Stranger Things Season 2, Episode 2 “Trick or Treat, Freak”


Ghostbusters! The school not dressing up totally got me.

– Half the appeal of Stranger Things is the Dadcore. Sean Astin’s corny but lovable  (awwww to the episode 1 backroom kissing) new character fills out the cast of Dads even if the character isn’t, you know, biologically a dad that we know of. That goofy vampire voice and that goofy vampire look. Dad no

– There was a bad dad in season one, Winona Ryder’s ex husband. This other kind of dad, the boring dad fits Austin’s character and Nancy’s dad. There’s something kind of corny and sentimental, nostalgia almost, about the kind of family unit we see on the show. They’re not perfect but there’s more of this mainstay thing going on. Even the idea of consistent long term home ownership is a fantasy to me. Anyway, there are a lot of interesting dads but too many are interesting in the way that they end up missing your birthdays. We need more of these argyle socks, washington post subscribing, chair sitting dads and more flannel and pumpkin patch dads.

– We definitely see Hopper doing a dad duty by bringing home some candy at the last minute, he rushes because he really cares but he’s late because he cares about work too. It’s nice to see two good things bump up against one another like this, he’s late but in the right way.

– We got that nice black psychic zone back, i’m still into that look

– Speaking of look, the visuals on the show are up a notch all around. Not just the CG! Little things like the grain and night lighting I mentioned in the episode 1 opening and in this episode there’s a big one shot to introduce the party that’s a quiet powerhouse.

– A smaller moment that they executed with the perfect balance of menace and practical thrill was the car rundown swerve scene. The wide angle out front, the roar, the practical swerve and the concern on Max’s face, it comes together so well.

– Back to that party, BILLY. Keg King Billy is pitched perfectly here, no shirt, great jacket, dripping beer. Sometimes 80s looks are goofy and man could this have gone the other way. Not hiding what is clearly a man’s physique (even though he’s supposed to be what 16?) makes him more intimidating around the actors who play kids more convincingly. I have a feeling this character is going to grow on me in a way the teen villain from season one didn’t. I’m getting Cobra Kai vibes from Billy but he’s actually cool which is insane.

– I’m really liking the angle that everyone is dealing with trauma at the beginning of the season here. Though, Nancy, girl no! No! Please No! We’ve all had to deal with shocking, terrifying or sad things in our lives. In season one she very much put everything to bed immediately and avoided any sort of human reaction to the death of Barb, it’s a little whiplash to see a year later this bottleneck breaking in a way that includes light substance abuse. Sometimes things just hit you and I can totally get that.

– It’s good that Nancy got home, I understand Steve walking out of the bathroom but leaving was not a good look. Also Jonathan WYD get one of her girlfriends to take her home with you. You people must have other friends.

– One last thing re Nancy, not talking about something is not the same as lying but the burden of finding someone to talk to… idk if you can put that on someone else especially if it’s a teen boy.

– Will was also trying to find someone to talk to this episode, I hope they get 11 back to the group soon.


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