Netflix still isn’t ready to show us anything from Season 2 of Stranger Things, but on this All Hallow’s Eve night, they did provide us with something: a supposed “archival newsreel from 5 WIYZ Hawkins, Indiana.” This should put those complaints about Barb’s disappearance being unnoticed to rest; if this is canon, it made the news. It’s odd, however, that a case of Eggo theft by a 12-year-old girl was deemed huge enough to be the next top story.
Whenever I see things like this done, my eye goes first to the simulated tape effects and how close they come to an actual VHS recording from the era. Making it look authentic should be as simple as using a working VCR and a standard-definition camcorder. There are still plenty of both sitting around in thrift shops, so whenever I see a digital HD picture being filtered down with various tricks, and looking somewhat off and obviously faked, I never understand why.
This time, I think they did a good job. This looks pretty close to a real 1983 recording, presentation-wise…..enough that I can’t tell if they used a real VHS tape or not. However, they ruined the illusion with the graphical glitches they edited into the program every so often, which don’t feel like the kind VHS was actually prone to making.
I’ll give the video another point, however, for doing their research on the use of CGI in local news logos around the early 80s. Contrary to what anyone who wasn’t around might think, the use of CG was commonplace. But due to the time period, it was all very simple-looking….as it is here.