At one point in season three, a few of Dustin’s friends surprise him in the neighborhood, and, in a moment of panic, he hits them with the bottle of hairspray he had been carrying. This hairspray has a dual purpose.
The first is as a reference to Farrah Fawcett, the eighties bombshell who was headlining “Charlie’s Angels” at the time, but it’s also a callback to a conversation Dustin had with Steve, during which Steve tells Dustin to get some hairspray and tame his mop. It seems as if Dustin listened to his ersatz big brother’s advice, even if his friends were on the business end of the spray at one point.
Making It Look Authentic
A lot of people have noticed that while the show uses modern filming techniques, it still has a certain eighties quality to it. This is due to the show's colorist adding scanned film grain to each and every frame. The Duffer brothers requested it to add a certain vintage vibe to the show, which was helped by the camera work, blocking, and sets.
People who are fans of classic eighties films probably felt right at home, even though the twenty-teens were already half-over when the show first arrived. A light touch was required so that it didn't overpower the show, but it still had to have an effect.
In the first episode of season 2, Will opens his front door to see a twisted landscape, roiling clouds, fingers of red lightning, and a dangerous, powerful figure. The red light that shines around him, and the scene beyond the door are similar to another classic film, “Close Encounters of the Third Kind.”
Little Barry Guiler opens his door to discover something very similar to the big shot from “Stranger Things.” Very likely, that's exactly what the Duffer brothers intended. While the elements aren't exactly the same, the framing and shot composition are undeniably similar. The newer version has a bit more of a pop to it, but that doesn't mean the original didn't do a great job.
Ideas From the Cast
Each of the main kids from the cast has unique styles and looks, despite all of them looking truly from the eighties. Caleb McLaughlin, who played Lucas, thought that his outfit didn't have enough personality in it, so he brought up the idea of wearing a bandana during season one. It gave the character a ready-to-rumble look, befitting Lucas's gung-ho attitude.
The Duffer brothers have gone on record saying the kids often have great ideas about the show, and this is one of those times. Such a simple addition that does so much to detail the character.
It seems like most of the main cast are good friends, and that comes as no surprise. All of the kids get along great, and even the adults fit in well. The group has a big group chat they've named “Stranger Texts,” but their phones aren't often seen on set – not even when the cameras aren't rolling.
Like the eighties kids the cast is portraying, they prefer playing board games and cards while they're waiting for their turns in front of the camera. It's nice to hear that not everybody is glued to their phones these days.