Articles

Stranger Things - S2, E4 - Shadows
With Kevin Nye on November 03, 2017

Wow! What an episode! For those following along at home, I am officially all in on this season of Stranger Things. On top of the laughs, the creeps, the fun, and the thrills, this season is operating thematically on a level that few shows do, showing how the grief, secrets, and trauma that we bury rises to the surface and can terrorize a person, a family, or even a town. This episode in particular contains some plot reveals that advance this theme forward in spectacular fashion.

Will starts the episode by living into the nickname he’s been given by the bullies at school – he has become an actual “zombie boy.” Through three episodes, he was the bearer of everyone else’s grief, being “diagnosed” with PTSD when he was actually seeing present realities, and now he is literally filled with the shadow of darkness that is spreading throughout the town. Note that Will makes a point to not call it a monster, but “a shadow…a feeling… everywhere,” and “I just want it to be over.” This is the way a person describes grief or trauma, not a horror-movie monster. Meanwhile, Dustin keeps a secret of his own, the little “pollywog,” Dartagnon, who in the shroud of secrecy and lies grows into a familiar monster, a demagorgon! (We should have seen this coming when he named it Dartagnon! The words are so similar.)

Nancy and Jonathan are on their own mission to uncover the truth, and the government’s words to them are so poignant thematically: “Mistakes have been made… we can’t erase it. We can only stop it from spreading.” As we learn at the end of the episode, they have not stopped it from spreading; they may actually have been causing it to spread faster! The upside-down is literally tunneling its way across the entire town, just below the surface. The government says, “We have to stop the truth from spreading like weeds!” But for anyone like me who grew up on VeggieTales and Larry Boy, we know it is rumors (or lies) that spread like weeds, and only the truth can set us free. Jonathan and Nancy are on a mission to spread truth. It will be interesting to see what this accomplishes.

The imagery here has drawn my attention to another sequel that builds off the aftermath of its predecessor, 2012’s The Dark Knight Rises. The end of The Dark Knight found Batman, in a seemingly heroic gesture, taking on a lie that allowed Gotham to go on believing that Harvey Dent was a hero and not a villain. In the sequel, though, we find that lie has worn Batman to the brink, and the lie that they buried literally comes to the surface to destroy the city. The rest of the film continues to bite off large chunks of thematic content, but the first act works so effectively as a visual metaphor for the lies that we bury rising up to destroy us. Stranger Things is doing a similar thing with the shadow monster, as different characters seek to control the truth, unmask it, forget it, or bear its burden. The shadow, the burden, the feeling - Death has not gone away, but has been spreading like a vine below everything and devouring all life in its path. It’s an all-out catastrophe of revelation.

There’s so much in Christian theology that comes to mind about truth and what we bury. Jesus taught that “the truth will set you free” (John 8) and “whatever is done in the darkness will be brought into the light.” (Luke 8) But more than those proof-texts, I think of Jesus’ teaching in the Sermon on the Mount and the attention given to what is internal rather than external as it pertains to sin. Instead of focusing on murder, Jesus draws attention to hate; rather than adultery, lust. (Matthew 5) Jesus implores followers to deal with the internal, the shadow, the feelings, before they emerge to wreak havoc on our relationships.  Whatever parts of us that we try to bury, mask, hide, or ignore will always come out eventually. (If you don’t believe me, get married.) Stranger Things 2 continues to be a cautionary tale and a fantastic parable about the danger of burying the truth and concealing pain.

34 Responses to "Stranger Things - S2, E4 - Shadows"

  1. When you have picked a vendor, your best course of action is to pursue the government laws. At the end of the day fact, you should pursue the laws identified with the clearance of restorative and recreational cannabis items.

    by Amy Kennedy on Apr 23rd, 2019 at 1:16 pm
  2. Your blog is very informative I would like to see this blog this article is very informative for visitors. I am glad to read this best essay editing service
    wonderful article thanks for sharing this blog. Keep sharing

    by Dean Clint on Sep 17th, 2019 at 8:54 am
  3. I acquired one in all the major helpful information for my evaluation research. a couple of a financial obligation of gratefulness is for sending, perhaps we will see considerably added on this. Does the area design your security system to numerous websites concerning this matter? more helpful site

    by Kieran Dickinson on Dec 2nd, 2019 at 5:10 am
  4. This is a heavenly open door for you where you are offered the depended on just as in like manner most satisfied with relocating supplier in Gurgaon that providing you the sensible relocating managements. Certainly, there disappears rate by this moving management while it uses you moving plans at outstandingly sensible expenses.

  5. Every week as well as hardly showed up over this. I theorize I am not by any type of indicates the just one having all the diversion here! safeguard up the coolest job. a lot obliged a suitable plan and will certainly search for even more postings from you. while you use genuine management, you’ll be equipped for deal guidelines, rate materials as well as pick the arranging style.

  6. What a fantabulous distribute this has been. in no other way, shape or form seen this kind of valuable message. I am grateful to you and also expect an extra extent of posts like those. phenomenal to travel your weblog afresh, it’s been a very long time for me. properly this article I have been stuck around for such a very long time. I need this article to finish my central objective inside the college, and also it has an equal subject with your write-up.

  7. What an exciting setup, you have talked about some superior variables, I as happily accept this is a fantastic web site. I have wished to see it constantly. hello there! remarkable appearance, do save me published while you publish something similar to this once again!

    by Click Here on Dec 9th, 2019 at 5:59 am
  8. An expansion of exposition net web pages as you’re as pleasantly accumulate in irrefutable English claimed inside the site. I’ll bookmark your blog and take the feeds furthermore ... I’m fulfilled to find such a lot of helpful details directly here inside the send, we require to exercise a lot more strategies on this respect, thanks for sharing.

    by expert Bankruptcy Law on Dec 9th, 2019 at 6:10 am
  9. The website is looking bit flashy and it catches the visitors eyes. Design is pretty simple and a good user friendly interface.
    <a >investigadores privados madrid</a>

  10. Admiring the time and effort you put into your blog and detailed information you offer!..
    Data Breach Management software http://enactia.com/

    by shadb shadb on May 28th, 2020 at 4:44 am
  11. I am very enjoyed for this blog. Its an informative topic. It help me very much to solve some problems. Its opportunity are so fantastic and working style so speedy.
    behelfsmaske https://www.hewecon.de/

    by shadb shadb on May 31st, 2020 at 4:46 am
  12. Thanks for sharing the post.. parents are worlds best person in each lives of individual..they need or must succeed to sustain needs of the family.
    purchase magic mushrooms

  13. This is my first time i visit here and I found so many interesting stuff in your blog especially it’s discussion. thank you.
    click here

  14. Nice to read your article! I am looking forward to sharing your adventures and experiences.
    <a >Pawn Shop</a>

  15. I recently found many useful information in your website especially this blog page. Among the lots of comments on your articles. Thanks for sharing.
    how to start a credit repair business

  16. The information you have posted is very useful. The sites you have referred was good. Thanks for sharing..
    click here

  17. That is really nice to hear. thank you for the update and good luck.
    click here

  18. Thanks for sharing the post.. parents are worlds best person in each lives of individual..they need or must succeed to sustain needs of the family.
    대전출장

  19. I think that thanks for the valuabe information and insights you have so provided here.
    click here

Remember my personal information
Notify me of follow-up comments?

Please enter the text you see in the image below:


|
135 N Oakland Ave, Pasadena, CA 91182