Thursday, July 4, 2019

Stranger Things: Episode 19

19. The Mall Rats
Billy survives his accident but can’t remember much and is now getting visions of the Upside Down similar to Will’s. Mike avoids El after being threatened by Hopper. Confused, El runs to Max for help in deciphering a boy’s mind and they end up bonding and shopping at Starcourt Mall. There they see Mike, Will, and Lucas who are trying to find a gift for her. Caught lying, she dumps him. Dustin pays Steve a visit at the ice cream shop and asks for his help in deciphering the Russian transmission. Being multilingual, Robin helps them out and successfully translates the message but can’t decode it. Steve notices that the background music in the recording is not coming from Russia at all, but rather from the mall itself. Hopper invites Joyce for a dinner date but gets stood up as she seeks the help of the school teacher to figure out why the ref magnets in their home keep falling off. Nancy and Jonathan investigate rabid and exploding rats. Billy takes a colleague hostage and brings her to the mill, where a terrifying creature awaits.

Oh, Billy’s not dead. He just became Will 2.0, except that there is something sinister about him, like he’s going to be used for something more than just a host. Okay, fine, that’s character development for you. So far there seems to be some division of labor here. The newbies are the ones involved in pushing the plot forward, while the main cast members are busy being what they should really be: TWEENS. It’s nice to see El and Max have a bonding session and just be girls, the same way the boys are just being boys. Of course, this semblance of normalcy appears to be short-lived because the formula is so obvious by now. Call El to fix the Upside Down mess. I guess we should let them have their fun, then. What confuses me now is how in the previous episode there was a Soviet Union flag outside the lab. So, are they in Hawkins all along or did they just move there later on? In any case, at least we are getting some headway and the cast have been grouped to contribute something to the bigger picture. Six episodes to go!

"How many children are your friends with?" –Robin

<<Episode 18                Episode 20>>

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