Created by twin brothers Matt and Ross Duffer, Netflix’s Stranger Things is a concoction of every child’s dream sequence coupled with gratuitous violence and gore.
Set in the fictional town of Hawkins, Indiana, in the 1980s, it involves a group of children investigating their friend Will Byers’ disappearance, which leads them to befriend a girl named Eleven (who has psychokinetic abilities) as well as uncover dark secrets of the government.
The show has attained unthinkable with a classic child endangerment theme set in a 1980s grunge backdrop. Nerdy kids on bicycles trying to find their missing friend, a girl with telekinetic powers, dangerous species travelling to and from between dimensions, a wicked bureaucracy and nearly helpless adults.
It sets in the nostalgia for the ’80s with a special focus on dysfunctional households, toxic parenting, supernatural elements and adventure that helped it become a pop-cultural phenomenon.
Netflix’s Stranger Things has a varied selection of characters who have all been discussed at length by fans due to their depth and progressive arcs.
Many of the characters have failed to make it through the three seasons. Before the fourth season’s release, however, it has been revealed that one of the fan favourite characters, Bob Newby, was originally supposed to suffer a more gruesome death.
Will Byers’ mother, Joyce is one badass character who has been to hell and back in the show. She was seen having a transient taste of happiness when romance brewed between her and Radio Shack manager Bob Newby.
Delightful, geeky and clever, Bob was pure at heart, brimming with empathy and deeply cared for Joyce and her sons, ignoring Jonathan’s disapproving stance. Selfless and nerdy, although Bob’s programming skills never bore fruits, he was helpful and put in the effort to make a connection with Jonathan and Will.
Bob has an aversion to horror films and seems boring and uninteresting to Jonathan at first, however, his heroic act leads to his fateful ending.
In the second season, this brave and compassionate character put his life at risk to save the Byers family and the fatal heroism cost him his dear life as juvenile Demodogs mauled him in front of Joyce, and left her scarred forever.
Sean Astin, known for his role in The Goonies, revealed how Newby’s originally conceived death scene was way gorier. He discussed how he requested the Duffer brothers to let the character do something “heroic” to bid a proper good farewell to the well-rounded, likeable character.
“I just kept saying ‘I don’t care if I last two episodes or five seasons, just please let Bob, pitiful Radio Shack Bob, let him do something heroic.’ I think I said that word ‘heroic’ like 35 times and they were like ‘Dude, we got it’,” he said.
Astin was happy with the way the show bade farewell to Newby. “I couldn’t have asked them to write a better death. I tell people all the time all an actor can hope for is a good death, and Bob really gets a chance to shine.”
In his death scene, after being attacked, Bob spits out some blood as a horrified Joyce watches o in his death scene. While shooting the sequence, a crew member had squirted copious amounts of fake blood into Astin’s mouth that led to an obscene amount of blood being spat out during the scene. Well aware of the audience reactions, the scene was cut short.
Ahead of its 2022 release, binge the first three seasons of Stranger Things on Netflix now.