“Stranger Things” Season 2 Episode 2 Recap: Trick Or Treat, Freak

Welcome to Fiction’s Mistress, currently known as Stranger Things central! If you’re just joining us now, let me give you the lowdown! Throughout the weekend I will be posting recaps on each individual episode of Stranger Things Season 2, giving a close look at all the drama that’s going down in Hawkins. You can check out Episode One’s recap here, and how Eleven escaped the demogorgon here! If you want to know what else happened in Chapter Two, look no further. So much went down in this episode, from Will getting a good look at a new monster to drama between Nancy and Steve, there’s a lot to cover! So sit back, relax, and let’s recap!

Halloween Night Sends Will Back To The Upside Down

Though Joyce and Hopper are convinced that Will’s flashes are just that, in reality they are so much more. Will describes it as being in between the two dimensions, always flipping back and forth. They can come out of nowhere, with no warning, but from what we saw this episode, it also looks like they can be triggered.

Though Joyce insisted Jonathan supervise Will while he trick-or-treats, Jonathan decides to give his little brother a break and just go with his friends, with a promise to not stray too far. And he keeps that promise. Everything is going relatively well until some teenagers in scary masks jump out at Will. Spooked, he trips and falls backwards, and as he lands, he finds himself back in the Upside Down. And this is where he gets his first glimpse of it.

We aren’t sure what it is yet, but it’s clear that it’s very dangerous. It appears to be a looming shadow, but as Will says, it’s alive. It wants to kill, and is capable of doing so, that much is clear. And what makes this monster so much more terrifying is the fact that it does appear to be a shadow. How do you possibly kill a shadow? But luckily, before Will has to find out what the monster can do, Mike is able to literally shake Will back into reality. He’s disoriented and terrified, but Mike helps him back to his house while the others continue on trick-or-treating. But truthfully, this isn’t the first moment this season that’s felt tense between our protagonists.

Trouble In Paradise?

There has definitely been a dynamic shift so far this season. Lucas and Dustin are closer than ever, but Mike has pulled away from both of them. Why? Probably the same reason why Nancy is withdrawing from people. Everyone is acting like everything’s okay, like nothing that bad happened. But Nancy lost her best friend, and in many ways, so did Mike. And with this new girl in town, being welcomed into the group with open arms, it can’t help but sting. They were so hesitant when it came to Eleven. And now it’s like she was never even a member of the gang.

But while Mike distances himself from Lucas and Dustin, he is growing closer and closer to Will. They’re both feeling like outsiders. Mike because of Eleven, and Will because of what happened to him last year. Out of the four of them, Mike and Will have the closest connection to the Upside Down. They both feel like they’re going crazy, but as Mike says, at least they’ll go crazy together.

“It’s Bullshit.”

Meanwhile, things are not going well between Nancy and Steve. Nancy is more devastated than she’s let on, and the guilt that she feels over Barb’s death is eating her up inside. But the biggest problem is there’s nothing they can do. Nancy wants to tell Barb’s parents the truth, but as Steve points out, that isn’t an option. They could be incarcerated, they could be killed, their families could be killed. The only way to keep everyone safe is to keep the truth hidden, at least for now. He tries to soothe her worries and suggests they go to a Halloween party, pretend they’re just stupid, normal teenagers again. But things didn’t work out at all like he hoped.

At the party, Nancy starts drinking. A lot. While Steve is trying to stop her from drinking more, her drink spills all over her top. She goes with him to the bathroom to try and clean it up, but of course by this point, she’s beyond drunk. I’m talking slurring her words, staggering drunk. And it’s in that moment when it all comes out.

“It’s bullshit. No, you. You’re bullshit. You’re pretending like everything’s okay, like we didn’t kill Barb, like it’s great. Like we’re in love, and we’re partying…it’s bullshit.”

Maybe she meant it, maybe she didn’t, but the words came out all the same. And Steve heard them. The admittance that she doesn’t love him, even though he loves her, was enough. And it was all he could take for one night. Should he have left without her? No. He had tried to take her home earlier but she wouldn’t let him. And by this point he was done. Luckily, Jonathan was also at the party and drove her home, making sure she got inside safely. And, so it seems, the love triangle is back on.

What does this mean for Nancy and Steve? Were Nancy’s words true, did she really believe that? Or did they come out in anger? Are they still a couple? And if not, does that mean Jonathan and Nancy may begin a relationship? So many questions, so few answers!

Hawkins Is Darker Than Ever Before

It’s not just teen drama in the town, there are a lot of sinister things in Hawkins right now. Max’s older brother, Billy, seems to be as much trouble as he looks. With intense anger issues that seem to often come out on his sister, there’s a seriously dark past there. We don’t know why, or what happened, but we do know they can never return to where they came from. Between him and the Upside Down seeping more and more into this world, it’s only a matter of time before everything falls apart. The pumpkins and trees have even begun to rot. What will be next?

So many things happened in this episode, and we’re only on the second one of the season! A few good things are happening, like Eleven loving romantic comedies and soap operas, or Joyce getting closer with Bob (hopefully he doesn’t turn out to be one of the bad men). But overall, things aren’t looking good. And from that ending, it seems things are about to get a lot worse. Dustin comes home from trick-or-treating to find his garbage can rattling, and a strange growling coming from it. When he looks inside, he’s nearly speechless…this should be good.

As always, thanks for reading and stay tuned for more recaps coming later tonight!

Sincerely, Fiction’s Mistress

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