in over 20 different languages, but prefers Tantalog. He can cook 372 recipes, but prefers Chinese food. He is an information repository, with a dictionary, thesaurus, encyclopedia, and experiment catalogue, and records every moment of his life, in a reserved portion of his brain that can theoretically store up to 300 PB. He is also fluent in playing the guitar and driving any sort of vehicle, which can be as simple as riding a tricycle or as complex as piloting inter-galactic spaceships.
His ability to lift objects 3,000 times his own size and weight is seen several times throughout the franchise, including incidents where he picks up a descending blast door, hits Dr. Jumba with a thrown Volkswagen Beetle (shouting gleefully, "blue punch buggy! No punch back!") and stops an 18-wheeled tanker of gasoline dead in its tracks. The reason why Stitch can lift 3000 times his own weight even though he has small arms is because his muscles contain excessive compressed amounts of myofibril in one muscle cell. This muscular arrangement makes Stitch's muscles contract 1000 times faster than a human's muscle can. The ability is sometimes joked about in the later series; for example, in Stitch! The Movie, Hämsterviel, while physically restraining Stitch for a cloning experiment, counters Stitch's strength with restraint devices, that are equal in strength themselves, as Hämsterviel loudly declares, to "three-thousand and one!" times Stitch's own weight.
Pads on Stitch's hands and feet can secrete a sticky substance allowing him to adhere to almost any surface and scale buildings and walls. His skeletal system is very flexible, allowing him to put his feet into his mouth and become a rolling ball and also to allow him to squeeze through tight spaces. Stitch's legs are small, but powerful enough to enable him to jump several feet into the air. His eyes can pick up various forms of light and he can filter out one or the other if necessary. Stitch can see in normal vision (during this mode, his eyes appear black in color), night vision (which is green), infrared (red) and X-ray (bright green). Furthermore, he also can magnify his vision. He also can act as an audio amplifier, radio and/or microphone, illustrated when he uses a claw as the needle on a record player, and the music comes out of his open mouth. He has an acute sense of smell and hearing and is also dexterously skilled in hand-to-hand combat, using all four arms or just two.
Stitch's greatest weakness is his inability to float or swim due to his dense molecular structure, which causes him to sink like a stone in water. Another weakness is the fact that his super-sensitive hearing can lead to temporary deafness when exposed to sonic blasts. Stitch originally had an instinctive aquaphobia, but was able to overcome it because of Lilo's influence over him.
Stitch easily became a common character in the Disney parks due to his popularity. He is usually seen with Lilo or by himself. In the Disney parks franchises, he usually accompanies Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Goofy and Pluto, replacing Daisy at times.
Stitch is also the greeter of guest on the Disney Fantasy cruise ship. Here, Stitch interacts with guest boarding the ship in CGI through a screen much like his attraction Stitch Live! in Disneyland Paris.
At Disney California Adventure at the Disneyland Resort, Stitch can be seen during the "Transformation" sequence at the end of the show. Stitch was also seen in a large amount of promotional material for the show.
A Totally Tomorrowland Christmas
Stitch is one of the special "guest characters" alongside Buzz Lightyear and Mike Wazowski. Unlike the others (until towards the end), Stitch does not appear on stage. He broadcasts himself from a television screen. The host checks back in with him between musical numbers, given the important job of tracking down Santa to make sure he comes for the big finale.
As Stitch learns more about Santa from the guests, Stitch mistakes Santa for a "spying snitch who breaks into house" and almost uses his ship's lasers to shoot down Santa and his sleigh. Luckily, he's stopped in time and he now learns the real meaning of Christmas. However, Stitch loses track of Santa afterwards and decides to appear on stage dressed as Santa for the big finale.
Stitch can be seen with Lilo on a surfboard in the Hawaiian area.
Stitch is one of the characters that appears on the riverboat in the finales of the American versions of Fantasmic!
In the Tokyo DisneySea version of the show, Stitch stars in his own segment, conducting the water and lights to an instrumental rock version of Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride while Angel drives around in a speed boat with a plasma pistol.
Stitch is the main character of his own attraction Stitch Great Escape and he has a chance to interact with the live audience.
Stitch is a minor and later major character in Kingdom Hearts II and Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep. He was originally found in Deep Space on a prison ship, where he allied with Terra, Ventus, and Aqua as a party member and Dimension Link, but eventually escaped and made his way to Radiant Garden, where he fought alongside Sora and his friends in the Battle of the 1000 Heartless. Afterward, he joined them as a summon.
Stitch appears in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep, in his homeworld Deep Space. In this world Stitch appears in his true alien form and is known as Experiment 626, along with bearing his red spacesuit.
Terra, having released an imprisoned Dr. Jumba to find Experiment 626, soon finds him encased in an experiment pod. Jumba explains 626's power to Terra and proceeds to release him in order to display it. 626 shows greater interest in Terra, jumping onto and climbing all over him, stealing the Keyblade wielder's good-luck charm in the process. Jumba finds it hilarious that Terra would think 626 would listen to his pleas to return the charm, though he is greatly surprised when the little Experiment does so, fleeing the chamber in which he was contained. 626 subsequently returns, and Terra attempts to reach out to him, but is cut short when the alarms go off.
When Aqua arrives in Deep Space, she is attacked by several Unversed. Finding a peculiar object in the shape of one of her good-luck charms, she studies it only to have it snatched back by Experiment 626. Angry with Aqua until he notices her Keyblade, he then runs with the approaching sound of Gantu's voice. Discussing 626 with Gantu and later meeting the Grand Councilwoman, Aqua is sent on a mission to eliminate the Unversed present in the world, as well as capture both the escaped Experiment 626 and Dr. Jumba. In the process, she finds 626 in the prison chamber, several Unversed prepared to ambush him. Aqua comes to his rescue, asking what the Experiment was doing in the chamber. He utters only a single name, "Terra", fleeing the chamber before Aqua can interrogate him further. Aqua later learns from the Grand Councilwoman that Jumba and 626 are now on the ship's docking bay, the Keyblade master going to them only to be attacked by Gantu. 626 and Aqua team up to defeat the alien Captain. Aqua later persuades the Grand Councilwoman to reconsider Experiment 626's sentence, as he has appeared to have learned the true value of love and friendship through the charm he made as a tribute to the one Terra had during his visit.
When Ventus arrives in Deep Space, he is attacked by a massive Unversed, pursuing it to the Grand Councilwoman's ship. Meanwhile, Experiment 626 has been recaptured, Gantu taunting only to be interrupted by an intruder. Told to stay put by Gantu, 626 uses his superior brain to escape his binds, the Blasters trained to fire only at him used to create a doorway and set the Experiment free. Gantu thinks Ventus is the intruder and does not believe his stories that it was a monster that was causing the trouble the ship was encountering, Ventus continues to pursue the Unversed that attacked him only to run into Experiment 626. He learns from the Experiment that he knows Terra and Aqua, 626 showing him his hand-made good-luck charm. 626 then attempts to follow Ventus in the trail of the Unversed, told to stay behind. Waiting for Ventus, 626 stands in the chamber with his precious charm, only to have it destroyed by Gantu, who says the Grand Councilwoman has reconsidered 626's sentence, Gantu not fooled by 626's apparent change in personality. When Ventus finally catches up to the massive Unversed, 626 appears before him, aiding him in the battle. Experiment 626's rage becomes uncontrollable during the battle, however, causing the small extraterrestrial to attack Ventus, who soon learns that 626's charm had been broken. Gantu soon appears and explains 626's destructive nature, the Experiment and Ventus flee as Gantu orders their capture. 626 goes on to steal a red police cruiser, Ventus following him on his Keyblade Ride. Experiment 626 activates the cruiser's faulty hyperdrive in order to escape his pursuers, and leaves Ventus behind in a blast of energy as the ship vanishes at light speed.
Some time after Xehanort's defeat, Experiment 626 gets his wayfinder fixed and puts it on the steering wheel as he flies his ship towards a blue star.summons during Kingdom Hearts II that makes a difference to the storyline (besides Genie). His first appearance was when Sora, Donald, and Goofy went into the corridors leading to Ansem's study; he was seen crawling above them without their notice. Later, he dropped down onto the keyboard of the computer. Donald jumps onto the keyboard to grab him, but Stitch jumped off with a laugh. As Donald turned around, he mashes the keys, causing the Master Control Program to be alerted.
Later, Stitch helps fight in the Battle of the 1000 Heartless in the Great Maw, using his blasters.
Stitch appears as a meet-and-greet character in front of Red Rockett's Pizza Port in Tomorrowland. He gives several tasks to the player, including fetching some burgers for him to eat, cheering him up by donning a hula costume and dancing with him while wearing it and taking a few photos throughout the park so that he can show them to Jumba.
While Stitch himself does not appear in the game, a costume of him (in his "pet form") does.
He appears on a surfboard.
DevelopmentChris Sanders created the character Stitch in 1985 for a planned children's book. Years later, when production of Mulan was wrapping, he had the opportunity to pitch a film version of his planned story, beginning the development of the film. In early drafts, Stitch would have landed in Kansas (the setting changed as a result of the greater isolation from large cities the islands would provide as well as the islands being one of Chris Sanders' favorite places) and the character himself was an alien warlord and conqueror rather than a recently created genetic monster. In these early drafts, his crew would be the ones hired by the Galactic Federation to hunt him down.
- Despite not appearing in the show itself, Stitch was featured in some online games for the television series House of Mouse.
- Stitch is very similar to the Beast from Beauty and the Beast, as they are both monsters judged by their appearance, but also true monsters at the start of their films. They both meet and befriend an outcast (Lilo and Belle), both start to develop feelings and compassion, and both receive a chance to show to others they are not monsters and are accepted. They also share similar characteristics: claws, fangs, head appendages (Stitch's antennae and Beast's horns), fur, and especially temper. Coincidentally, they were both designed by Sanders.
- Stitch appears, along with several other "Lilo & Stitch" characters, in a parody of the Disney Channel Original Movie High School Musical, which was broadcast as part of the High School Musical: Around the World one-year anniversary special.
- When Stitch has a glitch, his eyes glow green.
- Stitch is the first successful destructing experiment Jumba created after 2 failures: 600 and 625.
- Stitch's pod color is blue.
- Stitch is described by the experiment computer screen as, "Experiment 626 Primary function: Destruction of populated areas. Weapons: Sharp teeth and strong jaws for tearing stone, metal and flesh, 4 clawed hands, and 3 poisonous spines. EXTREMELY DANGEROUS."
- In "Cannonball," Stitch wears his super suit including a pair of red sunglasses (which he stole), a red towel (which he stole), a green bikini top (which he stole) and a letter S (which he stole from the PARADISE POOL sign).
- Strangely, unlike when Stitch was met in "Birth by Sleep", when Sora summons Stitch in battle, the summon scene depicts him on his Hawaiian home. So far, it has not been explained as to why this is yet.
- In the prequel comics, it is revealed that Stitch's genes contains those of some of the most powerful creatures in the galaxy, as well as some of Jumba's for "brains and good looks". One of the genes was from a puppy, explaining Stitch's resemblance to a dog (though Jumba did not know how it got in there).