The DOE wants justice for Barb
Credit: Curtis Baker/Netflix
Stranger Things 2
  • TV Show
  • Netflix

From watching the sci-fi series Stranger Things, you might get the impression the Department of Energy is a sinister government agency conducting arcane research into parallel universes. As it turns out, you’d be only half-right.

In a playful tweet Thursday, the DOE revealed it is totally not evil and has a good sense of humor — it even wants justice for Barb.

The missive came in response to a Freedom of Information Act request filed by Lachlan Markay, a reporter for the Washington Free Beacon who was curious about the agency’s internal response to its villainous depiction on the Netflix series.

When Markay tweeted a photo of the stack of documents he received, the DOE replied, “No matter what you write, it won’t bring Barb back. #JusticeForBarb.” (For the uninitiated, Barb is an ill-fated but much-loved character played by Shannon Purser.)

As the tweet underscores, the DOE has been having some fun with its newfound infamy since Stranger Things premiered in July. A blog post published on the DOE website in August explained how the show’s portrayal of the agency is “a little less than accurate,” and Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz recently told Chelsea Handler his department does indeed study parallel universes.

The emails obtained by Markay also reveal several humorous and interesting internal reactions to the show. One staffer writes in an email, “We have to have a conversation about the sinister (yet awesome) portrayal of the DOE”; another complains about spoilers.

Naturally, some of the juiciest stuff appears to be redacted. In one largely blacked-out email, a DOE employee notes that “we actually do make weapons” and adds there’s “some really eyebrow-raising stuff” about human experiments in the history of the Atomic Energy Commission.

Read the documents at the Free Beacon.

Episode Recaps

Stranger Things 2
Stranger Things

Netflix’s hit sci-fi series follows a group of kids in the '80s battling supernatural forces in Hawkins, Ind.

  • TV Show
  • 3
  • 25
  • Matt Duffer
  • Ross Duffer
  • Netflix
stream service