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Your priest, your postman, your teacher, the world at large. They won't believe any of this.

–Murray Bauman


Murray Bauman is a recurring character in the second season of Stranger Things. He is a private investigator who was hired by the Hollands to investigate their daughter's disappearance.

History

Background

Murray was originally an investigative journalist for the Chicago Sun-Times. At some point, he became a private investigator and was hired by Mr. and Mrs. Holland to investigate Barbara Holland's disappearance.

1984

On the morning of October 30, 1984, Murray met Jim Hopper outside the police station where he tried to convince Hopper of a Russian spy presence in Hawkins. Hopper initially dismissed him, but once he mentioned a theoretical “Russian girl with psionic abilities”, Hopper agreed to give Murray five minutes to talk.

Murray told Hopper of how he had spoken to a former Bradley's Big Buy employee who claimed to have witnessed a girl smash the front doors with only her mind. He also told of how a co-worker of Ted Wheeler said he claimed to have harbored a “Russian” girl with a shaved head in his basement, but later retracted this claim. These reports led Murray to believe that, not only were there Russian spies in Hawkins, but they were responsible for the disappearance of Barbara Holland. As Murray was talking, Hopper received a phone call and had to leave, cutting their time short.

Hoping to find a way to expose Hawkins National Laboratory, Nancy and Jonathan traveled to Murray's residence in Sesser, IL. After listening to their tape recording of Dr. Owens revealing the truth of what happened to Barb, Murray explained that though he believed their story the tape wouldn't be enough evidence as it could easily be destroyed. He then proposed to Nancy and Jonathan that they “water down” their story in order to make it more appealing to the public. After altering their story to say that Barb died from a chemical leak originating from the lab, they placed the evidence in several envelopes to be sent to the Chicago Sun-Times.

A month later, Murray watched as military personnel left the shutdown Hawkins National Laboratory.

Personality and Traits

Murray was a quirky, but vigilant jouranalist for the Chicago Sun-Times. Although an investigative journalist, Murray was always ignored by others due to his eccentric behavior and strange reports in solving investigations. After being hired by the Holland family to investigate their daughter's disappearance, he started working as an investigator, following over 200 tips to deduce Barbara Holland's whereabouts. While he's disgraced by most people, he was sure that the Hawkins National Laboratory was somehow responsible for the abnormal events occurring in Hawkins and the death of Barbara and was committed to uncovering the truth.

He was also shown to be very witty when he explained that the tape evidence provided by Nancy and Jonathan could easily be destroyed, but a modified one which was more believable to the public could expose the lab.

Memorable Quotes

  • "Those people... They're not wired like me and you, okay? They don't spend their lives trying to get a look at what's behind the curtain. They like the curtain."
  • "So, Jonathan.. how was the pull-out?"

Appearances

Season Two appearances
MADMAX Trick or Treat Freak The Pollywog
Will the Wise Dig Dug The Spy
The Lost Sister The Mind Flayer The Gate

Behind the scenes

The character was first revealed as a new addition to Season 2 in an article by The Hollywood Reporter on November 18, 2016, in which he was described as "a disgraced journalist-turned-conspiracy theorist who is investigating a cold case in Hawkins." It was announced that actor-comedian Brett Gelman had been cast to portray Bauman.[1]

An early iteration of Murray is mentioned in the original Montauk pilot script and the Montauk pitch book, the latter containing a short description of the character. The description reveals the character was originally envisioned as an “anti-social movie theatre projectionist and conspiracy theorist” resembling a serial killer, and would have played an important role in the story. The character was cut from the the first season because there was no room for his character.[2] Strangely, the character was originally named “Terry Ives”, the name that would later be given to Eleven’s mother.

Trivia

  • Out of all the main characters Murray has only met Hopper, Nancy and Jonathan.

References

  1. "'Stranger Things' Enlists Brett Gelman for Season 2 (Exclusive)The Hollywood Reporter. November 18, 2016.
  2. "The Duffer Brothers Recap Stranger Things 2, ‘Chapter Six: The Spy’"Vulture. November 6, 2017