Why has Stranger Things Become such a Pop Cultural Phenomenon?

Stranger Things, the supernatural Netflix thriller which is equal parts phenomenon, algorithm, and loving homage, sits at a peculiar cultural crossroads. It is without a doubt one of the most gripping dramas of recent years, and it has unsurprisingly surpassed Netflix’s two flagship dramas, The Crown, and the sumptuous historical drama House of Cards.

None of it, though, explains why the series has become more popular. Both nostalgia and its flirtation with the horror subgenre, which is a natural selling point to the under-40 market, are insufficient to propel it. In reality, the process itself, like most alchemy, is incomprehensible, and we are left to wonder how TV gold was created from what, with a less skilled hand, may have been nothing more than slabs of TV lead. Although Netflix’s analytics are at best hazy, it is known that 15 million people in the US watched the first season when it initially premiered, and, more importantly, that 70% of those viewers continued to watch the entire season after seeing the first episode. It received nearly unanimous praise, with the first season receiving a Rotten Tomatoes approval rating of 96% based on 68 reviews in top magazines throughout the world.

The first season of the supernatural drama, which is set in the 1980s in the fictitious town of Hawkins, Indiana, centers on the hunt for a young child who vanished amid many mysterious occurrences in the area. One such occurrence is the apparition of a psychokinetic girl who aids the missing kid’s friends in their quest. You may see a glimpse of Poltergeist, Stand by Me, the original It by Stephen King, and E.T. and other Spielberg and Carpenter movies, depending on your age and the popular culture that shaped your adolescence. plus, Halloween.

It is a light post-Dungeons & Dragons kind of horror, where the genuinely terrifying is masked by a haze of mystery, old books and stories, monsters, and things that go bump in the night.

Only eight one-hour episodes were created, therefore the series never ran the risk of becoming repetitive. The narrative economy of most short-running television shows is rarely praised, but Stranger Things made good use of it. Defying the more typical pattern in the genre, and with works by authors like Stephen King in particular, where the buildup is excellent, but the endings are weak, it also built up an exciting finish. The D-offer brothers, Matt, and Ross, who oversee the episode direction, as well as producer Shawn Levy and co-producer Dan Cohen, have the most creative power over the show. That group, “makes every creative choice.” “The team is small.” However, Netflix’s decision to simply not advertise the series was possibly its greatest strength. Netflix believed that the lack of overt marketing would instill a sense of mystery surrounding the show. They were accurate.

7 Ways ‘Stranger Things’ Has Influenced Our Lives Today, From Hairstyles to Music

1. Hair

The effect they had on our heads (literally) has had to be the most pervasive effect from Stranger Things. You will come across at least a couple of mullets if you decide to leave your residence. Women’s hairstyles were similarly influenced by the ’80s, although they tended to be more volumized and curled, with a few mullets here and there. You may thank Dacre Montgomery’s popular Billy Hargrove for this impact. He uses a mullet so frequently in the series that it has caused the women to swoon and the males to follow. A subtly mullet-inspired hairdo worn by Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) in season 4 shocked the female community and paved the way for a new female mullet hairstyle. Since then, these two characters have been setting the trend, which has led to the emergence of these haircuts all over the world.

2. 80’s Music

Everybody who has watched Stranger Things is familiar with the song “Running up That Hill” by Kate Bush. It should be noted that additional songs from the series, such as “Should I Stay or Should I Go” by The Clash, “Material Girl” by Madonna, and “Pass the Dutchie” by Musical Youth, have also become famous as a result of their inclusion in Stranger Things. Since these songs had a spike in plays, downloads, and purchases after appearing in Stranger Things, notably Kate Bush’s song, which peaked at number one on the charts, Stranger Things has caused a change in our musical preferences. Little did the musicians realize that these songs, which were published in the 1980s to correspond with the Stranger Things timeframe, would make a reappearance four decades later as a result of a television program about six kids battling monsters.

3. Clothing

Stranger Things maintained the idea of the 1980s by dressing its characters in 1980s-inspired attire. There are Eleven, Jim Hopper (David Harbour), Joyce Byers (Winona Ryder), and Johnathan Byers (Charlie Heaton) wearing flannels, as well as Eleven, Max Hargrove (Sadie Sink), and Karen Wheeler (Cara Buono) wearing brightly colored, geometric clothing. Steve Harrington and Billy Hargrove are dressed in tight t-shirts and straight-leg jeans.

These fashion trends have all returned with a bang, affecting the way we dress since they are so well-liked among those under the age of 30. To make purchasing Stranger Things costumes in the ’80s trends easier, ASOS has established its own Stranger Things apparel category on its website.

4. 80’s Themed Room

Fans of Stranger Things have been adorning their rooms with any type of illumination, including LEDs and fairy lights, ever since Joyce placed Christmas lights over the walls of her home to communicate with Will in the Upside Down. Retro lighting evolved from this straightforward concept to include both types of projectors. Some people use galaxy light projectors to light up their homes at night, while others use real projectors that seem antique in their rooms or gardens to watch TV shows and movies.

5. A Way of Living

People have been brought back to a time before cell phones, limitless TV series, movies, and video games by Stranger Things. It has inspired us to live more in the style of the 1980s and to stop, look around, and smell the roses. By encouraging a “Stranger Things summer” on TikTok where we utilize radios, and bicycles as transportation, and avoid screens, they have demonstrated what a small-town, leisurely way of life is like, which has touched a few people’s hearts. In contrast to our fast-paced, technologically advanced world, this trend is a welcome change, and we can only hope that it will serve as a constant reminder to calm down.

6. Dungeons And Dragons

Because Will Byers (Noah Schnapp), Mike Wheeler (Finn Wolfhard), Lucas Sinclair (Caleb McLaughlin), and Dustin Henderson (Gaten Matarazzo) play D&D together from the start of the series, as well as the introduction of new D&D enthusiasts Erica Sinclair (Priah Ferguson) and Eddie Munson (Joseph Quinn), Stranger Things has heavily incorporated the game into its plot. This game is used in the series to give the names of the creatures and explain how things work upside-down. Stranger Things has acquainted players with this game, dispelled the stereotype that it is just for “geeks,” and made it accessible to those who are not already avid gamers. The popularity of Dungeons & Dragons has surged since the release of Stranger Things in 2016, according to the Daily Dot, which claims that the show has made the game more hip and increased Google searches for it.

7. Food

Since Mike gave her an Eggo for breakfast when she was hidden in his basement, eleven has made eating Eggos her favorite snack. When she goes to the grocery store, she constantly buys many packs of Eggos; when she eats out, she always orders waffles; and she cannot help but have Hopper create her a triple-decker Eggo feast. Cheat Sheet, Eggo sales have surged since the debut of Stranger Things in 2016. This demonstrates how strongly individuals are being impacted by the popular program and that they are even altering their eating routines.


A global sensation, Stranger Things on Netflix is known for its compelling storyline, nostalgic 1980s setting, and original fusion of science fiction and horror. The show’s outstanding creative team made wise decisions regarding the pacing and narrative structure, which contributed to the show’s popularity. The fact that Netflix chose not to extensively promote Stranger Things also worked in the show’s favor since it heightened its air of mystery and intrigue. The show’s influence may be observed in contemporary popular culture in some ways, including the popularity of the show’s music and the comeback of ’80s design trends.