Stranger Things season 2 doesn’t just feature call outs to classic films, it pays homage to entire scenes from them. The intro of Stranger Things alone will clue you in to some of its inspirations. With a font evoking a Stephen King book and music heavily inspired by John Carpenter, Stranger Things is a series built on nostalgia and reverence for its predecessors. From episode titles to character arcs, the films and culture of the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s make up much of the show’s DNA.
Stranger Things season 2 not only upped the ante when it came to threats and the supernatural, but it also featured even more Easter eggs and references to the era in which the show takes place. Spotting all of the Stranger Things 2 Easter eggs can be tough and even eagled-eyed film fans will have quite a hunt on their hands. While tallying up every reference may be impossible, a new video attempts to highlight all the shots and scenes that call back to classic films.
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IMDb put together a video showing shot-by-shot comparisons of scenes from Stranger Things season 2 alongside the films they reference. Aside from a fairly obvious homage to one of Jurassic Park‘s most famous scenes, all of the moments focus on films from the ’70s and ’80s.
Like season 1, the new batch of episodes have tons of E.T., Alien, and Terminator nods. Some scenes, like Eleven dressed as a sheet ghost, even manage to honor multiple sources. It’s not just sci-fi and thriller films, either, as Stephen King’s Stand by Me is thrown into the mix – and of course, there are plenty of Ghostbusters homages.
It’s also interesting to see how certain moments are paired with a particular movie. The Stranger Things 2 scenes of Will seeing visions of the Upside Down, for instance, all heavily reference similar scenes from Close Encounters of the Third Kind; from the glowing sky to the mysterious force in the clouds, the moments act like visual remixes.
Two of the recurring references in particular even have an extra level of meta weight, thanks to Sean Astin and Paul Reiser appearing in Stranger Things 2. Several scenes in season 2 pay tribute to Astin’s role in Goonies, itself a big inspiration for the show as a whole. Likewise, Aliens – an ’80s film that Reiser costarred in – is referenced multiple times throughout the season. This tactic of visual homages to classic films is unlikely to go anyway anytime soon either, so expect even more to crop up in Stranger Things 3.
Stranger Things seasons 1 and 2 are now available for streaming through Netflix.
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