'Stranger Things' Gets Freakishly Accurate: 8 Quintessential 1980s Pop Culture Details

'Stranger Things' Gets Freakishly Accurate: 8 Quintessential 1980s Pop Culture Details ...

Stranger Things has welcomed viewers from all walks of life back to the 1980s, where some seek for pure nostalgia while others seek to discover a world that existed long before they were born. Its attention to detail and accuracy continues to provide a secure foundation for a show with such astronomical and supernatural stakes.

Stranger Things' fourth season, based on what was successful in the past, has a definite matureness that was missing from previous seasons. The kids are older, the stakes are higher, and Vecna (Jamie Campbell Bower) is more terrifying than any other monster in the Upside Down. Here are a few 80s pop culture elements that will help you get acquainted with Hawkins' world.

Hair & Clothing

Any job set in the 1980s must be accurate; otherwise, things will quickly become cheesy. For example, Wills (Noah Schnapp) has a longer and more scraggly bowl cut, while Jonathans (Charlie Heaton) has a longer and more pointed flattop, and Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) and Mike (Finn Wolfhard) have long mullets, likely inspired by their new hero, Eddie Munson (Joseph Quin

Season four's outfits worked brilliantly, enhancing each character's hairstyle and fashion sense. Argyles' (Eduardo Franco) bright, patterned outfit is an authentic 80s Quiksilver outfit, while Maxs (Sadie Sink) has her own pastel, professional outfit.

Set Design

Season 4 of Stranger Things sees all of the characters grouped together at various times. The set design was varied, yet it still needed to be realistic. The Byers house in California, an actual house that was never renovated, has a retro California feel. The wood paneling, thick carpeting, massive stone fireplace, and vintage kitchen

The main houses in Hawkins are also realistic, giving off a Midwestern lived-in feeling: Mikes basement is drab and stuffed with period-specific toys and board games, Nancys pastel room is adorned with 80s band posters and cassette tapes, and Eddies bedroom is decorated with vintage desktop computers and cut-out posters for Raiders of the Lost Ark and Gremlins.


Since season 1, music has been an integral part of Stranger Things. Songs like Should I Stay or Should I Go and Never Ending Story have regained popularity, but nothing has captured the zeitgeist like Kate Bush's 1985 song Running Up That Hill (A Deal With God) which has taken the world by storm. It was used in a ton of promotional material, and its Spotify streaming percentage has increased by 9,900%.

Metallicas Master of Puppets is the other major hit from season 4, which also climbed the charts and increased by 650%. This is no surprise, as Eddie's brilliant rendition of the then-two-week-old song in the most popular metal concert in the history of the world is one of the series' most epic scenes.

Pop Culture References

Stranger Things has always been heavily influenced by the 1980s, and it contains countless references to the decade. The roller rink scene where Eleven gets bullied is similar to Carrie, Eddie wears Maxs Halloween mask from season two, and perhaps the most famous reference is having Freddy Krueger himself, Robert Englund, play Victor Creel.

In season 4, Steve (Joe Keery) and Robin (Maya Hawke) discuss the 1982 cult classic Fast Times at Ridgemont High, and Dustin recites Han Solo's famous line Never tell me the odds at the D&D campaign. In the same moment that he begins singing Never Ending Story, Eddie mentions Ozzy Osbourne famously biting the head off a bat in 1982.

Latchkey Kid Phenomenon

The term latchkey kid is used by Merriam-Webster to refer to a school-aged child with working parents who must spend part of the day unsupervised. In the 1980s, Generation X kids and teens were forced to take matters into their own hands, but as a result, they became extremely close to their friends, which is a regular theme in the Stranger Things universe.

The Hawkins children are excellent examples of latchkey kids, especially given the supernatural difficulty in battling Vecna. They refuse to seek out help from their parents or the cops, who are ignorant and completely unaware of the Upside Down and Eddie's innocence. They only choose death itself, highlighting the fact that their friends are their true relatives.

The Satanic Panic

The Satanic Panic is the focus of a new season 4 episode, which spans many years, generating false accusations of cults and satanic ritual abuse. Dungeons & Dragons was also linked to the movement, as various conservative groups accused the game of luring young players to satanism.

Stranger Things has had a significant role since the very first episode, and the Duffer brothers wisely incorporated the Satanic Panic by introducing dungeon master Eddie Munson to the plotline. Eddies character gives the public a human face. He allows the public to recognize that not all outcasts, metalheads, D&D players, and socially misunderstood individuals are people to fear or accuse.

Russian Communists

The Soviet Union and Communism became America's greatest adversary after the end of World War II in 1945, and especially after Stalin's death in 1953. Russian communists continued to be a threat in the 1980s, but Gorbachevs actions slowly sparked the party in 1986, the same year season four began.

After Hopper's arrest at the end of season three, the Russians continue to be one of the season's villains. However, having the characters of Enzo (Tom Wlaschiha) and Yuri (Nikola Djuricko) turn out to be good guys is an interesting twist. Like Eddie, Enzo and Yuri humanize Russian people who just happened to be citizens of a Communist country.

Social Cliques

Eddie, who is similar to Judd Nelsons Bender, jokes that forced conformity is the real monster in his introduction in the cafeteria.

Stranger Things does a great job of turning this 80s film trope on its head, giving the characters new arcs, such as Steve is a natural leader rather than a stalker, Eddie is a hero and not a villain, and Nancy is a fighter rather than a bystander throughout the seasons.