In Review: Stranger Things 2

The boys get a much scarier Halloween than they bargained for in Stranger Things 2

Synopsis: As the town preps for Halloween, a high-scoring rival shakes things up at the arcade, and a skeptical Hopper inspects a field of rotting pumpkins.

Review: Life has moved on in the beginning of the new series for the boys and a newcomer to the town gets Dustin and Lucas rather excited. Elsewhere Sherriff Jim Hopper is mystified by how an entire field of Pumpkins has gone rotten and the Byers family are still struggling to help young Will Byers who is having terrible flashbacks to his time in the upside down. And with Eleven missing Mike is struggling his feelings about that.

I loved the way in which this second season starts. We get a glimpse of the everyday life of the various characters and how they are trying to move on, but then the shit hits the fan.

The various relationships that we saw started to bloom in the last series have naturally evolved. Hell, even Nancy’s boyfriend Steve proves to be likable this year. When last year he was a complete shit.

The biggest change though is the relationships between the four boys and of course Eleven. The boys have very little interaction with Eleven this year because she pretty much gets her own storyline, which leads her to learn more about herself and her origins. The boys, however, are growing up. They’re getting into girls and as such we see a little bit of a split starting to develop in the group.

But what about the Upside Down? I hear you all say. It is indeed back and it’s nastier than it ever has been. And not beyond using its psychic connection with a certain Will Byers to get what it wants. Essentially what that is. We still haven’t a clue, but rotting a crop of pumpkins, eating a cat and proceeding to feast on human beings is a pretty good start. Though being a cat lover. I have to cover my cat’s eyes when we saw the kitty feasting take place.

We get a few new people this year. First and foremost we’re introduced to Bob Newby who is Joyce Byers new boyfriend and very much a geek in his own right. Bob is played beautifully by Sean Astin of ‘Lord Of The Rings’ fame. Then we get the addition of Max and her cruel and vindictive older brother Billy. Max proves to be a new addition to the Gang while big brother does not approve and is not shy about saying so. In many ways. Billy fills the void left by Steve becoming a more reasonable guy.

The nine episodes spread the story out really nicely and we get some fantastic performances all around. I loved how Millie Bobby Brown and David Harbour played off of each other. They both had some wonderful scenes as Eleven and Jim Hopper respectively.

Finn Wolfhard, Gaten MatarazzoNoah Schnapp and, Caleb McLaughlin, were all excellent throughout the story. Specifically, Noah Schnapp who had to convey a hell of a lot of trauma and really sell it to us. 

Like last year. We got some brilliant references to geek culture of the 1980’s with the boys dressing up as the Ghostbusters to the video games like Dragons Lair, which still looks awesome even now.

This second series does a great job of moving stuff along and also gives us some more fantastic character moments to enjoy.

Overall a great new season adding to what was the best new genre show of 2016 and deservedly so.

Stranger Things 2
  • Story
  • Acting
  • CGI
  • Incidental Music

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at:
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