“Stranger Things” turns television Upside Down

“Stranger Things” pays homage to ‘80s culture. (Netfix)

Spoilers are discussed, discretion is advised.

The Netflix show, ‘Stranger Things’ was released in July and immediately became a viral sensation.

The creators of the show, The Duffer Brothers brilliantly take the audience to 1980 Hawkins, Indiana, a small town where nothing interesting ever happens until a boy named Will goes missing and a girl sporting a shaved head and a hospital gown appears.

Police Chief Jim, frantic mother Joyce, and a group of three boys Mike, Dustin and Lucas separately discover that these events are not only abnormal but also correlate with one another.

The girl, Eleven, played by Millie Bobby Brown, flawlessly mixes child vulnerability with psychokinesis, also known as moving objects with her mind. Brown took the audience through an unthinkable backstory of being enslaved because of her abilities.

Eleven’s talents were primarily used to connect with the Upside Down, an alternative dimension that parallels the current setting and is sure to keep you up at night. It is a dark, decaying shadow world filled with lanky monsters with no faces. These monsters kidnap humans and insert this plug within the human to extract the life from them.

The elements of the Upside Down contribute to the horror aspect of the show while the mystery of the disappearing persons define the show as science fiction.   

While the show is overall thrilling and addicting, there are some concerns.

First off, Barb, an innocent woman, was kidnapped by the monsters early on in the season and never heard from again. Even though the final episode pans to her connected to the plug system, no one saves her. Vengeance for her is demanded in season 2.

Eleven’s sacrifice after she and Mike share a little kiss was heartbreaking and showed a level of growth and protection that exceeds her age. This proves her keen awareness despite her lack of understanding of English slang.

Finally, Lucas is an underrated character who feels the common emotion of losing a friend to a romantic relationship. His mini breakdown was understandable. Dustin was a practical and humorous peacemaker who has won the audience’s hearts. Nancy is a horrible friend, Joyce is a heroic mother and Jim is the story’s underdog.

The show also uses a lot of 80’s references such as Dungeons and Dragons, Steven Spielberg and Stephen King, giving later generations and anyone who enjoys nerd culture a connection with the show.

“Stranger Things” leaves the audience with major suspense. Will sneezes in the real world and transports himself into the Upside Down for a second. Is he connected to the Upside Down and what does that mean for the second season? Is Eleven still alive? Will we ever get Barb back?

The joy of “Stranger Things” is its ability to wrap friendship and unconditional love with horror and science fiction into eight unforgettable episodes of pure gold. The 80’s never looked so intriguing.

Season 2 is set to release on Netflix in 2017.

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