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Then and Now: Stranger Things Characters Over the Years

As a parent, you might have no idea what your teens are talking about when they go on about ‘Stranger Things’. What stranger things? Is it a game, a book, a problem? What is it?

On the other hand, it might be you who is obsessed with the show and absolutely loves this Netflix drama and not your kids! So just in case you have no idea what the fuss is all about (do you know about Will, Joyce and Eleven from Stanger Things?), let’s take a look at the plot and some of the Strangers Things characters. This way, you will know what you are in for when you download the show or when you want to put together a Stranger Things costume for your next party!

What is Stranger Things about?

The Stranger Things drama is set in a small Indiana town in the 1980s and it’s basically an American science fiction/horror show. The main plot of the first season begins in 1983 and revolves around Joyce Byers who sets out to find her missing 12-year-old son, but soon comes up against government secrecy, outlandish experiments, supernatural forces and a little girl with psychokinetic powers.

The second season begins in 1984 and picks up where season one ended. Joyce Byers son, Will, has returned, but something is not quite right with him. It turns out that he went to another dimension, called the ‘Upside Down’ and is now influenced by entities from this dimension who also threaten planet Earth.

Stranger Things season 3 was released on July 2019 and is set in 1985. In this season, the plot thickens with the death (or disappearance?) of Jim Hopper, Eleven loses her superpowers and the Byer family finally leaves Hawkins. To find out anything more about the plot, you will need to watch all three seasons. However, now whenever anyone asks you ‘What is Stranger Things about?’ – you will have some of the answers!

Strangers Things characters

There are a number of Stranger Things characters that you need to know about so that you can understand the plot, so let’s dive straight in!

Joyce Byers played by Winona Ryder

Perpetually frazzled is a good way to describe Will’s mother, Joyce, a divorced supermarket cashier who believes that her missing son is communicating with her using the lights in her house. Despite everyone thinking that she is crazy, she willingly enters the Upside Down dimension to find her missing son. Most of the time she is tired, stressed and anxious, but when it comes to finding her son she is brave, fierce and unrelenting. Joyce is one of the main Strangers Things characters, as is her son Will.

Will Byers played by Noah Schnapp

The 12-year-old son of Joyce Byers and younger brother of Johnathan Byers, Will loves science and is a techie-nerd, playing Dungeons & Dragons all the time. However, as an all-American boy, Will is fairly shy and timid, doesn’t like sports and tends to apologise for things that aren’t his fault. In 1983, he vanishes mysteriously through a rift that opens into an alternate dimension called the Upside Down. The entire series is focused around Will’s disappearance and the aftereffects of his eventual return.

Jim Hopper played by David Harbour

As the chief of police in Hawkins, Indiana, Jim Hopper grew up with Joyce (Will Byer’s mother) and at the beginning of the first season, had a fairly care-free existence, predated by a troubled past. This all changes when he helps Joyce to investigate the strange happenings around the disappearance of her son because his life suddenly becomes infinitely more complicated! As the seasons progress, Jim Hopper locates a young girl, called Eleven, who was experimented on by Hawkins Lab and is being hunted for her powers. Jim Hopper rescues her, taking her to his cabin for safety, eventually forming a father-daughter bond and having even more adventures!

Eleven from Stranger Things played by Millie Bobby Brown

Kidnapped and raised by Hawkins Lab, Eleven was experimented on because of her innate psychokinetic abilities until she escaped and was found by Mike Wheeler (Will Byer’s best friend). Forming a strong bond with Mike, it was revealed that Eleven had accidentally opened a gateway into another dimension, and after overcoming a monster from this other dimension, she disappears and is next seen living with Jim Hopper in Stranger Things season 3. If you want to know what happens to Eleven from Stranger Things in season 3 – you will need to watch the show!

Mike Wheeler played by Finn Wolfhard

As Will Byers best friend, Mike sets out to discover how he disappeared and rescue him. Mike is intelligent and kind to his friends, but complications arise when he develops romantic feelings for Eleven from Stranger Things, and begins to miss her when she disappears after saving everyone from an Upside Down monster. When Eleven reappears, they get back together, but from then on, have an on and off the relationship.

Lucas Sinclair played by Caleb McLaughlin

Another best friend of Will Byers and Mike Wheeler in Stranger Things, Lucas is analytical, curious, assertive and brave, developing a relationship with Max who moved to Hawkins in 1984 with her mother, and new stepbrother and stepfather. The most notable things about Lucas is that he helped to distract a monster while Eleven closed a gate into another dimension, and he is a big brother to Erica, who loves teasing the boys and calling them all nerds!

Max Mayfield played by Sadie Sink

Max and her family moved to Hawkins from California, after her mother remarried, but she and her stepbrother were not happy about the move. Mike and Lucas make friends with Max, but don’t let her know about all the strange happenings in the town, but Max gets wind and becomes upset at being excluded from their group, then Eleven becomes jealous of her talking to Mike and it gets even more complicated! After many trials and tribulations, Max is eventually included in the group and helps to distract a monster with Lucas, while Eleven closes a gate to the other dimension.

There are lots more interesting characters in this drama and the plot continues to thicken! So now when you watch the show, you will have some idea of what it’s all about!

For help finding the best Stranger Things costume for your next party – check out the huge range at Costume Box.

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