When the wind starts to chill and things go bump in the night, “Stranger Things” will be there to keep you company this Halloween. This series is a great mix of suspense, horror, comedy, nostalgia, and heartwarming moments. I was a little late to the party, as I began watching it a year after it was released, but I’ve been hooked on it since.
The TV show is set in Indiana in 1983. It revolves around four kids: Mike Wheeler, Dustin Henderson, Lucas Sinclair, Will Byers, and other residents of the small town called Hawkins. If you’ve ever seen a Stephen King movie, “Stranger Things” will be a familiar ride. Since it is set in the 80s, it often feels like that’s when it was written, capturing the creepiness that movies like “IT” and “Cujo” (which was even referenced in the show) so well that you’d think King put the pen to the paper himself. Mixed with the horror aspect of the show, some ideas in it seem like something straight out of a comic book including an alternate dimension, a government facility testing on people, and a little girl with powers. The storyline of Mike, Dustin, and Lucas trying to find Will but stumbling upon Eleven made for some of the most heartwarming scenes in season one. Following the roller coaster of emotions, characters like Jonathan Byers, Joyce Byers, Chief Hopper, and Nancy Wheeler are on after discovering more and more of the truth about what really happened to Will along with some of the stranger things taking place in their small town provided a lot of suspense and drama.
Season two is right around the corner and Netflix is preparing for the show’s Oct. 27 release date with heavy promotion. The second season of “Stranger Things” has both a Comic-Con trailer and a final trailer released Friday the 13th in October. Many things stand out from these two trailers such as the new characters and the monstrous shadowy figure that has appeared in both trailers. This beast could be the Thessalhydra that replaced the
Demogorgon in the kid’s board game at the end of season one. It also seems as if we’ll be getting more of an explanation of the Upside Down and the monsters that reside in it. Will appears to have some connection to it from the time he spent there. This was briefly alluded to at the end of season one but has been a point these two trailers have tried to hammer home, meaning it will probably be a huge plot point for season two. Another storyline prevalent in the trailers is the return of Eleven, as she sacrificed herself at the end of the first season. It seems that fans won’t have to wait long for her return.
Netflix has been known to under market their shows, like “Bojack Horseman”, but they’re all in on this nostalgic show spending $5 million on advertising. However, even though the nostalgia aspect of the show is loved, it’s important for the Duffer brothers to prove that it’s more than just a mixture of things taken from “that old movie you used to love.” Considering “Stranger Things” is one of the best shows not only on Netflix, but TV in general, I’m hoping that it will be able to maintain its quality from season one throughout its second season.
Its ability to juggle comedy, horror, light-hearted moments, and suspense was certainly a big reason this show has gained so much popularity in such a short amount of time. It’s still important that they find a way to make this feel like a true sequel and something that can stand on its own at the same time. Season two has to expand on the original characteristics of the show and prove that there’s more things to explore within its lure to have fans coming back for more. Yet, this time they won’t have the benefit of being the surprise hit. With a huge fan base and tons of hype, the expectations will be in full force and it’s on them to deliver.