Put on some sweatpants, stock up on Eggos, and find a quiet corner to cozy up in for nine hours, because Stranger Things 2 is here, and it doesn’t disappoint. Despite the incredibly high bar set for it by the miraculous first season, the Duffer brothers came through with nine more episodes that will satisfy even the most critical of fans. Impeccable acting, visionary cinematography, spine-tingling suspense, terrible (or wonderful?) 80’s music, and, yes, Steve Harrington. It’s all back, new and improved.
The Demogorgon’s gone and the “bad men” are dead, and with Eleven nowhere to be seen, the families of Hawkins are left to deal with the aftermath of the events and move on with their lives. However, this proves to be a bigger challenge than expected when (once again) strange things begin to occur in the small town. In order to tell the continuation of the story, the beloved cast from the first season returns and is joined by some new additions to the different social groups, none of whom fail to impress.
While the loveable cast makes for not a single dull moment, this season is much slower than the first and takes quite a while to pick up. Where season one was suspenseful and heart-racing from the opening scenes to the finale, season two slows it down a bit and takes time to go deep with the characters and grow the story, ultimately leading up to a much greater climax.
In almost every sense, I found this new season to be superior to the last one. The acting of the younger kids improved, the dialogue was just as well written and funnier, the character development had a lot more depth, the CGI was much more realistic, and the story had a much grander scale. There was, however, one aspect of the season that I found to be a bit of a letdown.
Part of what made the first season so great was the constant suspense that it put you through right from the get go. You’re continually being left in the dark and have no idea what’s really going on or what’s causing it. For this new season, much of the mysteriousness is gone and just about everything is explained as it’s happening, counting on the audience’s curiosity of what will come next to keep them watching. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but what made the first season so enjoyable was the fact that I had no idea what to expect and didn’t know what all of this “upside-down” and telekinesis stuff was when it was going on. Getting rid of that aspect definitely took away some of the enjoyment that I got out of the first season.
Despite my one critique, I found this new season to be truly phenomenal and would still give it (forgive me for this one) an Eleven out of ten. The first season of Stranger Things made it one of the best shows of the year, but with this new season, I’m confident in saying that it’s going to go down as one of the best shows of our lifetime. The characters couldn’t be more likeable, the atmosphere couldn’t be better developed, and the story couldn’t be any easier to invest in. The only problem now is that we have to suffer at least another year of everyday life before we once again get to temporarily abandon society and binge an entire season.
Categories: MSJ at the Movies