Warning: This article contains spoilers from Riverdale and Stranger Things.
We all wept when our beloved Barb fell victim to the Demogorgon back in the first season of #StrangerThings. Following her demise, the character became hugely popular across social media and built up quite the following. If you're a Barb fan then you'll be pleased to know that even though Barb is rotting away in the Upside Down, actress Shannon Purser is thriving in the real world and made her debut as Ethel Muggs in the latest episode of The CW's Riverdale.
Riverdale is largely inspired by Archie comics, using the famous comic book characters to create a much sexier and darker world than Archie fans are used to. Purser's character Ethel is set to play a vital role for character Jughead Jones and it seems that she will become even more prominent as the show goes on.
The best thing about Purser's appearance on Riverdale was the fact that the show couldn't resist paying tribute to the actress' more famous, fallen character from Stranger Things and there were several hilarious easter eggs sprinkled throughout the episode. In fact, some of them were so on the nose that you would have to had to have been in the Upside Down not to have caught them. Let's take a look.
Nancy And Barb In The Same Scene — Sort Of
Within minutes of Purser's character making her on screen debut, Cheryl Blossom verbally attacked Betty Cooper — Ethel's friend —calling her Nancy Drew. It could have been a total coincidence but as I'm sure you Stranger Things fans are aware, Barb's best friend was called Nancy. It may have been one of the less noticeable easter eggs, this one had me giggling.
Ethel's Midnight Locker Hunt Brought Back Our Barb Feels
Barb chatting with Nancy, holding her school books, beside the lockers is the Stranger Things scene that has become synonymous with the Barb character. Riverdale wasted no time in paying tribute to it and in Purser's first episode, Ethel —with the help of some of the Riverdale regulars — broke into High School player Chuck's locker to find a book of about his female conquests. Seeing Purser standing beside a locker holding a book in her hand definitely hit us right in the feels.
Check out these related articles:
- Barb Will Have A Role In Stranger Things Season 2, Just Not In The Way You'd Expect
- Stranger Things Actress Shannon Purser May Be A Love Interest For Riverdale's Jughead, But Shouldn't He Be Asexual?
- From Thessalhydra To Barb: Just What Is That Monster In The Stranger Things Season 2 Trailer?
Ethel Has A Demogorgon Free Pool
When Betty was plotting her revenge against Chuck, she told him to meet her at Ethel's house the following night. Confused, Chuck asked why they are meeting at Ethel's house but Betty simply replies with "she has a pool." Almost immediately I was reminded of the Stranger Things scene where Barb, sitting beside the swimming pool, mysteriously disappears.
The pool reference had little to do with the plot of Riverdale but it was rather a hilarious little nod to Purser's most recognizable character. Let's just hope there are no Demogorgans at Ethel's place!
Barb Hasn't Got Her Justice Yet, But Ethel Has
The final and the best Stranger Things easter egg in Riverdale was during the final moments of the episode. Chuck had been vilified for what he had done to Ethel and Ethel had her moment of glory. Veronica then turned to Ethel and called her "the bravest of them all." This would've been enough of a hint for viewers to see what Riverdale was doing but the show didn't stop there.
Cheryl turns to the other girls and says "#JusticeForEthel" If you let out a scream, then you're not the only one because this easter egg was so on the nose that you couldn't have missed it. It refers to the treatment of the Barb character —many Stranger Things fans were a little perturbed by the town's lack of interest in Barb's disappearance and after the character turned up dead at the end of Season 1, many fans took to twitter, originating the #JusticeForBarb movement.
Barb may not have got the justice that she deserves but at least Riverdale made sure Ethel did. Purser will have a recurring role on Season 1 of The CW's latest #TV hit so maybe there will be more cheesy, on the nose, Barb-filled puns in weeks to come. Let's hope Ethel makes it out of Riverdale alive — there is a killer on the loose after all and we're hoping it's not the demogoragan come back for revenge.
Riverdale airs Thursdays on The CW. For those who live outside the US, it's available weekly on Netflix. Stranger Things 2 will arrive on Netflix Worldwide in October. Did you catch all of the Barb easter eggs in Riverdale? Tell me in the comment section below.