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S03.E03: Chapter Three: The Case of the Missing Lifeguard

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With El and Max looking for Billy, Will declares a day without girls. Steve and Dustin go on a stakeout, and Joyce and Hopper return to Hawkins Lab.

 

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Button your raincoat, Max.  You're defeating the whole purpose.

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El was wearing Hopper’s blue bracelet. They might be my favorite father-daughter on tv relationship ever.

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Poor Hopper. That looked brutal. And poor Mrs. Driscoll. I liked her and was hoping against the odds that she'd make it, but maybe she can still be saved.

Poor Will, too, but I was happy to see Mike and Lucas go after him and that Will told them right away about the Mind Flayer being back.

Max is really good at improvising. She and Eleven make a good team.

Steve was being weird during their Russian surveillance operation. He seemed more irritated than interested. He was enthusiastic about solving the mystery before, but maybe he's starting to hit the limit of how much craziness he can tolerate.

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Okay I really like Robin now and am with Dustin on  that Steve should wake up to how awesome is.

Every storyline so far has got me:

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Except Will's which had me:

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Edited by VCRTracking
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It took me three episode to figure out that Nancy and Jonathan's boss was Jack Snyder from As The World Turns.  He looked so familiar it was killing me.  At first I thought it was Zeljko Ivanek with hair. 

Also even though he was a jerk,  don't think he deserved his daughter going all Demon based Natural Born Killers on him. 

Does no one in this town own an umbrella?  I love how people just go about their business in a torrential rain, without a care or an adequate rain slicker.

I love seeing Joyce flex those problem solving muscles and Robin seems to be the Joyce of the younger set this season.  She is figuring shit out and it is great.

The Scoops Ahoy crew have the best chemistry and are bringing the comedy that some of the other groups lack.  I feel kinda bad that Dustin isn't hanging with his buds but he and Steve are just the best team.

Things are starting to heat up....

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Poor Hop, that was freaking brutal, even on this show that loves to have its characters get beaten pretty badly. I love that El was wearing the bracelet he gave her, I just adore their father daughter relationship so much.

The editor might have been an asshole, but he didnt deserve...whatever revenge of the body snatchers shit is happening in that basement. Poor Mrs. Driscoll, I hope that she can still make it, she seemed like such a sweet lady. 

Poor Will feels like his friends are all leaving him behind and everything is changing, him being super into their DnD game while Mike and Lucas are clearly not into it was so hard to watch. At least Mike and Lucas realized right away that they were being unfair to him and tried to make it up and apologize. Unfortunately, its  Shit Got Real O Clock again!

Edited by tennisgurl
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28 minutes ago, DearEvette said:

It took me three episode to figure out that Nancy and Jonathan's boss was Jack Snyder from As The World Turns.  He looked so familiar it was killing me.  At first I thought it was Zeljko Ivanek with hair. 

Also even though he was a jerk,  don't think he deserved his daughter going all Demon based Natural Born Killers on him. 

Does no one in this town own an umbrella?  I love how people just go about their business in a torrential rain, without a care or an adequate rain slicker.

I love seeing Joyce flex those problem solving muscles and Robin seems to be the Joyce of the younger set this season.  She is figuring shit out and it is great.

The Scoops Ahoy crew have the best chemistry and are bringing the comedy that some of the other groups lack.  I feel kinda bad that Dustin isn't hanging with his buds but he and Steve are just the best team.

Things are starting to heat up....

Thanks! I was wondering who that was. I was having the same “that dude looks familiar feeling.” 

Re: Mrs. Driscoll: if I thought I had rabid rats in my house, I would not be going down into that basement. Hell , I wouldn’t be staying in that house!

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Even though we're only three episodes in thus far, this season is really clicking in ways I feared it might not as the kids enter the awkward teen years.  Noah Schnapp was absolutely murdering those scenes of both showing Will's ongoing PTSD and his fear that his friends are outgrowing him and leaving him behind.  And kudos to that fight with Mike that ended with Mike spitting out that it's not anyone else's fault that Will doesn't like girls.  It perfectly straddled that line over whether Mike meant "not yet" or "not at all," which if the latter would have been a much much huger deal in small town 1985 and a nice bit of continuity back to the first season when Joyce was talking to Hopper about Will being bullied because people thought he was gay.  The flashback to the beginning of the kids playing D&D where the monster turned out to be real was sweet, and we got more callbacks like with the bathtub full of ice this episode to "he likes it cold" from last season. 

The Max-Eleven partnership is a revelation after decades of watching gangs of boys with maybe a token girl in tow biking around to have these kinds of adventures.  Eleven really needs someone who isn't Mike who can appreciate what a special case she is and help direct her in having those normal teenage experiences.   I adored how giddy Hopper was in realizing that was what was going on instead of it being Mike yet again.

I said last season how much I appreciate that this show that is about these strange and extraordinary things takes the time to acknowledge that they are indeed strange and extraordinary and that they take their toll on real people.  Joyce and Hopper were both really showing the effects of that throughout in both physically ending up back where they were last season and not really being able to move on from the events of it.

As much as the shitty guys at the newspaper continue to be shitty, they feel pretty true to the time period, and even so the editor did not deserve that ending.  

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I had really mixed feelings about Eleven spying on the boys using her powers. On the one hand, I remember what it was like to be that age. Pre-internet stalking my crush meant doing lame things like memorizing his student ID number (which I saw on the teacher's roll call sheet), so I get why she did it. But damn, that is such an invasion of privacy. I know that the show had her do that so that we could move on to Eleven spying on Billy and getting tied into that part of the plot, but still.

I thought it was good that she heard Mike trying to understand what he did wrong (even though duh, it's super obvious to me what he did wrong!) and that it ended with her giggling about the boys burping and farting.

I loved that Hopper came home drunk and upset that Joyce stood him up and he transformed into smiling and happy when he saw that Eleven was hanging out with Max (or really, anyone who wasn't Mike).

Poor Will. It's been obvious that he's felt left out since the beginning of the season. He just wants to play D&D with his friends and instead they're going on long hikes to try to talk to Suzie and going to the mall to buy apology presents and obsessing about what to do about their girlfriends. After Will finally got Lucas and Mike to play D&D, they were barely humoring him. It was clear that they were still thinking about (obsessing about) their girlfriends and not really into the game at all. The flashback was a good reminder of how much they've grown and how much they've been through since S1.

Honestly, I do remember how intense it was to have a crush at that age, but good lord, even when I had my first boyfriend in seventh grade, I still managed to talk about other things with my friends. Mike is all about Eleven so I can see how annoying that would be for Will to listen to nonstop. But on top of that, Mike and Lucas have been acting like Will isn't even in the room half the time because they're so busy talking about El and Max.

Hopper wearing a towel and his unbuttoned uniform shirt was hilarious.

El's double velcro strap Reebok high tops were so 1985!

Oh, Bob. I am glad that unlike the way other tv shows quickly forget about characters after they die, Joyce is still mourning him and remembering him. From the drawing on her refrigerator and remembering the Cheers episode she watched with Bob to inevitably staring at the place where he died when she and Hopper returned to the lab, Bob's presence is still part of this season.

I continue to love the adventures of Steve and Dustin. Their spy stakeout at the mall totally made me laugh. I loved when they did the simultaneous spin into casual hiding, especially Dustin's fake conversation on the pay phone. Also hilarious was the reveal that the supposed Russian spy was a Jazzercise teacher toting his gigantic boom box around in a duffel bag.

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Joyce and Hopper were both really showing the effects of that throughout in both physically ending up back where they were last season and not really being able to move on from the events of it.

And i think it's pretty great and believable that the adults actually have a harder time processing the trauma than the kids, who are younger and presumably more flexible.

Also glad they take time to address the death of Bob, a much beloved character, as they did with Barb in season 2. I hate the way many shows have very little fallout or remembrance of important events that supposedly greatly affect the characters. Twists or deaths without consequence after that particular episode is over makes it all so shallow and without resonance.

Loving this season very much as the relationships change and grow. Max/Eleven is wonderful. I decided El has never used whatever allowance Hooper gives her so that's how she's able to afford this mall shopathon.

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Noah Schnapp is really the MVP of this show for me. Everything about Will is interesting to me. Not that Millie Bobby Brown isn't great as well; I think those two really steal the scenes that they're in, but something about the character of Will really pulls me in.

Poor Will just wants to hang out with his friends but they're all changing and growing without him. After everything the poor kid's been through, all he wants is to stay the same, before things got weird. I can't blame him for wanting to hold on to that part of him that was innocent before the Upside Down. 

We also got a flashback to the pilot, which was absolutely crazy to see how much the actors have changed since then. I know that season 1 aired a few years ago, but still.

I get why Mike and Lucas weren't into what Will wanted. They have girlfriends and they're growing up. I can't exactly blame them for that, although I can blame their attitude. Luckily, both boys figured it out quickly and went to apologize.

Eleven spying on the boys was obviously wrong. The show kind of waved it off as something funny, but Eleven's choice in spying was definitely not right. It did lead to her discovering that something was wrong with Billy, though. And I'm always happy for Eleven/Max bonding time.

Jonathan and Nancy's plot continues to be something that I wish I was interested in more. I'd much rather them be in scenes with other characters. They're always so separated for much of the seasons. However, Mrs. Driscoll was great and I hope she can be saved. I wonder if what's going on with her is similar to what's going on with Billy and his new girlfriend (well, new girlfriend he offered up as bait and now has killed her two parents?)

So, Hopper and Joyce stumble onto some issues of their own. Man, I felt for Joyce when she went back to the place where Bob was killed. That could not have been easy for her. 

Steve, Dustin, and Robin continue to have great scenes together. I actually love that Robin got to solve the code. With her being such a new character, it's a risky move to not have Dustin or Steve solve it (just because they're more beloved characters) but I love that Robin brings something to that team. Man, I hope she survives this season because she's fantastic. I assume she will just so she can get together with Steve, but also look what happened to other beloved characters (Barb, Bob). Good thing her name doesn't start with a B!

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It feels realistic to me that Eleven doesn't have proper context for when she should or shouldn't be using her power to spy on other people.  When would she have learned that?  She was treated like a weapon in the lab, where they clearly weren't interested in teaching her normal human behavior, and it probably hasn't ever occurred to Hopper when he's already struggling with her doing normal teenage stuff.  Using her powers like that has been lauded as a good thing in the past when she used them to save or help other people and Max is still at the it's so cool that you can do that stage of knowing her.  I genuinely like that the show hasn't forgotten just how decidedly not normal her upbringing has been or that she lacks a lot of the social nuances because of it.

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Billy is getting more and more creepy. I guess they are possessed.

I am loving the Max/El duo.

Also Steve and Dustin with Robin. She grew on me. Not so annoying after the first episode.

I feel so bad for Will. Though his bad wig makes me laugh.

Edited by backhometome
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My heart bleeds a little for Will.  I understand being the perpetual third or fifth wheel.

The 1970s Invasion of the Body Snatchers and the Stepford Wives both scared me.  The creepy dinner scene reminded me of it a little of them.

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Mike super dramatically telling Will “ We aren’t kids anymore!” is just the most 13 year old thing to say ever. “In my long thirteen years of life experience...” 

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18 hours ago, DearEvette said:

It took me three episode to figure out that Nancy and Jonathan's boss was Jack Snyder from As The World Turns.  He looked so familiar it was killing me.  At first I thought it was Zeljko Ivanek with hair. 

Thank you. He's the one that I was trying to figure our yesterday, and google wasn't helping. 

2 hours ago, tennisgurl said:

Mike super dramatically telling Will “ We aren’t kids anymore!” is just the most 13 year old thing to say ever. “In my long thirteen years of life experience...” 

I once heard a young woman say that she figured something out really late in life - around the age of sixteen. 

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Robin is the best. That is all. 

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This episode was super tense pretty much all the way through. Even from the beginning I was worried about how casually El was being about using her mind/spying space. That's where she first discovered the Demigorgon! And then Will out in the woods by himself. 

There was some weird timeline stuff going on though. Since it seemed like Hopper and Joyce went to the lab early in the day and then were there until late at night. They were there before the scene where Robin looked at the clock and saw it was 3:15. Even Nancy somehow didn't make it from the newspaper to the old lady's house until after 9.

13 hours ago, nodorothyparker said:

It feels realistic to me that Eleven doesn't have proper context for when she should or shouldn't be using her power to spy on other people.  When would she have learned that?  She was treated like a weapon in the lab, where they clearly weren't interested in teaching her normal human behavior, and it probably hasn't ever occurred to Hopper when he's already struggling with her doing normal teenage stuff.  Using her powers like that has been lauded as a good thing in the past when she used them to save or help other people and Max is still at the it's so cool that you can do that stage of knowing her.  I genuinely like that the show hasn't forgotten just how decidedly not normal her upbringing has been or that she lacks a lot of the social nuances because of it.

Other then being worried about what El might find in those scenes that was the other thing I kept thinking about. I mean Hopper is doing his best but being challenged dealing with the regular teenage girl part of raising her. There is no one to teach her about her powers, how to use them and what is the right or wrong way to use them.

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12 hours ago, Kel Varnsen said:

There is no one to teach her about her powers, how to use them and what is the right or wrong way to use them.

Exactly.  We've seen scenes over and over again of people she likes and wants to be accepted by asking her to use those powers, both for big and small things.  It's what makes her "special."  Hopper got on her case last season for having the tantrum that involved a lot of slamming things and flying glass, but beyond that what guidance has she really been given beyond the obvious of don't draw unnecessary attention to yourself?  That's not even really a criticism of the Hawkins crew, who have mostly done the asking in times of real need or on a few lesser occasions just because it was cool and let's face it, she's got some pretty cool abilities and kids are going to run with that.  A lot of this is just clearly beyond them, no matter how much they may like or care about Eleven.  The only person we've seen who was truly able to understand her powers and where she might be coming from was Kali, and she clearly had her own issues and cynically wanted to use those powers to premeditatively hurt the people who'd hurt them.   

In thinking about this I keep returning to the first season scenes with Matthew Modine's evil Dr. Brenner and his look of absolute wonderment after Eleven had been out for awhile and had been using her powers without the set limits of being lab experiments.  Even he didn't seem to realize just what she was capable of.  There's really no one now save Eleven herself to know where her limits are, just as there doesn't seem to be anyone who understands her powers enough to be thinking through the ethics of her using them in non saving the world scenarios like being able to invade others' private spaces like that.

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This was more of a set up episode but still good. I felt so bad for Will. But it was good to see Lukas and Mike go after him and of course for Will to realize that the mind flinger (what's it called?) is back. And as said above tell them right away. I still think he can see the upside down like did at the beginning of season 2 before getting processed. From the way Will was acting, maybe he does know he's moving. It seemed like he wanted to just hang out with his friends but they are growing up.  Also I liked that Will finally asked where Dustin is, as the other two seemed to not care. Of course we the audience know, but you'd think they wonder where their friend was.

The doubles are creepy and have been done a million times. I do hope they take it in a different direction. We know the real ones are alive somewhere, maybe in the upside down? Which is where maybe Will could be of help. I still want a scene where Eleven helps him see into the upside down.

And poor Hopper. I was hoping Joyce would come in and hit the guy on the back of the head but oh well. I liked the stuff with Dustin/Steve and Robin. It's nice that she cracked the code and knows where the Russians are.

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On ‎7‎/‎5‎/‎2019 at 3:08 AM, ElectricBoogaloo said:

I continue to love the adventures of Steve and Dustin. Their spy stakeout at the mall totally made me laugh. I loved when they did the simultaneous spin into casual hiding, especially Dustin's fake conversation on the pay phone. Also hilarious was the reveal that the supposed Russian spy was a Jazzercise teacher toting his gigantic boom box around in a duffel bag.

Loved it, and the look on their faces when the ladies started warming up Bahahahah!

Poor Hopper he got his ass handed to him, that was brutal.

I want Lucas's sister to go away. How old is she, her and her friends look young. Does she have to be in every episode?

3 episodes in and the only storyline I'm interested in is the one with Steve, Dustin and Robin.  But I do like Joyce and Hopper working together too. I don't know why but I'm just not that invested in the other kids this season, except for Will because something is going on with him.

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Everyone's a detective!

It was mentioned in the thread for the last episode, but this can now be considered the show's formula: characters are separated into different groups and seemingly disparate storylines that eventually converge as the finale approaches. It's a formula that works, so I can understand why they don't want to mess with it, but at the same time, I'm feeling the separation a bit more this time around. A little more of the characters weaving in and out of each other's subplots would go a long way, even if it was just acknowledging each other on the way to the next plot-point. 

I mean, it's hilarious to me that Mike, Nancy and Mrs Wheeler are all leads, all belong to the same family, and never interact with each other. Likewise, is Dustin really going to spend all his time hanging out with Steve and not his friends? 

I can't complain too much though - I mean, at least they've got the dynamics right: Steve/Dustin/Robin chemistry is fantastic, so is the Max/Eleven friendship (I remember well that female friendships in eighties movies were never served particularly well, if they existed at all). The Lucas/Mike/Will stuff is incredibly poignant, as it makes sense that Will wants to recapture his childhood: partly due to PTSD, partly due to increasing hints that he might be gay, partly due to being the inevitable friend in any group who doesn't want to grow up as quickly as the others. (I was that kid). 

That leaves Nancy/Jonathan... well, let's be honest, the show has always struggled with these two a little bit. Possibly because they only ever get to interact with each other. What would happen if they actually got to talk to their siblings? Nancy/El would be fun. Jonathan/Steve has potential given their former rivalry. 

I love you Joyce, but you owed Hopper an apology for standing him up. Heck, the fact she didn't even register the fact that she's ditched him was a bit much.

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On 7/4/2019 at 1:18 PM, VCRTracking said:

Except Will's which had me:

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I was a bit choked up myself.

On 7/4/2019 at 9:10 PM, DearEvette said:

Does no one in this town own an umbrella?  I love how people just go about their business in a torrential rain, without a care or an adequate rain slicker.

I never use an umbrella, and rarely see anyone else use one in my rainy town. They're useless when there's wind, and I hate having to close them and figure out where to stash them when I enter a building. I prefer a coat with a hood. No muss, no fuss, and it keeps me dryer than when I used to use an umbrella.

On 7/4/2019 at 10:15 PM, nodorothyparker said:

Even though we're only three episodes in thus far, this season is really clicking in ways I feared it might not as the kids enter the awkward teen years.  Noah Schnapp was absolutely murdering those scenes of both showing Will's ongoing PTSD and his fear that his friends are outgrowing him and leaving him behind.  And kudos to that fight with Mike that ended with Mike spitting out that it's not anyone else's fault that Will doesn't like girls.  It perfectly straddled that line over whether Mike meant "not yet" or "not at all," which if the latter would have been a much much huger deal in small town 1985 and a nice bit of continuity back to the first season when Joyce was talking to Hopper about Will being bullied because people thought he was gay. 

I don't remember that line (but then my memory for specific dialogue is not the best), but I do remember the forum speculation and wondering why people thought Will might be gay. This is the first time, for me, that I thought the show might possibly go there. I agree the line was perfectly ambiguous, though Will's reaction seemed to me to lean more toward the "not at all".

On 7/5/2019 at 5:18 AM, Lady Calypso said:

Eleven spying on the boys was obviously wrong. The show kind of waved it off as something funny, but Eleven's choice in spying was definitely not right. It did lead to her discovering that something was wrong with Billy, though. And I'm always happy for Eleven/Max bonding time.

If El spying is wrong, I don't want her to be right. 😉

On 7/5/2019 at 1:07 PM, tennisgurl said:

Mike super dramatically telling Will “ We aren’t kids anymore!” is just the most 13 year old thing to say ever. “In my long thirteen years of life experience...” 

Ah, see, I'd bet most of the forum members here are what I'd call "kids." LOL. I think we all look at people younger than us and think they have little life experience compared to us. At least I do. I do remember 13, and I do remember that it was a time where everything shifted - and we really weren't "kids" anymore - though we certainly weren't adults. Of course, I had my first official boyfriend at 11, so I may have been an early starter.

10 hours ago, foxfreakinmulder said:

Loved it, and the look on their faces when the ladies started warming up Bahahahah!

And this is why I always went to all women health clubs, with no clear glass windows to the outside. I wasn't going to shake my beautifully clad bootie in front of gawkers.

Edited by Clanstarling

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13 minutes ago, Clanstarling said:

I do remember the forum speculation and wondering why people thought Will might be gay. This is the first time, for me, that I thought the show might possibly go there. I agree the line was perfectly ambiguous, though Will's reaction seemed to me to lean more toward the "not at all".

My husband was an episode behind so we rewatched this one with him last night to get caught up, and this time I agree that the way both Will and Mike reacted after he'd put the "you don't like girls" thing out there made me feel more like they both realized he'd said something they maybe hadn't been able to acknowledge up to that point.  The line itself could still go either way, but Will was clearly hurt by it and Mike seemed to know he'd said something out loud he shouldn't have.

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On 7/5/2019 at 6:08 AM, ElectricBoogaloo said:

I had really mixed feelings about Eleven spying on the boys using her powers. On the one hand, I remember what it was like to be that age. Pre-internet stalking my crush meant doing lame things like memorizing his student ID number (which I saw on the teacher's roll call sheet), so I get why she did it. But damn, that is such an invasion of privacy. I know that the show had her do that so that we could move on to Eleven spying on Billy and getting tied into that part of the plot, but still.

I thought it was good that she heard Mike trying to understand what he did wrong (even though duh, it's super obvious to me what he did wrong!) and that it ended with her giggling about the boys burping and farting.

I loved that Hopper came home drunk and upset that Joyce stood him up and he transformed into smiling and happy when he saw that Eleven was hanging out with Max (or really, anyone who wasn't Mike).

Poor Will. It's been obvious that he's felt left out since the beginning of the season. He just wants to play D&D with his friends and instead they're going on long hikes to try to talk to Suzie and going to the mall to buy apology presents and obsessing about what to do about their girlfriends. After Will finally got Lucas and Mike to play D&D, they were barely humoring him. It was clear that they were still thinking about (obsessing about) their girlfriends and not really into the game at all. The flashback was a good reminder of how much they've grown and how much they've been through since S1.

Honestly, I do remember how intense it was to have a crush at that age, but good lord, even when I had my first boyfriend in seventh grade, I still managed to talk about other things with my friends. Mike is all about Eleven so I can see how annoying that would be for Will to listen to nonstop. But on top of that, Mike and Lucas have been acting like Will isn't even in the room half the time because they're so busy talking about El and Max.

Hopper wearing a towel and his unbuttoned uniform shirt was hilarious.

El's double velcro strap Reebok high tops were so 1985!

Oh, Bob. I am glad that unlike the way other tv shows quickly forget about characters after they die, Joyce is still mourning him and remembering him. From the drawing on her refrigerator and remembering the Cheers episode she watched with Bob to inevitably staring at the place where he died when she and Hopper returned to the lab, Bob's presence is still part of this season.

I continue to love the adventures of Steve and Dustin. Their spy stakeout at the mall totally made me laugh. I loved when they did the simultaneous spin into casual hiding, especially Dustin's fake conversation on the pay phone. Also hilarious was the reveal that the supposed Russian spy was a Jazzercise teacher toting his gigantic boom box around in a duffel bag.

I'm watching this with my almost 12 year old. I was a teen in the 80's and I took great delight telling him I had those exact Reebok's in Junior year. 

I love the friendship of El and Max both of the actors are just so appealing. But Steve and Dustin will always be my favorite friendship in this show. And after all this time it finally clicked that Steve had John Taylor's (Duran Duran) exact hairstyle. 

Poor Will, he's been through so much and it's hard when all of your friends seem to be moving on and you're not. And they're all killing it in their roles. 

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I was pretty down on season two but am loving this one so far

So many stories going on, all of them fascinating and well done

The kids growing up, seeing splits among them with girls, new interests, outgrowing their old habits

Though hopper was a dick in how he did it, it really was better for El to have more friends, a girlfriend, to relate to rather than just one boyfriend. 

I was SHOCKED when they walked in the house and saw the quiet dinner going on.  What the hell?  Then them attacking the parents and the monster getting into that guys head ala the brain eating monster in Starship troopers?  Wow!

A bit over the top with the sexism of Nancy at the newspaper. 

No idea where all this is going, but like it so far.  A great comeback from a disappointing season two

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9 minutes ago, DrSpaceman said:

A bit over the top with the sexism of Nancy at the newspaper.

I kind of have to agree. Though I was a young thing then, and encountered plenty of sexist jerks, just not all in one room at the same time. Still, I'm willing to let it pass, as pretty much everything in Stranger Things is a bit heightened.

The mall stuff gives me such nostalgia. Walden Books! *sniffle*

Edited by Clanstarling
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On 7/6/2019 at 11:20 AM, nodorothyparker said:

Exactly.  We've seen scenes over and over again of people she likes and wants to be accepted by asking her to use those powers, both for big and small things.  It's what makes her "special."  Hopper got on her case last season for having the tantrum that involved a lot of slamming things and flying glass, but beyond that what guidance has she really been given beyond the obvious of don't draw unnecessary attention to yourself?  That's not even really a criticism of the Hawkins crew, who have mostly done the asking in times of real need or on a few lesser occasions just because it was cool and let's face it, she's got some pretty cool abilities and kids are going to run with that.  A lot of this is just clearly beyond them, no matter how much they may like or care about Eleven.  The only person we've seen who was truly able to understand her powers and where she might be coming from was Kali, and she clearly had her own issues and cynically wanted to use those powers to premeditatively hurt the people who'd hurt them.   

In thinking about this I keep returning to the first season scenes with Matthew Modine's evil Dr. Brenner and his look of absolute wonderment after Eleven had been out for awhile and had been using her powers without the set limits of being lab experiments.  Even he didn't seem to realize just what she was capable of.  There's really no one now save Eleven herself to know where her limits are, just as there doesn't seem to be anyone who understands her powers enough to be thinking through the ethics of her using them in non saving the world scenarios like being able to invade others' private spaces like that.

The ethical thing is huge. I mean how do you even deal with that. Yes pranking a kid at the mall or spying on your boyfriend are kind of harmless, but has any kind of line been set? I mean of course robbing a bank bad, but what about spying on your teacher or other things that would give you a huge advantage without technically breaking the law.

Also there is the safety thing that no one really talks about. The nosebleeds can't be good for you. Plus going in that mind space is what originally opened up the upside down. Why is no one worried about that?

5 hours ago, Clanstarling said:

I don't remember that line (but then my memory for specific dialogue is not the best), but I do remember the forum speculation and wondering why people thought Will might be gay. This is the first time, for me, that I thought the show might possibly go there. I agree the line was perfectly ambiguous, though Will's reaction seemed to me to lean more toward the "not at all".

Will not being into girls totally reminds me of Nick from Big Mouth. Will has had to deal with so many other damn monsters his hormone monster hasn't shown up yet.

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32 minutes ago, Kel Varnsen said:

Will not being into girls totally reminds me of Nick from Big Mouth. Will has had to deal with so many other damn monsters his hormone monster hasn't shown up yet.

Being the host body for a monster who likes things cold could definitely slow down the hormone monster.

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11 hours ago, Clanstarling said:

I don't remember that line (but then my memory for specific dialogue is not the best), but I do remember the forum speculation and wondering why people thought Will might be gay. This is the first time, for me, that I thought the show might possibly go there. I agree the line was perfectly ambiguous, though Will's reaction seemed to me to lean more toward the "not at all".

I've been on the "Will is being coded as gay" bandwagon since last season -- mostly because of the "Crazy together" scene between him and Mike in episode 2, which directly echoes the queer teen romance from the video game The Last of Us, a game the Duffer brothers had previously mentioned as one of their inspirations: "We can be all poetic and just lose our minds together."

But the "It's not my fault you don't like girls" scene in this episode felt like it took the subtext to another level, beyond oblique video game echoes and references to Will's "rainbow ship." It's the first moment when Will's orientation seemed like not just a plausibly deniable possibility but a more reasonable explanation than any alternative. Especially since, by the end of this episode, the most obvious alternate explanation is exposed as a deflection.

That is, Will spends the first few episodes desperately trying to be just a kid again, to the point that he represses the prickling realization that the Mind Flayer is back. It's only once he rejects his childhood pursuits, destroying Castle Byers, that he's able to confront the reality that the creature who tormented him has returned. To me this suggests that he didn't really just want to be a kid and play D&D; it was a way of detaching from a horrifying reality he couldn't bear to face.

In the same way, I don't think Will is just a late bloomer who doesn't care about girls. I think that attitude is also a pose, a way of distancing himself from the fact that he actually likes boys and probably has a crush on Mike. I don't think it's accidental that the two times in the previous episode that he represses his Mind Flayer alarm, it's when he's sitting next to Mike at the movies and Mike asks him if he's okay, and when he watches Mike skip down the hill with his girlfriend.

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On 7/6/2019 at 3:34 PM, blueray said:

the mind flinger (what's it called?)

It's the "Mind Flayer", but your alternative works, too. 

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Hopper hopping to catch up with Joyce.

Steve and Robin holding hands when they got scared and then quickly letting go (they better get together).

Except for the "abducted by a monster" thing, I was the Will of my junior high group.  When all my friends were suddenly boy crazy and starting to pair off, I was still playing with dolls and reading comic books.  We all mature at different rates, and I was a slow starter.

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I'm really enjoying this season so far! Of course it has always been an homage to the 80s, which I love, but this season gets to lean into it in a fun way, especially with the addition of the mall culture. Helps that Dustin and Steve, my favorite characters, along with the awesome new addition of Robin, get to be at the center of the mall storyline.

Mrs. Driscoll reminded me of my grandma! Poor lady; I hope they're able to save her. 

I knew that the kids had grown up over the course of the seasons, but the flashbacks definitely drove that home. They were just behbehs! We really are watching them grow up right in front of us. The casting of this show has been uniformly excellent, especially when you realize how the child stars have remained believable as they grow into teenagers.

The argument between Will and Mike was so well written, directed, and acted. They very much captured both characters' unspoken questions and implications in the "you're not into girls" line without it being over-the-top blunt or cruel.

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On 7/7/2019 at 4:14 PM, Clanstarling said:

Being the host body for a monster who likes things cold could definitely slow down the hormone monster.

Now I am totally picturing a scene where Maury the hormone monster shows up in Hawkins for Will, finds out that he has been taken to the Upside-down or possessed by the mind flayer, gets kind of shocked/nervous and kind of shows himself out. Now Connie the hormone monstress on the other hand would tear that shit up.

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While there is certainly some invasion of privacy issues with Eleven's ability to spy on people without them knowing, I think it is realistic that someone her age would use it to spy on her ex, so I wasn't too worked up over it since it was believable.  Plus, it led to the hilarious revelation where instead of crying and sobbing like Max thought they would be, Mike and Lucas were basically being silly goofs, eating Doritos, and farting.  Ah, teenage boys!  El/Max continue to be a great team though.  The scene with them drooling over Ralph Macchio makes me wonder if he could end up being a likely guest for any potential future seasons!

Oh, Will.  While I do think there is some truth in that he just hasn't matured like the other boys have and there was only a matter of time before the group started drifting apart in some ways, I can see why he is resistant to change after everything he has gone through these past seasons.  But his breakdown was well done and I cringed over him ripping up the pictures and destroying the base, because I can see that being something he'll regret once this is all over.  Glad Mike and Lucas at least followed him and apologized, but I hope those two at the bare minimum will at least play a full D&D game with him, without acting like bored jerks!

No surprise that Dustin and Steve aren't exactly master sleuths, with Dustin thinking all Russian spies stick out like sore thumbs (need to check out The Americans, Dustin!), while Steve is too busy using this as another opportunity to lament about his life.  I hope he does actually listen to Dustin, and quits clinging to his past and caring about his social status.  Robin continues to be awesome with her problem solving skills and general attitude (glad she finally shut down Erica and her clear attempts to abuse the "free samples" of ice cream), and even if it is obvious, I wouldn't be against any potential Robin/Steve, since she has no issues calling him out when he is being silly, but does seem to generally enjoy his company (even if she won't likely say it aloud!)

While I'm sure there was plenty of open sexism going on in the 80s, the Hawkins Times guys still feel like they stepped out of the Mad Men era.  I would think there would at least be one or two of them that would be more enlightened.  But I'm sure it will all end with Nancy rising above them.  Although her case has certainly taken an interesting turn!

Really loved how Winona Ryder and David Harbour played the Joyce/Hopper scenes, and both characters really come off like two people who have been through so much individually, but can relate to one another.  I hope Hopper isn't down for the count for too long, but man that was a rough beatdown!

So, it basically seems like Billy has been possessed by whatever monster stuff is going down, and now this Heather is infected as well, and are going to do the same to her parents.  And her father just happens to be the editor at the Hawkins Times.  It's all getting connected!

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On 7/7/2019 at 9:11 AM, Clanstarling said:

I don't remember that line (but then my memory for specific dialogue is not the best), but I do remember the forum speculation and wondering why people thought Will might be gay. This is the first time, for me, that I thought the show might possibly go there. I agree the line was perfectly ambiguous, though Will's reaction seemed to me to lean more toward the "not at all".

I didn't remember the bit from S1 either, though in light of being reminded of it, Will's reaction could also be simply hurt that Mike - who was supposed to be his best friend - sank to the level of calling him gay like any other jerk from school. 

Truly ambiguous all the way around, which I appreciate.  I always appreciate it when shows don't bonk us over the head with things that aren't essential to the plot.  Let us take it however we want to and move on.

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Okay, I'm already sick of the dickhead journalists bullying Nancy. Sure, era-appropriate storyline, but I don't need it.

I really liked El and Max teaming up, both to hang out and laugh about gross boys, and to actually start solving mysteries. They make a good pair, and it's nice to see El have someone who's an actual friend.

Hopper's look of joy when he realised El was hanging out with Max and not Mike was great. As was his petty, passive-aggressive attitude towards Joyce. He's as big a drama queen as anyone in town.

I feel for Will, being the kid who still clings to childhood while his friends are trying to be more grown up. I was that kid, for a while, and it wasn't fun. Either you have to get into the things your friends are now into, or you have to look for new friends.

The "I'm sorry you don't like girls" moment was interesting because, while it was a tacit acknowledgement by the writers that Will might be gay, it also seemed that Mike realises that. And it doesn't bother him. He was only worried that Will would be upset that he said it.

Noah Schnapp is definitely the best actor of all the young boys, and the one I think has the biggest future. His breakdown was convincing, as was his realisation that the Upside Down demon was back

I'm frustrated that the show is still splitting everyone up into groups, and seemingly keeping them apart. This is the third year of the show, and fans have been clamouring for scenes featuring different pairings and groupings, and we're still not getting that. Jonathan and Nancy have not had a single scene with another character yet. Hopper and Joyce are investigating the lab. The two girls are on doing their own thing, three boys another thing, and Steve, Dustin and Robin are looking for Russians at the mall. 

Why can't Steve and Dustin talk to Nancy and Jonathan about their 'scoop'? Why can't Nancy have any scenes where she gives El or Max advice? Sure, the storylines will all crash into each other, but probably not until the penultimate episode.

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I seem to remember that Will's character is actually a bit younger than the other boys, so the difference in development might be due to their ages, but I could be mistaken about that. I also think they're going full Invasion of the Body Snatchers...

The Russian experiment scenes in episode one reminded me of Chernobyl ( and timewise we're not too far away from that), and I could accept that the Russians might be trying the same crazy experiments that the season 1 mad scientists were, but what are they doing in Indiana - and at a mall??

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14 minutes ago, Tyro49 said:

I seem to remember that Will's character is actually a bit younger than the other boys, so the difference in development might be due to their ages, but I could be mistaken about that. I also think they're going full Invasion of the Body Snatchers...

The Russian experiment scenes in episode one reminded me of Chernobyl ( and timewise we're not too far away from that), and I could accept that the Russians might be trying the same crazy experiments that the season 1 mad scientists were, but what are they doing in Indiana - and at a mall??

He is. Both Noah and Millie are born in 2004. Caleb is the oldest there besides Finn and Sadie.

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1 hour ago, Tyro49 said:

I seem to remember that Will's character is actually a bit younger than the other boys, so the difference in development might be due to their ages, but I could be mistaken about that.

His character is supposed to be the same age as the other boys and Max (not sure where El falls relative to the others) but the actor is younger.

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Poor Will and his ongoing PTSD. I mean, part of it is probably being a teenage boy and I totally understood him feeling left behind. But also, I don't think he's ever been allowed to move on from his abduction. Joyce, try as she might took him into a spooky lab for tests but did she try to get him some form of counselling? Must be so maddening, you know.

Mike, even in his imagined state continues to be a little shit. I was looking at those flashbacks where he was cute and nerdy and that's just all gone now.

Loved the spycrafting. Dustin is such a star.

I'm glad Nancy is so tenacious. What the hell are they reporting about in that newspaper anyway? Because I imagine it's mostly like cats in trees and whatnot.

That dinner scene was some next level Charles Manson trippy shit. Yikes.

Hopper getting beaten up, also yikes. Loved the conversation at the beginning though, because it's hard to decide which one of them is nuttier. The lady with the magnets or the grouch wearing a towel and a shirt.

So, who is running the ice cream parlor when both of its employees are running about not serving ice cream? I think Erica should have just waited for the right moment and go to town with the ice cream tasting.

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I’m starting to dislike this show. For all the attention they spend on recreating the 80s, they spend very little energy on actual plot. Aside from season three being basically season one, with parallels from the same villain to the crazy mom being crazy, people still don’t talk to each other, or raise the alarm when someone is missing and there is blood, and everyone does stupid shit. Plus they use the trope I especially hate, of bad guys disguised as normal people, and we have to wait for everyone else to realize what we already know. I’ve started fast forwarding through parts of every episode. 

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On ‎7‎/‎13‎/‎2019 at 12:48 PM, Aliferously said:

Mike, even in his imagined state continues to be a little shit. I was looking at those flashbacks where he was cute and nerdy and that's just all gone now.

I just finished my rewatch and was thinking the same thing. For me Mike is the weakest link, I don't know if it's an acting choice or just him being a little shit but he's so different from the last 2 seasons. It's like he yell talks.

It sure did get dark quick. Will woke Mike and Lucas up early to play D&D and when he was tearing down his fort it was dark.

Dustin and Steve are still the best part of this episode.

It made me giggled when Will was upset and yelling his voice was cracking, I don't know why but the episode of the Brady Bunch where Peter's voice cracks popped into my head lol.

 It bugs me that Eleven still speaks with broken English.

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9 hours ago, foxfreakinmulder said:

It bugs me that Eleven still speaks with broken English.

It is, however, better English. She's improving, which is how language acquisition works. It can take a very long time for some, and be quick for others.

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1 hour ago, Clanstarling said:

It is, however, better English. She's improving, which is how language acquisition works. It can take a very long time for some, and be quick for others.

Yeah, I know she's getting better. It still bugs me though because even when she was a prisoner in the lab papa spoke English to her. I'm just surprised El is still talking like she is because in season 2 she was with Hopper for a year, granted he works and is not home much but when he was I'm sure he talked to her. Now she's been with Mike for 6 ? months, and I'm sure he talks to her between all the kissing lol.  

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5 hours ago, foxfreakinmulder said:

Yeah, I know she's getting better. It still bugs me though because even when she was a prisoner in the lab papa spoke English to her. I'm just surprised El is still talking like she is because in season 2 she was with Hopper for a year, granted he works and is not home much but when he was I'm sure he talked to her. Now she's been with Mike for 6 ? months, and I'm sure he talks to her between all the kissing lol.  

All of that's very true. However, since she was pretty non-verbal after being raised by "papa" (and the various lab techs and nurses), who all spoke English to her, I expect there's more to her lack of language than simple exposure. Who knows what they've done to her brain with their experimentation?

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On 7/24/2019 at 11:44 PM, foxfreakinmulder said:

I just finished my rewatch and was thinking the same thing. For me Mike is the weakest link, I don't know if it's an acting choice or just him being a little shit but he's so different from the last 2 seasons. It's like he yell talks.

It sure did get dark quick. Will woke Mike and Lucas up early to play D&D and when he was tearing down his fort it was dark.

I still like Mike. Interacting with teenage boys on a regular basis, they can get quite consumed in their romantic relationships since they have no idea how to regulate them. 

As for get getting pretty dark, it was established in season 1 that those games take the entire day to play. I wouldn't be surprised that despite their non interest in the game, Mike, Lucas and Will played for a good six hours and Will was alone for a few more hours before he decided trek back to Castle Byers and discovered even that sanctuary wasn't making him feel safe anymore. 

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6 minutes ago, Ambrosefolly said:

As for get getting pretty dark, it was established in season 1 that those games take the entire day to play.

To me it didn't seem like they were that interested in playing to begin with to sit all day and play, I just thought it might have been a continuity error. I remember many moons ago hanging out with friends that played Risk. Oh my god, that game never ended lol.

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