21 Steve & Dustin Friendship Moments From 'Stranger Things' That Prove They're The Show's Most Iconic Duo
Strangers Things is full of epic friendships, but the most iconic duo is irrefutably Dustin and Steve. Every Dustin and Steve moment in Stranger Things is special, but their bond blossomed even more in Season 3. Looking back on the whole series, it only proves how far they've come.
In Stranger Things' very first episode, Dustin lamented that Mike's sister was turning into a jerk. He agreed with Lucas that Nancy dating "that douchebag Steve Harrington" was the issue. In fact, Dustin and Steve didn't really interact at all in Season 1 — even after Steve became a part of the Dungeons & Dragons extended crew to help take on a Demogorgon.
But all that changed thanks to Dustin's desperation in Season 2. With his Demodog Dart on the loose and Mike, Will, and Lucas unresponsive, Dustin turned to the only ally he could find — Steve "The Hair" Harrington and his trusty, nail-covered bat. From there, a beautiful friendship was born.
In honor of their stronger-than-ever bond in Stranger Things 3, here are 21 of their best moments together. Fair warning: it's pretty much every time Gaten Matarazzo and Joe Keery have shared the screen, because it's genuinely hard to narrow it down.
1. The Start Of A Beautiful Friendship
Dustin was not going to take no for an answer when he needed help with Dart. "We have bigger problems than your love life," Dustin told Steve outside the Wheeler's house. Little did they know that the search for D'Artagnan would be the beginning of a beautiful bromance.
2. Their First Adventure Together
As Dustin instructed, Steve grabbed his bat to search for Dart at the Henderson's cellar. And while at this point, Steve was the cool guy and Dustin the young nerd, their back-and-forth repartee and silly chemistry was immediate.
3. Dating Advice
The next day, the guys were back at it. And as they put down bait for the Demodogs, Steve gave some pretty terrible dating advice to Dustin. On the flip side, he gave great hair tips — and these two dudes now shared their first secret (even if it was about Farrah Fawcett hairspray).
4. The First Time Steve Complimented Dustin
Dustin's face was so adorably proud when Steve praised his idea to use the junkyard as a trap for the Demodog.
5. When Dustin Stood Up To Steve
Steve might have called Dustin and Lucas "dickheads" when they were too busy mending their friendship to help him set up the Demodog trap, but Dustin proved Steve doesn't intimidate him when he replied, "All right, asshole!" If swapping insults is not the key to real friendship, what is?
6. When Steve Accidentally Revealed Dustin's Demodog Secret
Lucas and Dustin's friendship was on the rocks. So while Dustin tried to save face and act like he hadn't secretly kept the Demodog, Steve reminded us all that subtlety is not his strong suit and put his new bud in hot water with Lucas.
7. Dustin Taught Steve The Difference Between Germans & Nazis
Dustin explained that the Mind Flayer from Dungeons & Dragons considers itself to be the master race. But when Steve compared the Mind Flayer to the Germans, Dustin clarified that Steve meant the Nazis, which left Steve a bit embarrassed and Hopper totally exasperated.
8. The Head Pat
Dustin wanted to preserve the groundbreaking scientific discovery of the Demodog, so Steve graciously put the dead body in Mrs. Byers' fridge and topped the exchange off with a fatherly head pat.
9. Dustin Didn't Leave Steve Behind
Dustin was Steve's number one fan during his fight with Billy at the Byers' house, but the rest of the gang didn't want to bring their new babysitter/father figure with them to the tunnels. However, Dustin insisted. "They were gonna leave you behind, but I promised that you'd be cool, OK?" he told Steve as he came to — though it was hard for Steve to keep cool once he learned Max was driving them to lure the Demodogs away from the Gate.
10. Steve Protected Dustin
When Steve and Dustin were left in the Upside Down's tunnels, he had his new friend's back.
11. Steve Drove Dustin To The Snow Ball
Their bond was solidified when Steve drove Dustin to the Snow Ball. (Steve even came to the door of Dustin's house like a freaking gentleman!) And along with the help of his Farrah Fawcett hairspray, Steve gave Dustin a major confidence boost when it came to talking to girls — and the much-needed advice to stop the purring.
12. Their Epic Handshake
When Dustin came back from camp at the beginning of Stranger Things 3, Steve was beyond elated, and the two debuted their elaborate handshake.
13. A Role Reversal
Dustin and Steve discovered that they don't know what an "evil Russian" looks like when their '80s movie bias led them to a jazzercise class. (Plus, they both thought pig Latin was Russian, so good thing Robin was around.) But Dustin did school Steve on the primitive construct of popularity and gave him actually good dating advice. My, how the tables have turned.
14. Steve Gave Dustin A Boost
Before Erica climbed through the air ducts, Dustin gave it a shot since he lacks collar bones. But even with Steve shoving his butt, Dustin couldn't fit. The effort was worth it, though, simply to hear Dustin scream, "Touch my butt!"
15. Dustin's Death Pact
Steve wanted the rest of the Scoops Troop to step back when he opened the mysterious Russian boxes in the secret elevator, but Dustin refused, proclaiming, "If you die, I die."
16. Groin Gate
When the elevator plummeted them deep under the Starcourt Mall, Steve's first concern was his groin since a box full of the green liquid fell on it. Thankfully, Dustin was there to save the day (groin).
17. When Dustin Praised Steve's Fighting Abilities
Dustin acknowledged what every Stranger Things fan knows: that Steve kind of sucks at fighting. But his reputation can change now since, as Dustin pointed out, Steve successfully took out a Russian guard. "Dude! You did it! You won a fight!" Dustin proclaimed.
18. Steve Protected Dustin (Again)
19. Dustin Protected Steve
Dustin stayed true to his word and came back for Steve and Robin by taking out the evil Russian doctor with a Demogorgon prod.
20. Dustin Became The Dad
Steve was the unofficial dad (or mom) of the gang in Stranger Things 2, but this time around, Dustin had to step up to take care of the drugged Steve. Amidst his nose boops, Steve mockingly called Dustin "dad" twice — indicating that their role reversal was complete.
21. Steve Supported Dustin
Steve hesitated when Erica asked him if he thought Dustin's girlfriend was real. But while he expressed his doubts about Suzie to Robin, he never once admitted them to Dustin. Of course, it would have been better if Steve just trusted Dustin, but he at least gets points for not actively mocking him about it like everyone else. Plus, Steve and the rest of the crew had to face the consequence of doubting Dustin by listening to him sing "NeverEnding Story" with Suzie.
Steve ended Stranger Things 3 with his more age-appropriate friend Robin while Dustin said bye to the Byers and Eleven. But the new season was still chock full of Steve-Dustin moments that managed to make fans smile despite the dramatic circumstances. Here's to more of the glorious duo when Stranger Things eventually returns for Season 4.