Here is a list of Stranger Things easter eggs that you must have missed. Everyone likes Stranger Things. We have all seen the hit science fiction series on Netflix. The chemistry between the lead actors is just on another level altogether. Also, the antagonists have always been mind bending-creatures from the Upside Down. What’s more, the retro vibes and the classic setup makes it one of the finest series to watch. So without further ado, let us discuss some of the most commonly overlooked easter eggs in Stranger Things.
Stranger Things draws a lot of inspiration from Spielberg’s work. The show’s tone, themes, characters, and visuals are heavily influenced by Spielberg’s movies. In Season 1, we can see references to E.T right from the beginning.
The story revolves around a boy from a suburban town who befriends an “alien.” There are also evil people in hazmat suits trying to capture the alien for experiments. While Eleven is actually a human child, her behavior resembles that of a newborn baby, making it difficult for her to communicate. Mike has to hide her from his parents, which is similar to the storyline in the classic movie.
Additionally, there is a scene where Eleven dresses up as a “normal little girl” with a blonde wig and a girly outfit. This scene directly references the comical moment in Spielberg’s film where a small extraterrestrial creature is given a blonde wig and a girl’s outfit.
Stand By Me
During auditions for Stranger Things, the actors who play Mike, Lucas, Dustin, and Will were asked to recite lines from Rob Reiner’s Stand By Me. This makes sense because the film, based on Stephen King’s short story, is about carefree boys who have to face something much bigger than themselves.
In Stranger Things, there is a visual reference to Stand By Me in Season 1, Episode 5. In that scene, Mike, Lucas, Dustin, and Eleven walk along train tracks, similar to the iconic scene in Stand By Me.
In Season 1 of Stranger Things, when Joyce becomes frantic about Will’s disappearance, she takes an ax and starts breaking down the walls to save her son from the Upside Down. This scene is reminiscent of a famous moment in The Shining, where Jack Torrance attacks a door with a similar weapon while shouting, “Here’s Johnny!”
However, it’s important to note that Joyce’s intention in using the ax came from a place of love and concern for her son. Also, who can forget the bizarre harsh tone that he employs while talking to his wife. She is trapped inside the hotel.
In Season 1 of Stranger Things, there is a scene where Barb’s blood drips into the pool, attracting the Demogorgon. This reference can be linked to the suspenseful movie Jaws, where the blood of its prey lures the realistic monster, a great white shark.
The way the monster takes down Barb in the water resembles the actions of a shark, and this Easter Egg might have been overlooked by many viewers.
A Nightmare on Elm Street
In Season 4, the gang learns that to wake up and escape Vecna’s wrath, they must listen to their favorite song. This resembles Freddy’s technique in targeting teenagers’ dreams and their plan to wake each other up before he can harm them.
In Season 1, the Demogorgon tries breaking through Joyce’s walls with its sharp fingers, similar to Freddy Krueger pushing through Nancy’s bedroom walls.
You can find the influence of the classic horror movie in the first season itself. It is right there for you to find out. Joyce gives Will tickets to go to Poltergeist. Also, she communicates with him through the walls. This is as if she took a cue from the movie. In Poltergeist too, Carol Anne communicates with her son through the walls. The makers inserted this cameo so well. Nobody noticed it. We loved the cameo.
In Season 1, Jonathan secretly photographs Nancy and her friends, including Barb before she gets taken by the monster. Later, Nancy learns about Barb’s fate from one of Jonathan’s photos.
This storyline is similar to the movie Blow-Up, where a photographer suspects he captured a murder. Also, this is a very nice way of paying homage to the classic movie. Seriously, we had no idea the Duffer Brothers are so much into classic tropes and paying homages.
Close Encounters With The Third Kind
In the Season 2 premiere, Will opens his door and sees an apocalyptic scene with a red light surrounding him. This is reminiscent of the movie Close Encounter Of The Third Kind, where little Barry Guiler encounters an orange extraterrestrial glow when he opens his door. Also, this is quite reminiscent of old science fiction movies when a bar of orange glow meant something mysterious or powerful was arriving from outer space or another dimension altogether.
In Season 2, the kids play ‘Dragon’s Lair’, a popular ’80s arcade game known for its complexity and high cost. Back in time, this was one of the most popular games in the world. It was a fantasy game. Your objective would be to complete several quests while fighting a variety of enemies who would never remain the same. A rewarding game, by all means. And also very rewarding in the end.
In episode 7 of Stranger Things’ second series, Kali advises El to tap into her anger to move a train, reminiscent of Yoda’s teachings to Luke in Star Wars. This subtle reference delights fans of the classic franchise, adding a tasty touch to the episode. Also, the telekinetic powers mirror that of Jedi knights. Now that is a really cool nod.
Sean Astin, known for Lord of the Rings and The Goonies, plays Joyce’s boyfriend Bob in Season 2. His presence pays homage to The Goonies, as Stranger Things shares its adventurous spirit. In an Easter Egg, Bob jokes about pirate treasure, mirroring The Goonies’ plot. Samwise Gamgee is indeed a good partner.
In Season 2, there’s a poster of The Terminator, a popular movie from 1984, in the background. It reflects the time’s teenage interests. Another reference is Grigori’s resemblance to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s famous character. Also, we think this is a cool nod to the classic science fiction movie. Stranger Things rocks it in that direction.
If you’ve seen the movie about cute creatures becoming dangerous monsters at midnight, you’d notice the similarity between Dustin’s babysitting of the baby Demogorgon D’Art in Season 2 and the dynamic between Billy and Gizmo. Now that makes for some unusual bonding between the two. Also, if you noticed, D’Art arrives at the very end of the season for a teary reunion before everyone gets blown to bits.
In Season 2, the character Max Mayfield, who becomes the Dragon’s Lair champion, is clearly named after and shares a nickname with the iconic character from Mad Max, portrayed by Mel Gibson and later by Tom Hardy in the 2015 remake. Also, watch the Mad Max movies for a dose of nostalgia.
In Season 2, Lucas carries a slingshot, which is a nod to Beverly using it against Pennywise in the 1990 IT mini-series. It is a great weapon to use against monsters. The humble slingshot, killing otherworldly entities. Who could have ever known? We certainly did not. Now that is saying something.
In Season 2, the cast dressed up as Ghostbusters for Halloween and had a funny photo session with their excited mothers. This was a clever reference as they were soon going to confront a dangerous entity, just like they did before. Another clever nod.