Stranger Things: Season 3 Premiere 'Suzie, Do You Copy?' Review
Directors: Matt Duffer, Ross Duffer
Writers: Matt Duffer, Ross Duffer, Jovan Taylor
Cast: Millie Bobby Brown, David Harbour, Cara Buono, Jake Busey, Natalia Dyer, Cary Elwes, Maya Hawke, Charlie Heaton, Joe Keery, Gaten Matarazzo, Caleb McLaughlin, Dacre Montgomery, Winona Ryder, Noah Schnapp, Sadie Sink, Finn Wolfhard
'Chapter One: Suzie, Do You Copy?' Air Date: 04/07/2019
Stranger Things 3 is currently available to stream in full on Netflix.
This is a spoiler free review for the premiere of Stranger Things: Season 3. Check back for more Stranger Things 3 coverage throughout the week.
When it comes to Season Two of Stranger Things, I found it to be very hit or miss. Separating Eleven from the rest of the group for the season grew tedious very fast for me. I missed the dynamic they all had together a lot. Which made just seeing all these characters I love living their lives and being together again in the premiere of Stranger Things 3 such a standout. And most importantly, Eleven and Mike are together, happy, and love is certainly in the air.
Stranger Things 3's first chapter is titled 'Suzie Do You Copy?', which is a reference to something said in the show, not some confusing easter egg I saw fans theorising ahead of the episode’s release. release.
It's Summertime in Hawkins and everything seems to be going pretty well for everyone. Eleven and Mike are spending a lot of time making out much to the dismay of Jim Hopper. Will and the rest of the kids seem to be enjoying a holiday featuring a lot of time spent at the local mall, which is slowly destroying jobs in the town (possibly a big plot point as the series continues), and Nancy and Jonathon are now working at the local paper. Although, Jonathon is certainly coping the better end of that workplace as a photographer as Nancy puts up with rather shitty working conditions from her bosses as the coffee girl.
The episode gives you enough time with all the characters to see what they're up to now and reintroduce their somewhat older selves to audiences, while also introducing some new characters for this season. Maya Hawke is introduced as Robin and she's working with Steve at an ice-cream shop in the mall. Her short appearance is a standout as she bounces off Joe Keery quite well. Then you have two more veteran actors with Cary Elwes playing the Mayor of Hawkins and Jake Busey introduced as one of the new villain roles which I don't want to spoil.
I enjoyed all the time spent with the original characters, but it's hard to not worry going forward how all of them, plus the new ones, will all manage to fit together and feel necessary as the series continues. The Stranger Things cast is becoming crowded very quickly, but I'll head into the rest of the season with the hope that everyone is used well.
The kids look a lot older in this season too. I know it's been a while since Stranger Things 2 — but yep, kids age fast when you're not watching. It's especially evident with some more than others and took me a good minute to adjust too.
While my standout scene for this episode would go to seeing Winona Ryder's Joyce attempt to help David Harbour's Jim with tips on parenthood, my least favourite is anything to do with Dacre Montgomery's Billy. I know we're supposed to hate him, and I do, I hated him all of Stranger Things 2, but here all his scenes feel like crap I don't want to be watching. I don't care how much the girls love him. I don't care he's trying to get-it-on with any of the mothers in Hawkins — whatever, he's boring. It all builds towards the episode's cliffhanger though, so I suppose I'm supposed to feel like it was necessary building Billy up and spending time with him by the time the credits start to roll, but I just find Billy so damn boring and annoying
Stranger Things continues to look fantastic of course. Its spot-on costumes and set-design are continually amazing, season after season, a blast to watch. Unlike Stranger Things 2 this season doesn't open on a really heavy-handed nostalgia trip and I found its major throw-back references to be used a lot better.
A lot of story threads are opened in the premiere of Stranger Things 3 and all of them could lead in interesting directions. If you were feeling hit and miss with the previous season like I was, I think you'll feel a lot better going into this latest season. I am.