Stranger Things 2 review


Stranger Things 2 review

*massive spoilers and possible vulgar language*

While waiting impatiently for Netflix to release The Punisher, I watched Stranger Things 2 because…eh, why not.

It took me about three days to get through it, not because it was awful, I can power my way through awful shows, because I just have them on in the background while I work. It was the nostalgia that kept upending me.  I’d see the car chase in episode one with the old square cop cars like in The Blues Brothers and think “wow, The Blues Brothers was a great movie”…then I’d watch the Blues Brothers instead.  This happened a bunch of times.  This nostalgia thing they were going for, it’s a double edged sword. You better really be sure you are at least as good as what you are getting people to recall.  Otherwise it’s like trying to get someone to sleep with you yet constantly bringing up someone else they could sleep with who’s hotter than you are.  After stopping to watch Ghostbusters, The Last Starfighter, Aliens, Weird Science and Goonies, I finally forced myself to stay put and watch ST2.

Most of the world has seen this and the general consensus is that Bob was somehow the hero…or at least A hero.  Did everyone watch a different show than I did? I’ll admit I fell asleep during a few parts, but are you shitting me? Fuck Bob.  What good was Bob?!  Lets start at the end and work our way back, he got killed because he was too stupid to remember to bring his gun with him, after risking his life to reset a computer that didn’t need to be reset.  “He needed to do that to open the door!”  Really? Why? THE DOOR WAS GLASS!  THE DOOR…WAS…FUCKING GLASS! Just…break the glass and go home.  The gate didn’t NEED to get opened, because they didn’t know the kids where outside trying to get into the gate, and the kids were just trying to get in…to get the others out.  IF YOU JUST BREAK THE GLASS AND LEAVE THE KIDS DON’T HAVE TO GET IN, IN THE FIRST PLACE.  And sheriff what’s his name’s truck was inside the gates…not outside.  So what the fuck good was his heroic reboot of a computer to open a glass door and a gate that isn’t blocking the car?!  And don’t give me any bullshit about the gate being in the way…because we have seen smaller vehicles plow through larger gates on t.v. shows way more grounded in reality than this sci-fi clusterf*ck.

“oh but he deciphered a map!” yeah…a map THEY DIDN’T NEED! Where did they all end up? Hmmm? Where? THE FUCKING GOVERNMENT BUILDING THAT ALL THIS SHIT STARTED AT IN THE FIRST PLACE.  You needed a map for that?  You didn’t need a map, to talk to the possessed kid, or have any clues whatsoever.  If you were just some guy living in that town and saw some screwy shit going on, you’d think to yourself “I bet it’s that weird government lab place doing some bullshit again”.  He didn’t know the kids were going to light some big fire in the tunnels as a distraction, and for that matter they could have lit that fire anywhere in the tunnels, really.  They didn’t need that map all.

Fuck Bob, the gates, doors, and map.  As i said, I might have drifted off during some parts, but what the hell was Bob doing in the government building anyhow?! He doesn’t have any security clearance, he’s not the kids father, or immediate family, or even useful…he’s just some guy porking the kids mom.  That’s enough to get you into a government lab?!  fuck…I’m gonna go on a tour. (…I’m giving Bob the benefit of the doubt that he actually got in her pants.) And I’ll gloss over his advice to the kid about standing up to the bad guy in his dream turning out to be a bad idea because it didn’t work…because it was ASSINIE IDEA, for THIS reason- In order for that advice to work it has to A-actually be an actual dream (to be fare, Bob didn’t have reason to think otherwise, more on that in a minute) and B- a LUCID dream.  A lucid dream is one where you realize you are in a dream.  In order for Bob’s advice to help, the kid would have to be in a lucid dream…IF YOU ARE IN A LUCID DREAM YOU CAN DO WHATEVER THE FUCK YOU CAN IMAGINE! The kid could turn himself into a three thousand foot tall air filtration system and suck the fucking smoke monster into an air filter, then turn into a 4 thousand foot tall dragon and fly away to an Island full of naked cheerleaders….fucking Bob’s advice is to say “go away”…You’re a schmuck Bob. Bob couldn’t die FAST enough for me.

I spend most of the series hoping to see Bob die. And I was richly rewarded.

 YES! I cried when the plant dog things chewed him to bits!


Finally! good riddance!

Don’t look at me like that…it was better this way. Better for Bob most of all.  You think there was a happy ending there for Bob?  What world are you living in?!  You think that chaotic mess Winnona Ryder was playing was going to end up doing anything besides breaking his heart, ruining his life, and draining his bank account?!  Grow up.  If you’re in your twenties…fine, you haven’t seen as many patterns in human nature as someone middle aged. If you are middle aged…think about every chaotic mess you’ve ever seen and what they do to stable partners.  Go ahead…think.  Chaotic messes need chaos like alcoholics need a drink. And if there is no chaos, they create it.  That is the cold hard facts of life and you can ask a therapist if you don’t believe me.  “Oh, but not ALWAYS”.  Uh huh, forget the theory of no absolutes and just think about what you have watched go on in actual life and you’ll say- “okay, I guess always”, BUT let’s say there is some rare case that no therapist has ever seen where the chaotic mess tries really really hard and gets their shit together and becomes comfortable with stability…this was not going to be the case with Bob because the bitch was already lying to him.  About the DREAMS. She neglected to tell well meaning, good guy Bob that you all love so much, that HER KID GOT SUCKED INTO ANOTHER DIMENSION… That’s not a tiny thing to hold back if you’re already talking about moving away together.  That’s not just slipping a fast one by him like her kids going to need really expensive braces soon…HER KID GOT SUCKED INTO ANOTHER DIMENISON, AND MIGHT BE SEEING ACTUAL MONSTERS…AND SHE DIDN’T BRING IT UP.

 If she actually gave a rats ass about Bob, she probably would have mentioned that being around her and her child meant that his life may be in danger from monsters from a parallel dimension. Yes, this isn’t something to bring up on the first date, but if the guy’s talking about moving you all to another state…that’s a good time to bring that up, or maybe the first time you let him take the kid to school alone. She wasn’t serious about this guy, he was stable and okay for now…and that’s about it. And poor Bob, based on his imaginationless plan for how the kid should deal with a lucid dream, wasn’t even getting the benefit of all sorts of weird sex, which is the only plus of dating someone chaotic.  Now that I think about it…he owned a video camera…he’s dating a chaotic mess who will probably do ANYTHING he throws out there. Like, I don’t get the impression you’d even have to ask her twice, she’d just be on board right off…and he used the video camera to record…the kids trick or treating.    I’m glad he died.

I don’t know what the fuck the sheriffs plan was with 11.  He was just going to keep her in that cabin until…when?  And I’m even more baffled at the end when he gets a fake birth certificate for her from the government guy and the guy says “give it a year before you let her out in public” (I’m paraphrasing).  What difference does a year make?  In a year people won’t notice that out of the clear blue sky he has a 14 year old daughter?!  What ever hair brained explanation they have won’t be any more or less hair brained in a year, right?  And I have news for you Mr.Sheriff, you have as much of a chance of keeping 11 and what’s his name away from each other as Bob did of living happily ever after.  Two puberty ravaged teens who just had their first kiss and live in a small town…yeah good f*cking luck keeping her in the cabin waiting for you to arrive with waffles and a secret knock.  She’s going to be spending half her time trying to use her psychic powers to give herself abortions.

Anyhow, overall, I’d say….It was good. (shrug).  It was worth a watching.  Look, to me there is Deadwood and then everything else.  So, It was entertaining enough.  I don’t give it real high marks because there was no real degree of difficulty. Looking at it as a writer…they sure had a lot of tools to play with- Monsters, a parallel dimension, nostalgia, kids in peril, teenage romance.   It would have been pretty damn hard to not make all that entertaining.  It’s not like Seahunt.

I watch Seahunt from time to time when I think I have a tough writing problem in front of me. Those poor bastards had to write a half hour adventure show every week about a scuba diving instructor.  Can you imagine?!  Every f*cking week you have to come up with some reason a Scuba instructor fights crime…under water!  How the fuck they came up with more than two premises for why someone would end up fighting a criminal underwater at all is beyond me, much less a guy who’s just supposed to be teaching people how to scuba dive. He wasn’t a private eye or part of the coast guard. Plus, this was the age of black and white wholesome TV.  They couldn’t Baywatch it up and have a bunch of semi-soft core porn shots of twenty years olds in dental floss bikinis to get you to forget how stupid it all was…they had Lloyd Bridges and women in swim suits where the bottom part covered their belly button. Think I’m kidding?

Hey! Keep your hands to yourself, you two…this is prime time!

Talk about no place to run and nowhere to hide with a writing job.  But they did it…somehow, every week he ended up in a underwater struggle for some reason. For THREE SEASONS.

 Not that the action was much to fall back on…two guys fighting underwater is a very slow event. Those writers deserve every award ever made.

So to recap, Stranger Things 2 was good, but not as good as Sea Hunt.


When Douglas is not complaining, he and his work can be found here 

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