You'd think that once the Demogorgon got Demogorgone, things would've eased up for the gang in Stranger Things, but you'd be wrong. After all, one cannot simply walk into the Upside Down and remain unscathed, one must deal with the consequences. And it would seem, that's exactly what's going to happen in the show's second coming, both physically and psychologically.
Up until now, we've only had a handful of tantalizing tidbits that hint at what, or who, Season 2 of #StrangerThings will circle around. Does Will have secret powers now? Is Eleven alive? How much does Chief Hopper know? We've tried to hack this curiosity door to pieces in an attempt to work out just what the hell is going on, and weave the tiny clues we have into some semblance of narrative.
Thankfully, the guys have seen our pain, and they've answered to it in the form of an interview with Entertainment Weekly, which gives some pretty big pointers for what we can expect in Season 2. Here goes.
The second season will pick up on Halloween, almost a year after the first installment, and reintroduce us to the boys who automatically fulfill our nostalgia cravings by dressing as Ghostbusters. However, despite Will (Noah Schnapp) being back in the clan, the poor kid continues to be traumatized by what he saw in the Upside Down. Co-creator Matt Duffer explains:
“He seems to be seeing images from the Upside Down — the question is whether they’re real or not. So it seems like he’s having some sort of post-traumatic stress disorder.”
PTSD would totally make sense, and it would explain the sketches we saw in the Super Bowl teaser trailer — watch below — that dropped last weekend. From the trailer alone it's unclear whether these drawings were made by Will, but pairing with Duffer's revelation, it seems they must be:
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Of course it goes without saying that if Will isn't A-OK, neither is his mother, Joyce Byers (Winona Ryder). This time though, rather than clinging to fairy lights and talking to walls, she's attempting to create a stable home for Will and Jonathan by dating an old classmate, Bob (Sean Austin, The Goonies, Lord of the Rings), who will hopefully become a father figure for the boys:
“She’s trying to mask a lot. I think she’s made this choice with Bob because she wants a good father figure in her sons’ lives.”
It's not just the Byers who have a lot on their plate though. At the Fan2Sea Comic Con recently we learned via David Harbour (Chief Hopper) that the town of Hawkins, Indiana has been split into two factions: those who know what happened in the Upside Down, and those that don't. Expanding on that revelation, Harbour tells EW that is has now become his task to spread the news to the entire community — a hard task, one would assume. How can you tell people a D&D monster emerged from a parallel dimension without them thinking you're totally batshit crazy?
“It kind of falls on Hopper to be the voice of authority to say, ‘This did happen and this didn’t happen. He’s struggling with the compromise that takes him to, having to lie and cover things up.”
Siblings Nancy (Natalia Dyer) and Mike (Finn Wolfhard) are also having a hard time — both are morning the deaths of their friends, Barb (who's definitely dead) and Eleven (who Mike saw obliterate before a blackboard with the Demogorgon). Co-creator Ross Duffer explains:
“She and Mike are both the most screwed-up because they’re the ones who both lost someone. They’re both grappling with that, and we see the effects.”
And there are new siblings in town: Billy (Dacre Montgomery) and Max (Sadie Sink). While Max is enveloped into the friendship group (and becomes an object of lust for Lucas, nawww), Billy isn't quite as keen. Matt Duffer teases:
“Stephen King always has really great human villains. The evil in the real world is often as bad or worse than the supernatural evil, so we wanted to introduce a character like that.”
Though zero bombs have been dropped in terms of what that massive monster from the trailer could be — our bets are on the Thessalhydra — Gaten Matarazzo hints that we'll be seeing a bunch of different creatures this time around. Apparently Dustin is going to find himself a polliwog-esque pet:
“It’s a little creature I get to bond with. It’s obviously not from this planet or this dimension.”
Interesting, because not only does this little creature have major cute potential, but also "The Pollywog" just happens to be the title of Season 2 episode 6 — so it's safe to say that its in this episode that we're introduced to Dustin's new pal. But what could it be? Place your bets in the comments!
Stranger Things Season 2 hits Netflix October 31st.
I am so ready for this — despite the airing date still being over eight months away — are you?