Image: Netflix

Though it easily could have become an overly-reverential love letter to ‘80s movies, the Duffer brothers, who co-created Stranger Things, took special care to strike a balance between nostalgic dreaminess for the past and a sharp, novel take the various genres the series was clearly influenced by.

In a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the Duffers took the time to reflect on what all went into the production of Stranger Things’ first season and what surprised them most about the show that, at the time, had very little buzz associated with it.

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While Netflix was always largely supportive of the voice of the writers’ room, Ross Duffer, when asked what he most surprised by, said it was making Eleven killing machine onscreen:

I still can’t believe we got away with …

ROSS Having Eleven kill multiple adults over the course of the season. She’s technically a mass murderer. But they all deserved it.

Yes, Eleven does spend most of Stranger Things running from an organization of nefarious adults who want to experiment on her so, as Ross said, it’s not like she’s entirely unjustified in her actions. Eleven’s just trying to live her life, you know? Don’t start nothin, won’t be nothin.

Stranger Things returns for a second season on October 27th.