She may have only had a little screen time in Stranger Things but Barb, played by Shannon Purser, has gathered a massive fan base online… and rightly so, she’s a very real and great character.
However, despite the fact that we very clearly saw her dead in the Upside Down in the show – look, that bug crawling out of her bloated, blue mouth was NOT messing around, ok? – a lot of people believe she is still alive and a lot of them base their hopes on the fact that, despite the search for her being a big part of the series, we never really see anyone grieve for her.
Well now co-creator Matt Duffer is putting to rest any hope you may still have that Barb is out there fighting the good fight: “I can’t see [her returning] happening. But Barb will not be forgotten. We’ll make sure there’s some justice for Barb. People get very frustrated, understandably, that the town doesn’t seem to be really dealing with Barb. That stuff is all happening. We’re just not spending any screen time on it.
“It’s not like her parents are like ‘Oh Barb left. She died!’ Season One actually takes place over the course of six or seven days – it’s a really short period of time. So part of what we want to do with hypothetical Season 2 is to explore the repercussions of everything that happened.”
Will we see purser back as Barb? Well there’s always the flashback route but we’d say it’s unlikely. Barb is dead… but not forgotten
However, what about the villain of the piece – no, not the creature – Matthew Modine? Well, you may recall he never actually saw him die; attacked? Yes, but not specifically killed: “I would say that if we were going to kill [Dr. Martin] Brenner… as an audience member watching the show, if that was his death, that would be very unsatisfying to me – when the monster jumps on him and we cut away,” Duffer said.
“He would deserve much more than that as an ending. So yes, there’s a possibility of seeing him again.”
So Brenner will possibly be back but Barb won’t. Is that justice? No, but still, Squirrel Girl might still happen…