Stranger Things 2

I Have Some…Stranger Questions

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Stranger Things 2

I usually wait about two weeks after a movie or television show before I’ll try to discuss it with friends and family, and Stranger Things Season 2? Well, it’s been two weeks, and I’ve got some thoughts and questions about the nine episodes. Maybe you do, too. So, let’s talk. Below you’ll find some things that I noticed — things that might be bugging me a bit… or just have me very curious.

Be warned. Everything below contains potentially explosive spoilers. Keep reading at YOUR OWN RISK.

Now, I admit I may have just missed something. I may have missed many things. So, if you’ve got an outright answer… or theory… please share it in the comments. I cannot wait to read what other fans think of Season 2 AND what questions and observations they may have. Let’s go…

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Will’s Stomach Bug

One or two months after Will was rescued from the Upside Down, he coughed up a nasty bug into the sink. What happened to it? There’s been some discussion online that this bug became Dustin’s pet, Dart, but I’m not buying that. Season 2 takes place an entire year later, and we saw how fast Dart grew from a diet of Three Musketeers. I find it hard to believe that Will’s slug took an entire year to start growing at massive speed.

Additional Questions:

  1. Was there only ONE slug Will coughed up? Did he cough up more during the year?
  2. Was the slug because of the time Will spent in the Upside Down breathing in that nasty snow-like material? If so, wouldn’t you think Joyce and Hopper and Nancy would also be coughing one up? They spent some time down under, too…

Dustin’s Pet Slug

Speaking of slugs, HOW in the world did Dart end up in Dustin’s garbage can? Of all the events in Season 2, that’s the one that really bugs me (heh) the most. Maybe we’ll find out in Season 3, but I doubt it. I get that Dart gave us a view of how the Demodogs developed. It also gave us that sweet moment where Dart recognized Dustin (and vice versa) and ate some candy bar fragments, allowing the Scooby Team to escape from the tunnels. But how was it that only one baby slug escaped from the Upside Down and not dozens or even hundreds?

Additional Questions:

  1. If the slugs grow as fast as was seen in Season 2, wouldn’t the one Will coughed up in Season 1 be terrorizing the town? (Assuming it didn’t die in the drain pipes.)
  2. Do the Demodogs eventually turn into versions of the Demogorgon? That wasn’t really answered with 100% certainty. They definitely have the same heads, but they walk on all fours… do they eventually learn to walk upright?

The Portal Upkeep

At the beginning of Season 2, we see that the military is doing some controlled burns in the basement lab at the original portal entrance. They burn back the growth, thinking it’s keeping the portal at bay. This seems to be a fairly regular thing because the next day they show Hopper the process. When Will is attacked in the Upside Down by the Mind Flayer, he has a few days before they torch the pumpkin field. Why didn’t he experience the burning pain before that? If they were torching the portal entrance daily, wouldn’t he have started feeling the pain well before the pumpkin patch burning? (It’s possible that I may have the timeline wrong, and Will did start experiencing the pain at the right time… a nine-episode season tends to speed things along at different rates.)

Additional Questions:

  1. The basement portal begs the question — did it ever get closed? We saw Hopper and Eleven descend down the basket into the tunnels where Eleven closed the giant portal. But that was the one below ground… did the one in the basement also close? I’m assuming it did because the military packed up and left in episode 9, but there wasn’t confirmation.
  2. How in the world did these scientists NOT know about the big cavern and tunnels beneath the building? You would think that with a portal in the basement, they would have poked around a bit to make sure there weren’t “rats in the walls” or something.

The Bob Buffet

Okay, this is another event that irked me beyond words. After the demodog attack on the building, there were bodies everywhere. EVERYWHERE. But when Bob gets taken down near the exit, five demodogs attack and eat him. if they’re that hungry, why were they sharing ol’ Bob and not going to find a nice private corner for a solo meal? I mean, they REALLY went to town on Bob.

Additional Questions:

  1. With Joyce and Hopper less than 30-40 feet away, you’d think that one or two demodogs would have gone after them. It wasn’t like they were being quiet — Joyce is screaming “BOB!” and Hopper’s firing a shotgun in their direction.
  2. Why didn’t Bob just stay in the closet? Look, if I’m safe in the closet and a demodog walks by and ignores my hidey-place, I’m staying in there until a soldier comes knocking and tells me “this house is CLEAN.”

Eleven’s Magical Mystery Tour

So, Eleven goes into the Void and finds her “sister” and realizes shes just a short bus ride away. But it really wasn’t explained how she honed in and found Kali’s gang. Pittsburgh is a big city. I’ve been there. Walking around looking for a particular bit of graffiti could take days… weeks. She found Kali just a bit too fast. This part seemed rushed to me.

Additional Questions:

  1. Where did Eleven get the money to take all these bus rides?
  2. Does anyone else find it hard to believe that Eleven spent 350+ days holed up in a cabin and NEVER ONCE left? This is the girl who stole waffles, killed a dozen bad guys with the bleeding-eyes mindblast power, and broke a kid’s arm without blinking? She’s tough and strong-willed, and I’m just not buying that she stayed in that cabin for almost a year. I would have lasted a week… two max.

The “Late” Dr. Brenner?

At the end of Season 1, we see what appears to be an attack by the Demogorgon on Dr. Brenner. When the season ended, I believe most viewers accepted that Dr. Brenner was dead, and with the new Dr. Owens introduced in Season 2, it did seem like Matthew Modine’s character was indeed gone. But in Season 2, there were more than a couple flashbacks with Dr. Brenner, including the one forced on Eleven by Kari’s mind powers after Ray informs them that Dr. Brenner is alive and well. Is he? Or was Ray just saying what he thought they wanted to hear? I don’t think so — I do think Brenner is alive. Why is this important? If Brenner is alive, then it makes sense that Ray would let him know that 8 and 11 visited him in his apartment and tried to kill him. Wouldn’t that be important enough for Brenner to let the lab know? Dr. Owens is totally surprised later when he meets 11, so that call or warning from Brenner never happened apparently. Maybe he’s dead…

Additional Questions:

  1. Where did Kali get all her info and photos on the lab employees her crew was hunting and killing? She doesn’t have Eleven’s ability to look at a photo and find someone. That one still bothers me…
  2. When Eleven arrives back in Hawkins, how did she know to go straight to Will’s house? And had she EVER been to Will’s house? Her vision of Mike in danger was at the lab, so why not go there?

The Thing in the Fridge

Eleven “kills” a single demodog when she saves the day at Will’s house. Dustin puts it in the fridge. Don’t these things like cold? What happened to it? At the end of episode 9, a few months have passed, so was it just knocked out and somehow escaped? Did Dustin get his Nobel Prize in Biology for the discovery of the century? And didn’t it look a bit smaller than the other demodogs?

Additional Questions:

  1. The Mind Flayer figures out that Will is in the shed and only sends ONE demodog?
  2. And speaking of trying to keep Will from identifying his location… why not just blindfold him? Why spend an hour decorating the shed?

What’s Next?

Season 2 is over, and there are a LOT of questions to answer. Here are some more of mine:

  1. Why is the Mind Flayer floating over the gym in the Upside Down at the very end of episode 9? Is it focused on Will or Eleven or both? How does it know where the kids are? Is Will still linked to it? Or is it someone else? (Dustin and Hopper are both there, and each of them breathed in some of those spore things in the tunnels, right?)
  2. If Eleven is the latest test subject from Dr. Brenner, what happened to 1-7 and 9 and 10? I’m not all that taken with Kali (8), so I do hope we find out more about other test subjects. If Eleven opened the portal with her powers, might one of these others be able to open a portal? Might another portal already be opened?
  3. Do we trust Dr. Owens? He gave Hopper a fake birth certificate for Eleven, but if Brenner is alive he’s gotta also know that Eleven is alive now, and no birth certificate is going to fool him.
  4. Is the lab really closed? The military leaves, but would you leave that building unattended after all that’s happened?

I loved Season 2. Yes, I have questions… and I imagine most fans do, too. We’ll just have to wait for Season 3 to see where the story takes us. I’d love to hear your thoughts on any of the above items… as well as your own questions.

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10 thoughts on “I Have Some…Stranger Questions

  1. In regards to the portal upkeep, I don’t think it starts to affect Will until after the shadow monster enters his body at the end of like, the third episode? The one where he tries Bob’s advice and yells at it to go away, and instead it enters his nose and mouth. The next episode Will tells his Mom to turn down heat because “he likes it cold.” And then when they find the Hopper in the tunnel and the lab guys torch it, that’s when Will starts having the adverse reaction. I think.

    1. Possible, but I still think they are burning back the portal’s “growth” daily. Small nitpick that probably will never get answered.

  2. Ok, we just recently re-watched the series, so here’s my 2 cents.
    Will’s stomach bug: Remember when Hopper got to Will he had to drag that long thing out of his mouth? My guess is it laid a few eggs or something and that’s where the “slug” came from. A less certain idea: Perhaps those slugs are the burrowers of the tunnels beneath the pumpkin patches?
    I agree with Mark Hansen that I don’t think Will was connected until he was possessed by the Mind Flayer (post Bob’s advice).
    I think Bob Buffet was certainly one of the most disturbing bits of the series. However, I think the reason we had to see all the dogs going visceral on him was to clear up any misconceptions that he might have only gotten knocked down or might somehow recover. We love Bob but its obvious Bob is very gone. We all wish Bob had just stayed in the closet.
    My thought of Eleven finding Mike at Will’s house was that she had seen what the demodogs were doing and followed their wake of destruction to Will’s house. Of course, I could be as wrong about that as any of my other ideas, but I don’t think the pumpkin patch was next to the Byers’ house. So I assumed there was some rampage between the pumpkin patch and the Byers’ house that she could have found and followed.
    I didn’t think that the Mind Flayer only sent one demodog. There were sounds of a lot of fighting outside before one went through the window. I thought of it a bit like a reverse Bar Brawl. In the bar brawl there are a lot of people involved, then one goes through a window outside. In this case, Eleven was thrashing a number of demodogs and one went through the window inside.
    Blindfolding would be simple, but in stress situations you sometimes don’t think clearly. Hindsight is always 20/20. (Like staying in closets).

  3. I just finished last night! Here are a few of my takes on your questions:
    Stomach Bug: When I’d watched the first season I assumed the stomach bug was because of that tube they pulled out of Will’s throat. There were a couple people exposed to the spores but it was never entirely clear if those just made you dizzy when you breathed them or what—I guess we’ll find out if Hopper and Joyce start coughing up bugs in Season 3.
    Connected to that: maybe the one he coughed up is what grew and reproduced and became all of those demodogs—I mean, it’s never entirely clear how they came through because you’d think if they came through the portal then the scientists would know about it. So perhaps they were there from the outside, digging all those tunnels? I think we never saw whether the tunnels spread FROM the portal or if they joined up TO the portal from outside (like at the hub). Clearly they’re connected to the huge portal because the dogs get to the lab/portal through the tunnels. So, yeah, you’re totally right that it’s weird how the scientists didn’t know anything about the extent of the tunnels until Hopper maps it out.
    Poor Bob. I feel like he was killed off because he was between Joyce and Hopper, and they want that tragedy-filled relationship to continue being filled with sadness and remorse.
    I think Eleven’s ability goes beyond what they show us in the dark place—like aside from seeing the person, she also gets a sense of where they are physically. It’s not about searching for Kali or a particular piece of graffiti; it’s just going to the place that she can feel. In the same way, when she comes back to the Byers’ house, it’s because although she saw them at the lab, she knows where they are now.
    Oh, and she stole money from her aunt. The trip to her mom’s house was hitchhiking, and then she stole cash from her aunt for the bus.
    I wondered the same thing about the demodog in the fridge—whether it was going to recuperate because they put it in the fridge, but presumably it didn’t because we don’t hear anything about it before it skips ahead to later. If it doesn’t come up any more, I’m guessing it’s more military cover-up, the same reason that nobody talks about the other stuff after the end of season 1.

  4. El actually found her “sister” in Chicago.
    and the show gives no explanation why or how they got there from Pittsburgh.

  5. Another thing that bothered me, Bob figured out the tunnels avoided water, and turned on the sprinklers to divert one of the demidogs, but, no one remembered him saying those things. Also, Will avoided getting into the warm bath.

    Not sure the story line of Max’s older brother served any purpose.

    Also, Hopper didn’t tell Jonathan about the trip wire when they brought Will to the cabin but they didn’t set it off. Minor nit, but still…

    1. I forgot about the water thing, too. They should’ve armed themselves with water guns instead! I couldn’t tell if the demodog was trying to get away from water, or if he turned on a sprinkler and the demodog went to investigate the noise.

      I also wondered about the tripwire, but I think we’re meant to just assume that there were more instructions than what we heard on-screen, and they didn’t feel it was necessary to show us ALL of the arrangements and such. But I was sitting there waiting for them to trip it.

  6. At first I assumed that the tripwire warning could have been stated off screen, but when you listen to the information being given (where to even find the place) you really get the impression that it’s the first time they’re being told anything, and the tripwire is left out. Now, I just assume what was off screen was tripping the trap, because, no biggy, it goes bang, they get startled, then they just go in. It was just designed to make a noise and warn the inhabitants to hide or get ready, right?

    I thought the demodog was going to the noise, not running from the water. And I think Will avoided the HOT water, not the water. Maybe the tunnels just avoided water so as not to get flooded.

    Stomach bug… maybe will KEEPS vomiting them up… that first one became one of the many. The one in Dustin’s trash can. Maybe will spit up something at Dustin’s house and it got thrown away. He didn’t tell anyone about the first one, maybe he’d kept the next hundreds under wraps too (and he WAS all Mine Flayered so maybe he couldn’t)

  7. My assumption about Kali’s gang is they went from Pittsburgh to Chicago as part of their “search & destroy” spree. Ray was near Chicago and he was next on their list.

    Something that bugged me about that episode was that Kali didn’t “cloak” the gang’s van as it drove past a bunch of cops in broad daylight, and those same cops were the ones who raided the lair later.

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