ByMichael Patterson, writer at Creators.co
I Write. Sometimes.
Michael Patterson

Without a doubt, Stranger Things turned out to be one of 's standout newcomers in 2016. Debuting on last summer, the series received critical acclaim for its stunning performances and incredible writing. Whether your favorite character was Joyce or Eleven, there is one thing we can all agree on — there was nothing more terrifying than the Demogorgon. The creature from the Upside Down made us all cower in fear when it crawled from its parallel dimension.

So with all that success, you can see why we're excited for the show's upcoming second season. And we were understandably a little apprehensive, because what kind of evil could be more horrifying than the Demogorgon? Well, thanks to the brand new Stranger Things 2 trailer that aired at the Superbowl, we now finally have an answer. That multi-legged beast dwarfs Hawkins, and makes the Demogorgon seem like a mere minion.

What is this frightening new creature?
What is this frightening new creature?

But with a frighteningly long list of possibilities — and Dungeons & Dragons monsters — let's take a look at just some of the potential theories as to what this new menace could be.

The Thessalhydra

The Thessalhydra was one of the game's big bads in Season 1. [Credit: Netflix]
The Thessalhydra was one of the game's big bads in Season 1. [Credit: Netflix]

I think by now we all know that the Demogorgon got its name from a creature of the same name in fantasy roleplaying game Dungeons & Dragons. Will, Mike, Dustin and Lucas were such fans of the game that they bestowed the evil creature's name upon the Upside Down's resident monster. However, that was not all we saw of Dungeons & Dragons. Upon defeating the Demogorgon in the season finale, the gang revisited the board game and spoke of a new menace — the Thessalhydra.

In Dungeons & Dragons lore, the Thessalhydra is one of the many thessalmonsters designed to resemble the hydra. It is easily the most well-known of them and the mere mention of its name is enough to send chills down any player's spine. It has eight reptilian heads that frame a large, circular mouth that possesses jagged teeth.

The Thessalhydra. [Credit: Hasbro]
The Thessalhydra. [Credit: Hasbro]

There are notable similarities between the Thessalhydra from Dungeons & Dragons and our mysterious Stranger Things beast, including the multiple limbs. While the Thessalhydra has eight reptilian heads, this monster appears to have at least six or seven legs. That's not forgetting that it's also huge and terrifying — certainly enough to warrant the same name right? Has the Thessalhydra come to avenge the Demogorgon's loss?

Evil Is In The Eyes Of The Beholder

Beholder from Dungeons & Dragons [Credit: Hasbro]
Beholder from Dungeons & Dragons [Credit: Hasbro]

We were told by the Duffer Brothers that while the Demogorgon was gone, evil was not. And what is more evil than a horrifying creature with multiple eyes? Sticking with the Dungeons & Dragons references, there is another creature that Hawkins' new monster resembles. And that is none other than Beholder.

Known for its unsettling amount of eyes — most of which are extended on stalk-like limbs — a Beholder's central eye can emit a broad field of energy capable of nullifying the magic of its foes, while its eye stalks can blast foes with powerful effects. This sounds like it could be rather reminiscent of the eerie effects that the monster is emitting as it descends upon power lines in Hawkins — playing havoc with the weather in the process. Is this evil that the Duffer Brothers spoke of truly in the eye — or eyes — of the Beholder?

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Is Barb Back For Revenge?

Barb became an overnight sensation and fans want her back. [Credit: Netflix]
Barb became an overnight sensation and fans want her back. [Credit: Netflix]

One hilarious theory doing the rounds is the belief that the new eerie monster is in fact Nancy's best friend Barb, and that she's back for fiery revenge. Despite little screen-time, the beloved character became a fan-favorite after the worst ever search operation in TV history was mounted for her. When everyone was out looking for Will Byers, nobody stopped to look for poor Barb — the loyal best friend who just cut her thumb at the wrong time and fell victim to the Demogorgon.

We last saw Barb's body all alone in the Upside Down as a slug crawled out of her mouth. But does one really die in the Upside Down? Perhaps, she has been revived as a mythical monster with horrifyingly long legs, and isn't happy about the fact that nobody seemed concerned enough to look for her.

Barb met an unjust end, but is she back for revenge? [Credit: Netflix]
Barb met an unjust end, but is she back for revenge? [Credit: Netflix]

Whether this theory is a little too far-fetched for you or not, it would be understandable if she were to be pretty miffed with her local community for not showing enough interest in her disappearance. And after all, stranger things have happened, right?

Have M.U.T.O.s Come To Hawkins?

The M.U.T.O.s certainly caused a lot of destruction in "Godzilla" [Credit: Legendary]
The M.U.T.O.s certainly caused a lot of destruction in "Godzilla" [Credit: Legendary]

The giant monster's silhouette happens to bare a striking resemblance to an equally as terrifying movie monster — the M.U.T.O.s from 2014's . These loud alien life-forms destroyed many of the world's most famous cities and almost took out the most iconic movie monster of all-time. But could these giant creatures that Godzilla defeated have been on Earth before, in 1984? All this time we have been wondering where they came from — is their alien origin really the Upside Down?

Okay in all seriousness though, there's no disputing the similarities here. In fact, of all the creatures on this list — and iconic movie monsters in general — there is nothing that looks more like the Stranger Things monster than the M.U.T.O.s. With it's long leg-like limbs, the creature's silhouette is practically identical to the monstrous organisms.

Will's drawing shows a creature that looks very like the M.U.T.O.s. [Credit: Netflix]
Will's drawing shows a creature that looks very like the M.U.T.O.s. [Credit: Netflix]

In fact, the M.U.T.O. might be the most likely monster on the list as it stands for Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism — and at the end of the day, that's exactly what this creature appears to be.

Is It A Messenger, Here To Collect Will?

Will mysteriously opens the door during the creature's arrival. [Credit: Netflix]
Will mysteriously opens the door during the creature's arrival. [Credit: Netflix]

While we don't quite know exactly what the creature is, perhaps we would get more results from looking at why it's here. Last season focused on the disappearance on Will Byers and his trip to the other-worldly Upside Down. We know that he hasn't been the same since his return — he did coughed up a slug in the season finale — and now it appears that he just might possess powers similar to Eleven's.

But the most intriguing part is that he appears to be opening the front door with his mind during the creature's arrival. And this makes us wonder if the monster has arrived to take Will back to the Upside Down? Remember, Joyce and Hop saved him from the other dimension at the end of the season. Does this creature want him back? Furthermore, as the trailer presumably reveals Will's drawing of the creature, we have to wonder — does he know what it is?

What evil will the gang be facing when 'Stranger Things' returns? [Credit: Netflix]
What evil will the gang be facing when 'Stranger Things' returns? [Credit: Netflix]

When we all finally laid our eyes upon the brand new Stranger Things trailer, we were understandably shocked by the sheer size of the season's new big bad. This gigantic monster has us all talking, and will undoubtedly be one of the main points of conversation in the run-up to Season 2's release at Halloween.

Whether it truly is the Thessalhydra, or the return of a scorned friend, you can bet that it's arrival in Hawkins is quite literally going to turn everyone's world upside down all over again. But perhaps nobody will feel the effects of its arrival more than Will Byers, who might just know what the creature is — and that is knowledge we all wish he could share with us right now.

Poll

What do you think the new monster of 'Stranger Things' is?

(Source: Dungeons & Dragons)