Any show with a following as massive as Stranger Things is going to have fans throwing theories around, and over the last two seasons, viewers have scrambled for answers to a number of questions. Some involve the mysteries of the Upside Down. Others tackle Eleven’s origins. And some are just predictions of where future seasons may take some fan favorite characters. Plenty of these ideas are just plain wacky. “However, I am on a curiosity voyage and I need my paddles to travel.” So, let’s take a look at some of the Stranger Things fan theories that may end up being accurate. Daddy dearest Let’s start with a fun one, shall we? Before we ventured into Hawkins, Indiana with Stranger Things there was another small town in the Hoosier State that boasted a big-haired beau like Steve Harrington.
Parks and Recreation took place in Pawnee, Indiana, and while that show was entirely different, its resident silly man Jean-Ralphio looks an awful lot like Steve, which has led some theorists to believe that they may be father and son. Since Parks and Rec takes place in the modern era, and Stranger Things is set in the ’80s, the timelines match up just as well as their hairstyles, so it’s definitely a workable fan theory. And the actors portraying the characters have since played along with the popular notion as well.
“You’re my father. You’re my father.” “What did you just say?” The only question is, who’s gonna be the lucky Mrs. Harrington with whom he has young Jean-Ralphio? And speaking of paternity theories… Hopper’s daughter The first season explains that Chief Hopper’s young daughter died years before the show began, but some have suggested that her death might have ultimately been a cover-up for her abduction. The people behind the Hawkins Lab already proved they could fake a death with Will in Season 1, and we now have confirmation that the children they put through the program are abductees. It seems totally possible that Hopper’s daughter was one of their experiments—perhaps Number 1 to 7, 9, or 10. On the other hand, there are also some who believe Eleven might actually be his daughter. Sure, she’s able to sniff out files that make her believe she’s Jane, the long-lost daughter of another telekinetic woman whose daughter was stolen, but Hopper’s the one who had those files hidden in his house.
Wouldn’t it be something if the reason he was transferring so much protective fatherly energy to Eleven is that she actually is his own flesh and blood? Stranger things have happened. Career path There’s no doubt that Steve was the surprise MVP of Season 2. But what’s next for the former pretty-boy bully remains to be seen, as his entire post-graduation plan seemed to revolve around Nancy, who he’s no longer with. He spent the whole season subbing in as a big brother slash babysitter for Dustin and the other kids, so now some are drawing parallel lines between his arc and that of Chief Hopper. Considering the fact that Hopper has no one he can trust with all this sensitive information about the other side on his own squad, perhaps he’ll recruit Steve to join the force and become his new deputy. The only real question is whether he’d be allowed to maintain his signature mane while in uniform.
“We’re in such deep s—.” The upside-down As far as we know, the upside-down is a parallel dimension that was accidentally opened by all those government experiments gone wrong, and now that Eleven’s worked her supreme magic, the gate is closed. But what if there’s more to it than that? We know from the last shot that the fight against the mind flayer is far from done, but what if instead of fighting a parallel world, this is a battle against the future? The Upside Down is characterized by images of a Hawkins ravaged by destruction, decay, and rot.
Perhaps instead of seeing some second dimension, what’s trickling into the scene is a dreadful sense of inevitability that’s itching to come true now. The mind flayer may be some Terminator-style time traveler who’s ready to take over the town, and possibly the world, sooner rather than later. New spies Season 2 of Stranger Things sees the show’s new big bad, the Mind Flayer, possess Will Byers and turn him into his spy. We still know very little about this monster, but his possession of Will at least gave us a few answers as to how he functions. The most important tidbit: contact with him can have lingering effects, namely in regards to his ability to spy on our world through those he’s touched. Given this, a few fans seem to think that he’s already found his next set of eyes. While exploring the tunnels beneath Hawkins, both Hopper and Dustin discover a weird object on the wall that shoots a strange substance onto them. They clean it off in short order and little is said of it past that, but the Duffer Brothers aren’t the kind of showrunners to introduce something like that if it isn’t going to pay off later.
This has led many to believe that Dustin and Hopper are now infected by the Mind Flayer and will perhaps act as his new spies. Fast forward The time jump between seasons 1 and 2 of Stranger Things was roughly one year. But many fans posit that the show will jump forward even further in future seasons. Considering how quickly the child stars are aging, it might not be too unreasonable to expect the series to bypass the one year mark and take them straight into high school in Season 3.
If so, that’d put the show near the tail end of the decade and open up a whole new strain of cinematic callback potential. Think The Fly and Terminator and The Lost Boys. If they wait long enough to launch production on the third season, they could very well hop into the next decade — the ’90s — and start throwing out homages to sci-fi pics of that era like The Abyss and Tremors and Jurassic Park.
It could happen. Spin off The seventh episode of Stranger Things 2 has left a lot of viewers divided over whether Eleven really even needed to venture out to Chicago to link up with her lost institution sister Kali, who also bears the number eight on her wrist. But while Eleven was figuring out that her friends in Hawkins were important enough to fight for, there’s still a story to be told through Kali’s mission for vengeance. Sure, her appearance could just be a preview of clutch reunions to come for all the lab’s other missing children, but it could also be the first attempt to spark a spin-off for the series. The unpopularity of the episode might derail any plans for producing a Kali-centric spin-off, but don’t be surprised if the Duffer Brothers give it another shot with some more new characters in the coming seasons.