With the “bigger, darker, scarier” second season of Stranger Things just hours away, we’re refreshing our memories about where we left off at the end of the creep-tastic first season. Each and every character seemed to be superficially enjoying a general sense of ease and a return to normalcy going into the dying minutes of the last chapter of season one, but it was also apparent that the Upside Down will be right where we left it when season two hits Netflix on October 27.
If you don’t have time for a full rewatch of the original eight episodes before then, catch up with our crash course below.
The Byers Family
At the end of season one, Will (Noah Schnapp) was rescued from the Upside Down and reunited with his mom, Joyce (Winona Ryder), and brother, Jonathan (Charlie Heaton). Everything seemed hunky-dory as they sat down to a calm Christmas dinner — “seemed” being the key word.
Our first clue that the Byers’ terror isn’t over? That weird slug-like thing Will threw up. Which brings up some questions going into season two: Why is he having Upside Down flashbacks? Is he just some “Will suit” that a being from another dimension is wearing?!
At least the family is back together. For now.
Nancy Wheeler and Steve Harrington
Nancy (Natalia Dyer) reunited with Steve (Joe Keery) at the end of season one, but we got the sense that things between her and Jonathan weren’t completely over. Was the spark between them simply a case of getting caught up in the excitement and danger of tracking and attempting to slay a Demogorgon?
In any case, she seemed happy to be with Steve, who redeemed himself by taking on the Demogorgon. It’s also strongly implied that he had something to do with Nancy giving Jonathan a camera to replace the one he smashed.
The D&D Crew
Though Will reunited with our favorite D&D crew — Mike Wheeler (Finn Wolfhard), Lucas Sinclair (Caleb McLaughlin), and Dustin Henderson (Gaten Matarazzo) — things will surely never be the same for these kids, who went from basement fantasy games to IRL sci-fi horror scenarios.
We can only imagine what these three friends will get up to in season two, but we’re going to guess it has something to do with finding their friend Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown).
Eleven, who shared a sweet kiss with Mike before her showdown with the Demogorgon, disappeared after using her powers to obliterate the monster. It’s unclear what happened to her — one popular theory is that she was sucked into another dimension — but Chief Jim Hopper (David Harbour), for one, seems to believe (or at least hope) that she’s still out there somewhere, as evidenced by the fact that he leaves her favorite breakfast treat (Eggos, natch) in a box in the woods.
We’re desperate to know what happened — and what’s going to happen — to the traumatized (yet superhero-like) girl who escaped from world-warping experiments in the mysterious lab.
Fan favorite Barb (Shannon Purser) may be dead, but her presence will be felt in season two. According to co-creator Matt Duffer, we’ll meet more of her family in the upcoming episodes. And Dyer says Barb’s death is a big part of Nancy’s story line this year. “There are a lot of loose ends there that Nancy feels need to be addressed,” Dyer told Entertainment Weekly.
Are you excited for season two of Stranger Things? Let us know @BritandCo!
(Photos via Curtis Baker/Netflix)