All the 1980s Retro Easter Eggs in ‘Stranger Points 4’

Warning: Spoilers for Stranger Matters season 4 in advance.

A big section of the charm of Netflix strike Stranger Items is its 1980s environment. The Hawkins gang does not have cellphones (even though Dustin is really a hand with a ham radio), and their personal computer use is fairly primitive. But in addition to noting what they do not have, viewers can love the 1980s (and 1970s) elements as a nostalgic stroll down memory lane.

I’m a retro pop tradition junkie, and co-authored two books about misplaced toys, preferences and developments. (No matter what Occurred to Pudding Pops? focuses on the 1970s and 1980s, and The Completely Sweet ’90s is about, duh, the 1990s.) So when I binge-watched Stranger Points year 4 in order to compose my (spoiler-totally free) assessment, I kept noticing the previous-university specifics that the Duffer Brothers sprinkled in the course of the show.

Here’s a search at my absolutely tubular favorites.


Appear, I’m just expressing that the paperboy-eye perspective that commences the new period appears to be like Paperboy, the vintage 1985 Atari recreation, that’s all. Likely a coincidence.

Rainbow area

Youthful Eleven and the other experiment little ones have a playroom termed the “rainbow room,” for its colorful wall paint. Extended prior to the rainbow became involved with the LGBT group, it had a renaissance in late 1970s/early 1980s decor. I bear in mind owning a coronary heart-formed cloissone lapel pin with a rainbow and my name (misspelled, duh), and putting a rainbow sticker in my bed room window, much to my parents’ chagrin when it was discovered it didn’t truly peel off very easily.

Encyclopedia telemarketing

Joyce Byers is noticed desperately trying to offer encyclopedias over the cell phone. Telemarketing was one of the few positions that could be accomplished from property back in the 1980s, and encyclopedia sets have been even now some thing many homes experienced. (Ask any 1980s kid who had to do a past-moment e-book report soon after the library was closed.) They have been helpful as heck, but turned outdated in advance of they strike your cabinets. In the set of Entire world Guide encyclopedias that my mothers and fathers experienced, printed in 1962, John F. Kennedy is eternally president.

Dungeons & Dragons/Satanic Worry

Lucas, Dustin, Mike, Will, Erica and new character Eddie Munson (seems like “Eddie Munster,” no?) are all avid Dungeons & Dragons gamers. It can be not like viewers of now are unfamiliar with the fantasy job-enjoying game, but they could be stunned at how horrified Hawkins mother and father and jocks are by it. The video game has been unfairly blamed for murders (Google the Chris Pritchard situation) and other troubling situations (James Dallas Egbert III’s 1979 disappearance). Reality be advised, if Eddie, who appears to be like a great deal like late rocker Eddie Van Halen, wasn’t a D&D player, he’d most likely be conflated with Satanism in any case, just for his heavy-metallic hair. Extended hair on males was still stereotyped massive-time in the 1980s.

Online video retailers

Steve and Robin labored at a shopping mall ice product shop, Scoops Ahoy, in season 3. In time 4, they operate at Family Movie, a video rental retail outlet. In 1985, there ended up 15,000 video clip-rental shops in the US, and 25,000 by 1988. (Spoiler: There are a large amount less now.) Steve and Robin’s movie retail store occupation comes in useful numerous times, together with when Robin appears up all clients named “Rick” to see if she can come across Eddie’s drug dealer. Conveniently, he rented a lot of Cheech and Chong films.

Lucas’ hair

Lucas Sinclair is on the Hawkins’ basketball staff, and he is upgraded his hair activity, sporting a substantial-leading fade haircut. No dilemma, this was a well-liked 1980s glance. Child, of hip-hop team Kid ‘n Engage in, sported a well-known 1, while that was a few a long time right after 1986, when year 4 is established.

Blue eye shadow

Cheerleader Chrissy loves the caked-on, infant-blue eye shadow, but don’t judge. Many of us went bluer than blue in the 1980s.

‘Never tell me the odds’

Appropriate before an specifically crucial D&D dice roll, Dustin announces, “Under no circumstances tell me the odds.” Which is a direct estimate from The Empire Strikes Again, from the scene exactly where Han Solo informs C-3PO, Leia and crew to “never ever explain to me the odds” as he is about to fly them into an asteroid field. Empire had been out for six many years at that stage, and Dustin possibly had the whole film memorized.

Roller rinks

Roller rinks were being well known for a lot of decades — they’re not just a 1980s detail. But in the 1970s, several of them turned into roller discos, with disco balls and hip tunes. Eleven, Mike and Will test to have a pleasant day at a California roller rink, but many thanks to a snotty blonde named Angela, things go lousy rapidly. You can hear the 1985 Baltimora hit track Tarzan Boy in the roller-rink scene. PS, it continue to rocks, Oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh.

Rubik’s Cube

Never blink or you could overlook it: A Rubik’s Cube exhibits up in entrance of Steve in a 2nd-episode scene at the video clip retailer.


Nancy and Robin head to the public library to search up the Creel murders on microfilm. Of course, that’s how we made use of to investigation issues back again in the day just before newspapers place a great deal of their archives on the net. If I experienced a dollar for just about every time I loaded the reel in upside-down, I could’ve possibly purchased a house at 1986 charges.

‘Ponch and Jon out there’

In a scene in which the Byers’ residence is getting guarded by neighborhood cops, Jonathan sneeringly asks Mike and Will if they’re fearful about “Ponch and Jon out there.” Ponch and Jon, of system, have been the stars of CHiPs, the drama about two hunky associates of the California Highway Patrol. It finished in 1983, but a Ponch and Jon reference in 1986 is continue to a lot cromulent.

‘Pass the Dutchie’

Jonathan’s new pal, Argyle, is a bit of a pothead. So it truly is only fitting that the 1982 Musical Youth strike Pass the Dutchie performs though he’s driving his van in episode 4. “Dutchie” seemingly means “Dutch oven,” or cooking pot, but absolutely everyone realized that the tune originally was “go the kouchie,” indicating a pot pipe.

Robert Englund

Robert Englund, who famously performed Freddy Krueger in the Nightmare on Elm Avenue collection of 1980s slasher motion pictures, plays asylum patient Victor Creel this year. The ’80s are his decade. You will find even a “Freddy Krueger boiler place” joke in the demonstrate, while Englund isn’t really in that scene.


Try to remember the Xmas lights Joyce Byers used to discuss to Will when he was in the Upside Down, back again in period 1? A Lite-Brite plays the function in time 4, when it really is applied by Nancy and crew, trapped in the Upside Down, to talk to Dustin and his group. Each 1970s or ’80s child who saw this right away started out humming the jingle. “Lite-Brite, makin’ factors with liiiiiiiiiiight!”

The wayback

At one particular issue, the gang is driving around in a wooden-paneled station wagon. Steve and Dustin, of system, are the duo who close up crammed in what we ’70s and ’80s kids named the “wayback,” the cargo location powering the seats. Some station wagons experienced seats dealing with backwards. Have been there seat belts in the wayback? Probably not.