- SPOILER ALERT – ONLY WATCH THIS IF YOU HAVE WATCHED ALL OF STRANGER THINGS ON NETFLIX (optional for you to have read every Peanuts comic strip but c’mon why haven’t you?)
I have always felt like I was Charlie Brown.
Never quite fully understood, teased a lot as a kid, and never one of the crowd despite my best efforts.
So when I watched Stranger Things, one of the first things that struck me was how Will Byers, who doesn’t exactly have the best time of it – that massive understatement was courtesy of my desire not to be spoiler-y in any way shape or form – was very Charlie Brown-esque, the young everyboy who never quite fits in as much as he’d liked to.
In my case, it was a passing thought that went in one synapsis and out the other but Leigh Lahav, whose work I have adored and championed for a while now, has gone quite a bit better than that.
She has combined Stranger Things sense of dislocation and traumatic loss in mysterious circumstances with Peanuts philosophical sense of existential questioning perfectly.
The message at the end of it all is that having friends who care about you is ultimately what gives life its value, which is a very Christmassy message, one you can hang onto all year round (especially in a year as nasty as this one).