Warning: Major spoilers for all of Stranger Things 2 below
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If, like the large majority of the NME Office, your eyes are red and you’ve had nightmares all weekend – you’ve probably had a few days full of Halloween debauchery, or maybe just blitzed through the entirety of Stranger Things 2. Or perhaps both.
The sequel well and truly lives up to the hype. It may not quite reach the heights of season one – but on an episode-to-episode basis, it mostly holds its own when compared to the first. Mostly.
We say that because Episode 7, ‘The Lost Sister’ from Stranger Things 2 has proved to be its most divisive ever. In it, Eleven locates her estranged sister Kali, aka Eight, who she grew up with in Hawkins Lab when they were kids. Eight is now using her powers – she can create visions for other people as a decoy – to avenge all those that had wronged her as a child. Eleven briefly flirts with the idea, and helps Eight and her ragtag group of misfits out on one of the jobs. Soon she realises it’s not for her, and that she wants to channel her powers into helping her friends, who are stuck in the shit back in Hawkins again.
Set entirely in Illinois, the episode doesn’t feature a single jot of Hawkins action. An admirable endeavour, especially considering Episode 6’s toe-curling finale, and is an obvious example of The Duffer Brothers aiming to open up the Stranger Things universe outside of the most plagued community since Midsomer.
But not everyone is loving it. The response to the episode has been divided, to say the least.
Some people have taken to this pairing
A lot of fans felt like they were watching the pilot for a spin-off show.
People have been so vocal that The Duffer Brothers have spoken out about the response to it. “Whether it works for people or not, it allows us to experiment a little bit,” Matt told Entertainment Weekly. “It’s important for Ross and I to try stuff and not feel like we’re doing the same thing over and over again. It’s almost like doing a whole little other pilot episode in the middle of your season, which is kind of a crazy thing to do. But it was really fun to write and cast and work on.”
Either way, Stranger Things 2 was a huge success – and a brief hour outside of Hawkins won’t change that.