In the 16 months since ‘Stranger Things’ first took over our lives, there’s been plenty of speculation about what might be next for Will Byers and his pals, following their lucky escape from the monster of the Upside Down.
What’s the deal with the slug he coughed up? Did Eleven somehow survive? Will we ever get justice for Barb?
While we have a few more days before finding out the answers to those questions, there is one query critics are answering now: Are the new episodes worth the wait? Thankfully, it looks like the answer is a solid yes.
Here’s what they have to say…
“It’s my pleasure to inform you that the answer is yes, it does live up to expectations. It might even exceed them. Though it takes two or three episodes for the various story lines to fully kick into gear, ‘Stranger Things 2’ is a suspenseful, thoroughly satisfying follow-up that goes to emotionally deeper places than its predecessor did.”
“Though repetitive in places and absolutely bursting with plot, the reference-heavy, nostalgia-driven ‘2’ still succeeds at bringing families together for nothing but a good time.”
The good news is, the show’s core cast remains an extremely versatile and effective ensemble, and once the story kicks into a higher gear about halfway through the nine-episode season, a lot of the old magic returns.
“Nothing could equal the sense of discovery and nostalgia that the first season captured, but this new installment beautifully expands upon the existing tale, adding a few additional characters and answering some lingering questions.”
“What’s perhaps most impressive is how the Duffers have been able to have their Eggo waffles and eat them, deepening the mystery of Will’s disappearance (and, as #justiceforbarb fans will be pleased to note, Barb’s death) while also tickling our collective retro pop-culture synapses.”
“Ironically, directors the Duffer Brothers’ continual insistence this second season is far more like a cinematic sequel rings truest here: like most movie sequels, it’s a rehash of what everyone liked about the first one. It’s just, in this case, they largely get away with it.”
“Last year, ‘Stranger Things’ was a cute diversion, but ultimately aimless. For the most part, Season 2 acts with more of a purpose and a vision that feels like it truly belongs to its creators, the Duffer Brothers.”
“The Duffer Brothers have again managed to wield their particular alchemy and create a follow-up worthy of the hype created by its predecessor. ‘Stranger Things’ is not reinventing television, but it does once again provide a highly entertaining, extremely bingeable, and even surprisingly heartwarming viewing experience.”
‘Stranger Things 2’ arrives on Netflix on Friday 27 October.