Stranger Things: 10 Quotes That Perfectly Sum Up Dustin As A Character

With its seminal fourth season this past summer Stranger Things returned to dominate again as one of Netflix’s paragon series. That is until the recent release of Wednesday which broke the company’s record for most hours viewed in a single week. However, Stranger Things still triumphs over Wednesday in many regards especially when it comes to the memorability and depth of the main characters. Particularly, there’s no one like Dustin Henderson in Wednesday.

Played by Gaten Matarazzo, Dustin is one of the purest and most developed characters in Stranger Things. He’s a reliable source of comedic relief from early on, yet as demonstrated several times, he’s not been relegated to that role, and he’s had his share of deeply intimate and emotional moments. His distinct quirks, bold and personable nature, and unique intelligence are on full display throughout Stranger Things and these quotes, in particular, emulate what really makes Dustin, Dustin.

“Never Tell Me The Odds.”

“Chapter One: The Hellfire Club” (S4, E1)

One thing that Dustin is never lacking is self-confidence. Whether dealing with deadly monsters from an alternate dimension to the stakes of a game of Dungeons and Dragons, his bold personality is always on display. Here, he’s reacting to being told there’s little chance for success in surviving their attack against Vecna in their campaign, and of course, he’d never pass up the chance to quote a hero of his, Han Solo.

This quote does double duty in demonstrating who Dustin is, both emulating his boldness in the face of daunting odds and his proclivity for pop culture. As for the former, that’s what makes Dustin such an enjoyable character to watch. Despite the odds, he’s ready to fight.

“Oh My God!” / “Sh*t!”

“Chapter Two: The Weirdo On Maple Street”

While he might have self-confidence in excess at times throughout Stranger Things, Dustin doesn’t always showcase self-control. He does tend to panic if he hasn’t thoroughly thought things as demonstrated in some very funny memes. When that happens he’s usually saying one of two things on repeat – “oh my god!” and “sh*t”.

The latter came as the character grew up, and overall, while funny at the moment, these reactions are highly relatable. Likely, this is exactly how most people would react to getting chased and hunted relentlessly by monsters, bullies, and the like.

“How Many Times Do I Have To Be Right On The Money Before You Trust Me?”

“Chapter Seven: The Massacre at Hawkins Lab” (S4, E7)

Dustin doesn’t only play Dungeons & Dragons religiously, he has also used the game and elements of its various characters, lore, and gameplay to understand the Upside Down. It’s where the names for the Demogorgon, Mind Flayer, and Vecna all come from, and it shows his unique intuition and intelligence.

Overall, like in this quote, Dustin is often a voice of logic, instrumental in helping others understand what they’re up against, although his strange contextualization isn’t always well received.

“We Are Nerds And Freaks.”

“Chapter One: The Hellfire Club” (S4, E1)

Middle school and high school can be difficult times for many teenagers, especially if they are outcasts of sorts, yet Dustin isn’t trying to change who he is or what he likes for the benefit of popularity. That’s a difference between him and Lucas at the beginning of season four as Lucas had joined the basketball team and acted ashamed of their nerdiness.

While his response to Lucas is simple and matter-of-fact, this does showcase his self-assuredness and a sense of maturity beyond his years. He doesn’t see any reason to change who he is, rather embracing it like a badge of honor. That’s also demonstrated when he talked with Steve and calls popularity a “primitive construct”.

“I Am On A Curiosity Voyage And I Need My Paddles To Travel.”

“Chapter Three: The Pollywog” (S2, E3)

Dustin is quite clever and quippy, and as such he’s provided quotes that prove he’s the smartest in most situations throughout Stranger Things. In this moment, he’s trying to learn more about Dart, his new amphibious demo-dog pet, but the local librarian wasn’t allowing him to check out his desired books, to which he responds with this clever analogy, calling the books his paddles.

As demonstrated already in his contextualization of the Upside Down, Dustin has such a witty way of thinking. This is something only Dustin could say with truth and confidence. Plus, this moment is made all the funnier when he steals the book and runs away shouting “I need my paddles!”

“No! No! If You Die, I Die!”

“Chapter Four: The Sauna Test” (S3, E4)

One of Dustin’s most defining qualities lies in his friendship with Steve Harrington. Following season one, no one could’ve expected that he and Steve would be the best duo on the show by the start of season three. With other quotes, this best showcases Steve and Dustin’s deep connection, but delving deeper, it also emulates overall how loyal of a friend Dustin is.

He’s all in and won’t abandon a friend, no matter what. Whether they’re facing down the threat of a Demogorgon as in season one or it’s just Steve opening a box that definitely doesn’t contain a bomb, if one of his friends is in danger, Dustin would rather be right there, in the thick of it with them than run away.

“You’re Just Jealous ‘Cause I Have Another Older Male Friend.”

“Chapter One: The Hellfire Club” (S4, E1)

As good friends, he and Steve often poke fun at each other, especially when it encounters a new obstacle with the introduction of Eddie “The Freak” Munson in season 4. Dustin was hoping to persuade Steve to join their latest Dungeons & Dragons campaign, to which Steve naturally declined. So, Dustin jokingly volleyed the barb that he’s found someone to replace Steve

Dustin was “right on the money” in a way. Both Steve and Eddie were somewhat jealous of each other and their respective relationship with Dustin, showing how even in a joking quip, Dustin’s pretty self-aware. It’s a shame that their budding friendship was cut short by Eddie’s heroic death in the season finale.

“Okay, It’s Official. I’m Never Having Kids.”

“Chapter Seven: The Bite” (S3, E7)

One of the funniest moments in season 3 came as a result of Steve and Robin being tortured and drugged by the Russians. After escaping it was up to Dustin and Erica to protect them, but they didn’t make their jobs easy, constantly running around the mall. That’s what led to this hilarious comment.

It’s nothing too groundbreaking or defining, but it’s a good encapsulation of his role in Stranger Things as a comedic character. Compared to the likes of Will or Mike, Dustin does help provide some very welcome levity.

“She Will Not Be Able To Resist These Pearls.”

“Chapter One: Madmax” (S2, E1)

While there might be some unpopular opinions about Dustin among fans, one thing can’t be denied – he often exudes charisma and confidence. When they first meet Max and understand their interest in girls, he said this to express how he thinks she’d react to him flirting. While he wasn’t right in this case, as she ended up with Lucas, Dustin still oozes charm.

Of course, this moment is tied with Dustin’s, and Gaten Matarazzo’s real-life cleidocranial dysplasia that has affected his teeth growth. It was incorporated into the character’s life as well, as shown in season one, so this was a nice way to show how things had changed by the time of season 2.

“Touch My Butt, I Don’t Care!”

“Chapter Four: The Sauna Test” (S3, E4)

Thanks to his confidence and self-assuredness, Dustin has no problem being direct when speaking. That’s the case here when he needed Steve to push him through the tight vent in the mall. Without a second’s hesitation, Dustin shouts at him to push him by touching his butt.

​​​​​​Of course, this moment was for the laughs, but it does also showcase his connection and trust with Steve. Dustin probably wouldn’t have said that if it were Max, Eleven, or one of the adults. There’re a select few characters he’d trust in such a situation and Steve is going to be at the top of that list.







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