Lucas’s younger sister Erica Sinclair was originally going to have a much smaller role. The actress, Priah Ferguson, was just a local hire the Duffer brothers made in Atlanta, expecting to be little more than a background character to fill out Lucas’s family. She wasn’t supposed to be in season two as much as she was, but she started stealing scenes.
The brothers called her very “GIF-able,” as long as that’s a word. She gets a lot more screen time in season three (and four) since it makes perfect sense for a young kid like her to enjoy spending lots of time at the mall.
A First Role
Since there were so many kids, most of the actors and actresses didn't have much to their acting resumes, but one actress got her start on “Stranger Things.” It was none other than Shannon Purser, who played Barb of “#justiceforBarb” fame. Yes, the doomed friend of Nancy Wheeler was Shannon's very first acting role, and Shannon was vocal about how excited she was.
To her, it was the biggest thing she had ever done, and the idea of getting the role was super cool. Despite only being alive in the first season, Barb is an important part of the show, even getting mentioned in the fourth season.
Not After Midnight
Another eighties storyline that season two seems to be copying/parodying/creating an homage to is that of “Gremlins.” The gang finds a small, strange creature and starts to care for it, watching as it grows bigger, only to discover to their horror that it is, in fact, a young version of the creature that nearly doomed them in the first season.
In “Gremlins,” Billy and Gizmo get along well, but it becomes clear that Gizmo is far more dangerous than Billy first assumes. So, too, do the kids of Hawkins realize they have been harboring one of the denizens of the Upside-Down, which does a lot to move the plot along.
The Breakfast Duo
It isn't confirmed that this is what the Duffer brothers were going for when they created the scene, but there's one part of season three that seems reminiscent of “The Breakfast Club.” Steve and Robin are confessing things to each other in a pair of bathroom stalls after getting away from violent enemies.
A similar scene occurs in “The Breakfast Club,” which has the five members lounging on the floor of their detention space, telling each other secrets. Maybe it's just a coincidence, but Robin and Claire Standish seem to be seated in similar poses. Steve and John Bender also seem to have similar positions.
Keeping Things Rolling
With season three of the show in the bag, Netflix had a mind to keep the momentum going. They wanted the Duffer brothers to immediately jump into filming the next season, perhaps aware of how much longer and more intricate season four would be. Filming a show is a huge undertaking, and the Duffers, the producers, and the cast decided that it was best to take a break to do some other stuff and refresh.
It might have been for the best – with worldly events of the years after season three, who knows if the fourth season would have even come out any sooner. Lots of projects had to be shut down, and “Stranger Things” might have been one of them.