Arts & Style

Netflix releases new ‘Stranger Things’ season to positive critical responses

One of Netflix’s most beloved original series, “Stranger Things,” finally returned for an action-packed second season on Oct. 27. Season 2 consists of nine episodes, each unveiling the emotional perception of the new and old characters and introducing stranger creatures from the

Upside Down. With a bigger budget for the new season, “Stranger Things” indubitably expands its props and graphic details, making the season scarier just in time for the perfect Halloween binge.

The show received huge attention after the first season for the mashup of its iconic ‘80s background and an eerie sci-fi ambience that is very divergent from traditional action movies. The story starts from the disappearance of Will Byers, played by Noah Schnapp, in what seems like an undisturbed and tranquil town.

Freakish events start taking place in the town and a character named Eleven, shortened to El, escapes from a nearby laboratory. She possesses supernatural powers, supposedly coming from experiments in the lab. The discovery of Will in a parallel dimension serves as the plot of the entire storyline, which recurs in the newest season. Of course, thing are not always strange — there are humorous aspects that level out the grim details of the story.

A year since the release of its first season, “Stranger Things” describes the daily lives of each character where the story left off. Although Will has been saved from the Upside Down, more sinister creatures menace the characters who survived, especially Will. Secrets of the Hawkins National Laboratory were revealed in the first season, but season two unveils the shady things going on in the lab once again.

From the finale of the previous season, Jim Hopper, a cop played by David Harbour, leaves Eleven in the woods. The return of El was suspected from the ending of the first season, but it becomes evident from the preview of season two. The storyline of the new season beautifully captures the parallel plots of El and how the actions of the Hawkins boys progress in the later episodes. New characters are also added to the season, introducing a new dynamic for the protagonists as they combat increasingly stronger creatures.

Each of the boys play a crucial role in the discovery of the stranger things happening in the  town, and the season puts its main focus on Will, once again. Dustin and Lucas, played by Gaten Matarazzo and Caleb McLaughlin respectively, were the “shadow” of the group in the first season, but they each get their own storylines in the new season. There is also the addition of Max, played by Sadie Sink, who temporarily replaces the female role of El in the boy’s group and plays a central role in the later episodes.

The lingering question is whether the second season of “Stranger Things” is as good as its first. Season one captures the nostalgic sentiment and introduces the new sensation of a parallel universe, while season two further develops the plot and answers some of the most enigmatic questions from the first season.

Season two cannot share the same new sentiments of the first season, but the idea of “something greater is about to happen” thrills the critics who have yet to watch the newest episodes.

The 8-hour second season makes it easy for fans and critics to binge watch the series. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the second season had over 15.8 million viewers within three days of its release. Of those statistics, 11 million viewers are between the ages of ages 18 and 49.

The second season of “Stranger Things” is dominating Netflix. In comparison, season seven of “The Walking Dead” averaged at 16.4 million views on Live+7 channel. Shows like “Game of Thrones” are harder to compare, because many people watch the show on HBO.

Critics from Rotten Tomatoes gave the new season one of the highest ratings compared to other television series, giving it a 4.5/5 average rating.

Netflix has still not confirmed the release of season three, but the estimated release date is around the end of 2018 or maybe early 2019. The Duffer Brothers, the producers of the show, revealed that “Stranger Things” might continue until season four.

They also revealed that there is another definite time jump, so season three will have a jump in time from season two. The kids will be in high school in the next season, and fans are already thrilled for the mature group of boys who are no longer just kids.

 

 

 

November 13, 2017

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