I’ve been really excited about Stranger Things coming back, an excitement tinged with apprehension because I LOVED the first season and there is always a (very high) risk “they” won’t get it right the second time round.
Since I’m not watching this alone, I wasn’t allowed to binge watch which is probably a good thing. Two episodes was the limit set by my viewing companion last night and he wasn’t going to be swayed. Ok then, I guess I do need someone to rein me in at times.
So, what was it like being immersed in Hawkins again? So freaking good. I was an 80’s kid and this show is the ultimate gift for me: I would happily watch it just for the soundtrack, movie references, bad hairstyles, awful fashion choices and the video games – a mere mention of Atari and I’m quivering, instantly transported back to a time when gaming was new, crude but so much effing fun.
But of course, Stranger Things is so much more than 80’s nostalgia – I’m not going to spoil anything for anyone, let’s just say that I was hooked all over again with episode 1 which felt somewhat like being plunged in one of the early Stephen King stories.
The cast is as good as ever, I bloody love those kids and Dustin is still my favourite: I have shamelessly asked countless people why they were “keeping the curiosity door locked” in the last few months, which is a good way of separating the wheat from the chaff actually. Either people give you a blank look or they just high 5 you without even bothering with any other response and you know you’ve found one of your tribe. Incidentally I have been told that high fiving after the age of 30 is despicable and it probably is, but do I give a fuck? Hell no.
Can I also say that Sheriff Hopper is my favourite Sheriff in the history of both sheriffs and TV (followed closely by Sheriff Romero in Bates Motel) and if he doesn’t get with Joyce at some point, it’s going to be tragic. Yes, I know she is dating Bob right now but there’s no way that’s going to last because it’s just a ridiculous pairing.
I’m also curious as to what’s going to happen with the Nancy/Steve/Jonathan love triangle – I usually have strong opinions in such cases, but not this time as I have equal sympathy for Steve and Jonathan.
We’re getting to know Will who was mainly absent – for obvious reasons – from the first season and we have some interesting additions to the cast in the form of Max and Billy. Well, Max particularly I want to see more of, Billy I’m still ambivalent about.
And of course (of course) there is Eleven, our mysterious flawed gem, who is so far isolated from the other kids, a state of affair that can’t go on for long or I’m going to be very disappointed indeed.
So, I’ve done this: wrote about Stranger Things without mentioning the plot – I cannot be accused of spoiling anything for anyone this time. But I needed to write about it as the viewing companion was unwilling to keep discussing the lone 2 episodes we’ve seen so far. In fact, his actual words were: “enough, Nat, it is JUST a TV show, go and tell people on your blog about it if you must.”
I told him he was a philistine and (in a fit of exaggeration) the worst viewing companion ever – and then wrote this.
Seriously though, if you haven’t given Stranger Things a go yet, please do so. Even if you’re indifferent to the whole 80’s vibe, it is well worth watching.