D&D ‘Evil’ in Stranger Things: Ridiculous?
Is D&D ‘Evil’ in Stranger Things: Four Ridiculous?
I have seen criticism of this plot point online. Some say Jason Carver’s line of thinking is ridiculous. In a way, they are right. How can Jason Carver and all the townspeople be taking this Satanic cult stuff seriously?
Well let me tell you, the Satanism and D&D plot point is more than just realistic; it is actually based on true events. Yes indeed, the Duffer Brothers really did their research while looking into the 80s. And in that vein, I’ve done a bit of research of my own. So check this background information out, and if you like my site, please bookmark Dailysack.com.
James Dallas Egbert III
The first time that Dungeons and Dragons incited a moral panic was after the disappearance of James Dallas Egbert III (1962-1980), a computer science major. Egbert tried to kill himself via overdose and then disappeared; following the incident, his mother hired an investigator to get to the bottom of it.
How 1980s is this: the investigator found out that Egbert and his friends used to LARP “in the steam tunnels under the school” (source: Wikipedia).
The rest of Egbert’s story is actually quite tragic. He had a lot going on, and apparently got very little support. In the end, after several attempts, he successfully took his own life.
The investigator wrote about it in his book, The Dungeon Master.
The reaction in America was a moral panic. Books and movies emerged, capturing the imagination of the puritanical American conservative. None of it really settled down until the last decade or so.
I’ve done the research for you. Here are a couple of videos you may like.
D&D in Stranger Things was Most Likely Inspired by Specials like These
1. CBS 60 Minutes Dungeons and Dragons Interview
This interview came after the books and films stirred the pot all the way to the boiling point. But I’m putting it first so you can see how real the moral panic was at the time:
2. Mazes and Monsters (Tom Han1982, Tom Hanks)
Next, check out the first of the films about Evil and Dungeons & Dragons. It is 1982 TV movie Mazes and Monsters, starring Tom Hanks:
–Link removed, sorry–
3. Skullduggery (1983)
And how about this Canadian film about using D&D as a tool to turn a man into a serial killer, 1983’s Skullduggery:
I hope this helped explain a little more about how young Jason Carver of the Hawkins high school basketball team managed to whip up his whole town in a puritanical frenzy. For more on that topic, check out our article, All-American Boy to Corpse: Stranger Things’ Jason Carver.
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