It’s time to get inked like Eleven.
People are freaking out about Netflix’s Stranger Things. Why? Because it’s really damn good. The series is so well done that it is inspiring people to show their love for the series in one of the most extreme ways possible — fan tattoos.
That’s right. People are getting Stranger Things tattoos.
And they’re AWESOME.
People are getting matching tattoos of Eleven’s wrist ink (her “011” branding), they’re getting tattoos with the Christmas lights saying “R-U-N,” and they’re even getting tattoos of fan-favorite characters like loveable, toothless Dustin ("It's called cleidocranial dysplasia!"). Yes, they really love this show.
And while tattoos might seem like an over-the-top reaction to something you binge-watched over a weekend this summer, they show that the eight-episode throwback horror series really struck a nerve with viewers.
Created by the Duffer Brothers, Stranger Things is a beautiful piece of 1980s nostalgia, but that nostalgia only manifests in the best possible ways. It’s not just some piece of fan-service that pointlessly references genre movies and packs itself with “Hey, remember this?” moments. Instead, Stranger Things does something far more daring — it looks back at all of the elements of classic 1980s storytelling, emulates them, and tries to transform them into something scary and new.
Surprisingly, it works. It works WAY better than it should.
Yes, the show is packed with nods to iconic material like E.T., Poltergeist, early Stephen King novels, Stand By Me, 80s slasher films, and The Goonies (to name a few), but Stranger Things doesn’t just cut-and-paste those elements into one big “I Love the 80s” montage.
Instead, it uses those cultural hallmarks to tell a damn good period piece — a pre-digital campfire story all about a boy who goes missing in a small town in Indiana and how his friends and family all converge on the supernatural threat that might’ve had a hand in his disappearance.
So I get it. I totally get why someone would want to get a tattoo of something so fun. This is where being a geek is basically the best thing ever. Geek culture not only allows you to go totally overboard in your fandom, it downright encourages you to.
All that said, here are 10 of the most epic Stranger Things tattoos we could find online. (I’m sure there will be way, WAY more before the second season hits Netflix.)
This is a pretty awesome matching tattoo — honoring the wrist tattoo that gave Stranger Things’ poor telekinetic heroine her name.
This one isn’t technically a tattoo yet (but we’d wager it will be soon). It was designed by Quyen Dihn of Parlor Tattoo Prints, who creates pop culture art prints in the style of tattoo art. (Funnily enough, her tattoo-inspired designs are frequently turned into actual tattoos.)
This design cleverly brings together a lot of Stranger Things elements — Eleven’s name, a lightbulb (electrical disturbances are a big part of the series), and the 20-sided role-playing dice.
We’re so happy that this quote from the hilariously world-weary Chief Hopper has become so popular.
“Mornings are for coffee and contemplation” — Yes, they are, Hopper. Yes, they are.
Love this spooky design with Mike and Eleven riding their bikes through the spooky woods of Stranger Things. (And is that the Demigorgon rising up below them?)
There’s a recurring theme of X-Mas lights spelling out secret messages in Stranger Things, so we love this design that captures another iconic line from the series — “Friends don’t lie.”
This is another hugely creative design that weaves together a few different elements from the show — namely, the AV Club’s ham radio and the lyrics from The Clash’s “Should I Stay or Should I Go?,” which plays a BIG role in the show.
One of the most jaw-dropping moments of Stranger Things involves Winona Ryder (who RULES) getting a sudden message to “R-U-N.” This tattoo commemorates that moment nicely.
Seriously. Eleven, one of the tragic heroes of Stranger Things, is the most kick-butt female heroine since Charlize Theron’s Furiosa in Mad Max: Fury Road.
Gaten Matarazzo’s Dustin is one of the breakout stars of Stranger Things. His character is such a loveable dork, a dork who exhibits surprisingly strength and loyalty throughout the series. We’re so happy that fans are getting him inked on their skin.