Stranger Things and Elfen Lied

Much like everyone else who’s a Netflix addict, I recently binge-watched a show called ‘Stranger Things’. This is less of a review of these show and rather a comparison of an anime ‘Elfen Lied’, as I wanted to share my excitement about the similarities.


Stranger Things Plot Synopsis

‘In a small town where everyone knows everyone, a peculiar incident starts a chain of events that leads to the disappearance of a child – which begins to tear at the fabric of an otherwise peaceful community. Dark government agencies and seemingly malevolent supernatural forces converge on the town, while a few locals begin to understand that there’s more going on than meets the eye.’

I give every new show ‘the three-episode rule’ after episode 1 I was hooked.. slightly scared but hooked. The show is an amalgamation of all the good things about 80’s classics …as an apparent ‘oldie’ born in the 80’s, it was like being transported to my childhood…BRING BACK WALKIE-TALKIES!


Elfen Lied Plot Synopsis

Two university students come across a seemingly harmless girl named Lucy, unaware that she’s actually a mutant serial killer with a split personality.

I don’t know if it is too much to say this as I am still in the aftermath of the show but I feel like Elfen Lied is in my top 3 Animes of all time. The opening theme ‘Lilium’ is haunting and emotive much like the show.

So, from the synopsis of the show it doesn’t seem like they have much in common but from the first episode of Stranger Things I spotted common themes and scenes. Has anyone else noticed this?



Both characters have special abilities involving, telekinesis and psychic abilities.

Both of the main female characters are given numbers for their names and kept isolated from other people. This leads both these characters relying on older male figureheads for approval and love.

The older father figures manipulate this need for affection by experimenting on the special ‘abilities’ these girls have to create weapons for secret government factions.

This need for male approval may be the reason why they both bond with young males that they then feel the need to protect. They both open up to these male characters providing an insight in to the horrors that they have endured.

One of the main similarities is the dichotomy of the characters innocence combined with the darker aspects of their personalities leading to violence against those that come up against them.

The shows are different enough that I didn’t feel like I was watching the same show but I could definitely see a nod to Elfen Lied from Stranger Things. I’m sure there are similarities I’ve missed..let me know!

6 thoughts on “Stranger Things and Elfen Lied

      1. Yeah, I love anime, my boyfriend and I watch them instead of watching other things on TV, I think they’re way more interesting and cute (in some cases) 😀


  1. I haven’t watched Stranger Things yet but everyone’s been raving about it incessantly… I did watch Elfen Lied when I was younger (too young, in my opinion hahaha) and it still haunts me to this day.
    Great analysis! 🙂


  2. Actually, Eleven has elements of both Lucy and Nana. Also, the name ‘Eleven’ itself ties back to the original Elfenlied poem, wherein the Elf hears ‘Elf’ which is German for ‘Eleven’.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Elfen Lied and a mix of Akira with a touch of The Fury. I avoided watching Stranger Things until just now and cannot wait for season 2.


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