Stranger Things Halloween Special
Written by: Michael Moreci
Illustrated by: Todor Hristov
Colored by: Chris O’Halloran
It’s Halloween night in Hawkins, Indiana and Will, Mike, Lucas and Dustin gather in Castle Byers to eat candy and scare each other with a spooky story, revealing the quaint town’s deepest kept secret: the Child Eater of Hawkins.
* Comic tie-in with Netflix’s hit show, Stranger Things!
* Takes place six days before season 1 begins!
Normally, when I say things like “nothing special” or “has been done a hundred times before”, it’s not such good news. Thankfully though, the Stranger Things Halloween Special has found a way to be about more than the story it’s telling or how it’s telling it. This comic does a great job of capturing the look and feel of the popular Netflix series, and fans of the show are likely to enjoy this light-hearted holiday issue.
And that’s impressive to me, because this exact story really has been done a hundred times before. You’d probably be hard-pressed to think of any long-running show that hasn’t done something similar – the characters sit around a campfire and tell scary stories. It all even starts off with the exact same story most of them told – the perennial favorite hook handed stranger. So, as far as story goes, there is pretty much nothing new to this comic, and I’m a little surprised that it’s still so much fun. The great thing about the Stranger Things setting is that it allows the reader to think this might actually be another true horror story these poor kids go through. There’s a very real sense of dread for the reader to enjoy, and even in such a hackneyed setting you’re not sure the characters are going to be ok. It captures the “this can’t really be happening” from the show very well.
It actually captures quite a lot of the show very well. The art is well done and the characters are instantly recognizable. The comic is a little more gritty than the show, but that’s perfectly in line with the tales the kids would be telling, and that’s a nice touch to have included. Some of the backgrounds are a little sparse, but that’s easy enough to forgive as all the important details are there.
All in all, as long as you’re not expecting any real story or character development, and are already a fan of the series, you’ll probably have a great time with the Halloween Special. Just don’t think too hard about when this would have taken place, or that these children have likely already survived way worse stories than anything they could ever tell, and you’ll have a good time.
A Fun Romp with the Familiar Gang
There's not much special or unique about the issue, but that doesn't keep it from being a good time with characters who feel like old friends. Not sure why non-fans would care at all, but any one who needs a little booster shot of Stranger Things while waiting for the latest season should be happy.