The Steve Harrington Memes Are the Best Part of 'Stranger Things 4'

·4 min read
Photo credit: Netflix
Photo credit: Netflix

Stranger Things is back, much to the delight of its many fans. But amid the slew of new characters, returning villains, creepy monsters, and overwhelming '80s nostalgia, one man has managed to retain his chokehold on the fandom: Steve Harrington. That's right, the guy who we first met way back in season one as Nancy's douchey bully of a boyfriend.

Of course, Steve (played with inordinate levels of charm by Joe Keery) has been on a real journey since then, and it is due to his performance and character development far more than down to his good looks or gravity-defying hair that the internet remains fully in his thrall.

Steve's redemption began at the very end of season one, when he tried to make things right with erstwhile love rival Jonathan Byers (Charlie Heaton), and took full effect in season two, when he found himself responsible for the safety of the kids in the middle of a demodog attack. Ever since, Steve has held the title of babysitter... and the internet's boyfriend.

His appeal continued into the third season, when viewers thought that he had finally found the right girl in Robin Buckley (Maya Hawke), but that connection ended up being purely platonic, and their friendship remains one of the few sources of brightness and levity in an increasingly dark season four, with the two besties bemoaning their terrible respective love lives. The fact that in the '80s setting of Hawkins, Steve is an unflappable gay ally and supports Maya in her pursuit of another girl undoubtedly contributes to his status as one of the most enduringly popular characters on the show.

With the first part of Stranger Things 4 now streaming on Netflix, Twitter's thirst and admiration are once again focused on Steve Harrington, the big-of-heart and only-slightly-dumb-of-ass babysitter king of Hawkins, Indiana. And not to get too spoilery, but a certain scene of shirtless heroism means that the fans are, as they say, eating.

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