Stranger Things Recap

This July, things are about to get stranger!

Before the Netflix release of Stranger Things 3 on July 4th, lets recap where we last left off in Hawkins, Indiana.

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Millie Bobby Brown and Sadie Sink in Stranger Things 3. [Credit: IMDb]
Season 2 of Stranger Things saw the return of the creatures from the Upside Down to small town Hawkins, Indiana. It introduces us to what life would be like in Hawkins if Will Byers had never gone missing. After Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) successfully defeats the Demogorgon and vanishes, life in Hawkins returns to a semi-normal state. Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo), Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin), Mike (Finn Wolfhard) and Will (Noah Schnapp) return to playing Dungeons and Dragons. Everything seems to be back to normal until Will starts experiencing episodes he can’t explain.

Although only nine episodes, plenty happened in the second season that is important to remember before binge-watching the newest season.

Previously on Stranger Things (A Season 2 Recap) …

When we last left Hawkins, Eleven had just closed the gate to the Upside Down and Will had been freed of the shadow monster that invaded his body. Hopper (David Harbour) and Eleven resolved issues surrounding the father-daughter dynamic of their relationship and Joyce (Winona Ryder) was left to face the death of her boyfriend, Bob (Sean Astin).

The second season saw the break-up of Nancy (Natalia Dyer) and Steve (Joe Keery), as well as the development of a relationship between Nancy and Jonathan (Charlie Heaton). The teens spent most of the season working with Murray (Brett Gelman) to take down the lab. In the season finale, they get what they were after all along, justice for Barb.

Isolated from her friends, Eleven set out to meet her birth mother, Terry Ives (Aimee Mullins), who appears catatonic and unable to communicate. Eleven also heads to Chicago where she meets another girl with psychic powers, Kali (Linnea Berthelsen). Kali teaches her to better control her powers and warns her that Dr. Brenner may still be alive.

Joyce’s boyfriend, Bob sacrifices his life in order to save everyone and dies a hero at the hand of the “demo-dogs.” (“Demo-dog” is a term coined by Dustin that refers to a smaller version of the villain from the first season, the Demogorgon).

Not only did the party gain a new member, Max (Sadie Sink), but after a shared kiss at the Snow Ball, Lucas gains a girlfriend. Mike and Eleven also attend the Snow Ball together where they share a kiss.  A few feet outside the school, Hopper comforts Joyce as the pair share a cigarette. Despite Eleven having closed the gate, the shadow monster looms over the school dance.

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Mike Wolfhard, Caleb McLaughlin, Sadie Sink, Noah Schnapp, Millie Bobby Brown, Charlie Heaton and Natalia Dyer in Stranger Things 3. [Credit: IMDb]

What’s next?

The second season of Stranger Things explored the growing friendship between Joyce and Hopper. The pair grows closer over shared cigarettes, as Hopper continues to be one of the few people who would do anything for Joyce. It wouldn’t be surprising if we saw this relationship explored further in the upcoming season.

The reunion between Mike and Eleven was as heart-warming as could be. Though they barely shared screen time, the “Mileven” relationship continued to develop and grow over the course of the season.

The friendship/mentorship between Steve and Dustin continues to evolve (and we love Steve’s new role as a babysitter!). A potential relationship between new character, Billy (Darce Montgomery) and Karen Wheeler (Cara Buono) was also introduced.


If I’ve learned one thing about Stranger Things, it’s to always expect the unexpected. I think it’s safe to say that closing the gate to the Upside Down was only a temporary fix.