The Surprising Way Stranger Things 2 Was Influenced By Empire Strikes Back
Spoilers ahead for Stranger Things 2. If you haven't finished binging the season, you may want to check out a different story.
Stranger Things finally returned for its second season over the weekend, inspiring Netflix subscribers to stop their plans to begin binge watching the highly anticipated new installment. The season was a major success that delivered a ton of heartbreaks and horror, although there is one episode that is proving to be very divisive among the fandom. Episode 7 "The Lost Sister" followed Eleven as she traveled to Chicago to find her "sister" who was also experimented upon at Hawkins Lab. And now it appears that The Duffer Brothers actually took inspiration from arguably the best Star Wars movie: Empire Strikes Back. Matt Duffer explained, saying:
While fans might not have been pleased about the timing of Eleven's big solo episode, you can certainly see the parallels with Empire. Only rather than a tiny green Jedi Master, Eleven was hanging out with a bunch of 80s murderers who are punishing those who worked in Hawkins Lab.
Like Matt Duffer's comments to EW imply, Eleven did seem to get a far great understanding of her history and her powers in "The Lost Sister". While Kali's psychic powers focus on her penchant for creating illusions, she understands how utilizing anger can help increase Eleven's own abilities. It's only with this tutelage and determination that the young hero is able to save Hawkins in the end, closing The Gate into The Upside Down and therefore keeping the Shadow Monster temporarily locked away.
The backlash about Eleven's capsule episode is no doubt exacerbated by its timing. Because this sudden departure from the main narrative happened just as the action was really amping up over at Hawkins. In Episode 6's cliffhanger ending, we saw as the demodogs emerg from the hole in Hawkins Lab in front of Hopper and Dr. Owens. Fans were then forced to wait a whole other episode before seeing what chaos erupted in the facility in the penultimate episode.
Some fans also believe that "The Lost Sister" might be the Duffer Brothers' way to test a possible spinoff for Stranger Things. Considering there were ten other kids experimented upon before Eleven, we could see Kali recruit more survivors with the help of Eleven's sight. This would allow Stranger Things' mythos to continue past the four or five seasons that are currently planned. We'll just have to wait and see, though.
Stranger Things 2 is currently streaming in its entirety on Netflix. Be sure to check out our fall premiere list to plan your next binge watch.
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Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.