The cast of Stranger Things brought Hawkins to Hollywood for the premiere of its hugely anticipated second season on Thursday (October 26) night, just hours before it dropped on Netflix at midnight.
At this point, it feels redundant to emphasize how cute/dapper/grow-up the young stars of Stranger Things look on a red carpet. History has proven that this cast knows how to work a photo op. And yet, it's impossible not to crack a smile when you see this cast roll up to an event. They are, for lack of a better word, freaking adorable.
But long before Stranger Things was a cultural phenomenon — you know, before Millie Bobby Brown was anointed TV's Next Big Thing — the Netflix show celebrated its quiet series premiere in July 2016. At that time nobody knew what a sensation the show, starring 90s cool girl Winona Ryder, would turn out to be, least of all its adorable cast of child stars.
A little over a year later and Stranger Things, and its core cast, have completely captured the pop-culture zeitgeist.
In honor of the release of Stranger Things 2, we wanted to take a look at the show's humble beginnings, so we rounded up photos of the cast at their first big Stranger Things carpet in 2016. Even as a bunch of fresh-faced newcomers, these kids were red carpet pros.
Millie Bobby BrownGetty Images
She may have ditched the shiny Converse for a pair of sophisticated kitten heels, but Brown, 13, still knows how to strike a pose.
Finn WolfhardGetty Images
Wolfhard was mysteriously absent from the Stranger Things premiere, but here he is last October at New York Comic Con. Not one but two mega-successful franchises (Stranger Things and It) later and 14-year-old Wolfhard looks like he's ready to open his own practice as Los Angeles's youngest therapist. By that, we mean he looks dapper AF.
Caleb McLaughlinGetty Images
Does anyone have more fun with fashion than McLaughlin? He seriously werks it every time!
Gaten MatarazzoGetty Images
His hair may be shorter these days, but Matarazzo hasn't lost his sense of style — or his affinity for Chucks. Plus, he knows that a pop of color can go a long way.
Noah SchnappGetty Images
Schnapp is here to claim his rightful place on the Stranger Things throne!!! Since he upgraded his mature blazer for a trendy leather jacket, he's never looking back. Not to mention, he and his best friend Millie totally match.
Natalia DyerGetty Images
Hello, Nancy! Last year, Dyer kept things on theme with a pretty red dress. But for the Stranger Things 2 premiere, the starlet totally reinvented herself with a feminine pink lace frock and — gasp! — blond locks. Is she hinting at Nancy's future Madonna obsession? Time with only tell.
Joe KeeryGetty Images
Is it just us or has Keery's hair actually gotten shorter since Season 1? Regardless, you can't mess with perfection.
Never change, Stranger Things cast. Please. We mean it. We need some joy in our lives.