In appearance the gigantic spider like beast dubbed ‘Shadow Monster’, that dedicates its existence to hunting down Will Byers, shows no resemblance to any mythical creatures we know of in popular or ancient culture. Not that we’ve seen anyway.
We can say however, it’s hundreds of feet tall and terrifying.
All we really know is that Eleven opened a gateway to another place known as the ‘Upside Down’, whilst undergoing psychic experimentation under the evil eye of Dr Brenner.
From this hellish passageway we’ve seen a whole host of nightmarish demons stalking the once quiet town of Hawkins, looking for food in the form of animals or humans.
What is it?
The monster in question demonstrates similar qualities to a virus, as pointed out during the second season. It needs a host, it needs to be in a specific environment to survive, it’s suggested to be a hive mind that has control over every creature that emerges from the upside down.
With this in mind however, It doesn’t really fit into the standard virus category or demon/monster label either. It’s quite unique. You could even say it lacks a physical presence due to how it behaves & transitions through its surroundings.
Maybe if we look at the effects of it’s existence on the people of Hawkins, this might give us a clearer picture as to what exactly this thing is. They’re quite obvious as well.
It causes distress, turmoil, fear, anger, despair, cognitive despondency, self doubt, loss and even physical pain.
These are all very common traits of mental health issues rife throughout modern society brought on by stress, work life, relationship problems and people’s own demons from past afflictions.
An even more intriguing hypothesis, as this gate or manifestation all started with Eleven whilst induced in an altered state of mind during an experiment, could this monster not be a reflection of Elevens very own demons brought to life?
Are these just visions?
We saw a brief appearance from Eight In this season. Another girl gifted with a special ability, an ability to convince others of seeing objects or events that only exist in the mind of her target.
It’s more than plausible Eleven could unknowingly possess this ability which is causing the inhabitants of the quiet town to see her external projections of torment.
Could the closing of the Upside Down gate by Eleven be a visual metaphor that portrays her mentally resolving past issues?
She is, after all, the only one that actually holds any power over this evil presence. It would certainly stand to reason that she is also responsible for it’s creation, one way or another.
Considering El has the power to close an eternal gate from hell, she could easily conjure these types of manifestations that seem very, very real to the small town folk of Hawkins, Indiana.
Or, it could just be a genuine bat shit crazy monster from the darkest depths of the underworld!
BRING ON STRANGER THINGS SEASON THREE!
Stranger Things 2 | Final Trailer [HD] | Netflix