Stranger Things sprung up suddenly, having been nowhere on our radar of cool things. And what a great surprise it was. It was a nostalgic throwback to 80s sci-fi and mystery films like E.T. or The Goonies that basically starred a group of kids and turned out to be really, really good.
Now that we’ve all binge watched Season One, we have a lot of questions. One of the big ones is just what exactly is the Upside-Down and why does a scary monster live there? For that matter, just what the hell is the Monster supposed to be? Evil demon? Predatory animal? Alien from another dimension?
As it turns out, the actor who played the Demogorgon doesn’t really have any idea either.
“I feel like the monster maybe is more mushroom, which is kind of between plant and animal,” said actor Mark Steger in an interview with Vice. “Mushroom DNA is more similar to animal DNA than to plant DNA, [but the monster is] something else. He bleeds—or maybe they bleed, or she bleeds. I don’t know what pronoun to use for the monster! But it feels like a little bit of both [plant and animal] to me.”
We did see weird vines get inserted into victims mouths in the show, but it never occurred to us that the monster might be part plant. We’re also not entirely sure if Eleven actually got rid of it for good, or if the two of them were just transported to some other dimension (the Downside-Up?). Season Two of the show will almost certainly get made (although Netflix hasn’t made it official yet), so we may see more of the Monster yet.
Steger said it only took about 40 minutes to get into the full Monster costume and that they used different versions based on the scene. There was both an animatronic head and a stunt head, depending on what was needed.
“It was like I was part puppet. I was part machine. I was part human, animating the whole thing,” Steger added.