Where I do an episode-by-episode review of Stranger Things Season 3.
Episode 3, The Case of the Missing Lifeguard: For me, season 3 begins in this episode. Things happened.
It was great seeing Max and Eleven playing detectives in this episode. Finally, they’re talking about something apart from boys and them working together was a better portrayal of character relationship development than giggly outings at the mall. I enjoyed their whole investigation into Heather’s disappearance.
As for the boys, I totally echo Will’s sentiments. Poor guy just wants to play D&D and go back to the way they were before. It seems to me that Lucas and Mike have grown up too fast, and I don’t like that at all. In the earlier seasons, I used to like Mike’s character, but not now. He’s turned into just another stupid teen boy who, in Will’s words, just wants to spend his time swapping spit with a girl. Their childhood innocence and nerdiness that made them endearing has been lost. And that leads Will to destroy Castle Byers in a frenzy, which was heartbreaking.
Both Joyce-Hopper and Nancy-Jonathan are investigatory couples and seeing them doing their work in classic Stranger Things style has been a respite from immature teen problems right from episode one. Even though Bob wasn’t a major character in season 2, his death had made me sad and Joyce’s flashback to his death in Hawkins Lab brought back tragic memories.
Dustin, Steve and Robin were the best part of the episode, as always. Robin is an intelligent girl, and her cracking the code was what made me say ‘I love Robin’ out loud while watching the episode. She’d probably not have confused the innocent Jazzercise instructor with an evil Russian, unlike Steve and Dustin. In the end, they finally run into evil Russians for real. This team is going to be integral in uncovering the mystery.
The episode ends with El and Max running into Billy and Heather enjoying a nice dinner with Heather’s parents (whose dad, surprisingly, is Nancy’s boss) and them knocking out Heather’s parents. Obviously, they’re possessed by the Mind Flayer.