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…
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.
- Was there only ONE slug Will coughed up? Did he cough up more during the year?
- 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?
- 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.)
- 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.)
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Where did Eleven get the money to take all these bus rides?
- 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…
- 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…
- 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?
- The Mind Flayer figures out that Will is in the shed and only sends ONE demodog?
- And speaking of trying to keep Will from identifying his location… why not just blindfold him? Why spend an hour decorating the shed?
Season 2 is over, and there are a LOT of questions to answer. Here are some more of mine:
- 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?)
- 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?
- 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.
- 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.