February 24, 2020

"Strangers Things" and the Return of the Eighties

“To keep viewers immersed in their version of the 1980s, producers of the sci-fi horror series “Stranger Things” built their biggest shrine to the decade yet: a shopping mall.

To replicate a mall from 1985—the year when the third season of the Netflix show unfolds—the production team resurrected part of one outside Atlanta. They created the Starcourt Mall for the show’s fictional town of Hawkins, Ind., and filled it with shops like Radio Shack, Waldenbooks and Sam Goody. Season 3 will be released July 4.

Continuing the style “Stranger Things” used from the start, the eight-episode season mirrors ’80s movies, music and other touchstones. There are homages to “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” and “Weird Science,” period films with memorable mall scenes. When the teen characters in “Stranger Things” sneak into the Starcourt Mall’s cineplex, their glimpses of “Day of the Dead” (released in July 1985) foreshadow darker stuff. In this season they confront a new threat after beating back a spectral bodysnatcher dubbed the Mind Flayer. The kids pulled its name from, yes, their Dungeons & Dragons manual.”

Read more

JJ Editor's Picks

"U.S. President Donald Trump thinks he’s suffered more injustice than the alleged witches of Salem, but it could be worse. Pakistan’s former president Pervez Musharaff faced possible impeachment in 2008, leading to his resignation. In the end..."

"The 2000s felt like a decade of looking forward. Wi-Fi went mainstream, phones got smarter, social media connected us, digital tools let us rely less on physical ones. But the 2010s brought a shift. There was still tons of new technology, but..."

"While some women experience pregnancy and childbirth as joyful, natural and fulfilling, others find themselves recoiling in horror at the physical demands of carrying and sustaining a child in their womb, and even more so at the potential..."

"A few months ago, the New York Post’s Steve Cuozzo bemoaned the death of the Manhattan power lunch. Gone were the long, decadent afternoons filled with networking and Negronis: “Suit-and-tie-wearing machers in media and Wall Street gave way to..."

"Economic inequality has moved to the top of the political agenda in many countries, including free-market poster children like the US and the UK. The issue is mobilizing the left and causing headaches on the right, where wealth has long been..."

"If you’re not familiar with the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Cats — or even if you are — then you probably have many, many questions going into the film adaptation this weekend, especially if you’ve witnessed the widespread bafflement the trailer..."

"Despite his precisely targeted campaign and some unexpected support, the chances of Gideon Saar engineering a surprise defeat of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the Dec. 26 primaries for the Likud party leadership are still considered modest.."

"Peter Thiel is Big Tech’s most prominent Trump supporter. He is an unabashed enemy of the free press, having covertly funded a lawsuit that bankrupted Gawker three years ago. He has become one of the most vocal pro-monopoly advocates, taking a..."