2023 Author: Bryan Walter | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 22:24
In the third episode of the second part (just the part, not the season) of the series "Stranger Things" one of the main characters, Dustin, finds an unusual creature in the trash can, which he calls a "tadpole". Curious by nature, the boy immediately rushes to look for an individual in books on biology - and finds in them the correct answer, which, however, should not have been there yet … By tradition: be careful, spoilers!
Dustin (in the background) shows Mike the "tadpole"
Back to the Future
If you've watched Netflix's Stranger Things, you know about the demogorgon, a creature from a parallel universe known as the Upside Down. At the end of the first part, the demogorgon was defeated - and everything seemed to end happily enough. However, a character named Will Byers, who spent the entire first part in the Back Side, leaves us with a cliffhanger (without which, of course, there would be no second part): he spits out a strange slug into the shell. Our editors have been arguing for a week whether it was a larva or a whole clutch of eggs, but in the second part it appears already in the form of a sufficiently formed tadpole. In case it was a clutch of eggs, by the way, it becomes clear where the rest of the demops came from - although they could well have come out from the Back Side.
Dustin Henderson, another hero of the series, finds a strange creature and immediately comes to the conclusion that he has made a scientific discovery. Nevertheless, Dustin, being an erudite boy, tried to attribute him to some existing genus of amphibians. Biological reference books told Dustin the answer: the specimen found probably belongs to the frogs of the genus Indirana, which are usually found in India. "Tadpole" (the boy even gave him a name - d'Artagnan) was land and had a characteristic color, very similar to the known species. Dustin's conclusion sounds logical: the found individual is just a new species of this genus, with a very developed embryo, love for nougat bars, as well as light and heat fear.
Frog species Indirana
One of the Twitter users, American paleontologist Christian Kammerer, noticed that the genus Indirana was first described in 1986 - that is, two years after the events described in the second part of the series. Kammerer lamented the imprudence of Netflix's writers:
Despite this rather serious (especially from the point of view of biologists) anachronism, the series, in our opinion, did not get any worse. More questions, however, are raised by other creatures - demops, one of which just grew out of d'Artagnan who appeared in our world.
A little about the collective mind
Demops are very similar to the demogorgon itself: they have exactly the same opening mouth and they also love to feast on fresh flesh. At the same time, unlike the monster from the first part, they are four-legged and hunt in packs (hence the name - "demops"), and they are controlled by an even stranger creature - a spider-like Shadow Monster. It can be assumed that demops may be the previous stage in the evolution of the demogorgon, but the exact answer is unknown - our editorial board, by the way, is also actively discussing this.
The demops under the control of the Shadow Monster behave like a kind of analogue of the collective intelligence: in the end, when the gate to the Reverse is closed, the demops run to them all together, trying to stop El (Eleventh), but in the end they die when they lose access to the Shadow Monster.
Also, some in the editorial office believe that in fact demops and demogorgon belong to the same species, and the phenotypic differences between them are due to different tasks performed - as, for example, in ants. In this case, the demogorgon is a kind of scout, endowed with increased autonomy in decision-making, larger and more dangerous (with bulletproof skin).
Demops, in turn, are like soldiers-workers - they scurry through the tunnels, guard the lair and bring food to the same place. Yes, you remember everything correctly: the demops themselves do not mind eating the cat or Bob on the spot, however, judging by the bones found in the central grotto of the tunnel (the main habitat of the demops), they also deliver food to one place.
At the same time, in the first part of the series, the demogorgon dragged people (for example, Will and Barb) in the opposite direction in order to then use them as incubators - most likely to grow the same demops.
Perhaps we also have to learn that the womb of this monstrous anthill is not a Shadow Monster at all, but something completely different. For example, that Alien silhouette (it really is very similar) that Al and Jim saw in the closing gate.
It's good that Dustin kept one dead demops in the refrigerator; We hope that in the next part of the series we will be told about the evolution and hierarchy of the inhabitants of the Back Side in more detail.