Matt and Ross Duffer’s eight-episode-long science fiction drama, “Stranger Things,” is taking Netflix by storm. Set in a small town in Indiana, the Duffer brothers bring the 1980s back to life with Dungeons & Dragons, mom jeans and walkie-talkies. “Stranger Things” is sure to send chills down your spine, so make some popcorn, put on your pajamas and get ready to binge-watch your weekend away.
“Stranger Things” is like a jigsaw puzzle without the picture on the front of the box. You do not know what it is supposed to look like or if you have all of the pieces, and that is what makes it such an incredible show.
After a night spent with with friends, Will Byers mysteriously disappears on his bike ride home, kickstarting a series of unexplainable events in the town. Three boys, Mike, Lucas and Dustin are determined to rescue their best friend. In the process, Eleven, a strange girl with a shaved head and supernatural powers, shows up and assists the boys. Reminiscent of the 80s classic “E.T.,” Mike hides Eleven in his room and a cheesy teen romance begins to bloom.
The Duffer brothers channeled their childhoods into the show in a tasteful and creative way. The boys’ favorite card game, Dungeons & Dragons, serves as the boys’ source of knowledge throughout the course of the show.
Despite its serious and eerie tone, the show manages to capture the genuine bonds that children are able to form. The boys’ love for Will motivates their determination. Watching their relationships took me back to elementary school when I would play outside with my neighbor and use walkie-talkies to communicate with each other at night. The creators are able to make connections for audiences of all ages.
There are no characters who are utilized to fill space, and every scene contributes to the overall story. Although there are a few unexpected twists and turns that keep you guessing, the show is easy to follow and leaves viewers wanting more.
Winona Ryder makes a comeback as Will’s single mother who wants nothing more than to find her youngest son. Although creepy at times, her desperation is truly heartbreaking as she sits alone in her house with strands of Christmas lights surrounding her, so she can contact Will, who is revealed to be in the Upside Down, a place where he can only communicate through electricity.
The final episode of season one ends with Will’s return only to conclude with him coughing up a slimy, slug-like creature. It is just enough to satisfy watchers, but not enough to tie up every loose end.
Before “Stranger Things,” not many people had ever heard of Matt and Ross Duffer, but this show is sure to increase their publicity. “Stranger Thing’s” talented actors, references to 80s movies and its nail-biting plotline have created a phenomenon on social media, and we have the Duffer brothers to thank.
The puzzle is expected to continue, as Netflix announced at the beginning of September there will be a second season coming in 2017.
Correction: In an earlier version of this story, The Campus wrote that Dungeons & Dragons is a card game. Dungeons & Dragons is a tabletop role-playing game. Updated Thursday, Oct. 13, 2016 at 6:40 p.m.