|“||They left us with nothing, nothing. Why do we have to right their wrongs? Sometimes, one must be sacrificed.||„|
|~ 1's last words before sacrificing himself for 9.|
1 is the tritagonist and an anti-hero from the 2009 animated feature film 9. He was the first of the stichpunks to be created and is their self-appointed leader, and is the cowardly and arrogant portion of the Scientist's personality.
He was voiced by the late Christopher Plummer.
1 was the first of the stitckpunks to be given life by the Scientist, being a fragmentary portion of the Scientist's soul. The portion of the soul given to 1 was the arrogant and controlling side of his personality. As the other Stitchpunks were created, 1 appointed himself as the leader and tried to lead his group through the last few years of the war between the machines of the Fabrication Machine and humanity, though his leadership was put into question by members like 7. When the machines deployed a gas that killed every living thing on the planet, the Stitchpunks were left alone in the world. 1 commanded everyone remain hidden as the world quieted, and wait for the machines to die out as well. 3, 4, and 7 disagreed and left him, leading to him assuming them for dead.
However, 2 wanted to know more about their origins, and researched and studied the science used to bring them to life. Fearing that 2's probing, as well as his age, could potentially endanger them, 1 sent him out into the wasteland to die at the claws of the Cat Beast, lying to him and the others by claiming it to be a scouting mission.
The final stitchpunk, 9, awakened and found 2, but he was taken by the Cat Beast. 9 is found by 5, who rescues him. 9 is confronted by 1 and his bodyguard 8. 1 explains that they will not attempt to rescue 2 and demands that 9 conform to his rules. 9 and 5 decide to go after 2 anyway and, with the help of 7, find him and kill the Cat Beast. However, 9 accidentally awakens the dormant Fabrication Machine, which kills 2 as the others escape. They regroup with 3 and 4 and decide that they need to see 6 back at 1's sanctuary to figure out how to stop the Machine. They go, but are caught by 8.
1 is furious that 9 and 5 disobeyed his commands, and tries to detain them. However, they are interrupted by the Winged Beast, which attacks them and forces them out of the sanctuary. 1 is almost thrown from the roof, but 9 saves him. With 7's help they are able to defeat the Winged Beast, though 1 is still spiteful about losing their home.
The survivors travel to 7's sanctuary, and 1 belittles them for trying to discover their origins and researching how to defeat the machines. 9 puts together that 1 sent 2 to die, and 1 confesses, causing 7 to threaten him. 1 goes for a walk, only to be found by the Seamstress and captured along with 8. 7 and 9 team up to save 1, but the Seamstress escapes with 8 and 7. 1 wants to forget about them, but 9 insists they go after them. 1 refuses, but after seeing 2's fate, decides to help out.
The group travels to the factory, where 9 goes to help 7 and 8 while the others try to figure out a way to destroy the Fabrication Machine. They end up finding a barrel of oil and plan to light it, igniting it and setting the whole factory ablaze. 9 is too late to save 8, but saves 7 and defeats the Seamstress. The Fabrication Machine sends Spiderbots after them, and 1 tries to blow the factory with the two still inside, but 5 manages to hold him off until 7 and 9 are out. 1 then helps push the barrel into the factory, blowing it up.
With the machines presumed destroyed, the stitchpunks celebrate while 1 looks on with remorse. However, the Fabrication Machine survived and chases them, killing 5 and 6. 1 decides that it needs to be destroyed, despite 9 warning him that they need to free the trapped souls of the deceased stitchpunks first. 1 refuses to listen and uses an artillery to try and destroy the Fabrication Machine until 9 returns with proof of who they are and what they must do. 9 attempts to lure the Machine out, but 1 nobly sacrifices his own life so that 9 can retrieve the talisman powering the Machine and destroy it.
9, 7, 3, and 4 then release the souls of the lost members, including 1, who places his hand on 9's shoulder, congratulating him before moving on.
1 appears to be made out of pale-colored fabric. His hands and feet are metallic; the hands have somewhat of a gnarled, claw-like look to them, while his feet are divided into three metal plates, bearing resemblance to a clawed foot. His head is tall, with high 'cheekbones', and appears to have a skull beneath the fabric covering him. He is fastened by metal buckles, and appears to be patched up.
After the war, upon reaching the Sanctuary, he obtained a cape made out of a scrap of red silk fastened with a ruby brooch, along with a metal staff with a rusted gear piece attached to it (adorned with a bell at the end). He also adorned a makeshift 'pope hat' out of a bullet shell. The hat has a brass one-cent coin on it that was attached with a piece of wire. This outfit makes 1 highly resemble a religious figure of high position, most notably a bishop. It is considerable this outfit was chosen to represent the fact that, in the past, religious leaders acted much like 1: refusing critique or questioning about the Church (1 refuses to answer any questions about the origins of the stitchpunks), being dogmatic and hating science (or in 1's case, alchemy). His pupils are unlike the optics of the other stitchpunks, they are triangular, rather than round. They become dilated when he is afraid. 1 also doesn't have stitched eyebrows like most of the others, but part of his skin above his eyes is indented to resemble eyebrows. Throughout the film, 1 loses his leadership status, also losing his staff, cape and hat in the process and relinquishing his title after the destruction of the Fabrication Machine's factory. However, he takes on a leadership role again when 9 runs off to find the Scientist's workshop, but this leadership is more formal and patient.
Although his goals and intentions are honorable, 1 is arrogant, egotistical and selfish. He appoints himself as the leader simply because he believes he makes the best judgement, and fully believes he is right to remain in hiding. However, if anyone disagrees with him, he has no qualms about issuing harsh judgement upon them, and due to his cowardly and hypocritical view on on the world, firmly believes that members of his own group should be allowed to be sacrificed if they oppose him or threaten the group's survival. He demands respect and loyalty, even though none is owed to him. He casts 2 out to die for being "old and weak", despite himself being the oldest and arguably weakest of the stitchpunks. However, he does have a sense of honor and sophistication, as well as remorse when he realizes that he has gone too far.
- In the 2005 animated short film that the 2009 film was based on, 1 was already killed by the Cat Beast when the events of the short film took place.
- 1 is the 5th and last stitchpunk to die.
- The end of 1's staff resembles an object seen at the end of the short film.
- In the Russian adaptation, 1 possibly represents the Chancellor.
- Despite being a coward in the beginning, he was one of the only two stitchpunks to risk their lives and die protecting 9, the other being 2.
- A deleted scene shows 1 and 9 having a heart-to-heart, which 1's hat ends up falling off and breaking, soon showing his tied up fabric resembling hair — and even making a comical spring sound. This might have been cut due to the fact there is not much comedy within the film.
- 1 has an action figure of him made by Neca. He comes with his hat being removable, while his cape stays attached to him. he additionally comes with his staff, which he can hold in his hand, and his arms have bendable wire in them making them bend like fabric.