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Stranger Things Creator Says Joyce Will Never Trash Her House Again

This post contains spoilers for the second season of Stranger Things.

When Stranger Things first landed, it was a sort of revelation, its own singular thing, and no one knew if it would stand alone or have a follow-up. But now that the show's second season has arrived in full on Netflix, viewers are starting to see what Stranger Things looks like as a television series—and some viewers and critics are calling one plot point a little bit repetitive.

No matter how much Will Byers gets put through the ringer this season, the real victim of Stranger Things 2 is the Byers family home, which gets utterly wrecked by Winona Ryder's Joyce, on a single-minded mission to solve a supernatural mystery—again.

Where the first season saw a traumatized Joyce bust down her walls and string Christmas lights everywhere in a frenzied search for her missing son, Stranger Things 2 sees her (along with the help of Sean Astin's Bob Newby) taking stacks of fevered drawings a possessed Will is producing and taping them up elaborately around her house, turning her family home, once again, into little more than a particularly large corkboard.

Reminiscent of the Christmas lights as it was, some critics have been dinging the Duffers over this repeated plot turn, no matter how justified it may have been by the story they were telling. You've got to admit, seeing Joyce string yarn around her house and do some remodeling with a sledgehammer a third time would all come off as a little bit silly. Fortunately, no one knows this more than series co-creator Matt Duffer.

"Listen, we're never going to have Joyce trash her house again," Duffer said, in an interview with Vulture. "We've done it twice. We're done. We're never going to put anything up on the walls again, I swear to God."

Duffer says that having Joyce create the expansive map of the tunnels beneath Hawkins along her walls wasn't an intentional callback to the first season, as similar as it appeared to be.

"We had established in season one that Will could draw really well," Duffer said. "So we knew we wanted to use that skill as a way for him to communicate his visions. That was an idea very early on. It wasn't an intentional callback to the Christmas lights. Some critics are giving us a hard time about it, but the story just led us there."

According to Duffer, aside from being familiar ground for viewers, one big problem with destroying the house again is the pain that doing so puts on the show's production team.

"It was as big of a nightmare as you can imagine," Duffer said. " It was really our prop department that was in charge of it. We had an artist in charge of it—they had a little miniature of the house. They had it mapped out. You can't just leave [the drawings] there unprotected because if you walk on them, you're going to tear the paper. They had cardboard all over the floors. I mean, it was a nightmare. I'm not going to lie."

All nine episodes of Stranger Things 2 are streaming on Netflix now. The show will return again, the Duffers have previously said, for a third, fourth, and perhaps even fifth season. Hopefully the next ones will give Joyce's house a little bit of a break.