When a supernatural mystery kicks off with four young boys sharing a few laughs together at a nighttime gathering, you know something sinister is lurking just around the corner. Netflix's new series Stranger Things, set in 1980s-era Indiana, has the nostalgic feel of the movies that totally creeped us out as kids — only this time, we get eight episodes. The four kids all make it home, but one of them goes missing under bizarre circumstances by the end of the night. So, what happened to Will on Stranger Things? [Spoilers ahead for Episode 1.]
Both his mom and older brother are at work, so Will arrives home to an empty house and immediately realizes something isn't right. When he sees a strange, bright light outside the window, Will immediately picks up the phone — but all he hears is eerie static. Things get even weirder from there when the front door unlocks itself, so he flees outside to a shed in the backyard and begins loading a rifle. Unfortunately, it appears that whoever (or, in this case, whatever) took Will is not human and the shed's small light bulb becomes insanely bright before turning off entirely. Then, Will is gone without a trace — he essentially vanished into thin air and the town's wildly inept sheriff's department appears ill-equipped to handle a human kidnapper let alone a supernatural one.
By the end of Stranger Things' premiere episode, it's clear that supernatural forces are at play in this small Indiana town — and the government has capitalized on this by keeping it a secret and apparently experimenting on young children in a locked facility. One of these children, a little girl named Eleven, manages to escape but she barely speaks. It's unclear what exactly has been done to her and why, but she's rightfully terrified. An army of individuals come after her, but Eleven is able to escape.
Although I'm sure we'll learn more and more in each episode as the series progresses, it seems likely that Will's disappearance is related to Eleven's captivity. But, at this point, it's unclear why he was targeted. Will seemed like a totally ordinary kid — he's described as a good student whose mother's biggest concern is that his friends sometimes make fun of his clothes. Either way, the town sheriff's department is definitely on the wrong track. They automatically assume that Will's dad took him and refuse to take his disappearance seriously until they find his abandoned bike by the side of the road.
A search party is formed by the police and Will's three friends head out into the woods, trusty flashlights in hand. This would be a great plan if Will's abductor was human, but I doubt they're going to find him in the forest. Back at home, the phone rings and his mother rushes to answer it — but she's met with the same creepy static that Will heard moments before his disappearance. As the episode comes to a close, Will's friends come face to face with Eleven. Hopefully she'll be able to provide some clues about what happened to Will, but she's terrified to talk and the town's sheriff department has no idea that they've got supernatural forces and a government conspiracy to contend with. Fingers crossed that Will gets home safe and sound by the end of the season.
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