Stranger Things 3 finale recap: The Battle of Starcourt

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Stranger Things — Credit: Netflix

Stranger Things 3 ends with the dazzling “The Battle of Starcourt.” The heroics are off the charts. There are a couple of major deaths. We’ve got the recap!

If you’re reading this and haven’t seen “The Battle of Starcourt,” please know that this recap contains major spoilers. If you’re reading this while you’re watching the season finale of Stranger Things 3, hi! We could probably be friends. Either way, it should go without typing that if you want to remain unspoiled, close this tab now. The 77 minute finale was written and directed by the Duffer Brothers. Let’s go.

I Can Do It

We pick up with Joyce (Winona Ryder), Hopper (David Harbour), and Murray (Brett Gelman) in the Todd Father racing towards Starcourt Mall. Murray is listening in on the Russian radio they scored in “The Bite.” The guards again say that they have located the kids. Murray tries to say that it might not be Jopper’s kids. Joyce gives massive side-eye and declares, “Of course, they’re our kids!”

More: Stranger Things season 3, episode 7 recap: The Bite

At the mall, Eleven (Millie Bobbie Brown) is still on the ground writhing in pain. Something is moving just under her skin. Jonathan (Charlie Heaton) goes to the Chinese restaurant and gets a butcher knife. He sterilizes it with fire and apologies to El. He gives her a wooden spoon to bite down on while he cuts.

Jonathan’s cut creates an area for him to work. He sticks his hand in El’s leg and tries to catch the moving infection. El tells him to stop and gives the most pathetic sounding, “I can do it” that I’ve ever heard. She needs all the hugs. El seems to use the same amount of powers she used to close The Gate last season to pull the baby demodog, yes, a demodog, out her leg and throws it across the floor. The demodog tries to crawl away, but it’s stomped by Hopper! He, Joyce, and a completely confused Murray rejoin the group.

The Best Laid Plans

This is where things get tricky. Everyone catches up as much as they can during the opening credits. When the episode picks back up, Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) and Erica (Priah Ferguson) inform Hopper that they will guide Jopper and Murray through the quickest, the most clandestine path to the Russian Gate. There, Murray will shut the Russian Gate down while Jopper will make it explode.

StrangersThings-Credit: Netflix

In order for their radio signals to reach deep into the Starcourt basement, they will need to get to Cerebro. The newly minted Scoop Troop (I liked Team Scoops Ahoy, Dustin!), takes the Todd Father to Cerebro. They will walk Murray aka Bald Eagle through the conveniently bigger air vents.

We see the elevator race down towards the fateful hallway we’ve spent the last few episodes running around. It has Team Jopper on it. Murray declares that if everything goes well, no one will even know they were there. The elevator opens to a small squad of Russians. Murray tries to reason with them, but Hopper just shoots them all to death and takes their uniforms. He calls this improvising. We cut to the elevator racing down towards the hallway again. This time it has Terminator Grigori (Andrey Ivchenko) on it. Uh oh.

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