“The Bite” might have grave consequences for Eleven as all parties meet on Independence Day.
This recap of Stranger Things Season 3, Episode 7, “The Bite”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
Happy Independence Day to Hawkins, Indiana, although perhaps “happy” isn’t quite the right word according to Stranger Things Season 3, Episode 7. The mayor’s fair is in full swing, but little does anyone know that there are Russian agents in the mall and a giant, transdimensional demon rampaging through the countryside.
Will can sense that the Mind Flayer has detected them, and so can everyone else when they see it barrelling through the trees. Nancy, Jonathan and the kids all fortify the house and arm themselves in preparation. But when it attacks, it’s scarcely enough. It takes all their combined efforts and the full extent of Eleven’s powers to dismiss it — even temporarily. In the process it bites El’s leg, leaving her with a nasty wound and barely able to walk.
Steve and Robin are barely able to walk in “The Bite” either, but for slightly different reasons. They’re still high as kites from the Russian drugs, much to the annoyance of Dustin and Erica, who are trying to stage a daring rescue. They’re able to make it to the mall and into a screening of Back to the Future, where Dustin is able to radio his friends — although dead batteries cut him off — and Steve and Robin are able to argue about time travel as they come down from their high. Together, they run to the bathroom to throw up, where they have another heartfelt conversation on the cubicle floor. Steve confesses his feelings for Robin, and Robin confesses that she’s gay; her fascination with Steve in high school was a fascination that the girl she liked was only interested in him. This is a fun revelation, and thinking about it, it might be the best possible outcome for these two; their relationship has been one of the strongest aspects of the season, and seeing them laugh together about Robin’s crush was heartwarming to see.
The kids take shelter in a nearby store, where they’re able to find medical supplies for Eleven’s leg and fireworks to help fight off the Mind Flayer. Mike opens up to Eleven and gets this close to telling her he loves her; Stranger Things Season 3, Episode 7 is the place to be for confessions of young love, let me tell you. Using her powers while parked in front of a fridge full of Eggos — nice throwback! — Eleven is able to locate Dustin, so the gang set out to meet him.
Meanwhile in “The Bite”, Joyce and Hopper are quickly making their way back to Indiana, while Murray and Alexei have a good laugh at how blatantly sexually tense their relationship is. At the fair, Murray tries to teach Alexei about American culture, which he does quite well since Alexei is shot in full view of the public. The Russians, tipped off by Mayor Kline, have arrived at the fair in pursuit of Hopper, who is forced to fight them off through various fairground attractions. He demolishes one of the henchmen in a room full of heavy bags and, in the hall of mirrors, shoots the giant Terminator goon multiple times. Fortunately, he was wearing a bulletproof vest, so this isn’t the last we’ll see of him.
Stranger Things Season 3, Episode 7 ends with the Russians catching up to Steve, Robin, Dustin, and Erica at the mall, but Eleven and the gang arrive just in time to crush them all with a display car. The gang is back together! But the tearful reunion — and very confused back-and-forth questioning — is cut short when Eleven collapses to the ground in agony. It’s the bite. And it’s moving.
Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.