You know those giant buildings with an empty food court, closed shops with creepy mannequins still in the window, and one department store (probably Sears) that’s somehow still in business? Those used to be called “malls” and they were very popular in the 1980s (before everyone realized malls are bad). They were especially favored in small suburban towns, like Hawkins, Indiana.
In the gap between seasons two and three of Stranger Things, a new mall was built in Hawkins: the Starcourt Mall. It’s where kids, adults, and teenagers alike can try on clothes at the Gap, buy books (like The Hunt for Red October) and albums (such as Born In the USA) from Waldenbooks and Sam Goody, and eat ice cream at Scoops Ahoy Ice Cream Parlor, where employee of the month/mom of the year Steve Harrington works. (I watched this video three times to see if there’s, like, a Demogorgon waiting in line at Orange Julius… and also to watch Steve say “ahoy.”) In the immortal words of Robin Sparkles, let’s go to the mall today, because there’s a retail apocalypse (and actual apocalypse) coming, so you should buy The Unforgettable Fire on vinyl now.
Stranger Things season three premieres in summer 2019.