Stranger Things: Homage to My Childhood



It wasn't until last weekend that I came across Netflix's new series, Stranger Things. Needless to say that I’ve spent my weekend on the sofa with my wife binge watching the entire season. I had no idea what to expect since I had no info about the series, but from the very first episode I felt an overwhelming sense of familiarity with the lead characters, especially the 4 kids.

At this point I should mention that I grew up in the 80's, in a quiet little suburb that for me and my friends was our entire universe. Just a reminder, for those of you that were around, at the time there was no easy access to video games apart from Atari that had just been released and of course the arcade games that as far as I remember I was allowed to play with only during summer vacation. We used to play and explore outside, in our neighbourhood. With our imagination we made stories and lived through our little adventures in the woods, in abandoned houses, but mainly in the streets.

Back to Stranger Things now, the story develops in a small and quiet town of Indiana in 1983. A little boy mysteriously disappears. As friends, family and the local police are searching for answers, they find themselves involved in secret government experiments, unexplained supernatural phenomena and a strange little girl.

The series made me feel nostalgic for my childhood, borrowing elements from classic movies from the 80's like The Goonies (1985), E.T. (1982), Explorers (1985) and Stand by Me (1986). The creators of the series, the Duffer brothers, have stated that Stranger Things is a homage to the pop culture of the 1980's, influenced by the work of Steven Spielberg, Stephen King and John Carpenter.

Similar to the above films, Stranger Things is not a masterpiece but it does accomplish its purpose without looking like a cheap knockoff. The script is well written, the cinematography is great and the cast very successful. But above all, I love its soundtrack. 

Chances are that Stranger Things will return next year with a second season. I am unsure whether this is a good thing or not, but I guess we will all find out soon.