Stranger Things and the Upside Down - Reel or Unreal Episode 13
Reel or UnReal Logo appears
Episode 13 appears
Introduction – Orbax begins speaking. Orbax is middle aged, bald with a ponytail at the back. A long curling moustache and a goatee. He is wearing a 3-piece grey plaid suit. He is situated in a Physics lab at the University of Guelph and speaks directly into the camera.
A montage of video clips from the show follows.
[Orbax] - The world of Stranger Things is full of all types of incredible and fantastical science and science fiction! But today what we're going to investigate on Reel or Unreal, is the science behind the upside down and parallel universes.
Video switches to a close-up of Orbax wearing goggles and twisting his moustache, then a text bubble over most of the screen, saying, “Define the Multi-verse.” Video then switches to Orbax in the lab with 3 Funko Pops of Stranger Things characters.
[Orbax] - The physics of the multiverse starts in quantum physics.
We all remember this story from quantum physics of the cat in the box.
A black and white animation outlining the Schrödinger’s cat thought experiment plays and then the video switches back to Orbax in the lab.
[Orbax] - Is it alive or is it dead?
[Orbax] - In one interpretation, the cat is both alive and dead.
Until we open the box.
While we look inside the box, we see that the cat is hopefully alive and all of that existence, all of that reality, functions as if that cat was alive.
Now there's another interpretation.
A black and white animation outlining the other interpretation of the Schrödinger’s cat thought experiment plays and then the video switches back to Orbax in the lab.
In this one, we open the box and find that the cat's alive.
But in a parallel universe, that cat is actually dead.
And this occurs for every interaction, every decision, everything that happens in this world.
Another world shatters off where all the other options are possible.
And another world shatters off with even more options.
And there are infinite versions of this reality.
This is the Multi-World Theorem, and this is what the upside down is.
Video switches to a close-up of Orbax wearing goggles and twisting his moustache, then a text bubble over most of the screen, saying, “Could energy from one dimension to another transfer? Communicate?” Video then switches back to Orbax in the lab.
[Orbax] - In the latest season of Stranger Things, we see constant movement back and forth between the upside down and our reality. The upside down and our reality.
Can you actually move back and forth between these multiple worlds?
Well, the answer is no.
When something happens in this multi world theory, when something happens in our world, we continue along in that reality, as does the reality beside us, as is the reality beside that, as is the reality beside that.
But maybe the way to think about this starts in the idea of String Theory.
There's the analogy of the acrobat and the flea.
A slide and animation illustrating the idea of the acrobat and the flea appears on screen
[Orbax] - The acrobat walks along a tightrope and in so, has one dimension in which they can move forwards and backwards, whereas the flea on the same tightrope can walk up and down the sides, spiral around and have many more dimensions of movement while still experiencing the same reality.
And perhaps that's the best way to think about the upside down rather than going through different worlds. Perhaps you can meet creatures that can move in different dimensions through our same reality.
Video switches to a close-up of Orbax wearing goggles and twisting his moustache, then a text bubble over most of the screen, saying, “So what would the upside down look like? Is it actually upside down?” A video clip from the series showing the characters in the upside down is shown and the Video then switches back to Orbax in the lab.
[Orbax] - So the question is, is the upside down actually upside down?
And the answer is no.
Of course not.
Not even real place.
It would be right side up if you're in it. Right?
The video of Orbax appears upside down and then return back to right side up
[Orbax] - But that's the thing.
The science behind Stranger Things is pretty good.
It's self-consistent within the logic of the show itself, although the ideas are pretty fantastical and definitely lend a lot more to being unreal instead of being real.
Unreal appears across the screen, and the video transitions to a clip from the show in the upside down, the Reel or Unreal logo appears, followed by the University of Guelph logo and tag line Improve Life
Video cuts back to the lab where Orbax has a hand puppet of one of the Stranger Things monsters
[Orbax using a funny high voice] - Hey, have you seen my friend Barb around?
I've been trying to find her and one can see her.
No, I haven't seen her.
Orbax removes one of the Funko Pop figures.