27: “I’m Everything You Ever Were Afraid Of” – Stephen King & Stranger Things
STAND BY ME (1986) & STEPHEN KING’S IT (1990)
Stranger things have happened than what happened on Stranger Things — thanks in large part to one of horror’s most prolific names. In honor of the Netflix nostalgia-fest’s second season, When We Were Young takes a look at the 1980s oeuvre of its biggest influence, Stephen King.
Following two true blue horror masterpieces, Carrie and The Shining, King unleashed a wave of spine-tingling adaptations with varying degrees of schlock, from pyro pixie Drew Barrymore in Firestarter to the killer car in Christine. We discuss these titles and their influence on Stranger Things, then dwell on the 1986 coming-of-age classic Stand By Me, which blends some macabre moments with a more melancholy tale of boyhood, mortality, and purple vomit. Finally, we all float over to 1990, where Tim Curry’s fearsome fanged clown Pennywise awaits us in the sewer-dwelling TV movie It, recently remade as the most successful horror film of all time.
How does Stranger Things — which tries so very hard to emulate the 1980s — stack up against the stuff that actually scared us back then? Can looking and feeling like when we were young really capture the essence of when the When We Were Young hosts were young? If your brain is exploding from all the nostalgia-within-nostalgia nesting doll action happening here, great.
When We Were Young is a podcast devoted to the most beloved pop culture of our formative years (roughly 1980-2000). Join us for a look back to the past with a critical eye on how these movies, songs, TV shows and more hold up now. You can follow us on Twitter at @WWWYshow, on Facebook at @WWWYShow, you can Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and don’t forget to subscribe and review us on iTunes!
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