Netflix original hits the soft spot for ’80s culture fanatics


Within days of the initial release, Netflix original “Stranger Things” became an instant favorite among television and 80’s sci-fi movie lovers.

“Stranger Things” is a sci-fi, horror, supernatural film that takes place in a small suburban Indiana town during the fall of 1983. The title of the show itself foreshadows the likeliness of strange things happening within the town and it’s people.

The cast is primarily made up of newer faces, however, that doesn’t take anything away from the skill these young actors displayed, which was impressive. The show does star a notable actress, Winona Ryder, who is famous for starring in cult classic films such as “Heathers” and “Edward Scissorhands.”

Forewarning, the show alludes to many classic ‘80s sci-fi films and culture. The opening title sequence itself is incredibly similar to the title font on Stephen King novels, along with many other things published in that decade.

Following the sequence, the tropes found in ‘80s pop culture were very much alive and present.  Everything from the clothes worn by the actors to the use of huge walkie-talkies and the glorification of geek culture.

The craze for the series had me immediately drawn in to check it out for myself. I went in with high hopes and found myself pointing out many allusions which was considerably entertaining in the beginning but was eventually played out.

It doesn’t take the biggest sci-fi fan to realize it was getting old. Too many references to old films such as John Carpenter’s “The Thing” and Ridley Scott’s “Alien” had me wanting more originality and depth. It became too predictable and I soon realized I was only watching for the sake of a pretty shot.

Regardless of the overuse of ‘80s tropes, the cinematography was absolutely stunning. The aesthetics of the small suburban town were enhanced with each shot and it was very pleasing to the eye.

With all that being said, “Stranger Things” is still  a great series that has fans hopeful for another season. Considering the amount of sci-fi films that were released in the ‘80s, there are still plenty of to pay homage to.