After begging me to watch Stranger Things, I agreed to watch the popular Netflix show with my brother having very little expectations. I knew people were raving about it online, but for whatever reason, it didn't seem that appealing to me. But after watching the series, I can't express how much I love the show.

To break down the show, I'm going to review based on different plots and characters. There aren't many major spoilers regarding the plot, but I did throw in some of the most iconic moments in the show so be aware of the spoilers below.

The Boys 

I love the kids in this show. There seems to be this sort of a "pass" when it comes to child actors because they're young. Think the first Harry Potter movie. But here, all five of the kids are on par with adults, sometimes even better. They're the heart of the show as the entire series begins with Will going missing.  With the little to show about Will, Noah did great as we see flashbacks with her brotherly bond with Jonathan and the friendship with Mike, Dustin and Lucas. 

I love the charisma from the actors, which makes their determination to find Will very believable. The introduction of Eleven is very well-done as she slowly befriends the group and goes from the weirdo to their protector. Millie Bobby Brown is so exceptional and is easily the one who steals the show in every episode. Her expressions convey every emotion she's feeling. I also love how we have this strong female lead who continually saves the boy's lives. She's a fantastic actress, and I can't say enough about how great she is in her role of Eleven.

I love that Lucas has a very adult attitude toward Eleven and constantly warns his friends about her. Caleb really embodies the voice of reason among the group. Dustin is also perfectly cast to be the humor of the group, but he doesn't stick to the stereotype, as we see him put everyone in their place in the episode where Mike and Lucas aren't talking. Mike's the "leader" of the group, and I love this actor. He really is fantastic. His connection to Eleven really brings a tenderness to the show, and I like how his protective nature turns into real genuine feelings. 

The Romance

As the show progresses, we see Mike and Eleven have the most innocent romance. As much as I like the mystery of the show, the show brings depth with the bonds and interactions between the characters.  It's funny how transparent their relationship is considering Eleven says about ten words in each episode. It's more about the looks and gestures with these two.

I really loved the scene where he tells her she's still pretty and one of their first interactions with the recliner. I mean, I also thought that couch was everything when I was younger too.Their kiss in the last episode was super nostalgic and I love these actor's chemistry (especially for such a young age).

Nancy also brings the romance in a love triangle between Steve and Jonathan. What I love about Nancy and Jonathan is that they never really got anywhere in the first season, but we did see the sweet moments like when she was scared to sleep alone and when she gave him the Christmas gift. I think they'll be a slow burn. In order for that to work though, I do think we need to explore Steve and Nancy's relationship because we've finally reached a point where Steve is somewhat likeable. 

Nancy also changed a lot. I love the final episode, where she proves she's also a badass like a Eleven when she straight up tells Steve to leave with a gun pointed to his head. It's funny how Mike and Nancy's love lives cross paths when they blatantly lie about their feelings for Jonathan and Eleven.

Hopper in General

Besides Eleven, Hopper grows to be my favorite character. I really love his character growth, as he goes from a lazy cop to a heroine. His standout episode for me was when he broke into the coroner because we got to see him be a total boss as he casually punches the security out, but we also got the scene where he cuts open the Will's body, which was so iconic for me. 

When he teams up with Joyce, it brings out this story of how he lost his daughter, which is also heartbreaking. We then get to see why he wants to help Joyce find her child, when he was in a situation where he was so helpless. The theories about Eleven being Hopper's daughter are also super interesting.

Joyce's Meltdown

I love that Winona Ryder was cast in this 80's inspired show. It was such a smart casting choice. I really like her performance as the persistent mother. She really encaptured the essence of what a mother would feel if she lost her child, and you can feel her anxiety and hope through the screen. Her plot was smartly crafted because from an outsider looking in, you would think she's just going crazy. Her best moment for me was when she used the lights and painted letters to communicate with Will. The scene where the letters spell out run was so fantastic. Also, as a quick sidenote, I loved how mothering Joyce was toward Eleven. It was so great.

The Villains

The monster really did scare me at first. But for some reason, the more we saw it, the less scared I was. I think it's one of those things when you see a flash of something, it's so terrifying. But when you get the monster in its entirety, it wasn't as gruesome as I pictured. Matthew Modine as the silent villain was effective in Eleven's flashbacks because it added that extra mystery, but it wasn't as effective in the present day in the final episode. 

But other than that, I don't have too many complaints, other than nobody giving a crap about Barb.

The Ending

Overall, I was impressed by the small details of the show. I especially loved how the ending flashed to each character like a movie would. That's how this show felt throughout. The scene with Will throwing up the worm was nuts. The fact that he's not telling anyone is even more scary. I like how symbolic the game was to the series especially the flowers in the cave, which is referring to the monster who just happened to have a flower head. I adored that Mike had Eleven's bed set up. And for a good reason, as we see Hopper put Eggos for Eleven to find. The whole sequence was so epic, and I loved the final episode the most.

After watching all eight episodes, I can confidently say that it was just amazing. Seeing people talk about how much they loved it was exciting as well. I've also read some reviews and watched people's recaps on Youtube, and I do disagree with some people on one notion. People said that you have to be somewhat of a sci-fi fan in order to get invested, but that couldn't be further from the case. Anyone can watch this show. I highly recommend the series. The eight episodes go by super fast, and I mean, come on, it's eight episodes. I'm dying for a season 2, and hopefully Netflix renews the series for another chapter of Stranger Things.

Published by Kavita Singh