This post contains spoilers for Stranger Things season 1.
With less than a month to go until the official premiere of Stranger Things 2, the creators are revealing some choice details about what fans can expect from the highly anticipated second season of the much-beloved show. One of the most talked-about parts of season one was Barb’s death. To refresh your memory, Barb was violently sucked up by the Demogorgon early in the season while her best friend Nancy was hooking up with her crush Steve, which meant no one saw her go. Many viewers thought it was a little strange that Barb was hardly mentioned after that.
But Natalia Dyer, who plays Nancy, told Entertainment Weekly that “especially this season, Barb’s a big part of Nancy’s storyline and that drive to—I don’t know how to say it otherwise—to find justice.”
Dyer is referring to the popular hashtag #JusticeForBarb that exploded on social media when Barb was killed off the show. Even though she was only present in four of the eight episodes of the show, Barb’s character managed to win over enough fans to receive the viral treatment. The hashtag was revived when Shannon Purser, the actress who plays Barb, received a surprise Emmy nomination in July for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series. (But she didn't win that Emmy—in fact, Stranger Things walked away empty-handed at this year's Emmy Awards, despite a whopping 18 nominations.)
Wow. I am so incredibly honored. Thank you so much. Congratulations to all the other incredible nominees. @TheEmmys— Shannon Purser (@shannonpurser) July 13, 2017
“There are a lot of loose ends there that Nancy feels need to be addressed,” Dyer added. Stranger Things co-creator Ross Duffer confirmed that the aftermath of Barb’s death will be addressed. “We wanted to show that’s something that Nancy didn’t really deal with last year,” Duffer told EW.
Barb is definitely dead—the Duffer brothers have already dashed all hopes of a mysterious Barb reappearance or revival—but viewers will learn about her family in the show’s new season. “You met her mom briefly last year, but we introduce her dad,” Duffer continued. “The only thing that bothered me about the Barb criticism was people saying her parents didn’t care about her—of course they care. In their mind, [police officer Jim] Hopper has been slacking off and he’s a joke of a chief.”
To find out how exactly the show will address Barb’s absence, as well as its other storylines, you’ll have to wait until Oct. 27, when Stranger Things 2 premieres on Netflix.