There is a lot of debate over Chapter Seven, and this may be the episode to split the fandom. Some people loved that The Duffer Brothers expanded Stranger Things beyond Hawkins, but quite frankly, a lot of people feel the episode fell short, especially compared to the immersive and suspenseful Chapter Six. Some are even accusing it to be a bottle episode, a filler, nothing more. But while ‘The Lost Sister’ was far from perfect, it was more than just a filler episode.
Eleven Finds Eight
Chapter Seven begins with Eleven replaying her mother’s memories over in her head, and recalling the young girl in the rainbow room with her. She believes her mom showed her this so that she could find her. And find her she does. Eleven runs away from her mother and aunt to Chicago to find the title character, Kali, her lost sister.
Kali, as we saw in the first episode, runs in a gang. They are definitely thieves, but we find out in this episode that they’re much more than that. They each have a list of people who have hurt them or their families, and one by one they’ve tracked them down and murdered them. Maybe I’m going to sound a bit like a mother here, but these are not the kind of people I would like Eleven hanging around with.
Kali Teaches Eleven To Channel Her Anger
Kali proves to Eleven that she is much stronger than she thinks. By channeling all the anger and pain she has ever felt in her life, she is able to summon incredible amounts of strength. Enough to move a train. And yes, this is a good life lesson. But Kali takes it too far. She wants Eleven to channel her anger so that she won’t just move trains or lift cars. She’ll be able to kill or torture someone. And at her core, that isn’t who Eleven is. She isn’t an angry, hateful person. She’s loyal. And wants to use her powers to help rather than harm. Kali…well, she’s not like that.
Kali Has Potential, But What Do We Really Know About Her?
I love the concept of Kali. I really do. And I think that it was a bold move to take us outside of Hawkins for an entire episode. But while the concept was fantastic, the execution just wasn’t what it needed to be. Kali was interesting, her powers incredible, but we didn’t learn much about her. Everything we found out this episode, we already knew from the first. Or at least, we could guess. And the truth is that this episode couldn’t have come at a worse time. Right now, everything is falling apart in Hawkins. So many of our main characters are in grave and immediate danger, including Mike and Hopper, both of whom Eleven is close to. How can we possibly want her to be anywhere other than Hawkins?
Eleven Discovers Her True Self
All of this being said, maybe this episode was necessary for Eleven. She had a lot of anger for Hawkins and its people. She was angry at Mike because of Max. She was angry at Hopper. And she thought that she could just move on from them. But when she saw the picture of the man she was about to kill with his two daughters, something snapped in her. She realized she couldn’t be the reason that someone grows up without their mama or papa. She can’t be the person who abandons her friends. Kali is right, they can’t save her. But Eleven put it best. “I can save them.” Without this…test of faith, let’s call it, maybe Eleven wouldn’t realize this. She needed to experience a life without her friends, however short, to realize how much she needed and wanted them.
Overall, Chapter Seven definitely isn’t the best episode of Season 2, or of the entire series. While it kept the audience captivated, it had a lot of flaws, and quite honestly, it was hard to root for Eleven living her life murdering people and forgetting her friends. It just isn’t plausible. That being said, I get why the writers created this episode, and I see its purpose. Eleven needed this journey of self discovery, so I can respect it. And besides, the rest of the season is so amazing that they’re allowed one episode that’s only decent.
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