Get ready to cry into your Eggos. As first pointed out by BuzzFeed, Eleven’s blue hair tie from Hopper is alive and well in the new Stranger Things Season 3 trailer (though, sadly, the same can’t be said for poor Bob). Sure, a hair accessory seems like a minute detail at first glance, but if you think back to Season 2, the small, blue elastic had major meaning.
Why was it so significant, you ask? Here’s a quick Stranger Things 2 refresher: After Sara, Jim Hopper’s (David Harbour) now-deceased young daughter, began losing her hair from her cancer treatments, the Hawkins sheriff started wearing her blue hair tie around his wrist. Even after Sara’s death, Hopper held onto the memento, and could be seen in various Stranger Things scenes wearing it around his wrist or even twisting it through his fingers. Clearly, it was one of his most prized and meaningful possessions that he never let go.
That is until the end of Season 2 when he gifts the hair tie to Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) — the telekinetic girl he’d taken in to hide and fiercely protect — before her big date with Mike (Finn Wolfhard) at the school’s Snow Ball. If there was any doubt that Hopper thought of Eleven as a daughter or lacked any trust in her following her running away from home, that emotional gesture removed any hint of doubt. Of course, that symbolic moment seemed to be cemented in a more formal sense when Dr. Owens (Paul Reiser) gave Hopper a birth certificate for "Jane Hopper" (AKA Eleven) at the end of the season.
Now that viewers have seen Eleven wearing the hair tie throughout the trailer, what could that mean for Stranger Things 3? Well, first, it seems that the adoption that was left somewhat ambiguous last year, actually was legit — and the adorable, sometimes-at-odds duo are as tight as ever. Since the new season also appears to center on the theme of growing up (and not just because The Who’s "Teenage Wasteland" is playing during the sneak peek), there’s sure to be plenty more father-daughter moments — both tender and and teenage angst-filled — on the horizon.
In fact, one such (presumable) moment, can already be seen in the newest Season 3 preview. In one moment, fans hear an emotional Hopper says, first in voiceover, then onscreen: "It is important to me that you feel safe. I want you to feel like this can still be your home." While the next person viewers see is Joyce (Winona Ryder), there’s so much jumping around that it very well could have been Eleven that he was talking to in that scene.
In real life, Harbour feels similarly towards Brown as well. "I try to protect her as much as I can," the actor told People last year. "My hope for Millie always and my focus with her always, is that I want her to be an artist, so when I’m in the nursing home, she can bring me her Oscars so I can look at them and stuff like that."
Even if new monsters arrive from the Upside Down (or wherever), at least fans will have more of this loving relationship to look forward to in Season 3.
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