3. Holly, Jolly
Barbara (Shannon Purser) regains consciousness in a strange pit and tries to flee, but is dragged back by the creature that abducted her. Joyce installs Christmas lights to communicate with her missing son. Karen Wheeler (Cara Buono) brings over a casserole, but she chases her away after her toddler daughter Holly enters Will’s room and sees the same figure coming out of the wall. Joyce paints letters on the wall to ask Mike where he is. He answers “Right Here.” When she asks him how she can help, he tells her to “Run.” Chief Hopper visits the lab, finds nothing, but is convinced that they’re lying to him. Further digging reveals a controversial past, including abduction allegations. Nancy’s boyfriend Steve (Joe Keery) finds out about the photos Jonathan took of them the other night. He breaks his camera. She sees a photo of Barbara by the pool and goes back to the woods to find her, but to no avail. El leads the trio to Mike’s house where “he’s hiding.” They see patrol cars and follow them to a lake, where a body believed to be Will’s is found.
Okay, so we get a first glimpse of the alien thingy, and it’s not cute. At least now we have an idea what we are dealing with. Is it a lab experiment or did the lab people find it somewhere else? The police chief mentioned CIA operations. Area 51 much? It looks like Barbs is gone for good, but we don’t really know that. She was just dragged back down to the pit. We don’t even know if she’s dead. Let’s turn this creature into a contagious zombie that multiplies, until it has its own army to wreak havoc in the town. Nah, that’s too contrived. Besides, this is the 80’s. Aliens rule supreme. Say what you want about Mommy Byers losing her mind, but she’s actually getting more headway than the police officer. For someone under a lot of pressure, coming up with unique ideas to find answers is nothing short of admirable. But let’s be fair to the police chief. He seems to be solving the other side of the puzzle, that of skinhead girl. I must admit that I am starting to get hooked. This episode had a lot going on and I was amused to say the least.