The Demogorgon, also known as the Monster, is the overall main antagonist of the first season of the Netflix original series Stranger Things.
It was a predatory humanoid creature that entered Hawkins, Indiana in November 1983. The creature originated from the parallel dimension known as the Upside Down. When Eleven, a psychic test subject from Hawkins National Laboratory, made interdimensional contact with it, a gate between dimensions opened at the lab.
The creature passed through, terrorizing Hawkins for approximately a week. It abducted various residents and took them back to the Upside Down, usually killing them. The friends and family of Will Byers, one of the Demogorgon’s victims, slowly began to uncover the truth about the creature, with the help of the escaped Eleven. The creature was finally defeated and destroyed by Eleven in a showdown at Hawkins Middle School.
A test subject with psychic powers labeled Eleven was placed into a sensory deprivation tank as one of Hawkins National Laboratory’s experiments; this allowed Eleven to delve into a deeper psychic state. Although she successfully eavesdropped on a Russian spy as instructed, she unwittingly came across the Monster. Eleven’s instincts urged her to stay away from it; she panicked, and the experiment was aborted.
Dr. Martin Brenner was intrigued by the creature, repeating the experiment on November 6, 1983. This time, Brenner ordered Eleven to make contact. As Eleven psychically approached the Monster, she could see it feeding off an otherworldly egg.
With great hesitancy, she made contact. In that exact moment, a gate to the Monster’s dimension cracked open in the wall of the tank room, allowing the creature to pass through. Eleven managed to exit the tank and escape the lab amidst the ensuing chaos. An unnamed scientist was not so lucky; the Monster caught him as he tried to operate an elevator.
The Monster had the ability to travel between dimensions on a whim, creating temporary portals in the fabric of reality. The Monster arrived at Mirkwood, a road near a local forest, where it stalked Will Byers on his way home. The Monster chased Will as he entered his house, forcing Will to run to his garden shed. Will hide in the shed, loading a rifle in self-defense, but the Monster simply appeared behind him, taking him into the Upside Down.
Once in the Upside Down, Will managed to evade the creature for almost a week and began attempting to communicate with his mother. Joyce and Will had some success, with Will manipulating the electricity in his home dimension, although these attempts would sometimes attract the monster. In an early attempt, Joyce saw her house wall become warped and distorted as the Monster started to break through, terrifying her. In a later attempt, the Monster broke clean through, although Joyce managed to outrun it.
Meanwhile, Will‘s friends Mike, Lucas, and Dustin began investigating Will’s disappearance. Mike noted a strange coincidence linking the disappearance with a recent “Dungeons & Dragons” campaign. During the campaign, Will’s player character was defeated by the fearsome Demogorgon; hours later, Will had vanished from real life. In addition, Eleven used the game piece representing the character to attempt to illustrate her vision of Will hiding from the creature in the other dimension.
Hawkins Lab’s Scientists
The group began to hypothesize that the Monster may have really existed, and was responsible for Will’s disappearance. From this point on, the group began referring to the creature as “the Demogorgon”.
Scientists at Hawkins Lab began investigating the dimension, discovering exactly what it contained. One such scientist entered through the Gate, wearing a hazmat suit linked to a chain rope. The scientist was savaged and killed by the Demogorgon almost immediately after entering the dimension.
The Demogorgon hunted and killed other people and creatures, being particularly lured by blood. Its victims included Barbara Holland, hunters Dale and Henry, and a wounded deer. After Nancy Wheeler entered the Upside Down through a temporary portal, she observed the Demogorgon as it feasted on the deer. The Demogorgon noticed her, chasing her until she returned through the portal.
Will eventually succumbed to exhaustion, lying in his makeshift fort. The Demogorgon found him, breaking through the fort wall and taking him to the Upside Down library.
How was the Demogorgon killed?
Nancy and Jonathan Byers later exploited the Demogorgon’s attraction to blood to ambush it. With the aid of Steve, they severely injured the beast, setting it alight – however, it survived and slipped into the Upside Down. The Demogorgon left the Byers house and headed to the library, leaving a trail of blood.
Eleven killed a large number of government agents at Hawkins Middle School, defending herself, along with Mike, Lucas, and Dustin. The Demogorgon was attracted by pools of spilled blood, breaking through the wall. The Demogorgon began a spree of violence, attacking Dr. Brenner as surviving agents opened gunfire.
For a while, the four kids outran and evaded the creature, hiding in their science teacher’s classroom. Eventually, the Demogorgon found them, breaking into the room and attacking them. Eleven confronted the creature, pinning it against the blackboard with her mind. After wishing farewell to her friends, she proceeded to disintegrate the creature, vanishing as well in the process.
How Monster Look Like?
The Demogorgon is a tall and thin humanoid creature with elongated limbs. Its head seems to lack facial features until it unfurls the flesh like a flower to reveal “petals” lined with many sharp teeth, and a large open mouth. The Demogorgon’s arms and digitigrade legs end in claws; its skin is slimy.
After being set on fire by Nancy, Jonathan, and Steve, the Demogorgon’s body was covered in burns.
The physical presence of the Demogorgon is often preceded by the creature’s guttural growls and shrieks, alongside all lights in the area rapidly flickering on and off.
The Demogorgon possessed several unique abilities:
- Interdimensional travel – The Demogorgon was able to move between dimensions. It entered Hawkins repeatedly by creating temporary tears in space-time. The resulting portals resembled necrotic wounds. It used this ability to pull individuals, such as Will Byers and Barbara Holland, into the Upside Down.
- Blood detection – The Demogorgon was strongly attracted to blood and could sense even small amounts from different dimensions.
- Strength – The Demogorgon was a creature with outstanding physical strength. It could break through solid walls and is able to easily overpower and carry a fully grown man.
- Telekinesis – The Demogorgon appeared to have had some form of telekinetic power. It unlocked the hatch on the Byers’ front door while pursuing Will. It is also possible that it used this power to pull in the deer, and may contribute to its physical strength despite a visible lack of muscle. However, this has not been made entirely clear.
- Regenerative Healing – After being trapped and set on fire, the Demogorgon appeared to have healed most of its injuries after a short period of time.
- Durability – With its durable skin and tough body, the Demogorgon could withstand massive amounts of bullets from multiple firearms and several beatings from a baseball bat with nails. However, it was unable to resist Eleven‘s power of biokinesis, which she uses to dissolve and kill the Demogorgon.
People Who Killed by this Monster
- An anonymous scientist from Hawkins National Laboratory
- Barbara Holland
- Hunters Dale and Henry
- A wounded deer
- An unknown number of military police officers and government agents
Facts about Demo-gorgon
- The Demogorgon received its nickname from Eleven using the Demogorgon game piece to show that Will was hiding from it.
- In D&D lore, Demogorgon is a demon prince with two heads that strive to dominate one another but are unable to do so.
- In mythology, Demogorgon is a god or demon associated with the underworld, and whose name is taboo.
- It is currently unknown how exactly the Demogorgon senses blood, as it appears to only have a “mouth” and no other visible orifices that could be used for scent. Similarly, it is unclear how the Demogorgon “heard” sound.
- Though the Demogorgon can use telekinesis, it is only shown exercising this ability twice: when it unlocked the Byers’ front door and presumably when it pulled in the deer.
- While the Demogorgon exclusively hunted at night, Nancy saw it in the daytime while looking for Barb. This was done for storytelling purposes.
- The Demogorgon was killed in Mr. Clarke’s classroom.
- It was hinted that the falling ash-like spores present in the Upside Down have a possible direct connection to the Demogorgon.
- The Demogorgon’s open mouth somewhat resembles a Rafflesia Arnoldi, a flower with the odor of decaying flesh, earning it the nickname “corpse flower.” Furthermore, its teeth are similar to those of the leatherback sea turtle.
- In the original pilot script, people would bleed from their nose and ears when in contact with the Demogorgon, similar to how Eleven bleeds when using her telekinetic powers.
- In the Dungeons & Dragons game in “The Vanishing of Will Byers“, Will uses fireball against the Demogorgon, possibly foreshadowing Nancy, Jonathan, and Steve setting the Demogorgon alight in “The Upside Down“.
- The twin toddlers who portray Holly Wheeler, as well as Millie‘s younger sister Ava, were initially frightened by the practical Demogorgon suit. To calm them down, a crew member told them that it was a benevolent monster from the Disney/Pixar film Monsters, Inc.
- If one looks closely, it can be seen that the shot of the Demogorgon attacking Barb in “The Weirdo on Maple Street” was reused in “The Monster“, when the Demogorgon notices Eleven‘s presence. This was possibly done because of budget limitations or time constraints.
- When asked if the Demogorgon was some kind of plant due to its appearance, Mark Steger responded that it was fair speculation, adding that he feels it’s “more mushroom, which is kind of between plant and animal. “