With her powers, fascinating history, and offbeat personality, Eleven was an immediate sensation when she made her debut on Stranger Things. Over the course of three seasons, Eleven faces formidable enemies from both Hawkins and the Upside Down.
As an adolescent with psychic abilities, Eleven uses her powers in situations ranging from the mundane to the heroic. Here are 11 of Eleven’s best super-powered moments to help prepare you for the fourth season of Stranger Things.
11. Girl Time – Season 3, Chapter 5: “The Flayed”
Eleven grew up in a laboratory and after her escape, became friends with a group of boys. During season 3, for the first time Eleven finds another girl to be true friends with in Max. Together, the two girls enjoy typical teenaged girl activities such as sleepovers and shopping at the mall. When Eleven and Max have issues with Mike and Luke, their respective boyfriends, Eleven uses her psychic abilities to spy on the boys. She finds them reflecting on girls being an emotional species, but quickly flees her psychic eavesdropping when Mike and Lucas begin to compete in gross, gaseous behavior. When Eleven removes her blindfold, she and Max dissolve into a fit of giggles.
10. Telekinetic Teenaged Tantrum – Season 2, Chapter 4: “Will the Wise”
Season 2 features the main kids entering their teenaged years. With her history and psychic abilities, it is easy to forget that Eleven is still in many ways a normal teenager. Eleven grows increasingly irritated with Hopper’s insistence that she stay inside and away from her friends. She takes matters into her own hands and sneaks out. She and Hopper proceed to argue; Eleven wants the freedom to leave, while Hopper only wants to keep her safe.
Hopper tells her she’s grounded, taking away her beloved Eggo waffles and TV. When he attempts to move the TV, Eleven uses her telekinesis to prevent him from moving it. Hopper begins to verbally lash out, leading Eleven to psychically throw a dictionary at Hopper, hit his leg with the side of the couch, slam the door, and break all the windows.
9. Finding Barb and Will – Season 1, Chapter 7: “ The Bathtub”
Hopper, Joyce, Nancy, Jonathan, Dustin, Lucas, and Mike join forces to create a makeshift sensory deprivation tank for Eleven in the school gym in hopes of finding Barb and Will. With salt water to float in, static from a walkie talkie, and taped up goggles, Eleven is able to channel her abilities to reach out with her mind to the Upside Down. She is distraught when she finds Barb’s rotting remains, but with encouragement from Joyce, she continues to look for Will. She locates him in Castle Byers, giving Joyce and Hopper enough information to go looking for him.
8. Telekinetic Van Launch – Season 1, Chapter 7: “The Bathtub”
Agents from Hawkins National Laboratory, including Dr. Martin Brenner, locate Eleven and try to bring her back. Dustin, Lucas, Mike, and Eleven hop on their bikes to flee from Eleven’s former captors. As the vehicles from Hawkins National Laboratory close in on the kids, their odds of escaping are diminished further when another van rounds the corner and drives toward them head on. Sensing the threat, Eleven uses her telekinetic powers to launch the van into the air to block the other vans from pursuing them further.
7. Billy’s Redemption – Season 3, Chapter 8 : “The Battle of Starcourt”
The older and younger teenagers fight the physical manifestation of the Mind Flayer at Starcourt Mall. A Flayed Billy manages to get hold of Eleven, who finds herself without her abilities. Pinned and powerless, Eleven appeals to the human side of Billy, sharing what she witnessed when she entered his mind before. She tells him that she saw a fun day on the beach with Billy and his mother, saying, “She was pretty. She was really pretty, and you were happy.” Billy smiles softly through his tears and faces the Mind Flayer, saving Eleven and losing his life in the process. In this moment, Eleven used both her powers and compassion to help Billy free himself of the Mind Flayer’s control. He was able to then make his own decision to sacrifice himself for the greater good.
6. Showing Mercy – Season 2, Chapter 7: “The Lost Sister”
After lessons in leveraging her power and a punk rock makeover, Eleven teams up with Kali and the rest of her crew to locate the people that hurt them as children. Eleven locates Ray Carroll, a former orderly at Hawkins National Laboratory. During his role at the lab, Ray had been responsible for torturing the children being experimented on, and was responsible for delivering the electric shock treatment that had driven Eleven’s mother to her catatonic state. When the crew arrives at Ray’s apartment, Eleven throws him into a wall and begins to choke him with her powers. As she pushes him along the floor, she comes across a photo of Ray with his children. She hesitates in her punishment, and ultimately allows Ray to live.
5. Reunion with Friends – Season 2, Chapter 8: “The Mind Flayer”
The adults, teenagers, and kids gather at the Byers home to gain what intel they can from Will about the Mind Flayer. The Mind Flayer is able to figure out where everyone is gathered, and sends a Demodog to attack. Armed with shotguns, baseball bats, and slingshots, the group prepares for the imminent attack. Guttural creature noises and the sounds of blows landing can be heard outside, and a lifeless Demodog flies through the window. The door unlocks and creaks open, revealing Eleven in her new attire. Eleven’s friends are awestruck, as they had not seen her since she disappeared when facing the Demogorgon a year prior.
4. Fighting Billy at the Pool – Season 3, Chapter 4: “The Sauna Test”
The kids suspect that Billy has been taken over by the Mind Flayer and come up with a plan to test their hypothesis. Luring him into the locker room at the pool, the kids trap him in the sauna. As the temperature increases, Billy becomes more agitated and reveals that their suspicions were correct. With super strength thanks to the Mind Flayer, Billy escapes the sauna. Eleven is the only one that stands a chance against him, and the two trade powerful attacks. Billy manages to overpower Eleven for a moment, and Eleven is saved in the nick of time when Mike bravely interrupts Billy’s chokehold on his girlfriend. Summoning what remains of her strength, Eleven psychically lifts a dumbbell and pushes Billy through a brick wall.
3. “She’s our friend and she’s crazy!” – Season 1, Chapter 6: “The Monster”
Seeking payback for being forced to wet himself in front of the entire school, Troy corners Mike and Dustin at Sattler Quarry. Troy holds a switchblade to Dustin’s mouth, threatening to take his teeth out if Mike doesn’t jump over the ledge into the water. Despite protests from Dustin and even Troy’s fellow bully James, Mike leaps to protect his friend. Much to everyone’s surprise, instead of plummeting to the murky water below, Mike floats safely back to the ledge.
An angry Eleven walks into view, shoving James to the ground and breaking Troy’s arm. As the two bullies run in fear, Dustin shouts, “Yeah that’s right! You better run! She’s our friend and she’s crazy!” Eleven never hesitates to unleash the more violent aspects of her powers in the name of protecting herself or the ones she loves.
2. Last Stand at Hawkins Middle School – Season 1, Chapter 8: “The Upside Down”
Eleven, Mike, Dustin, and Lucas are on their own at the school facing two different enemy forces. As they try to get to safety, the kids are surrounded by armed agents from Hawkins National Laboratory. With nowhere to go, it seems that their luck has finally run out. The flashlights begin to flicker as blood dribbles from every agent’s nose and eyes, followed by each agent collapsing to the floor.
Exhausted and having barely escaped Dr. Brenner, the boys carry Eleven to safety in a classroom. The Demogorgon finds them there and the boys quickly realize that they are woefully outmatched. Stepping in front of the boys and pushing Mike to safety, Eleven faces the Demogorgon alone. After turning to say, “Good-bye, Mike,” Eleven summons the last vestige of her strength and vanquishes the Demogorgon. She also appears to sacrifice herself in the process.
1. Closing the Portal – Season 2, Chapter 9: “The Gate”
Hopper and Eleven descend into the depths below Hawkins National Laboratory, coming face-to-face with the giant portal to the Upside Down. With the Mind Flayer exorcised from Will and the tunnels below the town on fire thanks to Steve, Dustin, Mike, Max, and Lucas, Eleven is told to shut the portal. Eleven recalls a lesson from her fellow test subject, Kali, and channels all of her pain and rage.
While the Mind Flayer’s essence reaches out to her, Eleven recalls the trials she was put through in the lab and the cruelty her mother faced as she tried to find. With bloodshot eyes and a bloody nose from the exertion, Eleven levitates as she successfully shuts the portal and saves the day.
Over the course of three seasons, Stranger Things fans have watched Eleven evolve, both in her powers and her personal growth. Thanks to her own resilience and the loved ones she has surrounded herself with, she is able to endure her traumatic past, devastating losses, and the inherent pressure that comes with being a psychically gifted adolescent. With two more seasons of Stranger Things to go, viewers can look forward to even more iconic moments from Eleven and her group of friends.
What’s your favorite moment featuring Eleven? Keep the conversation going over at side.show/geekgroup, and don’t forget to Let Your Geek Sideshow!