It’s not often that a show manages to capture the imaginations of both the young and the old, with a complete modern take on a genre whilst simultaneously oozing with 80s nostalgia. Stranger Things does just this. The show has absolutely blown up amongst fans and critics, and the question right now on everyone’s lips is not if there will be a second season, but when.
The show’s acting is one of its strongest points. Two of the leads are established actors. Winona Ryder, known for Edward Scissorhands, Girl, Interrupted, and Black Swan plays the grieving mother Joyce Byers distraught over the disappearance of her son, Will Byers (played by Will Schnapp). David Harbour plays the sheriff in charge of the investigation. You may recognize him from recent films The Quantum of Solace, Black Mass and End of Watch.
But the most refreshing performances were from the child actors. The show mainly follows the exploits of the three friends of Will and their mysterious new companion, as they desperate try to locate him before time runs out.
If you haven’t seen it yet, head over to Netflix and prepare for the best 8 hours of TV you will see this year, as spoilers are up ahead. The show has a phenomenal 9.1 rating on IMDB, 94% on Rotten Tomatoes and 75% on Metacritic. It has clocked in 8.2 million viewers in the few weeks since it was released, performing strongly across all demographics.
As mentioned before, the show is harking back to the 80s in many ways. There are all the typical high school clichés. The nerdy loner (Will’s older brother, played by Charlie Heaton), the pretty well-to-do girl who goes out with the high school bad boy, the school bully duo, the extremely likeable science teacher, the sheriff with a dark past but a good heart, the shady government figures trying to cover their tracks: these all play integral roles to the film.
But the fact they are clichés only works in the show’s favour, as the setting is one of fantasy, sci-fi, horror and drama, all swirling to combine an environment where they characters are familiar but the challenges they face are not.
And the TV show’s poster draws huge parallels with that of Star Wars. The font of the title; the colour scheme background of space, night and red lights; the positioning of the characters bunched into the middle at different heights. It’s all there, and the show is not pretending to be something it isn’t. It’s 100% authentic, and its clear fans have appreciated it for this.
While there hasn’t been an announcement, the boss of Netflix was recently quoted as saying it would be ‘dumb’ not to do a season 2. And the show left plenty of stuff out in the open.
The fate of Eleven is still up in the air. She could have gone to the upside-down place or somewhere else. We know her powers mean she could still be alive. It’s clear that Will has still not recovered from his ordeal and that something more sinister could have stayed with, as we saw him throw up a slug in the last scene with him. He could be infected by the monsters of the upside down place, or he could be becoming one of them. Or it could just be a hangover from his time there. Who knows.
Who was your favourite character from the series?
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