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Why so sensitive, Harrington? Afraid of losing cool points to a 10-year-old child?

–Robin Buckley, July 4, 1985


Robin Buckley[1] is a main character introduced in the third season of Stranger Things. She worked at Scoops Ahoy located in the Starcourt Mall alongside Steve Harrington. She is portrayed by Maya Hawke.

As a former classmate of Steve Harrington, Robin started working with at Scoops Ahoy located in Starcourt Mall in the summer of 1985. Robin enjoyed mocking Steve as she harbored some jealousy towards him during high school because her crush, Tammy Thompson was attracted to him. When hearing that Dustin Henderson intercepted a secret Russian transmission, Robin helped them translate the message and discover there were Russians in Hawkins, working underneath the mall. With Steve, Dustin, and Erica Sinclair, Robin would slowly start to discover the paranormal activity that the Russians were working on with a Key, opening a Gate. During this time, Robin would form a friendship with Steve and reveal her sexuality to him. Robin would also help the rest of Dustin's friends battle against the Mind Flayer before the gate was closed by Joyce Byers. Three months later, Robin continued to remain friends with Steve as they looked for new jobs at Family Video.

History

Background

Robin lived in Hawkins, attending Hawkins High as a teenager. By 1985, Robin had been in band for 12 years and achieved fluency in French, Italian, and Spanish.

She sat behind Steve Harrington in one of her classes and noticed him being late every Tuesday and Thursday. The main thing she noticed about his presence in class wasn't him, but the fact that her crush, Tammy Thompson, couldn't take her eyes off of Steve, which made her jealous.

1985

When the Starcourt Mall opened in 1985, Robin got a job at the Scoops Ahoy. Steve Harrington also got work there, but the two initially didn't get along very well. When Steve's friends Mike Wheeler, Lucas Sinclair, Max Mayfield, and Will Byers arrived at Scoops Ahoy, Robin informed him. The next day, when Steve repeatedly attempted to (unsuccessfully) pick up dates while on the job, Robin poked fun at him, running a tally of his successes and failures on a whiteboard labeled "You rule; You suck" while calling him a "dingus". When Steve again tried to pick up another date, Robin, in disgust, put another tally under "You suck" board behind Steve's back. 

Personality

Robin is first seen to be somewhat sassy and sarcastic towards Steve alongside him while working at Scoops Ahoy.  She often teases Steve for his attempts of flirting, his friendships and just about anything else. Robin doesn't hesitate to sass any of the customers she has issues with either, such as Erica Sinclair.  Robin is often heard saying snarky remarks toward Steve and Dustin when they are trying to figure out the code that was overheard from Dustin's Cerebro until the boys allow her to help them decode it. She enthusiastically offers help translating Russian as she has a knack for picking up languages, being fluent in French, Italian, Spanish and has been in band reading sheet music for 12 years. Eventually, she figures out not only read and speak Russian but also cracks the code and proves that she is quite intelligent academically.  

Robin uses her snark as a way of protecting herself. When she and Steve are caught by the Russians, Robin reveals she has faced adversity because of her differences. She has become street smart because of her past, which helps her to think of a plan to break free from the Russians - though it ultimately fails. She is somewhat impulsive and yet brave, as shown when she spits on the face of one of their Russian captors.  

Later, Robin reveals to Steve, after he expressed his feelings to her, that she is a lesbian.  She explains that when she previously said she noticed him in class, it wasn't because she liked him, it was because Tammy Thompson liked him and she wanted Tammy to look at her the same way. Evidently, this is very hard for Robin to admit because she's afraid of what it might mean for the friendship between her and Steve. Steve however accepts this of Robin and the two go to help the kids fight the Mind Flayer. She becomes protective of the children and is willing to help them in any means necessary.  

Relationships

Non-Familial

Robin and Steve attended Hawkins High School together. Robin was aware of him and his reputation as a popular kid, but due to her lesser degree of popularity, Steve didn’t know of or speak to her. She was jealous of the attention he effortlessly attracted from their female classmates.

The two met properly when they were both hired for a summer job at Scoops Ahoy. Robin would often tease Steve for his attempts at flirting, but her comments failed to discourage him. Their relationship gradually grew more friendly as they worked together to uncover the Russian plot. While held captive for their interrogation by the Russians, Robin and Steve are clearly seen to care about each other’s well-being and enjoy each other’s company, talking and laughing together while alone. Once rescued, the duo share an emotional moment on a bathroom floor where Steve confesses his feelings for her and Robin comes out to him as a lesbian. Though surprised for a moment, Steve accepts Robin for who she is. They remain best friends after the battle of Starcourt Mall and are seen three months later getting a new job at Family Video together.

Erica Sinclair was a frequent customer of Scoops Ahoy who annoyed Robin as she kept asking for samples of different flavors of ice cream. However, when Dustin couldn't fit into the air vents to get to the secret room at the mall, Robin asked for Erica's help as she was small enough to fit in through the vent. Erica, agreed to help, on the condition that she gets free ice cream for life, which Robin accepted. As Erica climbed through the vent, Robin guided Erica to the secret room and seemed relieved when Erica made it out of the vent and entered the room safe and sound. When trapped in the secret Russian base underneath Starcourt, Robin helped Erica and Dustin escape when they were spotted by Russians, leaving Robin and Steve to be captured. However, Erica and Dustin managed to come to their rescue and escape the base together, protecting the older teens as they were drugged with truth serum until they were cured. Both Robin and Erica continued to work together in helping stop the Mind Flayer.

Robin first met Dustin Henderson when he and Steve greeted each other after the latter returned from Camp Know Where, asking Steve how many children he was friends with. When Robin overheard Dustin revealing to Steve that he intercepted a secret Russian transmission, Robin offered to help translate, revealing her fluency in several different languages, which Dustin accepts. As they worked together in deciphering the Russian code and discovering the Russians were in Hawkins, Robin would form a friendship with Dustin. Before she and Steve were captured by the Russians, she made sure Dustin and Erica were able to escape. However, Dustin and Erica came to their rescue and escape the base together where Dustin protected and cared for Robin after she and Steve were drugged with truth serum until they were cured. The two later continued working together in stopping Mind Flayer with Robin promising to stay in touch with him. When Dustin confirmed his girlfriend's existence, Robin was shocked and amazed at this.

Tammy Thompson

Robin and Tammy shared a History class together in high school. Robin had a crush on her, but Tammy was far more interested in Steve Harrington to notice. This was incredibly frustrating for Robin.

Abilities

Robin is very intelligent and has fluency over four languages such as Spanish, French, Italian, and pig Latin. When listening to a Russian transmission, Robin is able translate and learn the language, showing her capability in learning a new language and picking up small clues that relates to the Russian message, showing she is academically intelligent. Her intelligence is also street-wise as she's able to quickly gain ideas whether they work or not.

Robin is also skilled in biking, soccer, and band as she's been in it for twelve years.

Appearances

Season Three appearances
Suzie, Do You Copy? The Mall Rats The Case of the Missing Lifeguard The Sauna Test
The Flayed E Pluribus Unum The Bite The Battle of Starcourt

Memorable quotes

"Hey dingus! Your children are here."
Robin to Steve, "Suzie, Do You Copy?"
"I can't believe I'm gonna die in a secret Russian base with Steve 'The Hair' Harrington."
Robin to Steve, “E Pluribus Unum
"Tammy Thompson. I wanted her to look at me."
Robin to Steve, "The Bite"
“How many children are you friends with?”
Robin to Steve, “The Mall Rats
“We all die my strange little child friend. It’s all a matter of how... and when.”
Robin to Dustin, “The Bite


Behind the scenes

Her character was first revealed on March 2, 2018 when it was announced that she would be portrayed by actress Maya Thurman Hawke. Her character was described as "an alternative girl who is equal parts sharp and playful. Bored with her mundane day job, she just wants a little excitement in her life… and gets more than she bargained for when she uncovers a dark secret in Hawkins."[2]

Trivia

  • She is a lesbian, making her the first confirmed LGBTQ+ character on the show. [3]
  • Robin is the first older teenager to be seen riding a bike.
  • She has been in band for 12 years.
  • She plays soccer.
  • Robin's three favorite movies are The Apartment, The Hidden Fortress, and Children of Paradise.
  • Robin does not like doctors.

Gallery

View Gallery For this subject's gallery, see Robin Buckley/Gallery.


References

  1. Robin's last name was revealed on the ST writers' twitter account through a series of images
  2. "Stranger Things 3 to bring back season 2 breakout and add new mysterious character" Entertainment Weekly. March 2, 2018
  3. "Stranger Things: Maya Hawke Pulls the Curtain Back on Season 3 Breakout Role" The Hollywood Reporter. July 4, 2019
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