Stranger Things Says Younger Castmates Are Oversexualized by the Media

Stranger Things has grown into a cultural phenomenon since it first debuted in 2016, with its mix of '80s nostalgia and a talented ensemble cast quickly resonating with viewers. As the series has aired multiple other seasons, and a fourth one is on the way, the star power and prominence of its cast and crew has only grown. Of course, that can naturally have some downsides -- some of which series star Natalia Dyer is speaking out about. In a recent interview with The Independent, Dyer spoke about the worldwide fame that she and her co-stars endured, including the fact that some of her younger costars have been sexualized in the media, despite being minors.

“There are so many layers going on here,” Dyer explained. “I generally feel like, to me, it’s oversexualising them. I feel protective over the younger kids even though they’re not kids anymore, they’re teens. They’re all great people and all having to grow up in very crazy circumstances. As a private person, I just feel like, leave people alone – unless you’re talking about their work or what they want to talk about. It’s a very tricky and complex issue.”

“[Sexualizing young actors is] a cultural issue, there must be a bigger concept behind it as to why," Dyer explained. "Just let people be the people that they are, without any judgement.”

Dyer isn't the only Stranger Things cast member to speak out about this trend, with Eleven actress Millie Bobby Brown calling out the "inappropriate comments and sexualization" she has been subjected to. Finn Wolfhard, who plays Mike Wheeler on the series, has also spoken publicly about suggestive or sexual comments he has received from adult fans.

Even on a broader scale, Dyer says that the immense fame of Stranger Things came as a surprise to the film's cast, especially as they had only been provided one day of PR training about “how to bridge around questions and avoid giving spoilers”.

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'No one had any idea how successful the show would be,” Dyer explained. “There was no preparation – there couldn’t have been, even if we’d known. It was a surprising and overwhelming shock. Then it was like, ‘OK, this is how it is now’.”

Stranger Things' fourth season has been halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. ComicBook.com will provide any updates about its release as they come about.