Stranger Things

skinny

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#35
Yes. Finished it yesterday. It was good, but not great. I think if they'd have made it as a long movie (which it really is sliced into 8 pieces) it probably wouldn't have been as popular.

I mused that it could a parable of nuclear fallout and the mutations of our species resulting from that, but to be honest I'm none the wiser about the floaty bits in the upside down atmosphere and the Alieny growths. Perhaps I missed something crucial at the end. Will repeat viewing.
 

DougalLongfoot

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#36
Just binged it this weekend, not having signed up to Netflix before (didn't think my internet speeds would cope with streaming). Best TV drama I've seen since Life on Mars (UK original, not crappy US remake). Millie Bobby Brown gives the most impressive performance from a child actor since Natalie Portman in The Professional.
 

PeteByrdie

Privateer in the service of Princess Frideswide
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#37
I binge-watched this a couple of days ago (I know, I should have better things to do. I still haven't read the letters in the last FT). It had me on the opening titles, which totally made me feel I'd rented a video of a low-budget sci-fi film I'd never previously heard of that had a great blurb on the back. Eighties flashback right there.

I enjoyed it. I didn't get bored until the last episode, which just seemed to string out a predictable sequence of events. But it was late by then, and I'd been fending off sleep for a couple of hours.

The eighties tropes were ubiquitous and satisfying. To some extent, shameless but forgivable rip-offs of alien and other bio-horror; high-school drama, with nerdy and socially awkward kids being bullied and awkward sexual encounters; kids on bikes, often pursued by sinister government agents; nerdy kids in houses that seem to have plenty of space for them to have a hobby room where no adult bothers them much (is that really so common in America?); kids with a mysterious friend the adults can't know about; the alcohol abusing cop, struggling with past tragedy; even the thing with the lights instantly reminded me of Poltergeist. Classic eighties movies were deeply mined, but it never felt particularly unoriginal; perhaps because it was executed with such obvious self-awareness and affection.

Those parts that were a little too predictable were so because folk of my age had seen it all before, but that didn't bother me because I knew the writers had planned for me to feel that way.

I don't know whether it was an excellent series, but it was a damn good one. And, as has been said, young Milli Bobby Brown has talent beyond her age, giving a stand-out performance even in a generally well acted drama.

I don't know what's left of the eighties for them to plunder, but I look forward to the next series.
 

Krepostnoi

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#38
I somehow got it into my head that there were 12 episodes in the first series, so, given that my free netflix month ends on Tuesday, I thought I'd better get my skates on. By episode 6 I was thinking they'll never manage to spin this out for the same amount again... Anyway, that's episode 8 watched, and it's a pretty satisfactory conclusion to a pretty satisfactory season. I haven't much more to add to what's already been said, but I do have 2 questions, the second of which is definitely a spoiler if you haven't watched to the end.
Firstly - is it just me, or was the Matthew Modine character deliberately stiff and unnatural - not quite someonething wearing a human suit, but not far off? That hair... A reassigned man-in-black?

Secondly, I miss the significance of the car ride that Hopper takes at the end, as he leaves the hospital. Can anyone enlighten me?
 

Krepostnoi

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#39
kids with a mysterious friend the adults can't know about;
A little bit off-topic, but only a little bit: compare and contrast the attitudes of the children and adults in E.T. (and the rest) with the children and adults in My Neighbour Totoro. The difference is striking and, given that UK culture is closer to US than Japanese, more than a little depressing.
 

sherbetbizarre

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#41
Documents Reveal Stranger Things Really Freaked Out the US Department of Energy
The US DoE claims that it “doesn’t explore parallel universes” and overall tried to downplay its newfound reputation as ground zero for shady science. And that seemed adequate, until Free Beacon writer Lachlan Markay requested internal communications from the DoE’s public affairs office for any correspondence related to Stranger Things.

Markay has lots to comb through, but has been tweeting some of his finds. First among these: we’ve been lied to. The DoE is absolutely helping support research into parallel worlds...
http://www.gizmodo.co.uk/2016/10/do...ally-freaked-out-the-us-department-of-energy/
 

Ringo

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#44
My wife and I finally got round to watching this last week and we binged the lot in 3 nights. I really, really enjoyed it. I had just as much fun spotting references as I did watching the show.
 

Yithian

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#52
Last night we watched the first episode of the second series and the pre-credits, join-the-plots sequence to the second episode that shows what happened to Eleven in the inmediate aftermath of the battle with the Demogorgon.

They've laid on the originally thick 80s references even a shade thicker, but I don't really mind that and the arrival of Sean Astin as Wynona Ryder's love interest fits all right (wouldn't be surprised if he dies!).

Similarly, the new head of the government experiemental lab is the actor who played Carter Burke in Aliens; he has been all bonhomie and winks so far, which means he'll probably turn out to be a nasty piece of work.

No idea what's actually going on with the weirdness yet, of course, but then the first series didn't start bunching narrative threads together until about episode 4.
 

MrRING

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#53
Just started the first series on DVD and it's been a blast! So far I'm detecting lots of references to IT, Poltergeist, ET, Starman, and maybe Mazes and Monsters.
 

Ringo

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#54
Finished series 2 last night whilst eating a whole carton of Ben & Jerry's. Lots to talk about.

I didn't enjoy it as much as Series 1. I think the novelty, fun and kitchiness of the '80's had worn off a little. However, Billy was a great character (straight out of The Lost Boys). The scene with Mike's mother was brilliant.

The Clash of the Titans (Hooper and Eleven in the cabin) was great but it just seemed to drag along. Her Psychic Tantrum was cool.

And then that whole stand alone episode with Eight and the gang. Clichés and wonderful stereotypes aside, I was filled with anxiety knowing that there were only 9 episodes and here we were wasting one of them on this nonsense. Meanwhile, Hooper is watching Demodogs climbing out of the abyss. But still, it helped Eleven channel anger at a later date.

The cast were great as usual. The kids were great although Mike is becoming annoying. Mad Max was a fun addition. Am I the only one who thinks Jonathans character looks like Kevin Bacon in Footloose?

The Snow Ball was lovely. Shades of Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink and god knows what else. My heart broke for Dustin. I thought he was going to ask Nancy instead of the other way round. The kisses were so sweet and perfect. Maybe Dustin could have had a peck on the cheek from Nance to really make the other girls jealous.

All in all, as much as I love the kids, I think I would have preferred a seperate story line set maybe in the same town. A whole new set of characters, interacting with Hawkins. Maybe the kids could turn up in an episode (like the Lone Gunmen) or just be seen in the background riding bikes etc.

I like what they did with Fargo - new characters, same setting and world. Series 3 (even with the Shadow Monster left looming over the school) could be something else entirely. The town may be a paranormal hotspot.

That's my 2 cents anyway.
 

Yithian

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#55
Finished series 2 last night whilst eating a whole carton of Ben & Jerry's. Lots to talk about.

I didn't enjoy it as much as Series 1. I think the novelty, fun and kitchiness of the '80's had worn off a little. However, Billy was a great character (straight out of The Lost Boys). The scene with Mike's mother was brilliant.

The Clash of the Titans (Hooper and Eleven in the cabin) was great but it just seemed to drag along. Her Psychic Tantrum was cool.

And then that whole stand alone episode with Eight and the gang. Clichés and wonderful stereotypes aside, I was filled with anxiety knowing that there were only 9 episodes and here we were wasting one of them on this nonsense. Meanwhile, Hooper is watching Demodogs climbing out of the abyss. But still, it helped Eleven channel anger at a later date.

The cast were great as usual. The kids were great although Mike is becoming annoying. Mad Max was a fun addition. Am I the only one who thinks Jonathans character looks like Kevin Bacon in Footloose?

The Snow Ball was lovely. Shades of Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink and god knows what else. My heart broke for Dustin. I thought he was going to ask Nancy instead of the other way round. The kisses were so sweet and perfect. Maybe Dustin could have had a peck on the cheek from Nance to really make the other girls jealous.

All in all, as much as I love the kids, I think I would have preferred a seperate story line set maybe in the same town. A whole new set of characters, interacting with Hawkins. Maybe the kids could turn up in an episode (like the Lone Gunmen) or just be seen in the background riding bikes etc.

I like what they did with Fargo - new characters, same setting and world. Series 3 (even with the Shadow Monster left looming over the school) could be something else entirely. The town may be a paranormal hotspot.

That's my 2 cents anyway.
I shall read your 'spoilered' post in two episodes' time!
 

skinny

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#59
Watched 6 eps now and liking it about as much as the first season. Deliberately not thinking about how Joyce Byers' character gets all the shit karma in the USA piled on top of her family. Suspending my disbelief over her superhuman patience and resilience. Yeah, what a gal.

The Hopper character has been the most grounded. The actor's work is really good. Need 11 to come alive soon tho and sort out those arseholes who grieved her and her Ma. What a gal.

Enjoyed the blackbeard who worked with Nancy and Jonathon to get the Lab tapes out to the media. Looking forward to seeing how that doesn't work out. More vodka tonics!!
 

Stringtheory

Small Lifeform in a Vast Space
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#60
I quite enjoyed season 2. I'll wait for more people to catch up before I say more. But to use an analogy grounded in the 1980's, season 2 is definitely the series "Empire Strikes Back."
 
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