Stranger Things (Season 3), 2019
Signed up the 29/03/2017
Stranger Things 3 is finally here, and of course I had to review it because why not? I’m going to keep this review short and sweet or at least try. Firstly I f***in’ loved this season partly because it understood that character over plot will always win (in my book). This season of Stranger Things proved that if utilized properly, nostalgia can be a great tool to enhance and/or push your storytelling to the next level.
Season 3 of Stranger Things has proven itself to be a much stronger season in terms of the characters. While sure the plot is good, the writers just preferred to go for the characters over plot and for me that is a great thing. The relationship dynamics have surely changed and not just with “The Party” but with all the characters in play. Relationships are formed, broken and mended, characters discover their own paths when they’re not being weighed down by the past or the great expectations of the world. The boys again like last season learn that some bonds within their group are stronger than others.
Also each and every character this season helped push the story forward, side characters weren’t just side characters for the sake of it (like last season) but they were perfect little pieces to a puzzle that formed a much larger picture. Everything and Everyone was connected (Beware the Mindflyer!).
Another thing I loved about this season is how it showed the true effects of the previous seasons on Will and Joyce, Will is somehow still tethered to the monster and Joyce is paranoid that it’s not over, that she fails to see happiness waiting for her.
Millie Bobby Brown was AMAZING this season, Millie is a scene stealer, her and David Harbour’s dynamics is one of my favourite things about this season. Eleven and Mike explore their relationship with disastrous side effects (for the relationship anyways, but for a time) and I liked it. I mean for me this season is stronger when we’re being showed the comings and goings of everyday life for these characters that we’ve come to love, their experiences with first loves and epic summer adventures was just great to see. Because sometimes the only monster these people should be figuring out is how to date again, or how to apologize to your girlfriend.
Stranger Things season 3 has elements of the classic Invasion of the Body snatchers, which add to horror and weirdness of the show. The horror is amplified tenfold this season but it’s not all doom and gloom as that nightmarish, bloody and slightly disgusting element is balanced out by the neon lit, John Huhges-esque teen drama of the makeshift “X-Men”. Noah Schnapp again shines with his portrayal of Will, who essentially just wanted to have a good summer with his friends but soon realizes that nothing is the same. Also Erica is probably the real MVP of this season.
Hopper’s speech in episode 8 “The Battle of Starcourt” made me teary eyed, however episode 3 “The Case of the Missing Lifeguard” and episode 5 “The Flayed” are some of the best episodes in a very spectacular season that’s probably going to rake up millions and millions of repeat viewers.
Visually season 3 is extremely pleasing and I found the camera, sound and editing to be extremely exceptional. The neon colours and sound enhance the sci-fi and horror elements, and what I found amazing is how they were able to visually build from what they threaded last season. The shadow (the Mindflyer) in the storm that they made us fear last season, finally came to the light and boy that’s some nasty ass monster.
In terms of story, the season was enjoying the labour that was done in season 2 and this season just pushed everything further and introduced new elements that worked perfectly with the pre-existing elements. I found this season to be more action adventure packed, with some nice slice of life drama in the earlier episodes that merged beautifully with the sci-fi/action-adventure epic that the series becomes in its second half. A season that has the best parts of season 1 & 2 to become thrilling ride for hardcore fans of the show.
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