Stranger Things Season 1 Episode 3 Review

Just as the show is starting to get somewhere, I feel I may be starting to turn on it.

I’m not sure what it is, but a little bit of the “spell” was broken for me this episode. Maybe the novelty and charm of the setting is just wearing off, but other than Eleven, almost no characters are getting further development this episode. People are staying in their character archetypes and formulas. It’s a good thing that the mystery is intriguing–I legitimately have no idea what is going on with that monster, even after they showed it to us this episode, and especially what is going on with Will and the lights–because the characters are becoming less intriguing.

The most effective emotional moment of the episode for me may have been when the douchey high schoolers broke Jonathan’s camera. I will say, this show really nails the dynamics of kids’ and teenagers’ relationships. Both the young boys and the popular crew have age-appropriate dynamics (the sex noises scene at the lunch table was very vintage high school, even though those were the types of kids I shunned in high school). I truly hate these immature teenagers like I would hate real-life¬†immature teenagers, so that’s kind of a success.

Cinematography is still fantastic. I don’t know whether I love or hate that opening sequence–it was cliche, but well-executed. So far that’s the show’s mantra: cliche but well-executed. Let’s see if it can break out of the mold in the next few episodes.

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