Geeking out on the minutiae of our heroes’ daily lives is one of the key advantages of TV series over movies. Week after week (or hour after hour) the physical worlds that our favorite screen characters occupy become more and more connected to our own.
When it comes to their houses and apartments, the directors and set designers start with a basic layout, some meaningful details and a few surprises that they plan to reveal to us later – but because they continue to expand into new seasons, they’re free to respond to the elements that get us hungry viewers more intrigued.
We have whole towns to explore (Twin Peaks), homes that obey their own physical laws (Arrested Development) and worlds within worlds (Stranger Things). Just what is behind that door in Frank and Charlie’s It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia apartment – the one that no-one ever mentions or walks through? Is it a character flourish, a secret to be revealed, or just an oversight by the set-builders?
Stranger Things is one show that is bound to keep audiences guessing. Since it became a binge-watching phenomenon in the summer, theorists have continued to prod and poke at the inconsistencies and unexplained moments, to the extent that the producers released a special Halloween ‘news report’ to feed our interest between seasons. And it’s no wonder that the Stranger Things universe keeps us hooked – the double world of Hawkins, Indiana and it’s warped mirror image, the ‘upside-down’ is pure dream logic. It awakens the latent conspiracy theorist in each of us, suggesting deeper explanations for the strange stuff that happens in each of our lives.
While the monster may be the headline baddie, we’re led to understand that evil is inseparably tangled between the supernatural, corporate and governmental powers, and the very fabric of human society. Like The Wire before it, we see a town as multi-layered microcosm of the world – only Stranger Things layers them all up in a single series, where The Wire sequentially followed the drug trade, docks, government, education and media over five series.
Still, it’s not all doom and gloom – it’s thrills and spills, too. Stranger Things’ hauntological Halloween treat showed again just how great it is that the stories we enjoy today escape the boundaries of their original form. We also have an unprecedented ability to find and geek-out with folk who like the same weird things as us. Fan fiction, wikia.com, the less unsavoury corridors of Reddit, all give us license to speculate as to the deeper meanings, character quirks and hidden rooms of our favourite shows, in safe company.
And so, if you’re obsessed with the physical worlds we mentioned – the secret portals, peculiar energies, kitsch décor or enchantingly out-of-place furniture, you’ll want to run your eyes over this series of posters that gather the floor plans of eight of our favorite TV series into one easy-to-reference document. Whether you want to argue out the best escape routes with your chums, poke around in your heroes’ possessions or redesign your house to match the layout of Gilmore Girls or Sherlock, you’ll find the answers you’re looking for – and a few surprises.