Who was the dumbest, smartest, and most heroic in ‘Stranger Things’ season 2

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Netflix

Stranger Things 2

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Netflix

Warning: Spoilers for season two of “Stranger Things.” If you aren’t caught up on the series, read at your own risk.

Season two of “Stranger Things” brought back all of our favorite Hawkins, Indiana residents, and it introduced some new ones.

This time around, we got to know minor characters from season one like Steve, Lucas, and Dustin.

This season was also packed with character development, scary monsters, big hair, and teenage heartbreak.

So we’ve rounded up which characters were the smartest, dumbest, luckiest, and more in our power rankings.

Here’s the “Stranger Things” power rankings based on what we saw in season two:


Jim Hopper — the dumbest, best dancer

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Netflix

Hopper makes some questionable choices in season two. His plan to keep Eleven in a cabin makes sense. He’s protecting her from the people hunting her down. But he probably should have expected a teenager with literal superpowers to retaliate and want to see the sun for a second.

Hopper also jumps right into the Upside Down all alone. And instead of immediately climbing out back to regular earth, Hopper keeps going – and going, and going, all by himself, until a monster wraps around his entire body.

Hopper likes to work alone, but he’s seen what the Upside Down can do before, and he honestly is lucky that he is saved by good timing.

The best thing Hopper does this season is a cute little dance in a scene with Eleven, which has already turned into a meme.


Steve Harrington — best babysitter, best hair

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Netflix

Steve spends the bulk of season two running around with unlikely pal Dustin. Then he is in charge of Lucas, Mike, Max ,and Dustin while the adults and other teens go off and do the real work.

Turns out, heartbroken Steve is good at babysitting with the help of his assistant: his spiked baseball bat that he uses to fight demodogs and protect the children.

Steve also, as always, has the best hair. In season two he comes out strong with a bigger, better, more 1984 hairstyle, thanks to Farrah Fawcett hairspray.

Thank you for being Steve, Steve!


Eleven — most emo

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Netflix

Emo wasn’t really a thing yet in 1984, but it’s the best way to describe Eleven in season two.

Hopper is basically her dad now, but he has a set of rules for her. She can’t leave the cabin, and she can’t even open the curtains. He does treat her to Eggo waffles every night, but that’s really the only thing she has going for her.

After spending all day, every day, alone confined to a small space, Eleven starts to get moody. She is becoming a teenager, after all. So she has an intense fight with Hopper, goes to Chicago, and comes back wearing all black with heavy eyeliner to match. She looks like, in Hopper’s words, “some kind of MTV punk.” The most surprising thing here is that Hopper knows what MTV is.

Now, thanks to Hopper and Dr. Owens, Eleven might get to be an ordinary kid who inevitably turns on her parental figure for a few years.


Joyce Byers — most likely to cover her home in something

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Netflix

It’s almost as if the writers get together before they write out a season and say, “OK, so what item will Joyce cover her home in this year?”

Last year, it was Christmas lights. This year, it’s Will’s tunnel drawings. What will it be next, Joyce? Honestly, we hope it’s nothing. She’s been through too much and we really want the Upside Down to leave her alone forever.


Bob — most heroic, new Barb

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Netflix

Poor Bob. Once we get to know him and care about him, he immediately becomes demodog meat – kind of like Barb in season one.

Bob, played by Sean Astin (“The Lord of the Rings” trilogy, “The Goonies”), is quite annoying at first, as Joyce’s boring new boyfriend. He loves technology, Kenny Rogers, the movie “Mr. Mom,” and struggles to connect with Will and especially Jonathan.

Bob’s advice indirectly causes the shadow monster to take Will as a host. But once Bob gets involved in the Upside Down drama, he proves himself as a hero. And then he’s gone.

We’re still not completely sure if Bob takes a hit for the team. In his death scene, it’s hard to tell if he is being stupid by just standing there, or if he is sacrificing himself so Joyce, Hopper, Mike, and Will can get out of Hawkins Lab. Either way, he’s the reason they got out. Although we barely got to know him, we’ll miss him just as much as the internet misses Barb.


Mike Wheeler —most romantic

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Netflix

Mike takes a backseat in season two so we get to know his friends Lucas and Dustin a little more. But the time Mike does spend on screen is mostly devoted to his relationship with Eleven. He misses her, and calls her on his walkie talkie every night for 353 days. Once they reunite for the first time in over a year, they almost kiss. But they’re stopped, because they have some pressing Upside Down matters to take care of first.

At the end of the season, Mike asks Eleven to dance at the Snow Ball and it’s adorable. We wish nothing but love and happiness for their future, but if that happens this show would be really boring.


Dustin Henderson — most impulsive, most dramatic

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Netflix

Dustin is lovable, but annoying. He can’t help but turn every little thing that happens to him into the most dramatic event to ever unfold on planet Earth. It’s why we love him, but also why he frustrates us. Without even thinking that maybe it’s a monster from the Upside Down, Dustin impulsively takes Dart into his home. Oops! Bad idea, Dustin. Really bad idea (even though it kind of works out in the end).

Dustin’s time with Steve makes him want his hair, which works on Steve, but not anyone else. The scene at the Snow Ball when Dustin tries to get a girl to dance with him is more tense and dramatic than anything else the entire season, and we’re really glad Nancy is nice enough to notice he is lonely, despite using Farrah Fawcett spray.


Max — the coolest person in Hawkins

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Netflix

Max is the best at arcade games, she deals with her verbally abusive stepbrother daily, and she drives a car at night at age 13. Max is a nerd, but the coolest nerd in Hawkins because she doesn’t care what people think. She’s confident, brave, and accepts the madness of the Upside Down enough to help solve all the drama. She might even be cooler than Steve (sorry Steve!).


Lucas Sinclair —the smartest, most growth

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Netflix

Lucas gets a lot of screen time in season two, and we’re really glad he does. His instincts help the gang a lot in the end. He is immediately drawn to Max, and knows he can trust her, and she ends up being an essential part of closing the gate to the Upside Down.

Lucas also doesn’t trust Dustin after Dart goes missing, and is right not to. When Dustin reveals that he found him and kept him, Lucas yells at him. Somebody had to. When they’re trying to figure out Will’s message at the Byers’ house, Lucas also leads the Morse code decoding.


Billy — the worst, most mysterious

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Netflix

After a whole season, we’re still not sure what Billy’s deal is. He has an abusive father and he really, really hates Lucas, but we never find out exactly why, making us wonder what we’ll discover in season three.


Dart — most unlikely hero

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Netflix

In addition to a constant craving for 3 Musketeers bars and cats, the demodog Dart – who start off kind of adorable but quickly morphs into a slimy horrible monster – plays an important role in the finale.

Dart proves himself in the end by letting the gang pass through the tunnels while he slowly eats a 3 Musketeers bar. If Dart weren’t so occupied with his savior, Dustin, and his favorite food, half the characters on the show would’ve been devoured in the Upside Down. Thanks, Dart!


Will Byers — the unluckiest

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Netflix

Will Byers can’t catch a break. We quickly learn that since being rescued, he’s been haunted by the Upside Down. Kids at school call him “zombie boy” because they think he came back from the dead, and everyone treats him differently now, even his best friends (except for the great and wonderful Bob).

When Will tries to make the shadow monster go away, it takes over Will’s body. After he is rid of the shadow monster and has a good normal time at the Snow Ball (a girl asks him to dance!), the camera flips to reveal the shadow monster hovering over Hawkins Middle School in the Upside Down. Will this poor child ever live a peaceful life?


Eight’s team of punks — most pointless

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Netflix

When Eleven finds her her “sister” Eight (also known as Kali or Roman) in Chicago, she also meets her team of punks who help her kill bad men. Like Eleven, they’re all misfits who’ve had bad people do bad things to them. But that’s about it.

Beyond their very 1980s punk looks, they serve little narrative purpose. They time they spend on screen makes us wonder why we aren’t spending time with the people we actually like and care about in Hawkins. Like Steve and his hair, for example.


Barb — most dead

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Netflix

Sorry, Barb fans. Barb is dead. She was always dead, and she is still dead. But Nancy and Jonathan avenge her death with the help of investigative journalist


Jonathan Byers — most emotional

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Netflix

Jonathan is a sensitive guy. He likes music that speaks to him and that music is not Kenny Rogers, thank you very much. Jonathan is really close to his brother, Will, and will do anything to make him happy and safe, including planning a conspiracy to take down Hawkins Lab. Jonathan plays a very important role when everyone is trying to get the monster out of Will at the Byers house: He reminds Will of the first time he heard “Should I Stay or Should I Go” by The Clash, which helps Will give his secret message via Morse code.

Jonathan is so attached to his brother that he tries to stop his mother Joyce from hurting him when they’re burning the the shadow monster out of Will in Hopper’s cabin. Thankfully Joyce stops Jonathan, the shadow monster leaves Will’s body, and Will turns out okay.


Shadow monster — luckiest

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Netflix

The shadow monster somehow manages to live, so we consider him (or her) really, really lucky.


Dr. Owens —most withholding, most ignorant

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Netflix

Dr. Owens is the new face of Hawkins Lab. He’s a little creepy but also shockingly nice. In his session with Will, who he says is suffering from Upside Down PTSD, he asks Will to tell him what his favorite Halloween candy is. Dr. Owens seems like just another terrible Hawkins Lab employee who will lie to keep the secret from coming out, but by the end of the season he’s teamed up with Hopper to protect Eleven so she can live a normal life without being hunted for experimentation.


Nancy Wheeler — most supportive friend, most likely to become a journalist

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Courtesy Netflix

Nancy starts off the season helping Steve with his college essays. She edits his work and leaves him feeling pretty insecure about his ability to get in. But although on the surface she is acting like an ordinary teenager, deep down she’s really disturbed by the fact that she can’t even tell Barb’s parents what happened to their daughter.

After her drunken rant on Halloween and break-up with Steve, Jonathan helps her come up with a plan to get justice for Barb. Nancy and Jonathan successfully trick the folks at Hawkins Lab so they can get a recording that will implicate them, and finally give some closure to Barb’s parents.

If Barb were around, she’d be really proud of what her best friend Nancy does to avenge her death.


Murray Bauman — best matchmaker, justice for Barb

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Netflix

With the help of Nancy, Jonathan, and a lot of vodka, conspiracy theorist Murray Bauman comes up with a plan to get justice for Barb.

He also brings Nancy and Jonathan together. First Murray assumes they’re together, but they say “no.” Then he suggests that they’re into each other but they say “no.” But in the middle of the night they run into each other and hook up, or whatever teenagers called it in the 1980s.