Minor Stranger Things spoilers below.
Netflix’s hit summer series Stranger Things have hasn’t yet been renewed for a second season, but given that it’s become an online sensation, renewal is pretty likely. As such, creators Matt and Ross Duffer have been talking up the possibilities for a hypothetical second season, including during an interview yesterday in which they addressed the fate of Barb, one of the show’s most beloved characters.
The 1983-set science fiction series has generated a digital mountain of think pieces and positive reviews, not to mention scores of memes inspired by everything from its Dungeons & Dragons references to musical choices. But perhaps no element of the show has been more memed than the character Barb. Portrayed by actress Shannon Purser, Barb is perhaps the show’s single most 1980s-looking character, practically an anthropomorphic time capsule on a series filled with references to the Reagan decade. She appears only in two episodes of Stranger Things (three, if you count her half-devoured corpse in the penultimate episode), but despite this, she quickly emerged as the most celebrated character on the show, with her hair, clothes and general disposition frequently noted.
Also frequently noted, however, is the fact that Barb is utterly forgotten by the story after her death at the hands of an extra-dimensional monster is confirmed. It’s been a sore point for fans who felt the stand-out character deserved more screen time or, at least, a legitimate resolution to her story. Unfortunately for fans, as the Duffer Brothers made clear in an interview with IGN on Friday, she’s highly unlikely to return if the show is renewed. However, it is possible that her story will finally get the resolution missing from season one.
“I can’t see it happening” Matt Duffer told IGN about the chances the character will return. “But Barb will not be forgotten. We’ll make sure there’s some justice for Barb. People get very frustrated, understandably, that the town doesn’t seem to be really dealing with Barb. That stuff is all happening. We’re just not spending any screen time on it.”
Duffer noted that the entire season takes place in only “six or seven days,” though this characterization leaves out the fact the the last 10 minutes or so of the season finale takes place a month later. Even so, said Duffer, “part of what we want to do with hypothetical Season 2 is to explore the repercussions of everything that happened.”
Barb may be gone, but according to the Duffer brothers, Matthew Modine’s slimy Government operator, apparently killed just offscreen in the season finale, is still alive. “I would say that if we were going to kill Brenner… as an audience member watching the show, if that was his death, that would be very unsatisfying to me,” Matt Duffer said. “When the monster jumps on him and we cut away. He would deserve much more than that as an ending. So yes, there’s a possibility of seeing him again.”
Make of that what you will, and sound off in comments.