dadder things

Stranger Things Season 3, As Told by Mike and Nancy’s Clueless Dad

Gotta get those ZZZs.
Gotta get those ZZZs. Photo: Netflix

I love Ted Wheeler on Stranger Things. The dad of Mike, Nancy, and the other one has no idea what kind of show he’s in. His kids, of course, are in a sci-fi drama about monsters and psychics and how the ’80s didn’t get to Indiana until 1985. Ted Wheeler thinks he’s in … what? A bad remake of Revolutionary Road? A family sitcom about a dad who doesn’t like it when his kids swear?

Ted Wheeler cares about maybe three things: His La-Z-Boy, his lawn, and one of his kids (it varies day to day which one). If he can miss the entire plot of Stranger Things, what exactly fills his days instead of Stephen King–inspired horror and viscera monsters? Let’s find out. Here’s every episode of Stranger Things season three, as seen from the everydad perspective.

Chapter One: Suzie, Do You Copy?

The paper says they’re building one of those big indoor shopping malls on the outskirts of town. I hope there’s a decent pro shop. There’s supposed be a multiplex, which sounds neat. This town could use some fun after … well, whatever happened with Mike’s friend. The one that was dead, then not dead. Still can’t get a bead on that. We went to the funeral, for Pete’s sake! And then that business with Nancy’s gal pal? Kids deserve some fun.

Anyway, Karen did something new with her hair. It’s like, lighter or something. I think. I’m scared to say anything because the last time I asked if she’d gotten a haircut she said, “Yeah, a week ago!” Fool me once.

Photo: Netflix

Holly sure likes the pool. Karen’s taken her every day this week. Maybe we’ve finally got an athlete in the family, a little Esther Williams.

Chapter Two: The Mall Rats

This is the first time I’ve seen Mike at home all summer. I’d think he has a girlfriend, but what are the chances of that?

Meanwhile, a lot of folks are bellyaching about some good old-fashioned capitalism. Folks who ran stores on Main Street are protesting the mayor for letting the mall get built. But what’s Mayor Kline supposed to do, stop progress? This is America, we don’t stop malls from being built. That’s sounds more like Russian mayorism to me.

Chapter Three: The Case of the Missing Lifeguard

Photo: Netflix

Mike’s scrawny undead friend was playing pan pipes in my den, on my hi-fi, at seven in the gosh dang morning. I know the kid’s been through a lot, but jeezy creezy. I was trying to take my post-lawn-mowing nap, when — boom! — I’m at the Renaissance Fair. And it hasn’t stopped all day! Now I don’t know when I’m going to be able to take a nap. Post-lawn-mowing nap time is over, and we’re edging dangerously close to pre-dinner nap time.

Karen says Nancy broke up with the weird Frankenstein kid, who’s the older brother of the one playing the music in my den. That family is a curse on me, I tell ya. Karen tried to explain what happened with Nancy and the Frankenstein, but she kept calling people S-heads and it was very off-putting. I said, “Language,” in a mildly offended tone like I always do, but to no effect.

Chapter Four: The Sauna Test

Photo: Netflix

I guess Holly’s not so hot on swimming now. That’s a shame.

Chapter Five: The Flayed

Photo: Netflix

Red Dawn was on TV last night. What a crock. Totally implausible premise. The idea that the Soviets could violate U.S. airspace all the way to the middle of the country is baloney! One Russian lived in my den, and they sent five cars full of government agents. A whole cadre of Russians infiltrating the county right under our noses? Could never happen. Not in Reagan’s America.

Chapter Six: E Pluribus Unum

Photo: Netflix

Whole town is going to the fair tonight. Supposed to be meeting the kids there. I hope Karen doesn’t make me go on any rides that are too fast or tall.

Chapter Seven: The Bite

Photo: Netflix

I cannot in good conscience recommend the Starship 2,000 at the fair. But on the plus side, my new plaid pants were a big hit! God bless that new mall.

Chapter Eight: The Battle of Starcourt

Photo: Netflix

Kids today have no respect for other people’s bedtimes. Fireworks were going off all night. At one point, it sounded more like helicopters than teens setting off bottle rockets.

And apparently the mall burned down?! I bet it was one of those fireworks. They oughta make those things illegal. At least I got some snazzy new trousers before the whole thing went to heck in a hand basket, for criminy’s sake. Thirty-something people died, which is horrible. But maybe it will teach them that there’s no reason to go shopping so late at night. I didn’t even know the mall stayed open that late, and look where it gets them. I’m just glad my kids keep sane hours and stay out of trouble.

Stranger Things Season 3, As Told by Mike’s Clueless Dad