Stranger Things’ Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) has very few lines throughout the Netflix series, especially in the first season, which makes her words all the more powerful.
Even though she barely speaks for many of the earlier episodes, Eleven is the face of Netflix’s hit show, Stranger Things. Millie Bobby Brown’s memorable performance gives Eleven a mysterious quality, while simultaneously earning viewers’ sympathy.
The show is Netflix’s most popular series for a reason. Sure, the 80s nostalgia and vibrant aesthetic is a huge contributing factor, but it’s standout characters like Eleven who really cement the show’s reputation. She doesn’t speak much, so when she does, her words are all the more memorable.
10. I’m The Monster.
Throughout the first season, Eleven is very tight-lipped about who she is and where she’s come from, leaving the boys guessing. Lucas has a few opinions about her and he’s not afraid to voice them. He calls her a monster when she uses her powers against him, and Mike and Dustin have to agree.
She scares the boys, and they mistakenly believe that she’s lying to them. However, later, when she saves Mike from falling to his death, she tells them the truth — that she opened the Gate, letting the Demogorgon through, thus making her the monster. Mike immediately counters this by pointing out that she just saved his life.
Especially in season 1, it’s almost shocking to hear Eleven speak. Most of her lines consist of only one word, which is often “no.” However, it appears that being quiet allows her to absorb the information around her.
She pays attention and listens carefully to what goes on around her. She hears Mike call one of the bullies a mouthbreather, which Mike explains is “a dumb person, a knucklehead.” Later, when she breaks into a store and steals Eggos, she calls the attendant a mouthbreather in one of her most iconic moments.
8. 353 Days. I Heard.
Mike and Eleven are separated at the end of season 1 when Eleven sacrifices herself to get rid of the Demogorgon. Mike proceeds to call her on his walkie-talkie every single single day for 353 days, hoping that she’ll answer from wherever she is.
Eleven can only listen in by transporting herself to the Upside Down, where she enters an ethereal space and remains unseen. She listens to Mike every day but can’t say anything back, which pains both of them. When they’re finally reunited at the end of season 2, Mike starts to tell her that he called her every day, but she cuts him off and finishes his sentence for him.
7. I Can Fight.
In season 3, Eleven really learns to control and finesse her powers. This is largely thanks to her little lesson with Kali in season 2, which taught her a lot, even if fans didn’t love the episode.
In the Battle of Starcourt, Eleven contributes greatly to the fight against the Mind Flayer and in protecting her friends. However, she quickly feels drained. Nevertheless, she insists to Hopper that she should stay and fight, instead of leaving him to save herself. It’s a moment where she truly believes she can do good and wants to help her friends, even though she’s been compromised.
6. Ghost. Halloween.
At the start of season 2, Eleven feels trapped in Hopper’s tiny home. She’s not allowed to go outside or talk to any of her friends (who aren’t even sure if she’s alive).
The season picks up on Halloween, when Mike, Will, Dustin, and Max go trick-or-treating. Eleven wants to join in so she can see her friends, even if she has to be disguised to do so. She dons a sheet and cuts out holes for the eyes, explaining to Hopper that she’s a ghost. Still, he doesn’t let her go out, and Eleven becomes frustrated. The delivery of this line gives it a comic feel and works perfectly in the context of Eleven and Hopper’s new dynamic.
5. What Is “Friend”?
In season 1, Eleven doesn’t know much of the world, having spent her childhood locked up in a laboratory. She’s spent little time with peers her own age, so she doesn’t know what a friend is.
For viewers, this is a moment to feel sorry for Eleven, but when she asks Mike what “friend” means, he doesn’t judge her. He explains that it’s someone you’d do anything for, and someone you’d never lie to. For Mike, honesty is the foundation of any friendship.
4. Halfway Happy.
In season 2, Eleven is still expanding her vocabulary and learning to understand slang. When Eleven is upset that she can’t go trick-or-treating, Hopper decides on a compromise.
Eleven has never heard of a compromise, so Hopper explains that it means “halfway happy.” Eleven uses this term on a few occasions throughout the season, but it seems more like she’s halfway sad.
3. I Dump Your Ass!
One of Eleven’s most iconic moments is when she dumps Mike in season 3. It seems like a silly and frivolous thing to do, especially when it’s followed by a shot of Eleven and Max high-fiving on the bus, dripping ice-creams in hand.
Throughout season 3, Eleven is trying to figure out who she is, especially without male influences. This moment really cements her rise to autonomy. Having dumped Mike, Eleven is ready to be herself on her own, to make her own choices and do what she wants to do.
Eleven seems to have a pattern of picking up random slang and either misunderstanding it or adopting it into her everyday language. When she goes away in season 2, Kali and the others give her a makeover.
She assumes a new look, drenched in dark makeup and cloaked in black clothes. The others call her “bitchin’” and she later repeats the term to Hopper (and in season 3, to Mike).
1. Friends Don’t Lie.
The most important rule the Party insists upon is that they should never lie to each other. It’s one of the first things Mike, Lucas, and Dustin establish when they welcome Eleven into the group.
It takes some time for this to sink in, but eventually, Eleven is telling other people about this rule. When she thinks that Mike is lying to her about his grandmother, she insists to Max that friends don’t lie (but she retorts that boyfriends do). She also gets upset with Hopper for lying to her about when she can see Mike and the others, but he thinks he’s lying to protect her. In reality, keeping Eleven separate from Mike and her other friends is only doing her more harm than good.
Originally shared with ScreenRant.