Netflix’s Stranger Things gets another new poster, this one paying homage to Stephen King’s Firestarter. As the streaming service ramps up marketing for the acclaimed show (which returns this fall), there has been a concentrated effort on highlighting its nostalgic sources of inspiration. Previous one-sheets for Stranger Things referenced the likes of Alien and The Lost Boys, and now it’s time to pay respect to King – whose work has heavily influenced the series in its early run.
Everyone’s favorite horror author is back in the spotlight this year with the terrifying IT remake hitting theaters in September, so it isn’t surprising the Stranger Things advertising campaign is playing up the Duffer brothers’ love for his material. Whereas the previous throwback posters featured the Upside Down and all members of the principal ensemble cast, this one places the heroine Eleven center stage, asking a rather intriguing question about the youngster.
Firestarter is an appropriate poster to spotlight Eleven. The story centers on a pair of college students who take experimental drugs that give them abilities. They eventually marry and have a daughter with incredible powers who is then chased down by the government. The story of Charlie McGee and her father is incredibly similar to Eleven and her mother, albeit after the fact. While Andy McGee was able to try and protect Charlie, Eleven’s mother believed that she had died and never had a daughter at all. You can see the new poster in the space below:
There are a lot of parallels between Firestarter and Stranger Things particularly in regards to the relationship between Martin Brenner and Eleven. Eleven’s initial trust of the doctor who experimented on her is shattered by meeting Will Byers and the rest of his friends, but Brenner’s actions are similar to “John the Friendly Orderly” in Firestarter. Firestarter ended on a happier note for Charlie, is this a sign that while Eleven’s end in the last season was heart breaking there might be a more positive outcome to her story? After all, Charlie did go on to expose “The Shop” in Stephen King’s work.
It will also be interesting to see how fans receive Universal Studios proposed Firestarter reboot in the wake of Stranger Things with all of these similarities. The project currently has a director, can universal capitalize on a pre-existing fan base used to essential Stephen King tropes? The nostalgic factor of Stranger Things as well as the IT remake, illustrate that even if we’re in a different era from the one that King wrote his stories in they are still clearly relevant.
Time will tell how that applies to Firestarter and the “unusual experimented on girl” trope can continue its momentum. In the meantime, Eleven, much like her counterpart, is ready to fight for her right to survive in a very dangerous situation. Charlie McGee would be proud.
Stranger Things season 2 hits Netflix October 27th, 2017
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