This is the second of three Stranger Things rankings that I'm doing. The first one was the season four episodes, so if you haven't checked that out yet, go read that and then come back here. Season four cemented Stranger Things as my favorite TV show of all time. This was a really tough ranking to do, because I do truly love all the seasons of this show. Some are definitely worse than others, but they are all still great. That said, here's my ranking of all four seasons of Stranger Things.
4. Season 2
To be very clear: I still love season two of Stranger Things. I still think it's great. I love that it builds on the establishment of the first season. We expand the Upside Down. The Mind Flayer is an incredibly menacing threat that ups the danger and the stakes. They do some interesting things with all of our characters, while also giving us a cool new protagonist in Max and a disgusting new antagonist in Billy. The reason it is in last place is episode seven. The Lost Sister. That whole plotline was absolutely terrible, and it really kills the tension of the season. Still, this is a great season.
3. Season 1
Season one is truly the Iron Man of Stranger Things. It's smaller in stakes and scale. Seasons two-four are all about Hawkins and the looming threat that the Upside Down poses. Season one is a thrilling and heart-breaking mystery about a boy gone missing. Through this, we uncover the terror of the Upside Down and the truth about Eleven and Hawkins Lab. This season serves as an awesome introduction to the world of Stranger Things as well as our characters. I love it, and I really think it stands out among the other seasons as just feeling different in a good way.
2. Season 4
First of all, this placement is not permanent. We still have two episodes left. Volume one of this season was great. Episode seven of this season is one of the greatest episodes of TV I've ever seen. I think the reason it's number two is because there is a little bit too much going on. That's not to say it feels overstuffed, because all of the plotlines are important, but there are definitely pacing issues and some plots are less interesting than others. That's not to say I didn't love it. The new characters are really good. I love the darker tone. Vecna is a terrifying new villain. I'm super hyped for the final two episodes of the season, and I hope it moves this season up to the top.
1. Season 3
Most people think season three is the worst season of Stranger Things. I adore this season. The first few episodes are slower, but that works for me. We get to see our gang in a much happier place before the horror begins again. The last few episodes of this season are basically perfect. I love what they do with Billy and Hopper and El in this season. I'm not crazy about the Russian plotline, but I find Steve, Dustin, Robin, and Erica so watchable that I really don't care. This season is amazing. I love it to death.