‘Stranger Things’ Season 2 Episode 5 Recap: Dig Dug

Eleven finds her mother. Dustin enlists Steve to help take care of Dart. Will saves the day, but what will it cost him?

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…Well that escalated quickly.

The first season of Stranger Things wasted no time diving into the terror and the drama, but the second season has taken its time. And personally, I love it. But now things are in full swing again. Everything is happening all at once, and I have SO. MANY. EMOTIONS. There’s a lot to talk about with Chapter Five, so sit back, relax, and let’s recap!

Nancy And Jonathan Seek Help Outside Of Hawkins

Two of our favourite Hawkins’ teens are determined to destroy the Hawkins Laboratory and expose them. Like all of us, they want #JusticeForBarb, and are willing to do anything to get it. In Chapter Four, Nancy got Dr. Owens on tape confirming their part in both Will’s disappearance and Barb’s death, so they decided to take it to someone who could do something about it. And that someone turned out to be Murray Bauman, who you may remember from earlier this season. Murray is a detective who knows that something fishy is going on in Hawkins, he just isn’t sure what. But now, thanks to Nancy and Jonathan, he knows everything.

Unfortunately, as Murray points out, the tape isn’t enough. It’s easy to push under the rug. Certain things are so scary, so unbelievable, that the public at large can’t handle it. And so they won’t believe it. And once their word is questioned once, it will never be taken seriously. This has to be done right and it has to be done right the first time. And as Murray makes himself a drink, he realizes the answer is right in front of him. The solution is to water it down. Dilute the story, make it more believable. It’s still scary, still something the people will want justice for, but something they’ve seen before too. Like a leak from the lab. And the people who killed Barb will finally pay for what they did.

Also Outside of Hawkins, Eleven Finally Finds Her Mom

Thanks to a very helpful truck driver, Eleven makes her way out of Hawkins and arrives at 515 Larrabee, her mother’s house. She knocks on the door over and over again until Becky, Terry’s sister, answers the door telling Eleven that they don’t want whatever she’s selling. She proceeds to slam the door and lock it. Eleven hesitates before using her power to unlock the chain and make her way into the house. Becky looks on in surprise and slight horror, but Eleven isn’t threatening this time. As she says, she just wants to see Mama.

Probably thanks to the demonstration of her powers, Becky believes that Eleven is Jane almost instantly. She actually offers for Eleven to stay with them, if she wants. But although Becky is welcoming her with open arms, Terry, unfortunately, has no recollection. She continues to mutter the same words under her breath, staring blankly into space. And we finally found out why.

Terry isn’t completely lost…it’s more that she’s trapped. But she is able to use the lights to communicate to her daughter, letting her know that she wants to talk. Eleven uses the static from the television to send herself back to the darkness, allowing Becky to watch. And to be fair, though she’s kind of freaked, Becky is handling the situation pretty fantastically. Your sister’s miscarried daughter who also has telekinesis just walked through the door and then tells you she can travel to another dimension to talk with her. That’s a lot to go through in one afternoon. Respect for Becky.

Anyhow, Eleven travels to the darkness and finds her mother sitting in the rocking chair, still muttering. She tries to coax her out of it, telling her that she’s home now. This snaps something in Terry. She looks at her daughter and says, completely straight-faced, “No”. And then she shows Eleven exactly what she went through years ago.

When Terry went into labor, it was the Doctors from the lab that took care of her. She was the only one in the room that wasn’t working for the lab, which means her word was easy to deny. Who would believe a hysterical mother who just miscarried, right? But Terry wasn’t going to give up that easily. A little ways down the road, she takes a gun and goes to the Hawkins Laboratory to deal with Brenner and get her daughter back. She shoots a security guard in the process before finding her daughter’s room, which has a rainbow painted outside of it. She sees her playing with another child before she’s dragged away, taken to a room where she’s strapped down. They’re going to electrocute her. The last thing Terry hears is Brenner telling them to crank it up to 450. And it seems that this is why Terry continues to repeat the same words over and over again. She’s stuck in these moments. Giving birth, losing her daughter, getting the gun, seeing her daughter’s room, and being electrocuted. And now Eleven knows, and chances are, there’s not much even she can do to help.

Back In Hawkins, Dustin Deals With Dart

Things in Hawkins are as crazy as ever, and as per usual, our favourite group of kids are at the heart of it. But poor Dustin is currently dealing with a Code Red completely alone. He manages to lure Dart out of the house and into the basement, where he traps him. He did kill the cat after all, and, you know, is kind of a mini demogorgon! He cleans up the mess and tries to contact Mike, Lucas, and Will for hours, to no avail. Eventually he gives up and just bikes over to Mike’s house. But still no luck. Ted, Mike’s dad, opens the door and informs him that neither Mike or Nancy are there. “Our children don’t live here anymore,” he says, completely deadpan. It’s a fantastic interaction to watch, but still leaves Dustin to deal with the demogorgon alone. That is, until we see an unlikely and familiar face…

Dustin And Steve: Hawkins Latest Dynamic Duo

Steve pulls up to the Wheeler’s house and comes out with bright red roses in hand, ready to give the most epic apology ever to Nancy. As he goes over his apology, Dustin calls out to him. He asks if those are for Mr. or Mrs. Wheeler. Steve looks from the roses, to Dustin, to the house, confused. “No?” he says. Dustin runs up to the car and opens the passenger door, telling him Nancy isn’t there, and it doesn’t matter where she is. They’ve got much bigger problems to deal with. “You still have that bat? The one with the nails?” Steve asks why and Dustin tells him that he’ll explain it on the way. They’re going, and they’re going now.

Okay, this is just beginning, but this is already one of my favourite team-ups yet. Everyone loves Dustin for obvious reasons, and to be honest, Steve has always been one of my favourites as well. And if the bat’s coming back into play, this means that bad-ass, save the day, hero Steve is making another appearance. And I, for one, am here for it.

With Mike’s Help, Will Taps Into His Full Potential

Will has felt like an outsider all season. He’s felt like a freak, now more than ever. And I think he blames himself for anything that the monster does. He feels like he’s part of the monster. But Mike tells him to look at it another way. He’s like a top secret spy, gathering information on both the monster and the Upside Down. And this gives Will some peace of mind. Enough, in fact, to completely tap into his resources and discover that Hopper has gone missing. And he’s in a lot of danger.

In the last episode, Hopper was able to find the tunnels/vines that Will drew. The problem is that they’re right out of the Upside Down, which means two things. One, it’s super hazardous, and two, everything is trying to kill you. Hopper is poisoned by the fumes and proceeds to be trapped and dragged into the ground by the vines, barely holding on for dear life. So it’s up to Will, Mike, and Joyce to find him. Oh, and don’t forget Bob!

Bob comes over with some brain teasers in hopes to make Will feel better. But currently, as the house is covered in Will’s drawings, Joyce meets him outside and tells him it isn’t a good time. Bob shrugs it off and gives her a kiss goodbye, joking that they don’t call him Bob the Brain for nothing. And this gives Joyce an idea. She brings him inside in hopes that he can help figure out exactly what the drawings are. They know where Hopper is on the pages, they just don’t know what those pages represent. But Bob doesn’t understand. He pulls Joyce aside, and as he’s telling her that none of this is good for Will, something clicks. He understands. It’s a map, representing rivers, lakes, and underground workings. It’s a map of Hawkins. And with Bob’s help, they have an idea of where to go.

While they’re driving, Bob tells them that they’re in the vicinity, but there’s no way of knowing exactly where to go. That’s where Will steps in. Something tells him that they have to go right, and Joyce listens. Lo and behold, they’re right behind Hopper’s car. Joyce and Bob go to the hole and climb in, shouting for Hopper. They find the cigarette he left at the fork in the tunnels and because of that, they’re able to find him just in time. And they aren’t the only ones either!

Thanks to the suspicious dirt samples, the Hawkins Laboratory scientists pull up to the scene just after Joyce and Bob head down. They’re able to meet them all down there and get them back up. Everything seems to be going fantastically, right? That is until they start to torch the tunnels. The moment the flames hit the vines, Will clutches his stomach, groaning, clearly in pain. And as the flames fill the tunnels more, Will elicits a high pitched shriek and falls to the ground, convulsing. This isn’t a seizure, nor is it completely out of pain. Will looks straight up possessed. And quite frankly, this was one of the creepiest moments of the season yet. As a film critic, I’m applauding the scene. As a fan, I’M REALLY WORRIED.

Chapter Five was explosive, to say the least, and it’s only going to get crazier from here! Between the amazing duo that is Steve and Dustin, Eleven finding out her true identity, and Will being kind of possessed by a shadow monster, big things are coming. Not to mention the fact that Lucas has told Max everything. From Eleven and her superpowers to the truth of Will’s disappearance. She’s all caught up. Does this mean she’s officially a member of the gang? Stay tuned for a recap of Chapter Six coming soon! For other recaps and all Stranger Things updates, check out our Stranger Things Page here!

As always, thanks for reading, and feel free to geek out with me in the comments!

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