Eleven (Stranger Things)

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Eleven
Stranger Things character
Eleven (Stranger Things).jpg
Eleven in Season 1
First appearance "Chapter One: The Vanishing of Will Byers"
Created by The Duffer Brothers
Portrayed by Millie Bobby Brown
Information
Full name Jane Hopper
Nickname(s) El
Aliases Eleven
Eleanor (Chapter 4)
Jane Ives (Birth Name)
Gender Female
Family Jim Hopper (adoptive father)
Terry Ives (mother)
Becky Ives (aunt)
Significant other(s) Mike Wheeler (boyfriend)

Jane Ives, also known as Eleven, Jane Hopper or El, is a fictional character from the Netflix series Stranger Things. Portrayed by Millie Bobby Brown, she is a girl with psychokinetic abilities and a limited vocabulary.[1]

Fictional character biography[edit]

Season 1[edit]

Eleven is the daughter of Teresa "Terry" Ives, a participant in the Project MKUltra experiments conducted by the United States Central Intelligence Agency. Eleven was taken from her mother at birth by Dr. Martin Brenner and was raised in the Hawkins National Laboratory in Hawkins, Indiana as a test subject to develop her psychokinetic skills. When placed in a sensory deprivation tank she can engage in astral projection and access other dimensions, primarily for the purposes of international espionage. Eleven encountered a creature living in the Upside Down dimension, and on the evening of November 6, 1983, she finally made contact with it, because of this, a gate opened up between the Hawkins Laboratory and the Upside Down dimension and the creature gained the ability to go between the human world and the Upside Down.

She then escaped from Hawkins Laboratory and attempted to steal food from a local restaurant, the owner proceeded to call social services. The responding social worker was actually a Hawkins Laboratory CIA agent who killed the owner of the restaurant, causing Eleven to flee, she was then found by Mike Wheeler, Lucas Sinclair and Dustin Henderson, who were looking for their missing friend, Will Byers.

Eleven helps to locate Will using her supernatural abilities, and determines that he is trapped in the Upside Down. However, the use of her abilities temporarily weakens her and gives her nosebleeds, the group sets out to find Will using their compasses, but Eleven interferes with their search when she realizes that they are being led towards the laboratory. Lucas, noticing her deception, becomes angry at her (having mistrusted her from the beginning), and she uses her abilities to violently throw him, she flees, steals boxes of frozen waffles from a store, and consumes them in a forest. When Mike and Dustin are threatened by bullies, Eleven returns and saves them.

Mike, Dustin, and Eleven reunite with Lucas and make amends, and they travel to their middle school with Dr. Brenner and his associates in close pursuit, during a chase, Eleven uses her powers to cause a laboratory van to flip through the air. The group, aided by Joyce Byers, Chief Jim Hopper, Nancy Wheeler, and Jonathan Byers, produce a makeshift isolation tank with a pool and bags of salt. Eleven accesses the Upside Down and confirms that Will is alive, as laboratory personnel close in on the school, Eleven and Mike share a kiss. Eleven helps them escape by using her powers to kill most of the agents, the monster from the Upside Down makes its way into their dimension, and Eleven seemingly sacrifices herself to destroy the creature and save her friends.

One month later, after a Christmas party, Hopper leaves the police station and drives to the woods. There, he leaves waffles in a concealed box, the whereabouts or condition of Eleven are left ambiguous.[2][3]

Season 2[edit]

It is revealed that Eleven woke up in the Upside Down shortly after her destruction of the creature, and returned to the human world; however, with the government forces still searching for her she was forced to flee into the forest, where she struggled to survive. She found the waffles Hopper left for her, and followed them to him, after this, the two move into a cabin in the woods where he forbids her to leave, fearing for her safety. Hopper hides Eleven for almost a year, telling no one of her whereabouts, during this time, Eleven has managed to gain better control over her powers; she is less weakened by the use of her telekinesis, and she is now able to project her mind into other dimensions without the use of a sensory deprivation tank. She uses the latter ability to listen to Mike's attempts to contact her, though she is increasingly frustrated at her inability to reply.

After an argument one night, Eleven discovers that her birth mother is alive, a contradiction to what Hopper had told her, she then goes to meet her birth mother, Terry, and her aunt, Becky, and discovers what happened to Terry at Hawkins Laboratory. While there, she realizes Terry is trying to talk with her, but due to her mental state, is unable to. Eleven then uses her abilities to find out she has a "sister" – another gifted girl taken by Dr. Brenner for experimentations – and sets out to find her.

Using her abilities once again, Eleven locates her sister and discovers that she is an older girl named Kali ("Eight"), with the ability to make people see, or not see, whatever she wants. Eleven stays with Kali and her friends – runaways who are determined to take revenge on people who have hurt them. Kali tells Eleven that while using her powers, she needs to think about what makes her most angry. When they go to get revenge on the person who hurt Eleven's mother, Eleven stops Kali from killing him after realizing that he has two children. While they are about to flee, Eleven realizes she needs to go back to her friends because they need her help.

Eleven goes back to Hawkins and reunites with Mike and her friends, the group realizes that she needs to close the gate to the Upside Down, and she and Hopper head to Hawkins Laboratory. There, Eleven uses Kali's advice and focuses her anger into her powers and manages to close the gate. Afterward, it is discovered that Hopper has adopted her, and her new legal name is Jane Hopper. Though she is still not allowed out for her safety, Hopper lets her attend the Snow Ball at Hawkins Middle School, she meets up with Mike, dances with him, and they share a kiss.

Reception[edit]

Millie Bobby Brown received acclaim for her performance as Eleven

The character and Brown's performance has received highly positive reviews. Alice Vincent of The Telegraph wrote that "Millie Bobby Brown continues to be the star of the show: she has inspired fan art and tattoos, a worldwide acknowlegment of Eggos, the waffles her character devours and given a whole new life to the phrase 'mouth breather'".[4] Ashley Hoffman of TIME magazine recommended Eleven as a mascot for National Waffle Day.[5] However, Lenika Cruz of The Atlantic stated that "despite a rich backstory, Eleven is the show's most thinly sketched protagonist".[6]

In 2017, Brown was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series and Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series, and won the MTV Movie & TV Award for Best Actor in a Show and Saturn Award for Best Performance by a Younger Actor in a Television Series for her performance.

See also[edit]

Psychokinesis

References[edit]

  1. ^ Chaney, Jen (18 July 2016). "Stranger Things' Millie Bobby Brown on Playing Eleven, Her Love-Hate Relationship With Scary Movies, and Acting Without Speaking". Vulture. Retrieved 16 October 2016. 
  2. ^ Berkshire, Geoff (18 July 2016). "'Stranger Things' Finale: Duffer Brothers Talk Cliffhangers, Death and Season 2". Variety. Retrieved 16 October 2016. 
  3. ^ Stephens, Emily (29 July 2016). "On Stranger Things' season finale, promises are made to be broken". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 16 October 2016. 
  4. ^ Vincent, Alice (24 September 2016). "Eleven out of 10: how Stranger Things star Millie Bobby Brown charmed the world". The Telegraph. Retrieved 16 October 2016. 
  5. ^ Hoffman, Ashley (24 August 2016). "Why Eleven From Stranger Things Is the Perfect National Waffle Day Mascot". TIME. Retrieved 16 October 2016. 
  6. ^ Cruz, Lenika (26 July 2016). "Where Stranger Things Loses Its Magic". The Atlantic. Retrieved 16 October 2016. 

External links[edit]