Stranger Things 3 : Chapter Three : The Case of the Missing Lifeguard

We continue with the tale of Mummy Steve, new love interest Robin and bubby Duncan…. Plus some other stuff happens but who cares when we have these three?

Actually even I can’t deny that the real treat of this episode was Noah Schnapp as Will.

I forget sometimes that at the heart of all this it is a story of growing up. The main cast, even though it technically would be the entire main cast and not just the kids, are growing up and some are growing up more then others.

Of course one of them also had a bunch of his life spent in a nightmare place and still in some ways is connected to it so can you blame a kid for wanting to go back to normal and get to play games in the basement with his best friends for at least a little longer?

Whilst Mike and Lucas are too busy worrying about girl things and Duncan is nowhere to be seen, Will just wants to play D’n’D and spend quality time with his friends like he used too. The realization that his friends are growing up without him and they are growing apart hits him hard and in one of the best moments of the season so far we see Will lose it as his life crumbles around him.

At this moment in time he isn’t the kid that went to the Upside Down and probably has nearly died a bunch of times. At this moment he’s a kid that realizes that life doesn’t stay still for long and that he’s going to get left behind. He’s a kid that for a few moments forgets the terrible things that has happened to him because the most depressing and scary thing is that he’s losing his friends.

Whilst I’m obviously a huge fan of Gaten Matarazzo as Duncan I really think Schnapp sometimes steals the show from the rest of the kids without the audience even realising he’s doing it. Of course his character is the one that has had the horrible things happen to him so like Eleven he very much has a much more dramatic story being told but it is small moments like this that remind you that actually Will is just a kid. He isn’t the horrible things that happened to him he’s a kid that wants to play games but his friends have grown up and got girlfriends and don’t like to do those things any more.

Away from Will and his fight to play games with his friends things started to get real for everyone.

Hopper and Joyce go back to the lab to find nothing but one scary as hell Russian dude who we already know from Episode 1 can just crush someones throat in one handed pretty easily. Hopper barely survives a fight with him but that pretty much puts them two smack in the middle of the same story that Babysitter Steve, his new love interest and his favourite child are in.

Whilst Steve and Duncan bonding and being… Pretty useless spies is pretty much the thing that killed me in this episode they do actually manage to get in the thick of it thanks once more to Robin who actually uses her brain to figure out what the code they translated is. I really am enjoying this dynamic, the two boys aren’t brainless obviously but they are so set in their ways and treating it like a movie whilst Robin is just bored but actually able to think outside of this box that they’ve put themselves in. Of all the groupings so far I think this one is the best and Robin being added to the already amazing chemistry between Steve and Duncan was the right call.

Whilst their snooping is getting somewhere the penny drops for Nancy and Jonathan that theirs was going in the wrong direction. I don’t really have much to say for their parts in this episode, I think I made myself clear in the last episode that I don’t like Nancy at all. I find her character overly self absorbed and her need to prove herself whilst a decent story in a show that has a strong female cast being more then just damsels in distress but the actual brains, heart and strength of the groups they are part of she just isn’t a character I can ever like or want to succeed. Her dragging Jonathan around with her with no real thought for his job is annoying and whilst the joke is meant to be she keeps walking into the dark room and annoying Jonathan I’m finding the fact that she doesn’t even have the common decency of not doing something her own boyfriend has asked her to do a million times, something actually half important in his own job, not a joke at all but proof of her self adsorbed nature and the fact that she just isn’t a very nice person.

Saying that Mrs Driscoll is amazing and I’m so sad what happened to her in this episode.

I feel sad for Eleven and Max though because between the hilarious snooping with Detective Mummy Steve and Duncan, the wonderful fall out to everything with Will and even the drama with Hopper and Joyce their own bonding and later investigating kind of became overshadowed for me which on reflection was sad because I’m really started to love Eleven in this series and her relationship with Max is great. I’ve never had a problem with Millie Bobby Brown may a I add I just didn’t like the character of Eleven much maybe down to the fact I didn’t like Mike much either. Brown and Sadie Sink have such great chemistry though, Max showing Eleven how girls act, giving her a new style and then just hanging about being normal with her was great.

Then they dug a little too deep using Eleven’s power and now they are on the path to what the hell it is that Max’s brother Billy is up to.

It was actually a pretty amazing part of the episode and I do love the ability Eleven has of finding people. Her seeing Heather being dragged into the water was actually pretty scary and Brown’s fear in that scene was amazing, I realised afterwards that I was holding my breath the entire time it was so good. Then when they show up to Heathers house to find everything perfectly fine and Billy acting weird, you just were terrified of what is going to happen next.

Honestly just that good.

So maybe they weren’t overshadowed and I think in the coming episodes those two are going to shine so much. So happy that Eleven has been put with someone other than Mike and we’re getting to see her grow as a character.

Now just to see the world fall to the hands of Billy… And some evil Russians because Russia.

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