Stranger Things: 13 scenes that pulled on our heartstrings

Credit: Stranger Things - Netflix
Credit: Stranger Things - Netflix /
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Stranger Things – Netflix /

6. Rippling reflections

Episode: 6

While Mike is back home, feeling angsty and destroying forts, Eleven is off facing her own demons. She wanders the woods, still clothed in her pink dress and carrying the blonde wig. When she reaches some water, she kneels down, peering over at her own reflection.

She takes a good look, breathing heavily, and then pulls the wig on her head. After a moment contemplating, she pulls it back off. Her shoulders are literally heaving with every second of emotional restraint. Finally, she can take it no more. She screams at her reflection, sending a ripple tearing across the surface of the water.

As this episode is titled “The Monster,” I would postulate that the name refers to more than the Demogorgon. Just the episode prior, an angry Lucas asked Mike, “Did you ever stop to think that maybe she’s the monster?” Sadly, at the water, I think Eleven is wondering the same thing.

It’s interesting to note that the very next episode opens with Eleven checking out another reflection: the mirror in Mike’s basement. As she looks, she touches her head, indicating the loss of her wig. Mike simply tells her, “You don’t need it.” Just as she is, Eleven is “still pretty” and certainly no monster to him.

If you enjoyed the sweet chemistry between this pair in episode seven, then you really have this waterside moment from episode six to thank. Here, the Duffer Brothers have given us an artful moment in Eleven’s personal journey to define herself. She is who she is, and there will still be people who love her.