The Most Popular Stranger Things Episode: A Ranking of Viewer Favorites

Choose the episode you think is the most popular!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Jun 16, 2023 10:18 (Updated on Dec 2, 2023 09:21)
Welcome to StrawPoll, the ultimate hub for polling enthusiasts! We're excited to present our latest ranking - "What is the most popular Stranger Things episode?" As die-hard fans of the show, we know how hard it is to pick just one favorite episode from this thrilling, nostalgic, and spine-chilling series. That's why we've compiled a comprehensive list of episodes for you to vote on and find out once and for all which one truly stands out among the rest. So, put on your Hawkins AV Club cap, grab some Eggos, and dive into the mysterious world of Stranger Things! Cast your vote for your top pick, and don't forget to suggest any missing options. The Upside Down awaits your decision!

What Is the Most Popular Stranger Things Episode?

  1. 1
    This episode features a thrilling showdown between the main characters and the monstrous Mind Flayer, making it a fan favorite.
    In 'The Mind Flayer' episode of Stranger Things Season 2, the events take place in Hawkins, Indiana. As the group of kids investigate Bob's video footage, they realize that Will is still connected to the Upside Down. Meanwhile, Joyce and Hopper join forces to destroy the spreading tunnels under Hawkins Lab. The episode intensifies as the Mind Flayer, the main antagonist, takes over Will's body and embarks on a quest to conquer Hawkins.
    • Title: The Mind Flayer
    • Season: 2
    • Episode: 8
    • Location: Hawkins, Indiana
    • Plot: Will's connection to the Upside Down, the destruction of tunnels, the Mind Flayer's control
  2. 2
    This episode concludes the third season with an epic battle against the Mind Flayer and the Russian army, as well as emotional farewells to beloved characters.
    The Battle of Starcourt is the eighth episode of the third season of the popular TV series Stranger Things. It serves as the grand finale of the season, bringing together all the main characters to face off against the Mind Flayer and the Russian operatives in a climactic battle at the Starcourt Mall.
    • Season: 3
    • Episode: 8
    • Title: The Battle of Starcourt
    • Air Date: July 4, 2019
    • Duration: 77 minutes
  3. 3
    This is the episode that started it all, introducing viewers to the town of Hawkins, the disappearance of Will Byers, and the strange happenings in the Upside Down.
    In the first episode of the first season of Stranger Things, titled 'The Vanishing of Will Byers,' the thrilling story begins when 12-year-old Will Byers mysteriously disappears in the small town of Hawkins, Indiana. As his friends, family, and the local authorities search for answers, they encounter a mysterious girl with telekinetic powers and uncover a web of government secrets and supernatural forces.
    • Season: 1
    • Episode: 1
    • Original air date: July 15, 2016
    • Running time: 48 minutes
    • Genre: Science fiction, Horror, Drama
  4. 4
    This season finale reveals the truth about the Upside Down and sets up the storyline for future seasons.
    In 'The Upside Down' episode of Stranger Things Season 1, the thrilling conclusion unfolds as the disappearance of Will Byers takes a dark turn. As the search continues, the characters face terrifying encounters with the monstrous Demogorgon and explore the eerie parallel dimension known as the Upside Down.
    • Episode Number: Season 1, Episode 8
    • Release Date: July 15, 2016
    • Director: Ross Duffer and Matt Duffer
    • Writer: The Duffer Brothers
    • Genre: Science Fiction, Horror, Drama
  5. 5
    This episode introduces the mysterious creature known as Dart, who becomes a fan favorite despite his sinister origins.
    In 'The Pollywog' episode of Stranger Things season 2, the main characters are dealing with new strange occurrences in Hawkins. Dustin discovers a weird creature that he nurtures and names D'Artagnan, unaware of its true nature. The episode showcases the growing tension and mysteries surrounding the Upside Down.
    • Episode: The Pollywog
    • Season: 2
    • Episode Number: 3
    • Genre: Science Fiction, Horror, Drama
    • Release Date: October 27, 2017
  6. 6
    This episode features a tense and suspenseful confrontation between the main characters and the Mind Flayer's possessed hosts.
    In the episode 'The Sauna Test' of Stranger Things season 3, tensions continue to rise in Hawkins as the residents face a new threat. The Mind Flayer's influence becomes stronger, putting the town and its residents in grave danger. In this episode, the characters embark on a mission to uncover the identity of the new host for the Mind Flayer, leading them to a chilling confrontation in the Hawkins Community Pool sauna.
    • Season: 3
    • Episode: 4
    • Title: The Sauna Test
    • Genre: Science Fiction, Horror, Drama
    • Release Date: July 4, 2019
  7. 7

    The Spy (Season 2, Episode 6)

    The Duffer Brothers
    This episode reveals the truth about Will's connection to the Mind Flayer and features a heartwarming moment between Eleven and Mike.
    The Spy is the sixth episode of the second season of Stranger Things. In this episode, as Will's condition deteriorates, Joyce takes him to the hospital for tests, while Hopper investigates the pumpkin crop's rotting. Eleven meanwhile convinces Hopper to go to the lab, where she uses her powers to reveal a hidden room and find Terry Ives, her biological mother. The episode ends with Eleven discovering a picture of Terry with a young girl, whom she believes to be her sister.
    • Title: The Spy
    • Season: 2
    • Episode: 6
    • Director: Shawn Levy
    • Writer: Kate Trefry
  8. 8
    This episode takes a break from the main storyline to focus on Eleven's journey to find her "sister" Kali, and features a memorable punk rock montage.
  9. 9
    This episode establishes the close bond between the four young protagonists and their determination to find their missing friend.
    In the episode 'The Weirdo on Maple Street', the residents of Hawkins, Indiana are in shock after a young boy named Will Byers mysteriously disappears. As his friends and family search for answers, a strange girl with telekinetic powers appears. Meanwhile, the local police chief investigates a power outage and encounters a mysterious creature in the woods.
    • Episode title: The Weirdo on Maple Street
    • Season: 1
    • Episode number: 2
    • Release date: July 15, 2016
    • Running time: 51 minutes
  10. 10

    The Monster (Season 1, Episode 6)

    The Duffer Brothers
    This episode features a thrilling chase sequence as the main characters try to escape the clutches of the Demogorgon.
    In 'The Monster' episode of Stranger Things Season 1, the tension escalates as the group of friends desperately search for their missing companion, Will Byers. Meanwhile, Joyce begins to question her own sanity as she experiences strange occurrences, and the mysterious government organization, Hawkins National Laboratory, faces growing scrutiny.
    • Episode number: Season 1, Episode 6
    • Director: Peter Bradley
    • Writer: Jessica Mecklenburg
    • Original release date: July 15, 2016
    • Runtime: 46 minutes

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Ranking factors for popular episode

  1. Audience Reaction
    Popularity can also be determined by the audience's reaction to the episode. This can be measured by ratings on various platforms such as IMDB, Rotten Tomatoes, and other review sites.
  2. Emotional Impact
    Some episodes have a stronger emotional impact on the audience, eliciting strong feelings of joy, sadness, or fear.
  3. Iconic Moments
    Some episodes have iconic moments that are still talked about by fans long after the episode originally aired.
  4. Plot Development
    Episodes that advance the overall plot and storyline in a meaningful way are also likely to be well-liked and considered popular.
  5. Memorable Characters
    Episodes that showcase beloved characters or introduce new and memorable ones can also contribute to an episode's popularity.

About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most popular Stranger Things episode. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or episode is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 212 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each episode once every 24 hours. The rank of each episode is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.

More information on most popular stranger things episode

Stranger Things, the hit sci-fi series from Netflix, has captured the hearts and minds of viewers all over the world. With its perfect blend of 80s nostalgia and supernatural thrills, the show has become a cultural phenomenon. Since its debut in 2016, Stranger Things has released three seasons, each with its own unique storyline and memorable characters. Fans of the show have eagerly awaited each new season and have passionately debated which episodes are the best. In this article, we'll take a closer look at the most popular Stranger Things episodes according to our StrawPoll community.

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